Knock Knock

we tread this earth, green and brown

finite years of life’s countdown

crawl, walk, run, and play

skip, hop, swoon, and sway

egg to fetus; baby to child

adolescence, puberty, teens gone wild

twenties, thirties, forties, and more

the time clock ticks and keeps the score

we laugh and cry in joy and sorrow

always thinking there is tomorrow

killing, dying, violence, abuse

intolerance, slander, what’s the use?

our finite time we waste with hate

malice, gossip, lies that bait

i am right; you are wrong

you don’t matter; move along

look to the right, look to the left

pick a side or better yet

just put on the blinders; through that tunnel gaze

where peripheral’s just a word in books these days

open wide; be sure to swallow

what’s left un-sown from minds gone fallow

what’s wrong with us??  we’re going back

to when right was white and wrong was black

to fists and rocks and shoot to kill

our ‘sticks & stones’ now break things at will

when did debate become the place

to harass, harangue, inflame the base?

so trump’s a troll and cruz a liar?

clinton, sanders; fantasy cryers?

no proof – just say it -the same thing, right?

who cares for truth, it’s about the fight

well I am sorry for my nation

we’ll reap what we’re sow, this fear, our creation

we live in a country where anything goes

our music and tv; our poetry and prose

clothing, vehicles, make up, and hair

tattoos and nose rings everywhere

why not the same for politics and life choices?

why now are fear and hate the loud voices?

not just of the people; too those that govern

bottom to top, we act like a coven

of witches and bitches and wizards and dicks

if you believe it, we’re screwed, no matter the pick

I’m not naive – nothing I do matters

I’ll be just as covered as you with blood spatters

but for me, it’s the end of all this hate speech

I have my opinions and they’re not there to preach

you do what you want to or have to, for sure

but stop at MY threshold and knock on my door

if I let you in, then I’m saying I’ll listen

I may not agree, but a friend you’ll be christened

up and until or IF you decide

that I need a lesson in choosing sides

do you remember that threshold you crossed?

then just head back that way…you’re outta here ol’ hoss!

More or Less is More of Less…only MoreSo

Civilization at the end of 2015

• Our Phones – Wireless
• Cooking – Fireless
• Cars – Keyless
• Food – Fatless
• Tires –Tubeless
• Dress – Sleeveless
• Youth – Jobless
• Leaders – Shameless
• Relationships – Meaningless
• Attitudes – Careless
• Babies – Fatherless
• Feelings – Heartless
• Education – Valueless
• Children – Mannerless
• Country – Godless

We are – SPEECHLESS

Government is – CLUELESS

And our Politicians are – WORTHLESS

I am scared – Shitless!

Ain’t it just – PRICELESS?

old

The Post Politic

As I await the dawn of my 20,075th day on this earth, I feel the need for reflection.  Time enough alive, I should think, to have learned a thing or two. Sorry to say, it hasn’t been all good.

However, owing to the fact that tomorrow is an election day here, and the boob-tube shows nothing but boobs…I couldn’t help but get stuck in the quagmire that is our government

Having learned that cliches are cliches, and euphemisms are euphemisms for good reason, and never more evident than when a pattern of behavior BEGS to be seen for exactly what it is, I do think it’s time for me to call it what it is and like I see it…
B U L L S H I T

And by bullshit, I mean Politics

If you’ll allow, I give you:

The top 20 cliches and euphemisms of this 20,074 ½ day old female, who believes are alive and well in today’s bloody, rotten, stinkin’, crappy, silly, non-productive, infuriating, ridiculous, embarrassing; yet ours…world of politics

The more things change, the more they stay the same – POLITICS

A house divided against itself, cannot stand – POLITICS

Actions speak louder than words – POLITICS

Those who do not learn from history, are doomed to repeat it – POLITICS

If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em – POLITICS

Money talks – POLITICS

Stupid is as stupid does – POLITICS

Birds of a feather flock together – POLITICS

Talk is cheap – POLITICS

The ends justify the means – POLITICS

There’s one born every minute – POLITICS

The truth is stranger than fiction – POLITICS

Two wrongs don’t make a right – POLITICS

Cut off your nose to spite your face – POLITICS

Feeding frenzy – POLITICS

Out of sight, out of mind – POLITICS

The blind leading the blind – POLITICS

The status quo – POLITICS

It takes one to know one – POLITICS

A good man/woman  is hard to find – POLITICS

…and trust me, I could go on


But another pattern of behavior ‘frosts my ass’ too.   And you’ll likely notice that many of the above can be applied to what is below

I think I’ll call it the Tolerance/Intolerance Side Show to the circus that is Political Correctness:

Protesting to rename highways, parks, etc., and trying to remove monuments that celebrate confederate Generals because they fought a fight you don’t agree with

Yet…organizing campaigns to rename those same said highways, parks, etc. for people that answered the call for civil rights decades after the fact. The same protesters, I might add, who themselves never cried out for the removal from written history, all who made their lives hell

Removing the Confederate flag from all state and federal facilities because some see it as a symbol of hatred, when in fact, it was a battle flag designed to differentiate it from the Union flag and therefore has historical value; nothing more

Yet, not protesting when a world renowned symbol of the United States, The Empire State Building, is used to herald the achievements or celebrate holidays of the very countries that would like nothing more than to see the United States cease to exist

Removing something as iconic as The Duke’s of Hazard from TV Land because the car had a Confederate flag on it, even though not a single word of a single episode, ever suggested bigotry or racism or intolerance

Yet, if you’re a fan of TV Land programs, have you noticed George Jefferson says the word Honky in just about every episode?


And there are some behaviors that are not so easily categorized, yet the influence of today’s PC madness is evident in the overwhelming number of those who ascribe to these beliefs relating to color:

Listening as people of color tell me that I’ll never understand, could never relate, to what it’s like to be a person of color

True.  Yet at the same time, those said same people of color, tell me they know exactly what it is to be white, because being white means only one thing; privilege

[I get it, in theory.  But I can just as easily say that I wouldn’t know what it’s like to be a bird. It’s irrelevant.  And, another truth is that, unless you’ve walked the back roads of my life…your right to this claim is false.  So let’s stick to the truth that none of us can know what it’s like to be in another man’s shoes, unless we’ve walked in them, and call it a day.]

Sanitizing our history books to shield our kids from the worst in our country’s history, including the path of our growth (that we are still on by the way)

Yet making sure we do include a focus of study that tries to maximize a culture of them vs us, with little regard for how far we’ve come, nor teachings on the strides made in the last 200 years…as though nothing has changed


The worst of it comes out in the various ways we bite each other’s ankles…and to what end?

For instance:

Demonizing the rich for having too much

Denigrating the poor for having too little and needing more

Expecting the government to give more and more

Blaming the government for sticking it’s nose in our business

Tolerance for groups that separate and segregate

Intolerance for groups that point it out

Fighting for women’s equality

Crying that chivalry is dead

Calling for change through peaceful protest for the injustices seen in all facets of the human struggle, especially those affecting minorities

Yet some especially touched by these injustices hide behind a guise of protest for change, take it as the opportunity to loot for personal gain and destroy entire neighborhoods, then scream racism when motives are questioned


Are we so intolerant or jealous of each other’s success that we have to denigrate and belittle?
Are we so comfortable in our misery, we feel we must maintain it at all costs?
Have we forgotten what it’s like to celebrate each other to the point that every gain should be looked at as a loss because it didn’t happen 200 years ago?  100 years ago?  50?  Yesterday?

When all we have to show for the 3 centuries we’ve been a country are broken teeth and bloody socks…why the hell do we even try?


Is this to be our legacy…?

Welcome to the United States

The land of equal opportunity damning

Damned if we do

And by God

Damned if we don’t


Is the only way to prove I’m not a racist to agree with everything a person of color says and thinks?

Why?  Why can I not just agree and disagree with anyone and everyone based on what I believe and be done with it!

Conversely, is the only way to be true to your heritage as a person of color to pretend success doesn’t matter lest your peers think you an Uncle Tom or some other stupid shit?

That’s ridiculous on its face and damned insulting to every person who’s ever made more of themselves than those around them!  REGARDLESS of your heritage.

Is the only way I can prove I’m a strong woman to think and act like a man?

Shit, I’d rather be a cat (I almost said dog, but cats get away with more!)


We are better than this!

We…men, women, black, white, red, yellow, brown, HUMAN…are better than this!

This began as a reflection in the wading pool that is this political swamp, but resulted in getting caught in the current of political correctness, and nearly drowning in the tidal wave of whatthefuckarewethinking!

Enough already!

Just

Enough


I end it here…I am 55 tomorrow.
I am seeing the country I love implode because of an agenda I have no interest in adopting as my own.

I am proud to be an American.
I am proud to be a Christian.
I am proud to hold the values I hold and don’t feel the need to label them one way or the other.
I am proud to be a woman.
I hold no pride in being white…I have ZERO say in that.
Nor do I maintain guilt because of it.
I am proud to champion anyone who leaves the world a better place.
I don’t see the race or religion.
I could care two-shits for the land that you hailed from as long as you take good care of the one you are living in.
I will celebrate your achievements, but none so much as your paying forward that which you can to those that cannot.

I am a member of one race – the human one – and unless you expect me to give that up – I’ll always welcome you at my table

THIS…IS WHAT I WILL ALWAYS BE

(Bird) Food for Thought?

An Analogy to chew on…
bird feeder

I bought a bird feeder…I hung it on my back porch and filled it with seed.

What a beauty of a bird feeder it was I thought…as I filled it lovingly with seed.

Within a week, there were hundreds of birds taking advantage of the continuous flow of free and easily accessible food.

But then the birds started building nests in the boards of the patio, above the table, and next to the barbecue.

Then came the poop. It was everywhere: on the patio tile, the chairs, the table ……everywhere!

Then some of the birds turned mean.

They would dive bomb me and try to peck me even though I had fed them out of my own pocket.

And others birds were boisterous and loud.

They sat on the feeder and squawked and screamed at all hours of the day and night and demanded that I fill it and refill it, then refill it some more.

After a while, sadly, I couldn’t even sit on my own back porch anymore.

So I took down the bird feeder and in three days, the birds were gone.

I cleaned up their mess and took down the many nests they had built all over the patio.

Soon, the back yard was like it used to be …quiet, serene…and no one demanding their rights to a free meal.

The analogy?

Well, let’s see…our government gives out free food, subsidized housing, free medical care, free education, and allows anyone born here to be an automatic citizen.  Programs apparently so important to some running our government, that they hide them or piggy-back them on the shoulders of other programs that are paramount to our country’s health and well-being, so that we, the voters, don’t know about them and don’t have a say in their passing.

Illegals (notice I said “ILLEGALS”) came by the tens of thousands.

Suddenly our taxes went up to pay for free services; small apartments are housing 5 families; you have to wait 6 hours to be seen by an emergency room doctor; your child’s second grade class is behind other schools because over half the class doesn’t speak English.  

Corn Flakes now come in a bilingual box; I have to ‘press one ‘ to hear my bank talk to me in English, and people waving flags other than “ours” are squawking and screaming in the streets, demanding more rights and free liberties.

As I said…just my opinion…but maybe it’s time for the government to take down the bird feeder.

If you agree, speak up.  Help make it less necessary for the government to step in by stepping in yourself.  Donate to your local food banks, volunteer in your communities, donate your time or money helping the homeless, vote to reform immigration, or write your congressmen to stop ignoring the illegal immigration problem by making it less attractive to be illegal.

If not, just continue cleaning up the poop!


A personal note:

I am a huge proponent of immigration.

Just as, I am as huge an opponent of illegal immigration being ignored or treated as though it’s a legitimate path to citizenship based on the number of years you’ve been here (illegally)!

We, like every country in the world, have immigration laws.

We, UNLIKE every country in the world, have forgotten to enforce our immigration laws.

Instead, we make excuses and allowances for those who break the law, for as long as these choices promote one political ideology as humane and the other as intolerant, it will remain so.

I am Pro-America!

That fact alone seems to paint me as racist, bigoted, and anti-immigration.

I am none of those things.

I am Pro-Immigration!

If you want to come here to live in freedom, then do it LEGALLY and I’ll welcome you with open arms!

I am Pro-I don’t give two shits where you came from, but you’re in America now, so be a proud American!

Not African-American, Asian-American, Mexican-American, Russian-American, Somali-American…you are American of “African, Asian, Mexican, Russian, Somalian…” decent.  Like all of us.  EVERY ONE of us came from somewhere…what we now have in common is being American!

I am Pro-Keep your culture as long as you understand you are adding to America’s, not removing ours to make room for yours.

Add to our Land of the Free and Home of the Brave instead of trying to remake us into your Land of the Oppressed and Home of the Voiceless.

You came here.

I did not go there

You want to re-create your culture here at the expense of MINE by believing I must accept YOURS while you do not have to ACCEPT mine?

Why did you come here?

You want to live and breathe the country and culture you left behind, without embracing the one that took you in?

Why did you come here?

Many say Americans are arrogant and full of themselves.

Maybe we are, but how many Americans would you suppose, relocate or repatriate to other countries and make it their MISSION to change that culture to one that mirrors what they left behind?

The beauty of an immigrant rich society is what is added to our melting pot, not what is taken out.

 

Good Analogy or Same Ol’ Shit Politics? YOU answer that for yourselves

For me, I think the commentary below is a damned good analogy for Obama-care…aka The Affordable Care Act.

Yeah me, the ‘so-called’ middle class…the one who is now paying more than twice the cost for less than half the coverage.

The one who can no longer afford to go to the doctor, even though I have insurance, because the deductible is a joke.

No…worse…the deductible is half a year’s living expenses.

Political?

I wish it were that easy.

Reality?

You betcha.

I am one of those who has insurance, but will never reap the benefit of the (50% greater) amount taken from the paycheck for the simple fact that, the (4x greater) deductible is more than we could ever afford to pay on top of the premiums.

Therefore, for all (his) intents and (his) purposes…we consider ourselves one of the “Insured WITHOUT the state and federal benefits of the uninsured”

Yes, this is the reality.  If you are part of the subsidized health exchange system…good for you.

If you are not…like me…then this is our reality.

Does this mean I’m anti-poor or anti-needy?  HELL NO!

Does this mean because I work and you don’t, I am responsible for taking care of YOU before I can take care of me and my own?  NO

Does this mean I think I deserve decent, affordable health coverage because that’s what I pay for?  YES

Do I think there is a better way to achieve this than Obama-care?  YES

Why?

Because more than 50% of what my household makes ALREADY goes to the government.

When is it enough?

When is it going to be okay to think YOU take care of YOU and YOURS and I take care of ME and MINE is the way it should be, if at all possible?

Charity begins at home.  Right?

Charity comes from the heart.  Right?

Charity is NOT a mandatory tax.  Right?

Since when did the government become a charity?

I give what I can when I can, which is often.

I have never passed another human being in need, without offering a helping hand.

When did that cease to be ‘charitable’?

The future Analogy of which I speak (and please, this is not a personal attack on the Prez…just his policy) is outlined below:

Affordable Plumbing Act

Only weeks after leaving office on Jan. 20, 2017, former President Barack Obama discovers a leak under his sink, so he calls Troy the Plumber to come out and fix it.

Troy drives to Obama’s new house, which is located in a very exclusive, gated community near Chicago where all the residents have a net income of way more than $250,000 per year.

Troy arrives and takes his tools into the house. He is led to the guest bathroom that contains the leaky pipe under the sink. Troy assesses the problem and tells Obama that it’s an easy repair that will take less than 10 minutes. Obama asks Troy how much it will cost. Troy checks his rate chart and says, “$9,500.”

“What?! $9,500?!” Obama asks, stunned, “But you said it’s an easy repair. Michelle will whip me if I pay a plumber that much!”

Troy says, “Yes, but what I do is charge those who make more than $250,000 per year a much higher amount so I can fix the plumbing of poorer people for free. This has always been my philosophy. As a matter of fact, I lobbied the Democrat Congress, who passed this philosophy into law. Now all plumbers must do business this way. It’s known as the ‘Affordable Plumbing Act of 2014′. I’m surprised you haven’t heard of it.”

In spite of that, Obama tells Troy there’s no way he’s paying that much for a small plumbing repair, so Troy leaves. Obama spends the next hour flipping through the phone book calling for another plumber, but he finds that all other plumbing businesses in the area have gone out of business. Not wanting to pay Troy’s price, Obama does nothing and the leak goes un-repaired for several more days. A week later the leak is so bad Obama has had to put a bucket under the sink.

Michelle is not happy as she has Oprah and guests arriving the next morning. The bucket fills up quickly and has to be emptied every hour, and there’s a risk the room will flood, so Obama calls Troy and pleads with him to return.

Troy goes back to Obama’s house, looks at the leaky pipe, checks his new rate chart and says, “Let’s see, this will now cost you $21,000.”

Obama quickly fires back, “What? A few days ago you told me it would cost $9,500!”

Troy explains, “Well, because of the ‘Affordable Plumbing Act,’ a lot of wealthier people are learning how to maintain and take care of their own plumbing, so there are fewer payers in the plumbing exchanges. As a result, the price I have to charge wealthy people like you keeps rising. Not only that, but for some reason the demand for plumbing work by those who get it for free has skyrocketed! There’s a long waiting list of those who need repairs, but the amount we get doesn’t cover our costs, especially paperwork and record-keeping. This unfortunately has put a lot of my fellow plumbers out of business, they’re not being replaced, and nobody is going into the plumbing business because they know they can’t make any money at it. I’m hurting too, all thanks to greedy rich people like you who won’t pay their ‘fair share’. On the other hand, why didn’t you buy plumbing insurance last December? If you had bought plumbing insurance available under the ‘Affordable Plumbing Act,’ all this would have been covered by your policy.”

“You mean I wouldn’t have to pay anything to have you fix my plumbing problem?” asks Obama.

“Well, not exactly,” replies Troy. “You would have had to buy the insurance before the deadline, which has passed now. And, because you’re rich, you would have had to pay $34,000 in premiums, which would have given you a ‘silver’ plan, and then, since this would have been your first repair, you would have to pay up to the $21,000 deductible, and anything over that would have a $7,500 co-pay, and then there’s the mandatory maintenance program, which is covered up to 17.5%, so there are some costs involved. Nothing is for free.”

“WHAT?!” exclaims Obama. “Why so much for a puny sink leak?!”

With a bland look, Troy replies, “Well, paperwork, mostly, like I said. And the internal cost of the program itself. You don’t think a program of this complexity and scope can run itself, do you? Besides, there are millions of folks with lower incomes than you, even many in the ‘middle class’, who qualify for subsidies that people like you must support. That’s why they call it the ‘Affordable Plumbing Act’! Only people who don’t make much money can afford it. If you want affordable plumbing, you’ll have to give away most of what you have accumulated and cut your and Michelle’s income by about 90%. Then you can qualify to get your ‘Fair Share’ instead of giving it.”

“But who would pass a crazy act like the ‘Affordable Plumbing Act’?!” exclaims the exasperated Obama.

After a sigh, Troy replies, “Congress… because they didn’t read it.”

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…
😉

“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.

🙂

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?)

And Now…Something Completely Un-Original!

2014 – The Year in Review

I had the title typed before I saw the email with the gift from the WP helper monkeys that I assume we all got.

And I know this is a bit longer than usual, but if the ultimate goal is to kill a baby (the new years baby silly people…calm down) one can’t skimp on the details 😉

At first, I thought I’d just make the WP Review public and call it a day, rather than come up with a review of my own.

It does, after all, highlight our most popular posts, our busiest days, how many views, and how many countries.

It also…
Reminds us that this year has been spent like yesterday’s paycheck!
Proves in black and white that 2014 has slipped right through our fingers.
Shows us that we blinked and there it was….G O N E!

None of which are bad or surprising. Just not a true enough picture. At least not for me.

Can I say there’s something that makes me think it has been “The Best Year Ever”?

Not even close

(Though, I AM content knowing there were a couple events that will be remembered fondly. One of which was welcoming a beautiful new friend named Sadie into our hearts and our home and the landscape changed for the better)

If you are, or know, A Mama of Mayhem, A Deb of Destruction, or A Brittany of Breakage like me…then you understand!

Being a title holder of all three…this year is one for the books.
I actually shutter a little writing this ‘pre-midnight 12/31/14’ little tale, as it scares the SHITE outta me a bit!  Lord knows, a LOT can happen in the 36 hours that remain!

For example…I sit here writing in a room that houses nothing that could hurt me, yet I still feel as if I am in a militarized zone. I almost want to ensconce myself in the bathroom, where, if I manage to not fall into something wet and drown, I’ll be good to go.

There will be no daily, weekly, or monthly, blow by blow review of the past year here. Not even a highlight reel.  You’ve heard all of that before. No need to rehash old shit storms.

However, it appears this almost year-old ‘baby 14’ is not done with me.

He did, yet again, set his sights on my ample bottom, reared back his infantile, yet strangely fat and hairy leg, let loose, and kicked me in the ass.

Yup, this over-grown, tantrum throwing, troll doll, is still flinging the contents of his dirty diaper my way, and frankly, I’m sick to death of the little shit!

I Am, in fact, celebrating the fact that in 36 hours, this mini monster will be
D E A D

D O N E

H I S T O R Y

W O R M F O O D

But, before his happy demise, the little bastard thought it would be funny to inflict a bit more madness and mayhem into my life.

How you wonder? Ooooh, he’s nothing if not imaginative, the little Attila.

(cue dreamy, going back in time music now…)

Saturday, 12/27/14
2:30am
I left Virginia in Mini Me, primed and ready for my 700 mile trip to the frozen north to spend time with Superman and Lois

Well prepared, reasonably rested, I hit the nearly empty highway in good form

350 miles in, I was awed by the mile long caravan of flashing lights; cruisers, suvs, vans, and buses, of law enforcement vehicles from all over the south, headed to New York City for the funeral service of two fallen comrades

I cruised through NYC (okay, the Bronx) in record time
(Guess everyone had the same thought…no troopers on the road)

I reached the interchange of Interstates 95/91 in New Haven at 11:30am

Considering I’d stopped for breakfast and a fill-up, I was making good time

The GPS said I’d be there by 2:45pm, just a bit over a 12 hour trip

Right on schedule (Lobster dinner tonight!)

Then…that big, bad, baby decided to wake up

With a shitty diaper

And he reached into that shitty diaper

Grabbed a handful

And flung it in my direction

It was a direct hit!

Round I

At 75 miles per hour
Traveling in the left lane
Interstate 91 Northbound
Exit 5 (I can’t get away from details)
Mini Me died
Foot on gas pedal…nothing
I was surrounded by flying traffic by this time of the day, and just north of New Haven, CT
No where to go that didn’t already have a vehicle occupying that same space
There was no left shoulder
I had no choice
One look over my shoulder resulted in a “FUCK” and prayer to God that I had enough forward momentum to reach the right shoulder alive
I shut my eyes and turned the wheel
I drifted…just drifted…amid honks and screeches which I had no choice but to ignore in an effort to get to safety, but sick to my stomach and shaky with fear of being Johnny Hot Rod’s New Year’s Roasted Road Kill
When I opened my eyes, I realized, had I waited to do that one second later, I’d have landed in the middle of the entrance/exit ramp and been no better off, and just as likely to be creamed
But, as it happened, I opened my eyes just in time to two-foot the brake and stop right before the shoulder/guard rail ended

Round II

After regaining the ability to breathe and pick up my phone without dropping it from shaking, I realized I only had 27% left on my battery with no power to re-charge
Panic set in, knowing I had to have my phone to get out of this mess

I tried to call my husband at his job in Virginia
I didn’t have the damned number in my phone as he’d just been transferred
SHIT  (not that he could have done anything, but I needed to hear something, anything, besides whizzing traffic)
I called Lois…hoping she answered and not Supe, because I didn’t want him to worry. She was gone, he answered
SHIT
He reminded me his best friend lived about an hour away, was a mechanic, and calmed me a bit.  (so much for me worrying about him eh?)
I called this friend, but he knew nothing about good ol’ Mini Me, but would pick me up if I needed
All I knew was I needed off the road but was not willing to leave the car sitting there
I called my insurance company thinking I had roadside assistance coverage
NOT (but she offered to sell it to me, the bitch)

After a Google search, found the number to hubby’s new location, called him and cried all the way through that conversation (ugh, what IS that anyway?)
He too reminded me (needed a lot of reminding that day) that I had an extended warranty that included roadside assistance (duh)

So, I called them and after a lengthy discussion, was relieved to hear that by 12:50, there would be a tow truck there to take us to a service location.
PHEW because I was down to about 12% on the phone and sweatin’ bullets

Round III

12:53pm
Tow truck arrives
Mini Me quickly and expertly man handled onto the flat bed
Passenger (moi) rudely told “IN. Don’t Smoke. Don’t Eat”
Passenger (moi) just as rudely yelled (in my head of course) Fuck You. Drive.

1:30pm
Reach our destination
Driver takes Mini Me off the rig, gets her safely into a parking spot behind the dealership
Waves me off and drives away
I go into the dealership to seek guidance
(after noticing the service department was closed baby closed)

Information desk girly pages the manager who informs me they don’t service Minis, so even if they had been open, they could not have helped me
Water works begin in earnest

To say anyone within spitting distance was a tad uncomfortable with this 54 year old lady, blubbering in the middle of a BMW dealership would be an understatement
(and worse still-they were having an ‘event’ and the place was packed!)
To say I gave a shit would be a lie

Round IV

After being herded off by the dealership manager
(to a padded, all but sound proof, cubby hole)
Where I was to sit and get things figured out
(offering to keep me in coffee and food, a power outlet, and a phone at my disposal)
I called the warranty eeeedjit back

One point five hours later, having listened to this dickhead tell me it was my fault I’d landed in “A place no Mini has gone before” (really?)
I told him to shut it…get me a new tow to somewhere that could actually SERVICE my car, and I’d deal with his incompetence later

Got a text ten minutes later that the tow truck would be there at 3:50pm to tow me 45 miles further north, to Hartford, where there was a Mini dealership whose service department was closed, but they were open until 5 and I could get my car checked in and arrange for a rental to continue the 300 miles I had left on my journey north
That left me about 10 minutes to spare, provided the tow truck arrived on time

The truck did NOT arrive on on time, and I knew I needed a new plan
I couldn’t be stuck at an empty dealership in Hartford, CT with no way out

Lois to the rescue…she calls my cousin in Massachusetts and arranges for her and to pick me up in Hartford and drive me to Brattleboro, Vermont where my visiting brother would drive to and pick me up to take me the rest of the way home

All told, cousin Shari and brother Allan would spend 3 hours and 4 hours respectively, driving on my behalf, all because a warranty roadside assistance representative didn’t think it was necessary to find out if the destination HE chose to have me towed to, actually serviced my vehicle

(I’m lucky to have the family I do…at least there IS that)

Round V
4:30pm
The second tow truck finally arrives
Getting to Hartford in time to talk to a person was already completely out the window
A talker
Good God, they sent me a fucking jaw bones!
(In an antique truck to boot)

5:00pm
The driver (Randy) finally gets to doing what he’s there to do
While he’s putting her on the truck, I notice the driver’s side window slowly inching down
And of course, there’s no power to raise it back up
OMFG…wanna guess the forecast for that night and the next day?
Yeah…like that
Oh well, another phone call to Shari to let her know I wouldn’t be in Hartford by 5 and to go ahead and get something to eat in the meantime

Sometime after 5:00 but before 6:00
Arrive at dealership in Hartford
Hugs and kisses for Shari and Jimmy
Off load Mini Me to spend the night, the next day and night, and the next morning exposed to the elements
Transfer all my shit to Shari’s car
Pay Randy (a.k.a. driver jaw bones)
(and I hugged him actually…he turned out to be good company and a much needed source of laughter and companionship on the drive to Hartford. He told me I was his ‘best tow ever‘ and I told him that’s only because I like to use the F word, tell raunchy jokes, and smoke (so he could smoke and he was good with that!)
🙂

Round VI

We meet up with Brother in Brattleboro Burger King
I got a drink while he sat staring at what he dubbed his “ass burger”
After a few minutes of visiting for the brother and the cousin, the eventual garbage can burial for his ass burger, we hit the road for our 2 hour trip home
ps…My brother is a genius! He brought me a bottle of wine and a plastic cup for the ride home. Does he know me or what? Update:  I’ve been informed that it was brother number 2 who told brother number 3 to bring the wine!
Could they both be geniuses?

Round VII

It is now Tuesday, 12/30/14
I know absolutely nothing more today than I knew Saturday about the state of Mini Me
All I know is she’s there and I’m here
I’m already $260 bucks in the hole for which they called me to authorize, yet they’ve not even looked at her
Unsure if any or all or none of her ailments are covered by the warranty or if it’s gonna cost me an arm or maybe the one good leg I got left

So…let’s try this again:

2014 – The Neverending Story?

2014 – The Worst Story Ever Told?

2014 – It’s A Wonderful Life For Somebody Else?

2014 – Kill Me Now and Get it the Fuck Over With?

Sure…they all could work

But, since the little cuss ‘Atill-ito de Hun-o’ seems to like it when I get upset or angry or depressed when he slings his excrement my way…I’ve decided to take his poo and make poo-ade

I’m looking for and looking at, the positives that came out of this.

1. I’m alive
2. I’ve got great family
3. I made a tow truck driver’s year
4. That same driver made my fucked up day not so fucked up
5. I still made it up north to be with Superman and Lois
6. Mini Me is where she needs to be – in a Mini Hospital where she’ll get the care she needs

So, little baby butthead, go ahead ya filthy animal
You’ve got 36 hours to do your worst

But remember…
I’ve got a hell of a lot more time than you do, so there IS that, right?

In a little while, the world will be celebrating YOUR demise and your REPLACEMENTS arrival

How does that feel?

new_years_baby_crying

For me…it’s p r i c e l e s s

Happy New Year to all of you

As for you Baby 2.0.1.5.

Good friends?
Maybe, maybe not

But I’ll tell you what I’ve told your predecessor…

“I’ll be around a lot longer than you (God willing), so go ahead…

Bring. It. On!

David and Golliath – Thoughts on Independence

As we approach our nation’s day of independence, I had a thought or two that I’d like to share. In honor of all who fought, died, survived, and still fight so we may enjoy…our country’s ultimate day of freedom…Happy July 4th America
IMG_0397
seventeen hundred and seventy six
this day in that year our fate we did fix

we rallied and warred and we bled the fields red
all for the right to our freedom instead

of the yolk from an empire determined we bow
to king and to country, the collective high brow

we started ignorant, starving, and poor
equipped with nothing but freedom’s allure

one hundred times two add to that thirty-eight
the years then to now, the days fate to fate

our beginnings were humble, and not always sainted
to think what we’ve done to the darker and painted

all we can strive for is continu-ed learning
to treat all as equals, we all have that yearning

for the freedoms hard fought and hard won from oppressors
it’s not up to us to now be the aggressors

but when those who still fight for the simplest of freedoms
can’t live and can’t love and can’t grow their own kingdoms

I will not say war is always the answer
but fight we should still against any agenda

that takes away rights to live free and live true
a war worth waging, battles must ensue

to live in a world that allows you to be
everything imagined, the power of we

I hate that our country is still fighting wars
but hate more would I if we sat on the shores

of our own piece of heaven, at the same time deny
the same to others who’d enjoy it but by

the happenstance of geography
but for that they’d be me

but for where I was born
I could easily live in a country that’s torn

should I feel guilty? should I feel blessed?
to one I’ll say no, to the other I’ll say yes

I won’t lay claim to guilt not my doing
but nor condone I, those who hope our ungluing

a believer am I of “get what you pay” for
but not when one has and the other is dirt poor

if you cannot fight for the basic of rights
then why should we feel bad for fighting their fight?

goliaths are bullies, and davids are smaller
but bigger’s just bigger, not better, just taller

the true winner wins when the heart is the weapon
big losers lose when they continually lessen

the right of the people, equality all
pride goeth ‘fore the mightiest fall

in honor of our freedom, in honor of our fight
a prayer I’ll say ‘fore this morning is night

may all who seek peace and all who seek freedom
know you’re not alone as long as we are one

nation of davids, scrappers are we
a nation of davids, who’ll fight ’til you’re free
IMG_0077
Let Freedom Ring