Friday, February 29, 2008

composed on 11/5/07

Like a proud 6 year old on the first day of first grade, there is something special about this brand new spiral notebook and every brand new spiral notebook. Like a small schoolgirl, it's a chance @ a fresh start. New notebook, new life?

The Baltimore Sun/ article "Poverty Politics" 2/08

Here are excerpts from a very powerful article on social inequity



Homelessness and poverty are among the most misunderstood , patronized and politically expedient issues.

As one who grew up on welfare and was often homeless as a child, I admit to being protective of a class of people that is shunned by all but a rare few in society.

John Edwards, in his quest for economic just for the poor of AMerica, began and ended his presidential campaign in the crippled Ninth Ward of New Orlenas.

He has brought much needed attention to an issue that begs for a constant media spotlight.

Neither the democrat nor the republican nominee is ever going to make ending poverty central to his or her campaign, because it's impossible.

Tonight, across this country 200k men and women who wore our uniform, will go to sleep under bridges and on grates.

O'Reilly rebuffs: Poor households in America have lots of stuff. 97% have a color tv, 78% a dvd player, 80% an air conditioner, 73% a car or truck, 63% cable or satellite tv, and 43% of poor households in the u.s. own the home they are living in:

McKinnon-O.R.'s "welfare queen" attack on the poor is as misleading as it is hurtful. Does He know what crushing poverty is really like?

 Does Mr. O'Reilly know what it's like to continually have your phone, electricity and your gas shut off for nonpaYment? Does he know what it's like to be continually evicted from your apt.? Does he know what it's like to go without heat for days or weeks in the dead of winter?

(p.s. i've experienced all of this)

Sometimes, tv and dvd is the only escape the poor have. Beyond the front door, they often face crime lawlessness, gang and drug warfare, and a horrific life that only those who live it can imagine.


My comments (elana's comments)

wow, what an article! eye opening for so many. to see the entire article go to, and look for the february article "poverty politics"

Saturday, February 23, 2008

The Ellen Degeneres Show/more favorite quotes

Ellen's guest was Patty Sanger who plays the matchmaker on "Millionaire Matchmaker" a show I have never seen. One of the comments was so graphic, it shocked ellen, but I'm not going to include that one on this website. Here are some of Patty's comments:

"Most mill. men want a woman who will give up her career!" (this comment shocked me)

"Men don't like women with curly hair" (this is ludicrous in my opinion)

Now here's a great quote by my beloved Ellen: "YOU HETEROSEXUALS ARE WEIRD!" (she said this to patty!)

Favorite Quote

This quote was a commercial, an ad for Louisville, KY.

"A city can inspire you and fill you with optimism, or it can make you wish you had stayed in bed!"

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

"The Miracle of Life"

I guess for most people who have never been pregnant, they might wonder: "what's the big deal about an ultrasound?!" But preg. women get all excited about the whooshing, and the picture, and the excitement about the new life they have created.

Today I had an echogram. I thought about how similar it is to the ultrasound. I heard the whooshing of my heart, and saw the picture. The tech. said that I have a very "imogenic heart" (kinda like being photogenic) She said not everybodys heart is so easy to see! Anyhow, she said the chambers look clear and normal by what she can tell, and I thought to myself that it is amazing that my heart would look normal, given what it has been thru.

The "echo" goes to the cardiologists who will read it, and then see if there are any problems. (The reason an echo was ordered is because I have chest pain, irregular heartbeat, and collapsed 2 weeks ago in my bathroom)

I'll know the results in 3 days, and I'll let you know what's goin' on. Have you ever had an echo?

"A most unusual find!" 2/19/08

Should I pick it up? Nah. I walk a few more steps. Pick it up! I walk back and pick it up. It's a fully wrapped fortune cookie. I have to know what my fortune says! Here's what it said:

"You have a natural grace and great consideration for others!"

Saturday, February 16, 2008

"The Oprah Show" Suzie Orman helps "penniless" woman

I enjoy these financial counselors, I read their articles, books, watch their shows etc. But I do have a major critique. I've never met or seen a counselor who knows how to help people who truly did lose it all.

I was excited initially when I heard the advertisement for this particular Oprah Show where Suze was going to introduce us to a woman who lost "everything".

Yes, her situation was sad , however, she really didn't lose it all in the way that I did, so Suze WAS able to help her. When one truly doesn't have any assets, no car, no place to live, no phone, no family and no close friends, they aren't going to "dig out."

O.K. Here's the situation, in case you didn't see the show. The promo showed Suze asking Sheila: "So you don't even have money to buy milk tomorrow, do you?" Sheila replied "no"

I thought: this should be fascinating, they are finally going to help a penniless person. "Sh." (sheila) came home one day and found that her husband had committed suicide. She has 5 kids. Huge house, they were materially very wealthy. Turned out though, that he was verbally and physically abusive. They had a very traditional relationship and Sh. hadn't had a job in many years. The husband (we'll call him Warren or W.) was spending money on "stuff" instead of on the mortgage, and to be mean, he purposely cancelled the life insurance policy before killing himself.

So, Suze, advised that Sh. and her kids move into a 1 bedroom apt! That did surprise me. S. said that since Sh. and the kids had all been sleeping in the same bedroom for a year, there is no reason why they can't continue. Sh. does own a car. (a huge difference between she and I, the car is the key to getting employment) And Sh. is going to be going back to hairdressing. In the meantime, S. called 12 of Sh.'s family members for a meeting. Told them they are going to have to "gift" her financially, give free childcare, meals, and a monthly grant of 1k for a year. Sh. will be getting 2400 a month, since her husband died, then the 1k a month that S. told family to do for her. Then S. asked her to have an estate sale where she earned 13k in one day.

It was a great show, and always a learning experience, but Oprah asked Suze, "but what if a woman truly has no money at all?" Suze replied: "there is no such thing as running out of money, that's impossible, if a woman says she's run out of money she is lying!"

Oprah said "O.K.aaaaaaaaaaaaaaay"

So, obviously Orman is a bit naieve and has no exposure to poverty at it's worst. I'm still waiting for the day that these "experts" help the poorest of the poor pull out.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Fire is one of my greatest fears

The way our apt. bldg. is designed, we have the old "motel" heaters. You know the kind you have in your hotel/motel room? So the heat doesn't reach our bedrooms and bathrooms. Living on York HIghway I hear sirens constantly and always pray that they aren't coming to our bldg. Yesterday, 12 hours after our bldg. fire, I was alerted, informally by a neighbor at the mailbox! I never heard the smoke alarm! A man's space heater (my neighbor, i don't think i know him) overheated. This makes me feel so powerless. I simply have to move, and I'm aggressively seeking a new home.

One of my female neighbors said (and most of the people in my bldg. don't really seem too lucid/bright) that the man (D.) had no business using a space heater, and had no business living on the 4th floor in a wheelchair! She said that" there is no point in planning how to get out of a fire, God is the only answer, and you just need to pray, if god wants you to get out safely you'll get out safely!"

I haven't met one person (there are 160 units) in my apt. bldg. that i can relate to! needless to say. Anyhow, I guess I got"lucky" yet again surviving yet another major incident. Did you see the fire on the news? I did not. I watched the 11 p.m. news but didn't see anything,,,,,,,,,,,,,so I just googled for the article. This man's current condition is unknown to the public, but he is in shock trauma.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The Oprah Show/The Children of Sperm Donors all grown up and being interviewed!

Wow! Fascinating stuff. Did you see this episode? They interviewed about 4 girls between 18 and 42, who are the products of sperm donors. (One guy too.) They guy said that all he knew about his dad is that he is #42HQ7!

Can you imagine, growing up, only knowing your dad as a series of letters and numbers? Truly the most moving part of this show, is that one girl registered on and found she had a 1/2 brother. Saw his pic. on the internet, and the brother looked like her twin! He was living in Africa serving in the Peace Corps. The Oprah cameras filmed their reunion, and for the first time in their lives they saw someone who looked like them. They are very very similar in many ways, both are fluent in French even though they both grew up in the U.S.

The Oprah show also interviewed a handful of donor males. One guy determined that he could have up to 200 children! O' asked him if he'd be open to meeting them. He said, YES, EVERY LAST ONE!

One of the other donor men said that the only kids he considers his own are the ones that live in his home, however he'd be open to contact if his "kids" contacted him.

One girl found her "donor dad" and they are now close.

Of course you have the whole range of turnouts with the whole range of human traits and levels of closed and/or open ness.

You're having to wait longer and longer to read postings from me

Because, I simply cannot handle the buses anymore. I felt however, that it's not a bad idea to at least replace my stolen bus pass. I was absolutely dreading it, because it's always traumatic to use public transit. I decided to go on the day that reached 72 degrees last Wednesday. I'm not going to record here, the details of what happened that day, (both on and off the buses) as I doubt you'll believe me. 4 buses and one cab. An all day affair to get downtown and back. But here's what I will tell you and that you will believe.

At 11 a.m. ish I was at 33rd and Greenmount waiting for the #3 bus. When I got home and watched the evening news, I learned that at about 7 a.m. this morning, in daylight hours, a 16 year old girl was blindfolded, abducted and taken from the bus stop 1/2 block away from where I was, taken to a warehouse and raped...........................

"Waiting, waiting................waiting"

There he is......................No, this guy is wearing a black leather jacket, but NOT balding, i must be wrong. Oh, THERE he is, this guy's 5'7, and balding,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,no, that can't be him, he didn't mention being african american....................oh, there he is, 5'7, 150, black leather jacket,,,,,,,,,,,,nope that can't be him, he's wearing a wedding ring.

Oh, there he is. No, long black jacket, not leather. Oh, there he is! Nope, didn't mention being Asian, and that's a BROWN leather jacket!

Well,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,time to head home...........................looks like I've been stood up again!


Friday, February 1, 2008

"I've fallen and i can't get up!"

Sometimes it's scary to live alone. What if I fall and can't reach the phone? What if I'm too sick and weak to get to the phone?!

. This was put to the test on Thursday. I was in the bathroom brushing my teeth, when my face got hot really fast, I got naucious and collapsed. I wasn't totally unconscious, but wondered: "Am I gonna die in this prison cell?"

I came to enough to get to the phone. Stayed on the phone with a friend for 5 minutes and had her just talk me through whether or not I should call an ambulance. I decided that since I do live alone, I don't want to take another chance at another incident later in the day. She dropped me off at the e.r.

They ran a bunch of tests, and can't figure out why I collapsed. They said that many e.r. admissions are due to collapse. So they have ordered an echocardiogram (not sure exactly what that is) but I assume it allows them to see stuff they can't normally see. I'll keep you informed! I'd bet most people think: "Why "life alert" if you're young?" Because any manner of things could happen to a person even if they aren't a senior citizen.

"God Bless" the non-smoker

Well it's about time. I've been "legal" for nearly 27 years, and I've had to avoid bars and nightclubs because of my inability to tolerate second hand smoke. As of midnight last night, all restaurants and bars in the state of MD have gone non-smoking. I'll bet my bottom dollar that business will eventually improve. There are statistically more non-smoking adults in America then there are smokers. It's about time, we have the freedom to go out for a drink, a pool game, or a disco night without having to go home with asthma and headache symptoms, not to mention stinky clothes.

"God Bless" the non smoker!

"Getting There" 1/16/96 part 2

Looking back at 1/16/96

I found a subway station and arrived at Owings Mills  Metro Station @ 12:35 p.m. I had to wait 65 minutes for the bus that would get me to the mall. Everyone had a story to tell about the horrors of the MTA.

30-40 people waited 3.5 hours for the M-16 bus. I finally got to the mall @ 1:50 p.m. (I could see the mall from the metro station but couldn't safely walk the distance) One interview down and one to go. Dear Lord I hope it goes well, and "I pray" that my friend will drive me back to the city and spare me the return trip misery.

The interview took 80 minutes. Patty was very sweet but the job sounds miserable. 8 hours a day on the phone. In the meantime, where should I turn to for rent help?

Salvation Army?
the churches?

When I got done with my interview I called my friend Brenda to see if she could pick me up and bring me to her Randallstown home. Her phone service is down! Called PikesvilleCab, they say there is a 5 to 60 minute wait. So I began my "selective hitchiking." I got a ride with an elderly woman who said that she has to drive to Randallstown.

I arrived @ Brenda's just in time for a wonderful home cooked lasagna dinner. Afterwards, she drove me back to the city.

(Author's Note 1/08 I no longer have the physical, emotional and psychological wherewithal to withstand the MTA nightmares that I used to put myself through. I've drastically reduced my attempts at traversing distances more than 2 miles (in any given direction.

Is it any wonder why there is a "car theft epidemic" in Baltimore? One doesn't have a chance in hell at a normal life without a car)