Posts Tagged ‘rules’

tony christensen (3)

“You have to learn the rules of the game. And then you have to play better than anyone else.”~ Albert Einstein

DISCLAIMER: Every person is different. This is educational post is only for myself and for those that I know who are also in wheelchairs and what they have expressed to be their opinions on the matter, and since I have reached a rather large majority of the consensus, I will list what the results of that majority will be. 

The other night, a strange woman came up to me and just made herself at home while plopping herself down onto my lap. Miraculously, she did not spill her cocktail in the process.

But I swiftly rejected the idea and ejected her from my lap. For many reasons. One..  I did not know her. Two, she was more than obviously drunk. Three, because she is a stranger, I don’t need any possible significant other getting any weird and wrong ideas about what is going on.

So allow me to provide for you some rules as well as dis-spell some myths about able-bodied people sitting upon the laps of those who are confined to wheelchairs.

Rule #1- Before making the decision to do so, always ask the person if they are okay with the idea of having you upon their lap. I would like to believe that this would be the case for anyone sitting on any body’s lap in general.

Rule #2- Do not assume or freak out that the person in the wheelchair is going to cop a cheap feel. If they are touching you, they are more likely concerned about you shifting your weight to the degree that they fear that you are going to fall off their lap and then you end up on your ass. If they do end up in contact of your body in a place that you are not comfortable, chances are greater than none, that it was simply an accident.

Rule #3- Making engine sounds while sitting on a person’s lap, is only going to make that person think that you are immature. Or really drunk. Or something to that. Don’t make jokes about “riding a stick shift” or “go vroom.” Anything of that nature is just frowned upon from the person sitting in the wheelchair. They will probably think you are an idiot, and they will hope that you will get off of their lap as soon as possible.

Rule #4- “Wheelchair Tricks” are out. Not to say that if you are on a person’s lap, that the person is going to say that you are fat, however with the added weight of you being on his lap, wheelchair tricks are going to be twice as difficult to perform, if not impossible.

Rule #5- NO Free Rides. If I had just one penny for every time some random person came up to me, jumped on my lap, and then insisted/requested a ride… I’d be so rich that I could hire somebody else to write this blog for me. It is rude. Its unnecessary. The difference here being that YOUR legs work, and OURS do not. If your legs work…. YOU CAN WALK!! You don’t need a ride. Don’t be fucking lazy. Remember, we are WISHING our legs would work.

Myth #1- People in wheelchairs (males) are not going to get an “automatic erection” because you (a female) have decided to sit on their lap. Although it is true that the person in the wheelchair could possibly joke about that. And the joke is probably coming because they are a little uneasy about you being in their lap for whatever reason may be.

Myth #2- You’re NOT going to end up pregnant from sitting on someone’s lap. Dumb as soup to think that!! Clearly the only way that is going to happen both people are naked and their sex organs make a connection and intercourse begins.

Myth #3- Sitting on a wheelchair person’s lap will NOT give you any STD!! If you think Myth #2 is dumb. This is one is beyond ridiculous. And yet I’ve met people who honestly BELIEVES that it will happen. Trust me: it won’t.

Myth #4- We are not going to piss on you. There are some people in wheelchairs who have such a disability that they deal with problems of incontinence. Not everyone though. But that does not mean that men are going to whip it out and just let loose. Women are not going to just lean closer to you and just have at it. We’re disabled human beings… not gross human beings. Chances are if the person does deal with that issue, you’ll be denied to sit down on their lap for their own protection and state of mind.

Myth #5- Duration will be short. If you are told it is okay to sit, don’t expect to be there long at all. If our legs don’t work, it does not mean that they don’t get tired, and you don’t realize when the best time is to shift your weight around like you do on your own. Or even how to shift your weight. Listen to the person that you are sitting upon. Off means off!

So this small lesson should be helpful for you in the long run, especially for those who are socially connected with the physically handicapped. And if you know me personally… then DEFINITELY pay attention to this. It will save you in the long run.


“The big print giveth, and the fine print taketh away.”~ Fulton J. Sheen

Earlier this evening I very cautiously read an e-mail from someone that I didn’t recognize right away.

And as I waited for my computer to instantaneously burst into flames, I realized that the e-mail came from a company in which I had entered an online giveaway. It didn’t take me but five seconds to scroll to the bottom of the message and click on the UNSUBSCRIBE button.

And now I suppose, or at least I have the feeling, that since I’ve done that… that I will not be the first prize winner of this particular giveaway.

Some of these giveaways and contests and sweepstakes online really just make me think sometimes. We’ve all grown up with seeing the more popular ones on television. And we’ve also grown up with watching contestant after contestant winning big cash and prizes on game shows.

But let’s go back for a minute to these giveaways before I start talking about television game shows.

Just the other day, I saw that there was a contest to be a part of a local PBS show called “The Daytripper” and it sounded like a lot of fun! But then as I was filling out the online entry form, something caught my eye. It was the CONTEST RULES that was uploaded in a pdf file.

A lot of it made sense. A trip for two people, lodging accommodations and some money for meals. Standard, considering what the prize was considered for.

I really enjoy watching The Daytripper. The host is very funny and he does travel the entire state and see some really awesome things, educates you on some really cool facts and history about the places he visits, and he gets to dive into some really awesome food. It makes me wanna have a travel show of my own!!!

But as I scrolled by all the typical jargon that nobody understands, I noticed two things:

#1- The winner will be contacted via e-mail. Okay, that makes sense. Sounds pretty standard.

#2- The winner will produce a 1099 form for eligibility.

Ummm…. what? WHY?!?!?


Watch out for the fine print which says that if you win, you will forfeit your SOUL!!!!

It is all part of that small print that everybody knows about, but seems to not pay any attention to.

As I went back to the top of the document and started to re-read everything, my excitement about the contest turned into a huge disappointment. Sure, I’d probably receive transportation to and from wherever the program was going, and I would get to hang out with the people behind the scenes and quite possibly be ON CAMERA for that particular episode. But the contest holders (who is a sponsor of the show) is looking to read over your 1099.

Uhh, NO WAY!

Publisher’s Clearing House is probably one of the largest known sweepstakes companies in existence. Now they have a contest where the winner will win $5,000 a week for the rest of their life!!!

Sounds pretty sweet, doesn’t it?

In a full year, that’s close to a quarter of a million dollars. So I went to the website to check it out and I looked at their RULES page. It explained that the odds of winning the prize of $5,000 a week for the rest of your life were incredibly insane! Almost to the point of being impossible to win. And there were other eligibility factors involved with it, even though there was “no purchase necessary” at all to win.

Throughout my entire lifetime I have wondered about these promotions on television for these kinds of sweepstakes and I often wonder about who are the winners? What kind of people are actually winning these sweepstakes? And where are they now??? It seems like NOBODY wins because there’s no fanfare. Even though during their promotions they show these cardboard checks being held by people. And honestly, I think its all a scam. I think they are all actors. But I could be very wrong.

I’ve gone on and on about how the odds are ridiculous many times before, and so I think I’ll skip that rant.

Game shows however are a different breed and have different types of fine print.

When you are watching your favorite game show and are playing along at home and you think that you would be a great contestant and your family and friends believe that you should audition, there’s a few things that you should keep in mind.

Game show winners are always met up by the IRS when they leave the game show studios. They wait, ready to pounce upon you and your winnings.

If you are the big winner of a game show and you win, let’s say…. $50,000 in CASH… the IRS will be right there when the game show producers are writing out your check. Taxes are super heavy and super high when it comes to game show earnings. So a winner of $50,000 in cash, will actually come home with a check of only a sum of between $15,000 and $25,000. That’s the way the taxes work with game shows.

Also, if you are playing at home, watch the ending credits very closely when an episode of the game show is finishing on television. It will say something to the effect that all contestants that appear must meet the eligibility requirements.

And what does that mean?

Of course, you must know how to play the game. That’s obvious. But you must audition to show that you know how to play the game.

And if you are the winner of some fabulous prizes, such as a new vehicle or a vacation trip somewhere in the world, the contestant MUST pay the taxes on these prizes.  If later you show that you are unable to pay the taxes on your winning prizes, then you will give it up to the repo man.


Don’t get caught not knowing the rules, only to see your prizes taken away!!

The catch is that it is flashed across the television screen so fast that most people miss it. But since it was flashed on the screen, then the game show producers and those in charge of prizes are not liable.

Do you remember several years ago when Oprah Winfrey gave everyone in her audience a brand new vehicle? Well, the same thing had applied for every single audience member. They had to pay the taxes on it. If you couldn’t, then you did not receive the vehicle. I believe that at the time, the taxes were several thousand dollars. I don’t remember exactly how much. But I did read many years later in an article that some audience members gave back the keys because they were unable to pay the taxes.

Entering contests online is easy to do and a lot of fun. But there are always RULES and there are always requirements in order to be considered the winner. You must take the time to read the pages of the requirements in order to make a better and clearer decision on whether or not to enter. If you can’t fulfill the contest requirements, then you’ve already lost.

Yes, it is tedious and confusing and a lot of it you might not understand. But for the parts that you can understand? Well, it does apply to you and your entry in these contests and giveaways.

Some online contests are actually simple. But you have to watch out for those who are offering much larger winnings and prizes.

I wanted to enter an online giveaway for a tornado chasing tour. Free hotel, food, spending money, and the thrill of being on the chase. Naturally there’s NO GUARANTEE to see a tornado. Nobody can predict that. But the fine print that I read said that you had to find your own way to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma… which is where the chasing tour started.

Another contest was being held by a stand-up comedian to win FREE TICKETS to their show. But when I read the RULES, that’s all you got was the tickets to get in. And the location and date of the show was to be determined by someone else. In this case, the show was to be held in New York City. How in the world is that winning? No hotel, no spending money, no autographs, no “meet and greet” type of scenario, only the tickets for you and a friend.

I surrendered and did not enter either contest. There is no way I would ever be able to get myself there on my own.

And like I said before, who knows who actually wins these things. I personally never hear anything about the winners. I think a lot of these contests and giveaways are a scam. Most of the ones online gather your e-mail address and then start flooding your inbox with crap that you honestly don’t want that has nothing to do with the contest you entered by giving them your e-mail address. Its just another way to drum up interest and business in other ways.

So please, for the love of all things good and holy, READ EVERYTHING BEFORE YOU ENTER!!!! It will save you the effort, the time, and possibly your soul (in a sense) if you actually do read everything and you understand just how the winning process works for each individual contest or giveaway.





“I realize you can’t please everyone.”~Gemma Ward 

I think I’m seriously done with the whole Friday morning “Coffee & Donuts” drama.

I’ve run out of energy to deal with this shit, and I’m beginning to fail to see the rewards in getting up every Friday morning, only to witness the total and complete avarice of people.

This situation is always going to piss off someone. And usually that “someone” is a person or people who got left out for that week’s donuts. Mainly because they didn’t receive any.

The whole idea of having coffee and donuts came from a previous apartment manager who decided to give a reward (and a little incentive) to those residents who would sign up and go walking at the local mall in the morning. We still have the activity of mall walking every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday morning. But the previous person in charge gave as a reward to those who stuck with it.

But then the coffee and donuts would spread to the rest of residents of the apartment complex. This being the incentive of getting the residents out of their homes and actually participate in some fellowship.

Ever since I have been here, it has always turned into a major FUBAR Fest, and it comes from people who just cannot control themselves.

The biggest issue that we’ve had is the fact that we have some residents who have been taking so much more of their fair share. And these people happen to be bilingual, and they speak English as a second language. They have been most capable of using the excuse that they don’t understand English when they are getting screamed at by others who are behind them in line when suddenly 4 donuts and 10 pieces of fruit are taken by them. Fruit is also presented along with the donuts. Apples, bananas, etc., and this is for those who cannot eat sugar or are diabetic.

One Korean neighbor has been allowed to take more than her share because she has a husband at home. The assumption was that she was going to take a donut to her husband as well. But this destroys the whole idea of having residents come out of their homes to enjoy. At some point, it had been allowed for a husband/wife to take an additional food item for their spouse. This suddenly became the excuse for those taking so much, because their “spouse” was still at home. And it went even further to claim that their spouse “couldn’t make it out” for whatever reason.

This same neighbor always uses the excuse that they do not understand English. Whether or not they do, isn’t the point any more. Their families have been contacted to have it explained to them in their native language that there are rules and that they are breaking them!

So when the other residents see this atrocity continuing to happen, they want vigilante justice done and served. They feel as if staff has abandoned them because they’ve complained so much about their actions to staff. And to be honest, for a while it had calmed down with the Koreans. But then the others who are bilingual took on the same act. And then others who speaks English followed as well. People taking so many donuts and pieces of fruit that they don’t leave shit for anyone else to enjoy.

Some tried doing this on purpose in an effort to be noticed and hoping that others would notice their mistakes and that they would stop doing what they were doing. But it only got others to join the ranks of the eternally and perpetually pissed off.

What does that do? That brings a whole new group of people running to the management office to bitch and complain. And the cycle repeats. But with a new set of people.

Here is the thing that I have witnessed: The groups of people that bitch and complain so much about how others are taking too many, are the same ones who are guilty! And others who bitch and complain about it in general, are the ones that don’t come out of their homes and join the rest of the people. And so I find it totally ridiculous that they are saying anything at all.

I take TWO donuts and I leave it alone. Now I’m being told that I should only take ONE donut (or fruit) and if everyone else who is there has gone through, I can go back again and take ONE MORE. Still, that equals two. I have recently taken TWO and gone back for no more.

I'm tired of this

I’m sick and tired of this!!!!!!

So now today, I’m told that it is wrong to take two at one time. Even if I do not go back. It was also said that a note would be distributed to all of the residents, reminding them of the “rules” of participating in having coffee & donuts every Friday morning.

I do not know how well that will go over. I DO know that by the judge of characters that live here, it will be something that they will groan about for a long time. Until the next useless thing to bitch about comes along.

But I was told that I was wrong.

Okay… fine. Something I can correct in the future.

For months and years now,  I have seen so much bullshit coming from this activity of having coffee & donuts every Friday morning, only to have it piss off someone because they do not like what others are doing and they can’t keep their mouths shut about it. Or act like an adult.

Someone is ALWAYS taking more than they should when they first go through the line. And even some others will go back the second time through once the first round is over, and do it again!

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, over???

Management has time and time again stated that the Friday morning activity is NOT mandatory! It is something that was a special treat for people. And it still doesn’t sink in with these people. Either they just don’t give a flying fuck or they hide behind the fact that they “don’t speak English”.

Those members of staff today were not the ones who were working when this got started. They all understand that this is not something that is mandatory to happen every week. And in fact, I have personally gone to members of staff and begged them to stop having coffee and donuts altogether.

Management no longer likes to get involved with it in the first place. I can see that management doesn’t even want to bother with it anymore because it is not staff’s job to babysit the residents and making sure that they behave. I see their point. I agree with them. And so I have been so encouraging to them to have them get rid of it all.

Staff has not done so yet. Today’s events however was an announcement that residents were to take either ONE donut or ONE piece of fruit and then sit down. Once the crowd had gone through, they can get up and get ONE more donut or ONE more piece of fruit.

But I hadn’t gone through yet. And I shouted out that I still hadn’t gone for the first time, and I could feel the daggers coming in through people’s eyes.

I was busy. So what?!? Now I am going to get a donut. Bite me!!

When I got there, there was plenty left over. Especially the chocolate covered donuts. I took a glazed donut. I always do. That is my preference. By that time, I’ve already had insane amounts of coffee that I don’t need chocolate or decorated pure sugar to help.

There’s been some gossip earlier this week about how there’s going to be a a group of people who will volunteer to distribute the food items to the rest of the people every Friday morning. I see all kinds of wrong in that. There may be someone who can be fair and just in the distribution. But eventually, they are going to feel “entitled” and have a false sense of power and authority.

I COULD abuse that sense of entitlement when I distribute food for Food Pantry Day. And even if it has been allowed by members of staff as a way of saying “thank you for all of your help”, I don’t always take up the offer. I probably haven’t done that in over six months. But this is NOT food pantry… this is coffee and donuts.

I can see how this idea of having a few select people could turn up bad because they just might secretly slip their closest friends and neighbors an extra piece. And they could also argue the fact that they are entitled to another piece of food because they are the ones that have been placed in charged.

Those of whom I know who want to volunteer for this weekly duty… are the guilty ones who bitch and moan and have in the past, taken more than their fair share.

I’ve been caught up in this nonsense for a long time. And I really need to let it go. I think from now on I am simply NOT going to partake in any donuts. Sure, I’ll have coffee like I do every morning it seems. But no more of this donut drama for me! I don’t care if the others kill themselves over this because it is stupid.

I’m done with it all.






“And it’s tough traveling. You know, the hotels and the airports and all that. That part, eating and getting around to the hotel room and then going on.”~ Harvey Korman 

Part two of my ten days away from home required me to stay at a Super 8 hotel for two nights, so that I could see SIX MINUTE CENTURY perform. It was the only way.

We took off from the resort and drove the 20 minutes to get to this hotel. I found a deal on the Internet that a weekend reservation, that it was 15% off the price. And wouldn’t you know it, that’s exactly what I was needing, Friday and Saturday nights.

So I called and booked this hotel room and was told that I would be on the second floor. And it was all with taxes and fees under $100. SCORE!

But as I was getting dropped off and going into the hotel lobby to check in, my nephew came up from behind and gave me a drink that I had in my sister’s car that I had left behind on accident. How nice of him to come through and give it to me.

And then, the horror began. As he walked away to return to his mother, I heard him weeping openly… sad that I was leaving and not going home with him. It nearly killed me. But life goes on with me doing what I need and want to do.

I checked in, was given my key to the hotel room and then told “You’re on the first floor”. Umm okay? I made the reservation for the second floor but whatever. It would work out in a sense as there was NO elevator.

But now we have a huge accessibility problem as for every hotel room on the ground floor, there was a HUGE step to get through the door. Something that I would have a lot of difficulty in my wheelchair to manage for two nights.

And then the key wouldn’t work. Or at least I was never able to get it to work. So instead of fussing with it, I would throw the dead bolt to block the door from shutting all of the way and locking me out and then go on and do what I needed to do.

I DO NOT recommend doing this! I left myself really exposed to being robbed of everything I had in the hotel room. And yes, I would have been the one responsible for everything that would have been stolen. Luckily, I had everything still when I left. But I did allow the door to shut when I was leaving to go see SIX MINUTE CENTURY. And I decided that I was going to fight with this door when I got back from the concert.

It would be a fight that I would lose and I had to go to the front desk to ask for help at 1 AM.

But let me back track some to let you in on all of the trials and tribulations that I had with this hotel, that has caused me to set aside some time to either write a letter or an e-mail and make phone calls to file multiple complaints against this hotel. Yeah, Dambreaker is pissed again.

Friday evening, I was aware that I would not see anyone from the circles of SIX MINUTE CENTURY until Saturday evening. So I had the entire day to myself. But where this hotel was located, was not attached to sidewalks. So roaming somewhere nearby to find something to eat on Friday was not in the cards, so I did without and of course when I don’t eat, I get headaches and migraines. And I didn’t want pizza delivery because I had gone through that a lot while spending the week with my family. Kind of burned out on it.

As I was in the room, I fought with the air conditioning unit, trying to get it to cool off in there. But the dial actually just spun around in circles and I never felt or heard any “clicks” from setting to setting. Eventually I found the setting to make the hotel room feel like the Arctic Circle.

Then I laid in bed and watched television. The television however would only allow me to turn the volume up half way. I suppose that was to respect the others that were around me. And after a while of watching television… the signal was lost. I saw a familiar warning. The hotel’s cable was actually coming from Dish Network. I know this because when I lived with my sister a few years ago, she had Dish Network and it would do the same thing when a thunderstorm would pass.

But the satellite wasn’t getting any signal at all. Tired from the days before and while getting impatient, I turned off the television and just fell asleep.

Less than an hour later, I noticed that the air conditioning suddenly stopped. I sat up in bed and realized that the power went out.

I  went outside and saw that it was raining and the only thing that I could assume was that the thunderstorm that was overhead knocked out the power. So I went back to the hotel lobby to verify that’s what had happened or to find out if it was just my room that was powerless.

When I opened the door, I saw a lady huddled in the corner in the darkness. The only lights on inside were the emergency flood lights in the building. She had this look on her face that she was so terrified.

The entire hotel was out of power. So I knew it wasn’t just me. And this woman behind the front desk was frantic about the situation because she couldn’t make any phone calls out to anyone, except for the use of her cell phone. But she was calling other hotels and their power was out as well and she couldn’t get through.

I remember her saying, “If we don’t get power back on soon, I will have to close down the hotel.”

I began to wonder what that meant exactly. And was it so bad that they were going to have to take all of their customers out and put them somewhere else. That thought actually crossed my mind and deep down, I hoped that it was true because a ground floor hotel room that is NOT accessible… is just ridiculous!!!

As I went back to my room to make sure that nothing was stolen since I left it wide open, the rain had stopped. The clouds were parting and I just went back and laid on the bed and went back to sleep. The hotel would have no power for 50 minutes before it came back on.

So here’s what else that I found that was so difficult with this hotel room, all of their restrictions and what not.

No smoking. No pets. No visitors. No housekeeping. No vending machines, other than ice.

Yep, that’s right. There was a card laying on the bed when I got in there that literally said. “Use our towels like you would use yours at home, over and over again.” So no fresh towels and no beds being made.

And if you were caught smoking or had pets or visitors, it was either an eviction or a very large cost to your room.

They had a list of their rules posted on the back of the door. It was crazy.

At last, I would find that behind the front desk they had candy bars and beverages that they were selling. But hell, I couldn’t see them at my altitude because the front desk was so high up that I was doing Kilroy when I got to it.

So I bought some drinks here and there. Which helped. And then Saturday morning I noticed that they had a computer set up in the lobby. I jumped on to check on my e-mail and after only a week of not being on the computer (because I was spending time with family) I had over 80 e-mails. I tried to clear some of them out but the computer wanted me to enable cookies. And I just wasn’t going to mess with it, so e-mail was going to have to wait until I got home. And when I did, I had to deal with a total of 105 messages and spam.

And then I silently signed on to Facebook. Bad decision.

12 pokes, almost 20 notifications, 5 messages in my inbox, and one friend request. A majority of the messages were regarding the woman who killed herself and they were asking if I knew about it.

I didn’t want to deal with the situation because I was still on vacation and at that point, still had a concert to see. I didn’t want to go to the concert all bummed out because of what had happened.

So I left and watched HBO, which was free. But then ended up getting yet another migraine and fever only two hours before I got picked up to go see  SIX MINUTE CENTURY.

Being frustrated with having to deal with that large step up into the room, I did some investigating. I found four hotel rooms on the property that had a poured concrete ramp up to the door. But they were not in service. It even had the wheelchair symbol on the hotel room number sign.

Why wasn’t I in one of those??

When I checked out Sunday morning, I was asked how my stay was by the same woman that I had been seeing in the day time.


And then she replied with, “Yeah, we don’t have any accessible rooms at all.”

This after being told when I made the reservation in the first place that I would be put in one. I gave her a puzzled look and she continued with “We’re hoping to have some soon. But we don’t have any at the present time.”

So I gave it to her again. All she could do was say “Sorry”.

Sorry doesn’t cut it though.

And why is it that I found this out at the END of my stay instead of being told while I was checking in that there was nothing??

There will be some heavy duty bitching about it. Yeah, there was nothing I could do about losing the power on Friday. But going through what I went through, wasn’t all that necessary. So I’m going to do something about it, and hopefully someone will have the sense to either refund or comp my next visit to Houston.



Some elderly can kick ass, others suck it

“Old age is like a plane flying through a storm. Once you’re aboard, there’s nothing you can do.”~ Golda Meir

What a day, what a day!!

Today was the first time that my complex had a resident council meeting under the “new leadership”, and I was so full of hope for a new day.

If you read the blog post about the Scrabble game I was involved with, the husband and wife were elected as President and Vice President, respectively.

But the meeting turned into a verbal brawl of sorts. And the leadership was totally less than admirable as our newly elected President never took order of those residents who were causing a stir.

I was rather disappointed personally as the new President was not able to hold a meeting as he was when he was in the same office back in 2005. Clearly, his health has been fading and he just didn’t seem to have it together.

For whatever reason, his wife decided to speak up just about as much as he did. And I became totally confused, who’s running this outfit?? She took over nearly half of the meeting, and I couldn’t understand it. Neither could I believe my own ears.

When the floor was open for comments under new business, a resident got up and started to talk about a “beautification committee”. In other words, she wanted to make a group of residents responsible for trash clean up. Because in her mind, the property was in bad shape.

Well of course it is, the drought has really done a lot of damage to our lawns. It doesn’t look as lush and green because we’ve had no rain. But she wanted to single out a number of people who live here to be responsible for picking up random trash, as well as be a helping hand with those who are unable to bend over and spruce up the front parts of their personal patios.

Ummm…. in other words, make other people work in other people’s gardens who may no longer be able to, or no longer care. Just because SHE wants the property to “look beautiful”.

There’s so many things wrong with this. Although I would agree with her that people should pick up their trash. But having people go intrude on their neighbors? Nah, I don’t agree with that at all. Pick up your trash and we’ll be just fine.

I’m not sure if that’s going to go anywhere. This is a resident who rarely shows up for any activities and/or meetings that we may have. But when she does arrive, you can be sure she’s about to bitch and moan about something. If she has nothing to complain about, she’s going to be sitting at home… inside, and not come out for anything but to check her mail.

And that was the first round.

The second round came about when another resident who also stays at home and doesn’t participate and always gives the excuse of poor health, had brought up the idea of celebrating “Octoberfest”.

Last year, there was a gathering in the evening where we were celebrating it. It was a nice social event with the rest of the residence. And it even had included alcohol. Well, beer.

The consumption of alcohol at specific activities and events here have been more or less “forbidden”. It is not quite “banned” necessarily, but the fact of the matter is that there are some people who live here that have had religious convictions against the consumption of alcohol. They have been the residents who have spoken louder than the ones who have no opinion about whether or not alcohol is being offered, so they’ve said “no alcohol”. But last year’s Octoberfest celebration was a rare test-drive of an exception. “Near beer” was also offered. A limit of real beer was given to those who actually were drinking.

Anywho…. this second round- the resident who rarely comes out offered the suggestion to have yet another Octoberfest celebration this year as well, because she so much enjoyed the year before. So when our social worker said that it was a possible event to place on the calendar, she was happy as a peach.

And then it turned ugly. The social worker left her in charge to plan this event. And she had also mentioned that the event would have to take place during the week some time and could not happen in the evening or over the weekend. (Last year was held in the evening.)

There are only two members of staff that works here. They have made their personal decision that they are not willing to stay longer into the evening or over the weekend. They have their own lives.

If this resident would’ve just accepted the deal then the snowball of bitterness would’ve never started to roll.

Round three- the issue of having our community room open over the weekends and/or week nights. First off, let me share with you the back story of this “dead horse”.

In 2006, and year prior, certain residents had the keys to the community room and these residents were more than willing to get up in the mornings and open the community room for usage by the residents. But in 2006, the people who run this complex decided to remodel it. It was closed for many months while work was being done to it.

The community room is an open room with chairs, nice furniture, a great collection of books, and even a television. Several computers are also connected to the Internet for the residents to use to check their e-mail if they do not have a personal computer or an Internet connection at their home. The remodel came with a lot of newer and fresher things. Including one big-assed television set. Yep, big screen.

But the Board who oversees things had made the decision to collect all of the keys that were handed out to residents and no longer allow the community room to be open during the nights or weekends. It was an issue of protection for both the residents and the items that were held within. It also was an issue of insurance that nothing would be broken or stolen.

So since then, all of the residents who lived here then, and those who have moved in afterwards have basically adapted to the new policy. But many of them do not like it. They honestly would prefer to have access to the community room, just like it was before. Several times residents have gone to the Board to ask them to change their minds, but so far they have not.

I personally wouldn’t mind if it was open, but I’ve gotten so used to it being closed. And also consider the fact that members of staff have changed since 2006 as well. The newer members of staff that work here today, mainly the social worker and the apartment manager are simply not that willing to give up their personal lives to come over here and make sure things run smoothly. The residents who are stubborn not to see it as a risk factor, call it “babysitting”.

That came up today by little Miss “I wanna Octoberfest”. The war then began.

She cried and cried and cried and complained about how it was not fair that the community room was not open any more to the residents. It was not fair that the two main members of staff were “being snooty” for not wanting to come in over the weekends, and it was not fair that the members of staff would have to agree to “babysit” the residents.

The two members of staff have personal lives. I can see why they wouldn’t want to come in. But at the same time, I could also wish that they would every once in a while come in and allow us some off-site activities. It doesn’t have to be every night though.

The social worker had decided to interject and stop the childish whining. She was trying to explain that #1- the two members of staff are NOT the ones that the residents should take their frustrations out on because the residents do not have an open community room any more like it used to be. #2- There are specific reasons why the Board decided to keep things closed.

But the woman would not listen to the social worker. She wouldn’t budge a single half an inch to hear the side of the social worker. She went on and on about how she and her husband HATE being “stuck in their caves” during the weekends.

Well honestly and personally, that’s an easy fix. If you don’t wanna stay at home- go visit a neighbor. Go out to eat, go to a movie, something!! But I am sure that I would be met up with “We don’t have the money for that.”

Then just go visit a neighbor.

She continued to say that she and her husband has renter’s insurance. So they’re set and not afraid. But not everyone here has that. And she knew that the Board wouldn’t dare let the community room be uninsured, so she just couldn’t see what the problem was.

And so then the social worker came out with the big heavy question to her: “So if the community room is open to the residents when staff is not here, and something happens, are you willing to be held responsible?”.

I was so glad when I heard that. I thought for sure that would be the nail in the coffin on this woman. It wasn’t.

The response to the question was, “Insurance is insurance“.

Umm… what??

First of all, she never actually answered the question. And secondly, that kind of a response was in a sense more or less a way to say, “I don’t care what happens to the community room as long as it is kept open for the residents to use. You’re covered, why bother worrying?”.

The social worker had then seen that this woman was not going to give it up and so the social worker in better judgement gave it up, saying to her that she needs to present it to the Board.

An issue that has been repeatedly denied over and over and over again for the past five years or better. The horse is DEAD!!

Now I am sure that maybe someone can come up with a solution for this. And maybe in the future things will change. It is the fact that she and her husband have only been living here a few years.

They moved here after the 2006 remodel and the decision to keep the community room locked on evenings and weekends. So they’ve never really known any different. And I can do nothing more but roll my eyes and laugh at this fact. Why are they soooooo much involving themselves to try and obtain something that they’ve never experienced before?

Not only was the community room unlocked on the weekends. But we also were involved in a variety of other off-site activities:

  • We went to the movies
  • We went out to dinner on a spur of the moment decision
  • We went out to breakfast once a month
  • We went to the horse races
  • We went shopping in the malls for an afternoon
  • We went to the baseball games or other local sporting events
  • We went to the theater

And many, many more fun things to do, that was away from home. Why did those things suddenly disappear? Because of a change in staff. Those who worked here before were willing to do these kinds of things. Those who work currently, are not.

This woman and her husband (mainly her) were battling the social worker because they were jealous of the fact of what USED to be. And since they’ve moved in, they keep hearing these wonderful stories of all the fun things we used to do around here, and now we don’t do that any more…. and these two are taking it PERSONAL?? Because of their jealousy.

Jealousy sucks. And I know that this woman is going to hold yet another nasty grudge against staff members and have nothing but gossip and back-talk about the members of staff for a long time to come. These grudges that she holds, will commonly go on for several weeks, a couple of months even.

But it makes NO sense because the two of them rarely come out of their apartment. The husband comes out, but the wife does not. And its probably a marital problem between the two of them as to why he comes out and she doesn’t. Which is not the fault of any body else who works or lives here. It is their own.

But why fight until you are almost out of breath for something that you aren’t even going to use?

I would bet that she decided to use this platform to whine because of who was elected. She was pleased with who is now in charge so to speak and decided that was the time to come rushing in and complain as much as she wants, because of the new shift of power and she believed that she could get away with it. And honestly, she did.

Hypothetically estimating, maybe a total of five or six residents would actually use the community room during either the evenings or weekends. Another five might use it for other personal reasons (personal gatherings, family parties, etc.), and when you add all of that up, you MIGHT get a total of fifteen random residents using the community room during these hours… out of almost 70 who live here.

I just don’t see it as a convincing case. If they do open it up, they’ll monitor the situation as to who and how many use it. Just like they monitored the beer from last year’s Octoberfest celebration. Nobody got stupid, nobody got drunk, nobody got into a fight so they may be a little less strict on further parties and social gatherings to include alcohol.

This however, is probably going to go down in flames with the low numbers of people actually using it during times in which we have been accustomed to it being closed after having the situation watched closely to see exactly who is using it.

All the while, our newly elected President allowed this snowball of ill-feelings to rattle on and on and on. Basically the President and Vice President also think that the community room should be open. But they’ve got their own problems too as to what their excuses are. (No cable, and they live in a mess and they are lucky not to yet be evicted for it.)

But he sat there and let it drag on, until he finally suggested to her to make another motion to do something about it and present it to the Board. In which I really don’t think is going to do them much good at all.

The elderly, and the absurd things that they fight over. Some are just that stubborn, others are just that dumb.