Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Is there still a racial divide in this country? Um, yeah.

I used to be like you. Naive and living in a state where racism wasn't obvious.

Then I lived in GA for 8 years.

What a rude awakening.

First, let me say I LOATHE the term "reverse racism". Reverse racism would be not racist. Racism is one race against another, not just owned by minorities. I also hate when people pronounce Mischievous "Mis-chee-vee-ous", when there is clearly no "I" after the "v", making the correct usage "Mis-che-vous".

But that's a whole other topic.

While working in staffing agencies, it was normal for a client to specifically tell me they didn't want black people. It got to the point I had to submit resumes with no names, when the name was clearly ethnic, or they would not agree to interview the person. This is why I tell people that depending on where they live, be careful what you name your child, because people may not even look at you as a candidate if they have a bias.

I also had many companies ask specifically for mexicans, and they actually would pay MORE for someone of that nationality, because they were hard workers.

I don't understand why people think that undocumented workers don't pay taxes. Most of them do, as they carry fake social security cards, and still have to complete the requisite tax forms. So they pay in to our system, yet cannot draw the benefits later.

No matter what racist or sexist job orders I had been given, I always advised my clients that I would submit the best qualified person for the job, period, and that I could not accept job specifications based on race, religion, sex or creed.

Probably the most irritating, and shocking experience I have had in dealing with racism, was a coworker of mine who was a white girl from Mississippi. She was married, to her family's dismay, to a Puerto Rican, and had two mixed race daughters with him. But she was fast to tell you she only married him because she mistakenly got knocked up, or she wouldn't have married a Puerto Rican. She also told me during the first Obama campaign, that she wasn't ready to vote for a black guy for President. The hipocrisy stung me. How can you be the mother of two mixed race children, yet not be "ready" for a mixed race President?

The political parties have completely changed. It used to be that most southerners were democrats...back when they owned slaves. It's funny now, that all the southern states are now red. Just a coincidence?

People love to say that they aren't racist. My experience is, if you feel you have to verbalize it, you're a racist.

Thank Goodness I have raised two race-blind children. It's much easier to live your live when you choose your friends and, eventually political figures, when race isn't a factor.

And as someone pale as a ghost, I can't wait to introduce some mixed culture into my own family, as my red-headed youngest seems to have an affinity for girls who are latin in ethnicity.

Friday, November 23, 2012

My internal compass is spinning...Why won't things stand still?

Some days, its easy to point out happy things and bad things.

Lately, I feel like I am largely soaking up other people's energies, and well...


I feel like, as a person and on the exterior, I am together. I feel like at work, I am focused and driven. But work is the only place that this "got it together" Keri exists.

When left to my own devices, I feel overextended and drained. So drained that I can barely do anything because my body is tired and my mind is drained.

Emotionally, I feel little in regards to my own life. I don't know if it's because I was wildly out of control for a year, or because I've checked out for self-preservation. The circle is coming to it's completion in regard to my marriage. I've made a commitment and am honoring my vows. As long as my husband continues his self-care, I will stay with him.

But I have too many things happening in the lives of those I love, and, like an electric current, it fills me with sadness and stress.

I love my job and my coworkers. Somedays I feel like a corporate badass. But then a day later, I find myself wondering if I am in over my head. I often do this with jobs, because I second guess myself and have high expectations, both of my employer and myself. I expect my performance to be impeccable. Which is funny, because in the rest of my life, I expect utter chaos.

Life is full of uppers and downers. Coffee, coffee and more coffee to wake up and fuel myself during the days, and at night, darkness, anxiety meds, muscle relaxers and sleepy pills to shut down this machine. I have to actually take a pill that makes me so tired, I can't even continue to think in order to sleep, because I am a chronic insomniac and my mind will continue to run scenarios of how something may go, or how it should've went, making it impossible for me to rest. It's like a computer cracking a code. On and on, it sucks energy from me. I would say that in the scheme of a week, I spend a third sleeping, a third analyzing and producing, and a third stressing.

It's not New Years yet, but letting stress envelope me has to stop, and will be a major focus on my 2013 goals, along with feeling more confident and not being afraid to ask for a second opinion at work. I don't want to lower the bar I have set for myself. I just want to have enough time to let my ideas bear the fruit I know exists.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Emergency Preparedness: What you need

People keep asking me to tell them what they should have in case of disaster.

Let me be clear...I am not one of those crazy preppers...we don't run drills, etc.

But first, you need to identify potential catastrophes in your area. For example, we live in the SF Bay Area. There is threat of nuclear meltdown, Yellowstone Mega Volcano eruption, Earthquakes and rain monsoons, local to this area. In addition, since we live near Silicon Valley, we are at risk for atomic bombs by terrorists. And all of us are at risk for Solar Flare Coronal Mass Ejections.

You can check daily solar "weather" at: http://www.spaceweather.com/

Basically, our Earth's magnetic field protects us from much of the suns radiation. However, it is entering it's most active phase, which happens every 10,000 years. It's happened in the past, that the sun throws out these Mass Ejections that aren't blocked by our magnetic field, and when that happens, if it heads toward us, it knocks out power grids. It's like an EMP, and can knock out anything with a battery. With our declining power grid, and our reliance on technology, this is what I believe is our biggest threat overall for a major shutdown in the US. Electric transformers are on a 3 year waiting list worldwide, so if large ones go down, especially widespread, this would alter the way we live. Most of us would be out of work.

Imagine a country without electricity. How would you get money? Gas? Food? Water?
No computers, phones, nothing.

This is potentially a real situation. People would riot.

Your best bet is to keep enough food and water stored for at least a year. Large bags of rice, tuna, beans are easiest to keep, and least expensive. You can get 5 gallon water storage containers at Walmart for $10. You will need food for pets. You will need some method of cooking, like a firepit or propane powered stoves and the propane to go with it. Vitamins are a good idea.

A stash of medications and a good first aid kit are a must.

You need some method to protect what you have, because others will want it. Guns, knives, slingshots, stun guns, pepper spray.

You will need things to barter with. Small bills in cash, gold, silver. Things of value. Even food could be something to barter with.

Then you have to think long-term. Hunting and fishing gear, and seeds to plant a garden. Hand tools to use.

Your best bet if something happens is to group together. Form a neighborhood watch immediately after a catastrophe to lessen the chance of gangs of people invading your territory.

No one likes to think about this stuff, but look at New York and NJ. Look at the state of the world.

Bottom line...you have a better chance at being a survivor if you are prepared.

The clock is ticking...

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Enact the "Roosevelt" Bill of Rights

FDR died before he could enact this second "Bill of Rights" but when WWII ended, all of Europe and Japan got them. So why haven't we?

On January 11, 1944, in the midst of World War II, President Roosevelt spoke forcefully and eloquently about the greater meaning and higher purpose of American security in a post-war America. The principles and ideas conveyed by FDR's words matter as much now as they did over sixty years ago, and the Franklin D. Roosevelt American Heritage Center is proud to reprint a selection of FDR's vision for the security and economic liberty of the American people in war and peace.

“The Economic Bill of Rights”

Excerpt from President Roosevelt's January 11, 1944 message to the Congress of the United States on the State of the Union

It is our duty now to begin to lay the plans and determine the strategy for the winning of a lasting peace and the establishment of an American standard of living higher than ever before known. We cannot be content, no matter how high that general standard of living may be, if some fraction of our people—whether it be one-third or one-fifth or one-tenth—is ill-fed, ill-clothed, ill-housed, and insecure.

This Republic had its beginning, and grew to its present strength, under the protection of certain inalienable political rights—among them the right of free speech, free press, free worship, trial by jury, freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures. They were our rights to life and liberty.

As our nation has grown in size and stature, however—as our industrial economy expanded—these political rights proved inadequate to assure us equality in the pursuit of happiness.

We have come to a clear realization of the fact that true individual freedom cannot exist without economic security and independence. “Necessitous men are not free men.” People who are hungry and out of a job are the stuff of which dictatorships are made.

In our day these economic truths have become accepted as self-evident. We have accepted, so to speak, a second Bill of Rights under which a new basis of security and prosperity can be established for all—regardless of station, race, or creed.

Among these are:

The right to a useful and remunerative job in the industries or shops or farms or mines of the nation;

The right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation;

The right of every farmer to raise and sell his products at a return which will give him and his family a decent living;

The right of every businessman, large and small, to trade in an atmosphere of freedom from unfair competition and domination by monopolies at home or abroad;

The right of every family to a decent home;

The right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health;

The right to adequate protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness, accident, and unemployment;

The right to a good education.

All of these rights spell security. And after this war is won we must be prepared to move forward, in the implementation of these rights, to new goals of human happiness and well-being.

America’s own rightful place in the world depends in large part upon how fully these and similar rights have been carried into practice for our citizens.

Source: The Public Papers & Addresses of Franklin D. Roosevelt (Samuel Rosenman, ed.), Vol XIII (NY: Harper, 1950), 40-42

12 How. 152: “Necessitous men,” says the Lord Chancellor, in Vernon v Bethell, 2 Eden 113 (1762), “are not, truly speaking, free men; but, to answer a present emergency, will submit to any terms that the crafty may impose on them.”

Friday, November 16, 2012

Women Who Defend Dumb Men

O to the M, to the mother fucking G!

First, read this bullshit:


Yes, I am blogging twice in one day.

This bitch is crazy. Like, so crazy, I want someone to hold my "err-ings" so that I can beat her down, ATL/Oakland style.

Firstly, some women have time to put lots of energy in to their looks. Maybe they don't work. Maybe they have no children. Maybe they have good genes. Maybe they have lots of money.

But there is NO EXCUSE for a man to cheat, and for it to be justified because his wife "let herself go". As far as I can see, the woman he cheated on was LESS attractive than his wife, as is the case with most men.

If my husband thinks he could land Jennifer Anniston, then child, let him try, and I would congratulate him on his new life with her. But the fact is, men go bald, go deaf and get fat too, and I don't hear men telling each other they need to glam it up to keep their wives.

This woman was a military wife for almost 40 years. That is like 100 years in real life. Being a military wife is more stressful than being a non-military wife. She spent that time largely raising their children alone, while having to serve the military as a Commanders wife, a Colonel's wife, and finally a General's wife. You idiots who have nothing to do with the military would have no idea that at a Captains level, there are many things expected of you as the wife.

Being in a marriage is being in a commitment. It's being a companion and a friend. It's being a partner is all life's good and bad. It's NOT about superficiality and appearance. Anyone who has had rampant diahrhea and given birth should know you can't always look perfect. And this poor woman is having to suffer the entire humiliating event in public and in the media.

SO EFF YOU, crazy ho who wrote this blog post. I hope your husband cheats on you with someone who is uglier than you, so you can take your own advice and let her have him.
Because it doesn't come down to how you look. It comes down to who you are.

HOV lanes are bullshit.

The concept of a HOV, or High Occupancy Vehicle lane is not foreign to me. I've driven through the DC beltway and Atlanta enough to know what they're for.

I just ignore it.

As someone who has a long commute, if there is any chance of me getting to or from work quicker, I am all over it. I am willing to risk a ticket.

Other things that are bullshit:

...why does it cost $100 for a family of four to go see a movie and get some snacks? We're not talking caviar and champagne here, just soda, popcorn and some damn nachos?

...without fail, everytime my car is washed, ten birds coat it in a fresh layer of crap.

...when its 100 degrees outside, the last thing I need people to small-talk about is how hot it is. Can't you see my pit sweat and the fact I am guzzling a bottle of water while in the checkout lane?

...when your child loses an argument with you, and then throws themselves on the floor, crying and begging. All this is going to do is earn a solid grounding, merely for interrupting my tv show, and solidify the fact they are not mature enough to do what they requested in the first place.

...when people pat men on the back for watching their kids, or sharing household responsibilities. I don't get kudos for washing my hair or unloading the dishwasher, because when you are a grown up, you do these things. No one deserves a medal for taking care of their crap.

...when people keep lying to other people on Facebook about how cute their babies are, when anyone with correctible vision can clearly see they are not. Stop feeding into their delusion and encouraging them to post more pictures that we dont give a rats ass about.

...people who give a play by play of what their children do everyday. Seriously, and I am tempted to name names here, WE DON'T CARE. And neither does your extended family. Pictures of family vacations and holidays are enough.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Chill of Winter

It's been two years since I started this blog. Such incredible changes. I went from almost 15 years of Army haze to living like normal people do.

It's not much better.

My oldest child is going to be 14 next month. I am 33, although my dad thought I was 36. Men should know instinctively to round down, rather than up, if unsure. I think mentally, I am about 42.

I see my friends and family with all their little ones, cute as they are, experiencing all the "firsts" that most people find exciting. I look at them in pity, and am glad my two will be in college in 6 years.

I love them. I am thankful for the joys they bring me, mostly in amusement...seeing how they take after me and my witty sense of humor. I think they will be just fine in life.

I am just sick of being responsible for someone other than myself. Unfortunately, my husband's state of mind has been such that I still have to guide him in the right direction sometimes. Having a husband is like having another child. Either you have to nag them to do things to help, or you have to flat out have to tell them how to logically handle things.

Still, there are days when I think back to how cute babies are, and how I let most of that pass me by, because I was so young when they were little. I didn't appreciate most of the times in my life that I should've appreciated them. When you're a teen, you want to be a grown up. When you are single, you want to be married. The grass is always greener on the other side.

I want to talk to the 17 year old me. I want to be inspired by her dreams...because they're harder to have when you've been affected by life. I want to capture her carefree, fun-loving spirit. It seems to have escaped me. Now I dream about being old enough to retire. How sad is that? Planning for retirement to be when my "real" life starts. When I have enough time and money, both available at the same time to not worry about day to day living? I want to tell that 17 year old me that the problems I had then were nothing. I want to tell her to run far, far away from cute guys in uniform.

But then I realize I am feeling sorry for myself because things are stressful. And that my stress is stupid. I know (for the most part) my reality now. I know ways to overcome my stress, by planning ahead.

I am thankful that in the wake of a personal devastation, I now have learned to give up the problems that I can do nothing to change. That was the hardest to learn. Trying to live every day, focusing on little but that day, or week. What can I do to change the things I am not satisfied with? It's up to me to do the dirty work.

I foresee the chill of winter.

Not the temperature, but the obstacles I am likely to deal with. And I am ready for them, only because I know that the sun will shine warm on my face again.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Jeez...I leave you guys alone for a few weeks, and you all leave me!

Sorry I haven't been posting, but my life has not been a box of chocolates.

Not that there is too much bad, just BUSY.

All that being said, I heart my job. NetSuite is an amazing company. Everyone is hilarious and we have a great team there. With all that's bad in the country, the San Francisco Bay area is largely flourishing. The housing market is great and there are jobs aplenty. Moving here was one of the best decisions I ever have made, and even though it wasn't easy and took an ounce of luck to come through, I'm living (partly) the dream. Or atleast as close as one can get to it.

But with all good fortune comes a little bit of negative. It's hard to feel good about yourself when people you love are struggling.

Enough about me...there's been a lot to comment on...

Firstly...YAY Obama won!!! Secondly, pot is legal in a state! Finally, someone was smart enough to start taxing the crap out of it so we can get out of this fiscal nightmare. Sadly, my horrid commute kept me from voting, but it was a great political night. I heart election cycles. And superstorms.
(I know, I have problems.)
I had a week of catastrophe on the East Coast to watch, and then election night. It's better than cable. I often wonder, living in Earthquake Hell, if I will get caught at work in a bad earthquake, or how I would get all the way home if a solar flare knocked out power. I would have to walk. A LOOOOOOOONNNNNGGGGG way. Andy asked if I wanted my emergency preparedness backpack in my car, and I said HELL NO. I just threw my UGGS in my trunk and a sling across the front purse. If I have to walk 60 miles, I am just doing it with as little drag as possible.

That being said, we upped our emergency preparedness kit to include a slingshot that shoots metal slugs, and a machete. (Both my ideas). I don't need a gun. I want to maim with a good ole fashioned slingshot. I was actually delighted to find it. Yes, DELIGHTED. Like a kid on Christmas, before the cruel reality about Santa was poured upon my soul.

My bet on 2012 phenomenon is solar flares knocking out the grid as a massive EMP. I was sad that I fell asleep Friday night in the middle of a Doomsday show. Did you know there has been a bunch of random earthquakes lately? I check out the USGS Earthquake Map from time to time. I like to keep an eye on Yellowstone, especially now that I live in the kill radius. It would be just my luck.

Today I was pissed when all NPR had to talk about on my commute, was David Petraeus's affair. And then I looked on Yahoo, and they had his wife's agonizing picture plastered there.

HOW DO YOU THINK SHE'S GONNA LOOK????? Her husband's affair was just announced as top news, and she probably had little to no idea it was going on. LEAVE HER ALONE!!!

Why do men fuck up and then the media want to see how the woman handles it? What are you hoping for? That she'll lose it and beat him down with a baseball bat in front of your camera's? Aside from Betty Broderick, most of us handle indignities that are thrust upon us in private. If I am gonna beat down my husband for being a giant ass, I am gonna do it in private, leaving no visable marks, and then laugh as I retell the fear in his eyes as he was being mauled.

Hmmm...why does it sound like I may have done that before???

Anyhow, I am sick of men being idiots. Just because you have a penis, doesn't give you license to keep acting like a teenager. You can't fuck up everyone's life because you were weak. Women don't have time to be weak, much like they don't have time to be sick or get a decent night's sleep. We grow a pair of balls (suspectedly, the ones our mates are lacking) and do what is expected of us. We let go of the dream of being the supermodel next to the rich guy and expensive car long ago. Probably when we met you...our husbands. So it's time men realize they will never BE the rich guy in the picture. You're stuck with us. And if you don't stop being asses, we will continue to not have sex with you, because who wants to fuck a whiner?

Now, I am an asshole, and there are days I have much compassion for my husbands ailments. Yeah, it sucks your brain is distorted, you have to take a pharmacy's worth of pills, and have hearing aids at 34. I understand depression very well, since I've been depressed for probably half my adult life. But grow the fuck up and pitch in! You have it pretty damn good from where I am standing. It's not the hearing aids keeping me from putting out. It's the fact you constantly look like you've been beat. And thats just sad, not sexy.

Marriage is a form of punishment. I highly do NOT recommend it for anyone that wants to be carefree and happy. Any chance of that goes away the minute you fall in love. And if you're married and not happy, DON'T HAVE KIDS. All they do is trap your ass in. People who don't have kids and hear me say this look at me like there is something wrong with me. And then they have kids and are like, "oh". I was young, and carefree and happy once. And I was thin and sexy. And then it all went to shit when I got married because I had to be the grownup.


Life is what you make it. If your life sucks, maybe try something different. Like caring. Like getting up out of bed and doing something. Like take the spray nozzle in the kitchen sink and drench your wife with it while she does dishes. It's completely unexpected, and will probably make her chase you down laughing, and when she does...that's when you try to get her naked. Be inventive. My life has sucked ass. I have a friend whose husband died, and is she giving up? No. She's living her life to the fullest because she understands that its too short.

Whatever your ailment...don't give up hope. Happiness comes in short dribbles, just long enough to make you realize what you do have. And how miserable you would be without it.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Just when you think it's all good, someone bitch-slaps you.

Son of a f#Ck!

Due to the PTSD/Brain Damaged poor choices of someone I know...
Now I don't get an unholy Christmas vacation next month. I am really effing pissed. It's been a year and a half, and I get slammed between Thanksgiving and Christmas.Vegas was laid to rest an hour ago when I canceled my reservations.

And I have to rush my poor dad out of his house and inconvenience my sisters and brother in law to help pack my dad up so he can move out here, because Andy may be going to treatment out of state for an undetermined amount of time. So I need help watching the kids, since Gavin is in Cross-Country and my commute is from hell, keeping me from getting home until usually 7:30pm. And then I found out I could've made like $30k more at this job. I shouldn't complain...$30k is nothing in comparison to what I wanted vs. what I got.

Do you realize, I haven't gone to a grocery store since Andy moved out here? I have to go this weekend. He packs the kids lunches and everything.

(Sidenote to my bitching)I love hearing people who work at my company describe our software products in terms like, "it has a sexy dashboard", or "this is a sexy company". LOL. SEXY. Not one of the sexy folks. Not today. I bought black skinny jeans, or, as we used to call them,"painted on" jeans. But they're from Lane Bryant, so they can't, in all seriousness be referred to as "skinny" anything. They're like leggings with pockets and actually, I think they're more comfy than my pajama pants, but for the sag in the crotch/rear-end area. I guess you should buy small. So fat Keri, in black skinny jeans, a tank and a cropped sweater. Why do I feel like 1987 creeped back in?

I also had to laugh today when I posted something on FB to a friend's wall, and then realized I could look at the history of our postings since I joined the FB in 2008. It's pretty hilarious, and proves that it's good we have both sought psychotropic assistance.

Speaking of "assistance"...sometimes I just think about getting a medical marijuana card and saying eff it, and eat a whole bunch of Girl Scout cookies and laughing for a weekend. Three Valium and a muscle relaxer does next to nothing for my anxiety anymore, and drinking gives me hangovers.