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Posts Tagged ‘Sacramento’

Traveling by airplane in today’s cultural climate can be stressful at best without other issues being thrown in there that are harmless and out of the traveler’s control.  

Recently, Roy and I went to Southern California (Ontario, CA, to be exact) for a business conference.  We flew from Sacramento to Ontario because it’s quicker, cheaper, and less stressful on our relationship than trying to drive.  Gas as well as wear and tear on our vehicles coupled with the sheer time saved all play a factor.

Anyway, it was cool and rainy out, so I wore jeans and a sweater with a tank top underneath to the airport so I could keep warm without having to carry unnecessary items.  Little did I know that my sweater would cause the machines to go nuts and me to get a total and complete pat-down.  I mean really now … I don’t even come CLOSE to looking or acting like a terrorist … and couldn’t pull it off if I tried.  I’m tall, fair-skinned, red-haired, bold, and outspoken as well as in my early 60s.  I guess, however, since I don’t fit any profiles, I am safe to target.  

In any event, my sweater had glittery threads sewn throughout, which caused the entire group of TSA agents to almost have a melt-down.  Really, now … a damn SPARKLY SWEATER?  Come on now.  Get a grip!   A sparkly sweater.  

I volunteered to take the sweater off and go through the scanner machine again, but they weren’t having it.  Oh no … let’s pat her down COMPLETELY right out in the open.  When I say “completely” … I mean completely.  

“Well, ma-am we’re only using the backs of our gloved hand in the ‘sensitive areas’.”

Really, now … would *they* want that done to THEM out in the open?  

Fine.  I’ll work hard at keeping my non-PC mouth shut.

Anyway, while they were doing this, I told Roy … “Remind me to *NEVER* wear this sweater while travelling again. Sparkles are apparently dangerous.”

Then, on the way home, there was another dumb issue.  I guess I attract it.  As I said … since I don’t fit the standard terrorist profile, I’m one of the first ones targeted.  You know how it works … get the children (my daughter who, at the time was 12 years old, was pulled out of line due to a box of AAA batteries that they thought were “bullets”); get the tall red-haired Caucasian women (like me); get the elderly (they pulled my very frail 87 year old white haired mother out of line to pat down and go through all of her luggage once also), etc.  You get the picture. 

A couple of years ago, it was because I had lost a bunch of weight but hadn’t bought an entirely new wardrobe yet, so I was patted down “because your pants are too baggy”.  (That blog post is back in my historical posts.)  

Ok … uhhh … I’m sorry … (I guess) … that I was working to be healthy but couldn’t afford an entirely new wardrobe, because my income is taxed excessively by the goons in Washington DC.  

Next it was about a sparkly sweater.  

So … coming home after the sparkly sweater incident (believe me … I packed it under the plane this time) … I was eyeballed closely because the State of California DMV does not know how to put hyphenated names on their driver licenses, but my passport, my Social Security card, my legal name, my airline ticket, whatever, all have a hyphenated name shown.  Generally, the TSA agent can see past this idiosyncrasy with California and understand that both names are listed there, but they are not listed the way everyone else lists them.  Basically, I have NEVER had TSA have an issue in the past.

Until this time …

TSA (snotty): “Next time, ma’am, make sure the ticket matches the driver license.” 

Uhhh … then it won’t match my PASSPORT … which is by far and away more important to match.   The State of California can’t seem to do it right. 

TSA (confuzzled): “uhhhhh …”

Yes, that’s a word.   I made it up.  It’s a cross between confused and puzzled. So there. 

I want to ask this question however.  Has TSA ever actually caught a terrorist before anything happened?  I sincerely doubt it.  I wonder if, in their training manuals, it states “your job is to harass anyone that doesn’t look or act like they’ll be a problem, particularly if they’ve lost weight or are wearing sparkly sweaters because that way you won’t be accused of profiling.”

Anyway, when travelling, along with not carrying all the things they say you can’t carry (fingernail clippers, tweezers, bazookas, bottles of water, hand grenades, shampoo, hand lotion, etc), I offer you my additional list of “don’t do these things”.

1. No baggy pants

2. No sparkly sweaters

3. No AAA batteries

4. No California driver licenses

  
 

Carry on, everyone.  Happy travels … if possible.

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Today on Capitol Mall in Sacramento, I was truly honored to take my lunch so that I could watch the “Sacramento Hometown Heroes” Parade honoring Anthony Sadler, Alek Skarlatos, and Spencer Stone, the 3 gentlemen that averted a massacre in Paris, as well as to honor those that were lost 14 years ago in the 9-11 attack in New York City on the Twin Towers.

The French Consul General rode in the parade also. Del Campo High School and Sacramento State University bands played.  The CHP, the Sheriff Department, and the City Police all rode in the parade, as well as numerous members of the military.  The Sacramento Blue Star Moms also marched.  I salute my friend, Shawna Hill Fenison, one of the Gold Star Moms, and her beloved late son, PFC Ryan Hill.

I was proud to be in attendance.  It gave me chills.  I am proud of these 3 fine young men as well as the men and women who give so much to protect our country.

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I work on Capitol Mall in Sacramento, the heart of the CA State Government. Because of this, there is almost always someone or some group demonstrating against and yelling about something.

Today however a friend sent some awesome pictures of a *GOOD* parade down Capitol Mall. It was for the CA farmers … “Farm to Fork”. Most of the pictures were too blurry to post but these are cool nonetheless.

These are the kind of programs and people that should be funded and celebrated … & not the “complain about this, yell about that, whine about everything else, and sit on their ___ waiting for a handout while doing absolutely NOTHING” kind of people.

Roy and I both come from hard-working stock. We wish that everyone was.

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I work for the State of California Employment Development Department in the Unemployment Insurance Division on Capitol Mall in Sacramento, 2 blocks from the Capitol Building. I know I’ve said this before, but I am reiterating it for a reason.

I am quite well aware of what most people think of government workers and, in particular, state workers and, even more so, those of us blessed with working in Unemployment Insurance. You can’t fool me. I *know* what most of you think … that we are all lazy, stupid, overpaid, do-nothing’s, sucking off the taxpayers. (No, that would be people like BO, the current occupier of the White House, and his gang of crooks.).

Anyway!

Hold that thought close to your hearts and think about that throughout the Christmas season as you go to your parties.

Yesterday (Thursday) I worked from 7am to 6pm. I worked 7am to 5pm today (Friday). Tomorrow (Saturday) I’ll work 7am to 5pm yet again. Then on Sunday, I’ll work 9am to 4pm, just to get up on Monday and work 7am to 6pm (yes, that’s right … you read all of those hours correctly). Tuesday … Christmas Eve … I’ll work 7am to noon, taking the afternoon off, wanting to spend *some* Christmas time with my family. I have Christmas Day off since I hold that day to be a holy celebration. I’ll be at work the day after Christmas from 7am to 6pm yet again, as well as on Friday, Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday. I get Saturday off (woo) to attend my beloved daughter’s wedding shower (gee, we actually do have families and lives too). Then I get New Years Day off, when I’ll probably sleep all day, just to be back at it the day after. How many of you are willing to do that?

There may be some government workers that are lazy but there are many private industry workers that are too. My point is …. the vast majority of the government workers put their hearts and souls into what they do.

I get tired of the clichés.

Oh, hell, I just get TIRED.

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 “She gets hungry for dinner at 8.  She loves the theatre, doesn’t come late.  She’d never bother with anyone she’d hate.  That’s why the lady is a tramp …  will not dish the dirt with the rest of those girls.  That’s why this chick is a tramp.  She loves the free cool wind in her hair, life without care.  She’s broke, but it’s oke.  Doesn’t like California, it’s cold and it’s damp.  That’s why the lady is a tramp.  She gets far too hungry, baby, to wait there for dinner at 8.  She adores the theatre, however doesn’t get there late.  She’d never bother with someone she’d hate.  That is why the lady is a tramp.” 

‘THE LADY IS A TRAMP’; Frank Sinatra

 

 

i'm different

 

 

No one has ever understood me, as I’ve said before.  I come from a long line of people who the sheeple of this world don’t understand.  That’s ok with me.  I’m happy with who I am and I do ok in life (generally at least).  I may get knocked down but I always come back up, swinging.  Nothing, and I mean NOTHING, will ever keep me down for long.

In any event, I have always had family and friends that laugh at me because I’m different and I march to my own beat.  That’s ok.  I also know that I fascinate them all with how I carry on.  That’s ok too.  All I care about is if my husband, my children, and my mother/father love me and care for me.  They do.  They may not always understand me … but they love me for who and what I am.

 

 

“… My friend, I’ll say it clear.  I’ll state my case, of which I’m certain.  I’ve lived a life that’s full.  I traveled each and every highway, and more, much more than this, I did it my way!  Regrets?  I’ve had a few but, then again, too few to mention.  I did what I had to do and saw it through without exemption.  I planned each charted course, each careful step along the byway, and more, much more than this, I did it my way.  Yes, there were times, I’m sure you knew, when I bit off more than I could chew, but, through it all, when there was doubt, I ate it up and spit it out.  I faced it all, and I stood tall and did it my way.  I’ve loved.  I’ve laughed and cried.  I’ve had my fill, my share of losing, and now, as tears subside, I find it all so amusing.  To think I did all that, and may I say, not in a shy way!  Oh, no!  Oh, no, not me!  I did it my way.  For what is a man?  What has he got, if not himself, then he has naught, to say the things he truly feels and not the words of one who kneels?  The record shows I took the blows and did it my way.  Yes, it was my way.”

‘MY WAY’

 

 

I think I’ve done ok with my life.  I am a Baby Boomer that was raised a suburban kid.  I went through college.  I got a good degree.  I stopped working to raise my children.  Two out of my three wonderful children had disabilities.  One of them has died.  I’ve been through divorce, major medical issues of my own, financial upheaval, remarriage, relocation, unemployment, and job searches.  However, I have ended up with a pretty darn good job (since I must have a job right now, although I’d sooner not work than have to work, but that’s a different topic altogether) on Capitol Mall in Sacramento, 2 blocks from the State Capitol Building, in a very politically charged arena, and am being promoted quickly up that ladder.  Roy and I have a thriving online marketing business and a mobile disc jockey business.  We live in a terrific rural area, well outside of suburbia and city-life, which is definitely our preference.  Roy has a good new job.  After many years of instability financially, we came out as united as ever, swinging and fighting our way out.  We have, as we both always do, landed on all 4’s.  (Yes, that’s a mixed metaphor and I don’t care.)

 

 

“… & everything’s starting to hum. Still it’s a real good bet the best is yet to come.  The best is yet to come, and, babe, won’t that be fine?  You think you’ve seen the sun but you ain’t seen it shine. Wait till the warm up’s under way … and wait till you see that sun shine day.  You ain’t seen nothin’ yet!  The best is yet to come, and, babe, won’t it be fine?  The best is yet to come!”

‘THE BEST IS YET TO COME’

 

 

Today is my birthday and I love having birthdays … because they are by far better than the alternative of not being here to have one.  I am cut from a different cloth than most people and celebrate my uniqueness … and I’m glad to be married to someone who saw that in me and celebrates the fact that his wife is unique and different too.  As Roy has told me, that’s much of what attracted him to me … and part of why he married me … because he knew he was the same and that way we’d understand each other’s quirkiness.  I continue to do it “my way” and plan on doing it “my way” for some time to come.

Now, admittedly, at times Roy (or those that love me) may get frustrated by the fact that I am not normal, but I can’t and won’t change … and they wouldn’t really want me to do so.  At least someone who truly loves you wouldn’t want you to change.

While I’m not by any definition of the word “young” any longer, my spirit is … and my personality is … and I will live to enjoy my life as long as I can.  Using my love of good wines … my life is like vintage wine, all the way from the brim to the dregs!  I’m still living it to the fullest no matter what happens and no matter how old I am.

 

 

“When I was 17, it was a very good year. … When I was 21, it was a very good year. … When I was 35, it was a very good year.  … but now the days are short, I’m in the autumn of the year, and now I think of my life as vintage wine from fine old kegs, from the brim to the dregs, it pours sweet and clear. It was (and is) a very good year.”  

‘IT WAS A VERY GOOD YEAR’

 

 

So …

… with that …

 

 

WHEN I WAS 58, IT WAS A VERY GOOD YEAR, NO MATTER WHAT ISSUES CAME UP!

 

 

AS I TURN 59 YEARS OLD TODAY, I CAN HONESTLY SAY THIS UPCOMING YEAR WILL MOST DEFINITELY BE A *VERY* GOOD YEAR!!!

 

 

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME!

 

 

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There may be only a few of us “mavericks” around … but Roy (and my daughter) in particular knows this would fit me better than a lot of people who think they know me realize.

 

 

boots and dirt

Roy figured out that this is the way I am …

… and married me anyway …

… and loves me anyway …

… whether I’m in my cowboy boots …

…or …

… on my mountain bike …

… but …

… I do love my boots!!!

 

 

“Blame it all on my roots, I showed up in boots, and ruined your black tie affair.  The last one to know, the last one to show, I was the last one you thought you’d see there  …   Well, I guess I was wrong.  I just don’t belong, but then, I’ve been there before.  Everything’s all right.  I’ll just say, ‘Good Night!’, and I’ll show myself to the door. Hey, I didn’t mean to cause a big scene  …  Yeah, I’m not big on social graces, think I’ll slip on down to the Oasis, cuz I’ve got friends in low places …”

‘FRIENDS IN LOW PLACES’, Garth Brooks

 

 

While I may have been born into a fairly comfortable life up-front, things haven’t always gone “easy” for me, and I fought my way through.  Besides, as I’ve discussed before … I never fit the mold of “California Girl” or “suburbia” (more like “suburgatory” in my eyes) or “high-class” or “Beverly Hills” or “Hollywood” or however you want to classify any part of me being born in California in the middle of the Baby Boom generation.  I am more in line with people like many of my ancestors  …  7 brothers thrown out of Ireland in the 1600’s and sent to the New World  …  a young German boy who stowed away on a ship in the 1700’s and came to America on his own, never looking back  …  the upper-crust that chose to move to California in the early 1900’s in search of entrepreneurship and a less stifling life  …  a divorced Dust Bowl woman who moved to California with 2 young children  …  Rob Roy  …  or so many more than are listed.

 

 

“I wish they all could be California girls …”

‘CALIFORNIA GIRLS’, The Beach Boys

 

 

I may have been born a suburban Baby Boomer kid raised mostly in California (but not completely … read prior blogs) listening to rock-n-roll music and raised fairly comfortably, but you can’t even classify me by the music I like.  I like Big Band.  I like Classical.  I like Rock.  I like Country.  I like a variety of other things.  I’ll credit my mommy and my daddy for giving me a wide foundation in music.  (I just don’t like rap.)  Don’t try to classify me.  It won’t work.  Probably the closest is this:

 

 

“I am a red, white, and blue blood graduate of Honkytonk U.  That’s right – a red, white, and blue blood graduate of Honkytonk U.” 

Toby Keith

 

 

No … I’m not politically correct.

… never have been … never will be …

 

 

Pay close attention here …

 

 

I NEVER HAVE BEEN POLITICALLY CORRECT!

I NEVER WILL BE POLITICALLY CORRECT!

 

 

 

… getting ready to go ziplining in Kauai with Roy …

 

 

Hey, Roy, it’s time for me to put on my boots!

Let’s go out to dinner tonight and celebrate my birthday in STYLE!

I’ll try not to get dirty or muddy … but I won’t guarantee anything … ever … 

 

 

 

 

 

Carry on, all!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Roy and I were out-of-town for our personal business ventures this past weekend in Denver, CO, where we experienced a spectacular snowstorm on Friday night and throughout most of Saturday.  (While Roy grew up in Maine, it’s nice to not have to deal with those blizzards on a day-to-day basis any longer.) 

Anyway, we got up Sunday morning at 4:00 AM Mountain Daylight Time to catch a flight back home and arrived at the Sacramento (CA) Airport at about 10:45 AM Pacific Daylight Time on Sunday morning so that we could race back to Placerville, CA, do laundry, cook for the week, and greet our animals that had been wonderfully taken care of by our marvelous pet/house sitter over the weekend.  We were then up Monday morning at 4:00 AM Pacific Daylight Time, only 23 hours since we’d left Denver (where it was 3 degrees Fahrenheit to the balmy 69 degrees Fahrenheit at home).  I worked a 10 hour day on Monday and Roy had an exam he had to take for the new “regular job” that he has, not getting home himself till well after 7:00 PM Pacific Daylight Time. 

Like I say, while we’re entrepreneurs at heart, right now, we have our “regular jobs” that we have to have in the meantime while we work our dreams.  To really be a success, you have to be willing to “go the extra mile” and give it all you have in life.

However, after weekends like the past (which was wonderfully productive financially, intellectually, and emotionally), suffice it to say that we are incredibly tired and are looking forward to having at least a day or two where we can sleep in and nap, which is our goal over this coming Easter weekend (when we also plan to stuff ourselves on Easter candy, just as we did when we were children).

easter bunny 

So … we will be using our “rollover” minutes this weekend, thank you very much (along with eating Peeps, Cadbury Eggs, Reese’s Eggs, Jelly Bellies, Malted Milk Balls, and Chocolate Bunnies).

  rollover nap

 Happy Easter, everyone!

 

 

 

 

 

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We’ve all seen blaming, finger pointing, and politicization on the newest “end-of-western-civilization-as-we-know-it” crisis with which the government is trying to scare the public.  Today I saw a “march” on the State Capitol that was essentially saying someone else should pay for whatever the particular group marching wants to do, because “sequestration isn’t fair”.  Hmm, what it boils down to is that they don’t feel that it’s fair to them.  This is a regular occurrence unfortunately here on Sacramento’s Capitol Mall.

Guess what?  If we as a nation, a culture, a society, a group, a family, whatever wish to survive, it must be shared responsibility, and everyone must share in what needs to be done, not just one person or one group or one anything having to do it all for a few.  Since when has the general public become “entitled” to the fruits of what others have worked hard to obtain?  Everyone needs to understand that the only way the entire will survive is if the entire does something about it.  Otherwise, the entire will collapse.

Perhaps this is just too simple for some to grasp.  To me, it seems like plain and simple old-fashioned COMMON SENSE … or as my parents and grandparents would have called it … HORSE SENSE.  However, like my daddy always used to say … COMMON SENSE AIN’T THAT COMMON.

I work for the State Government.  I am starting to see the sequestration cuts that will go on in my department and division.  Even before this, we as State Employees have already endured cuts in the form of not only paycuts but also “furlough days” (which are really just different words for “paycut”).  We are seeing that this may affect us yet again not only as employees but also as a provider to the public.  I have no problem per se with the fact that it will since this will slow down the out-of-control spending that the Federal Government seems to enjoy.  However, we who have already endured cuts and higher taxes should only have to receive more IF AND ONLY IF other areas, other places, other programs, other people also receive the same ACROSS THE BOARD.  It shouldn’t be levied on just a few. 

I’m one of the many doing background work about this issue for my employer, and I’m by no means in any authoritative or decision-making position with regards to this, but I do have a very general understanding of it.  So, since the prior cuts and the prior tax increases have already affected me and my ability to not only make personal financial ends meet but also to handle my own financial obligations, then it is only right that everyone else should also receive the same treatment, including the Federal Government.  Why do so many think that they can make someone else carry the burden for the entire population?  It simply isn’t feasible.  That’s what sequestration boils down to, at least in my opinion.  Everyone must share the pain.  Period.

Essentially it comes down to the fact that any individual sooner or later has to “pay the piper” and meet financial obligations, or they will go bankrupt.  It’s not always easy to cut back on personal household expenditures when receiving paycuts or layoffs or higher taxes, but you do it.  SO MUST THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT instead of just taxing and laying it on the backs of others.  Cut-backs must be made by all.

I guess, as I’ve said before, this all goes back to my upbringing.  I was raised to work HARD for what I wanted and to look toward the future.  I was raised to go out on a limb if I had to, like my maternal great-grandmother (Big Gramma) that moved from Pennsylvania to California on one of the first Trans-Continental Railroads for a better life and more opportunity; or like my other maternal great-grandmother that left an oppressive upper-crust household and moved to California to be free to live her own life; or like my paternal grandmother that moved from the Dust Bowl with 2 very young children; or like so many other ancestors.  I was raised to be responsible for my own success and to never blame any misfortune I had on someone else.  Perhaps that’s why, even as a college freshman at the University of California, Davis (UCD), I took a job one year as a part time, student janitor cleaning dorm bathrooms. 

I may have been raised upper middle class, but I knew how to work, and if that’s what was needed to get through college, then that’s what I would do.  I did that for an entire year, and I then found other jobs throughout college, but I worked my own way up and didn’t expect someone else to hand it to me.  These jobs weren’t easy or glamorous.  They were far from any comfort zone I may have had or anything I’d been raised to do.  However, my parents and grandparents raised me to “do what you gotta do” when it comes to getting through life.  It’s how I raised my children to be.  Keegan could have blamed all sorts of circumstances after being born with Cystic Fibrosis, but he knew that, as I had taught my children, life isn’t fair, no matter how much you wish it were.  Logan has never blamed others for having Classic ADHD, Tourette’s Syndrome, and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.  It’s just how life is sometimes.  Kara has never blamed any struggles she might have on the fact that she grew up with so many major medical and emotional issues going on in the household.  You deal with it.  You carry on.  It amazes me then that so few have that ability to not throw blame anywhere and everywhere.

Like I said … common sense … ain’t that common.

Common Sense, as it says below, is a Super-Power.

 

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