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My sister’s surgery really opened my eyes about the V.A. Medical Center.   Even the shoddy pajamas they give you, it makes the place seem like a dog pound.  I went to a anti smoking meeting, and they got all bent out of shape because I was using a Tablet to take notes.  So I just walked out of there. Sheesh, many people’s cell phones are more capable and powerful than this tablet.  Strictly serfdom. 

Self interest is the ONLY interest.  The place has a bad reputation, and it is getting worse.  It is very difficult to get a shuttle ride in the huge parking lot, and it used to be easy.  The Patient Advocate is no more. 

Most of the vets I have seen are from poor to homeless, and many kind of get batted around in this world.  They have special problems.   Perhaps this is just the few I have met.  There is a certain camaraderie with them though.   At least I have this in common with them.  It’s a comfort.

I had a shoulder surgery, now it is really bothering me.  While my sister was ill,  I visited Truman Lakewood,  the little Hospital at Blue Springs, and Menorah.   All of these,  especially Menorah, seemed quite superior to the V.A.  The website at the V.A. is down now, so I am wondering if it is going to be improved, or if it is going down hill like the rest of the place.

At the V.A. they seem to have a controlling thing,  like you are a dog in a dog pound, and they pretty much don’t give a shit about the patients, but their career.   I finally got a decent blood draw where they did not just tear my arm up, for instance. 

It is very machine like.. you are dealt with, and a lot of the people working there, especially the social services, well they are not that good, not that informed.

I HAVE got some very good care there.  Yep, they’ve done a good job on a few occasions.  In the USA you have to have your eyes wide open for the fine print- or else you are a dead duck.  I mean literally- dead. The wait time at the VA is far shorter than Truman.  It is very short there.    BUT..the VA is very jam packed.. very busy.  It is busier than even Truman East, maybe.

The USA is a scary damn place.  You never know what you are going to get.  Maybe, it is better than I think.  I hope it is.

“As Soon as there is Life, there is Danger”- Ralph Waldo Emerson.  Bambi and Fred move out, and they are in my prayer list every night.  It feels good to pray for people,  for people you do not know, and most of all,  for people you dislike.  Many a person who I have disliked, has turned out to be a good human being.   People’s lives are checkered.  Here a good deed, and there a sin.

God forgives people, but men never do.  Especially the IRS. 

There is one thing about being a Fool.. it knows know race, creed, or color.  Now that snippy little thing Margie fights with her old man.  They are both whites.  I do not know if they are drug enthusiasts or not.  The dude is always saying.. “those cops kicked in such and such apartment.”   Well who gives a shit?

Anyways, I do not know how they even have a voice left, or least,  how Margie has a voice left.  They were screaming for 3 or 4 hours.   Well they DID take a break after the first 2 hours.

We are in God’s image,  except our mirror is distorted and malformed.. like these Frankensteins of God.

Anyways,  when that  starts I dive under the covers.

The Fool Shoes we Wear

“Each man must wear out at least one pair of Fool Shoes.”- Charlie Chan.  After all the stuff I did in life, it would have been best to have just kept applying at the Post Office,  until I got hired!  Instead I drove over the road,  worked at AT&T in the IT industry,  did this and that.

The simple job of the postal workers looks appealing right now.    It is NOT an easy job.   They must walk and walk and walk.  But it pays really good, compared to many jobs that are supposed to be.. high tech,  cool,  etc.   The most I ever made driving a semi truck was $41,000 a year.   This was GONE from home all the time,  and pretty much 70 hours a week,  sitting in front of a steering wheel smoking,  then a couple hours of frantic, heavy exercise,  and starchy truck stop food.

How I love my nerd gadgets and computers.. but the IT industry just went south,  I guess.    Love the computers,  but boy, I do not see how I am can make a coin drop with them.

I see people in Northeast living very exciting lives.   They are in and out of jail,  use drugs until they practically drop.   They use them until it drives them clean into the gutter.

We are offered an apple, but choose instead the poison.

 

 

Sunday

All the Mexicanos are going to church.  Some are working.  There are two chicken places set up,  one down at the BP across from Northeast High School,  the other up by Fast Stop across from Indiana.  I had a chicken yesterday,  Pollo Asado al Carbon.  YUMMY!

Brandi is out there.  She bums a cigarette from me, and she looks terrible.   Fat,  and with the same dirty clothes on she has been wearing for days now.  She is desperate and dangerous,  so I steer clear.

Actually,  it is peaceful, and how sweet the peace is, as long as you steer clear of people.

Saturday

Saturday at noon,  go get something to eat.   As I leave, the regulars are coming  out on the stoop.  Charles has a white plastic sack, with fifth of cheap bourbon in it.   I drove down the avenue, where a lone street preacher was preaching the gospel in Spanish, to whoever would listen,  which was nobody, at least so far.

The preacher’s children were sitting on the bare, hot concrete of the parking lot.  His wife was sitting in a folding chair, attentive.    Mexican vendors were in the empty parking lots,  cooking grilled chicken over wood fires.   Big grey plumes of smoke marked them for blocks.   They make some GOOD chicken,  let me tell you.   The usual hookers walking around, and some new ones too.  I parked the car on the side of my favorite restaurant,  Flor de Chiapas.  It is run by a Mexican family,  from Chiapas, of course.  Previously it had been called “Super Pollo”.  Then, the owner had gotten busted, and the police discovered many kilos of cocaine stashed in the cinder block walls.   I order three tacos,  and they are as usual,  very good.

Down at the end building hot, loud words, as the argument from Friday night continues.   Call me a racist,  call me what you will,  NO ONE fights like blacks do.   It’s that ghetto, “I don’t take no shit off nobody.” They really get into it,  and when it starts, it is time to RUN.   Conversely,  blacks can be very sweet,  very considerate.

Hmm.. on the other hand, most serial killers are white.  The really bad ones,  like Gerald  Stano, or Pee Wee Gaskins,  they were white.    Pee Wee Gaskinz might may well have been, the meanest person who ever lived.   It’s hard to believe someone could be so mean!

It takes time to get used to people.  A long time.  They’re always fighting..who did what to who, who ripped off whom.   *Groann*   Who knows why things happened?  You are just a witness, that is all.   You sort of witness people.

The Front Stoop

Everyone out there on the front stoop,  it is Friday.  Mostly poor and black.   People start drinking the stupid juice.  I hate that shit.   A ‘can o’ whoopass, and a bottle o’ loudmouth.’   People are stupid over in Independence, too.   They are stupid everywhere.   “Experience holds a very dear school, but fools will learn in no other.”- Benjamin Franklin.

Dunno if the woman next door is out of jail, and who cares?  I do not like violence.   They are out there,  louder and louder.  A big black woman is cursing and threatening the woman in the leopard skin dress..”and I’m gonna tell YOU somethin'”   Some women like to fight,  they really like it.

One guy says, “if this was St. Louis, someone would have been shot long ago.  They don’t fight and argue too long there.”   He’s from East St. Louis.    It’s not only the blacks.   There are plenty of white punks,  plenty of whatever punks around.  To be honest,  no one fights like the blacks do,  at least,  the poor ones.  They will fight at the drop of a hat.    It’s that liquor, or the drugs.  The liquor seems the worst.

People are doing their best to spoil Friday.

People LOVE violence more than sex,  more than drugs,  more than anything.   Mankind loves it’s darkness.  It doesn’t matter if we were all fed with a golden spoon,  they would still find something to fight about.

Ah, Friday night.  I get some very good tacos from Flor de Chiapas I am in love with those women,  at least their cookin’.   AND..  Sonic has 1/2 price shakes,  so what a sweet reward.  You know,  this place ought to be like paradise on earth.  Man keeps trying to turn it into hell.

Friday,  thank God you are here, but it is time to stay indoors.

Now Craig-o gets his TVee stolen.  That’s what he gets for being friendly around here.   He has a terminal condition,  cancer.  Or at least,  he has been saying that for a year.  He’s got that one eye all clouded over like he can’t see out of it,  there is a film over the eye.  He lives over in the building next door,  which is good,  he can’t knock on my door and bug me.  Not that I mind.  You get used to him.  He is just lonely,  but he kind of bugs you.

He gets drunk, likes to drink,  and leave his door open so he won’t miss out on the “action party.”  Well he got some action,  all right.   The same action you would get with a pack o’ wolves.  The people in the other building, the one just north of me,  got some “action” too.   A woman whops her husband (boyfriend, or whatever) in the head with some object,  hurts him,  and the cops come and take HER away.

Oh well.. the world is NUTS.. just about everywhere you go!

That Hustlin’ Shane

Old Shane, he’s always out there.  He really knows how to hustle up a buck or two.  He goes around to businesses,  offering to take out the trash,  mow the lawn,  I mean whatever.   I never would have nothin’ to do with him ‘cos he drinks,  and was on the “D”,  AND..we didn’t have too much in common.  I’m a computer nerd.  I like nerdy,  he likes Lynyrd Skynyrd.

While I am wrestling with ‘subjective’ and ‘objective’,  Shane’s already made himself a couple dollars.  He has this intensity,  that scares people at first.

While I am figuring out how to make a coin drop from YouTube advertisements,  he’s already mowed the lawn,  took out the trash, and doing generally whatever other people do not want to do.  Which is WORK.

These people around here are all pretty much characters.  You just have to get used to them.

He’s all right.  This quote, I think, from the Upanishads:  “Each one is needed by the other.”

Hammer hammer HAMMER the poor.  That is what it’s all about in the USA.  Hammer the working people, and take away money from the poor, old, and sick.

The real “Thugs” are the wealthiest people.    The rest of us are slaves like in a slave galley.  National Anthem?  This should be this guy beating on a great drum,  and we are the oarsmen.

For everyone I meet, it is just one damn thing after the other.

Everybody in this world is hustling, and it is never so apparent as around here.  At the Aldi I pick up Shane, who needs a ride.  At first I was always leery of him,  he’s got that “prison” mentality.  After these years now,  I sort of like him.  See where he is comin’ from.   It’s called SURVIVAL.    I take him to another store before I drop him off,  and a couple local hustlers try to punk him for money.   This happens all the time in Northeast.  “Gimme $3″, or some variation of it.  Either begging,  trying to intimidate, or whatever.   I’ve had people follow me into the grocery store.   You grow calloused toward other people.

It is not only the street people.  People out in the suburbs aren’t very nice.  As far as saying people are nice in the USA,  well- I wouldn’t go that far.   They just act nice- when it suits them.  Here and there,  there is that golden deed.

People are so slap happy they don’t know what to do.

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