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Archive for August, 2011

A couple of days ago I was watching a TV show in my favorite, most comfortable chair when my wife walks out of the room and then I start feeling my chair shake. At first I was baffled since I am on the 2nd story of a house and there isn’t any construction going on in my neighborhood… right now. So I stand up and feel nothing. I sit back down and I feel it again! I am now starting to thinking I am just nuts so I look at my drink and the liquid is shaking (I did learn that trick from Jurassic Park!).

I asked my wife if she felt anything, and she answered no. SO I stated that it felt like the house was shaking. My wife’s answer?

“Well, the neighbors are mowing their lawn!” Uh, honey it takes a HELL of a lot more to shake a house then a small lawnmower. I love her to death but she can be very silly at times… that’s probably why I love her so! J

Later I found out that there was, indeed, an earthquake in Virginia which caused some minor tremors up through NY. Now, if you listen to the nut jobs on TV, and there are a LOT of them-believe me, you would think that all the buildings in NY fell over.

After all is said and done, I think they stated it was a 2.1 on the Richter scale. It wasn’t even enough to set off any car alarms, and there are some cars that drive on my street that their stereos will set off car alarms.

Basically, I wish people would just relax and stop over exaggerating things.

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I work in an Emergency Room, my shift ends at 11pm and I arrive home about 15 minutes, or less, later. After a shift I have a huge problem falling asleep as I am not tired until around 1 or 2 in the morning, so I do the feedings at night so my wife can get some much deserved sleep.

Usually around 12:30ish my daughter starts to stir and make noise so I bring her in with me and she conks out for another 30 minutes or so before she is REALLY hungry. As I am feeding her I watch tv, VERY quietly, and I am an avid fan of HGTV. I LOVE this tv network. It shows so many Do it yourself projects and ideas, but one of their shows is HOUSE HUNTERS.

If you are unfamiliar with the show, it follows a couple around with a real estate agent while they show 3 houses and at the end, the couple chooses one house to place a bid on and then they tell how much they paid for the house as well as any changes they made to it. It can be a little addictive, especially when you are trying to guess which house they chose.

The show is REALLY good, but the people they have had on the show lately have been the bottom of the barrel type people. I mean EVERYONE wants to buy the best things for the lowest price, but these people seem to expect a mansion for the price of a cardboard box.

So the recent episodes, these people have CRAZY budgets. They are approved for somewhere around $800,000 or more but expect to buy multi-million dollar homes for around $300,000 it seems! I can understand spending $500,000-$750,000 and expecting you can just move in and not do much if anything. I mean, most people do make changes to their home to make it their own such as paint walls or changing the hardware on cabinets, but some of these people… I think they feel if they knitpick everything they will receive a HUGE discount when bidding instead of realizing, it’s just superficial things that can easily but done themselves but I guess they feel they are too above painting their own rooms.

One couple stated they wanted a fixer upper and when they were shown a house that fit the bill and the house was over 3,000 square feet as well as being sold for ½ the price of the houses in the same neighborhood, they did nothing but complain. Maybe its just me, but when I think of a fixer upper I think of a house that requires so real work. Maybe dry wall needs to be done or maybe a bathroom needs to be completely gutted, I think of MAJOR work. I think the people on the show do not really know what a fixer upper is. If you can’t do the work needed FOR the fixer upper, don’t ask to see fixer uppers and then act like the world is going to stop because you have to repaint a room because the last people had REALLY bad color choices. Or act like the entire house is useless because someone put lime green shag carpet in a room. People change their carpeting all the time, so realize… if someone put it in, you can take it out and change it!

By the end of the episode, these people buy the house that is the exact OPPOSITE from what they were asking for and then put all this money into changing to be what they wanted. When I start house hunting, I have specific criteria in mind and there may be some minor things I will compromise on, but the major things I would not. Things like the size of the house, the minimum size of the lot it is on, the fact that property taxes are a concern and so on.

But that is why a GREAT show, like House Hunters annoys me. What do you think? Do you watch the show?

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I chose this topic this week because I feel this is a topic some people find to be important… I am not one of them.

I understand some people may become offended easily… and that is a shame. I mean, do you REALLY become offended when someone says Merry Christmas to you instead of Happy Holidays? Some people do (and the ones who do all seem to wind up in my ER).

Some people are offended by ANYTHING. I remember when I was working as a Customer Service Rep for a cable company, a customer called and was just screaming and yelling. Now, growing up, I was always taught salutations are a sign of RESPECT so referring to someone and Mister or Missus was the respectable thing to do. Well, this person was SUPER rude. And I referred to her as Misses and her last name. (For this post her name will be Smith, because I don’t think it’s appropriate to use cuss words in a post about cussing) And she became offended that I called her Missus Smith? What?

Our blogs are our voice. And our voice is protected by the first amendment under the Freedom of Speech Act. Now I try not to cuss in my posts, but sometimes and expletive helps show my level of frustration.

I think, nowadays, every becomes WAY too offended too easily. I mean people can’t just take what is said, or posted, for what it is and move on? I mean if the words are directed at you personally and the person is trying to be purposely offensive, that’s one thing. But when someone says “Merry Christmas” and you can’t use the manners your momma taught you and just say “Thank you” but instead you say something like “I don’t celebrate Christmas”, I mean jeepers. It’s a moment. The person was just trying to show you some courtesy and respect and you were offended?

With a blog post, if you read a cuss, just keep chugging away and read unless you are not that interested which is just about every one of my posts and then just move to the next post or leave the blog all together.

A cuss is just a word. Every cuss has an actual meaning, but since we have moved them into the category of “slang” and given them different meanings, they are “off limits” to say.

I feel let people say what they want, how they want! I do believe only it with expletives if you can say it with the same meaning without them.

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Ok. Just like every other person on the planet, there are things which annoy me. I mean REALLY annoy me. Some things only annoy me slightly while other things are WAY on the top of my SHUT THE HECK UP list. You know the list I am talking about. The one where people say these things which sound so asinine that you can’t help but tell the person to shut up and then proceed to give them your feelings on the subject.

Well, the other day I had one of those conversations where I just told the person how idiotic what they were saying sounded.

When I have these conversations, I always give myself time to think things through just to be sure I am not over reacting about the topic… I wasn’t.

With people at work, some people you become more friendly with than others. Those people you talk to about things as well as ask them about things as well. I was at work and one of these people I am friends with had been on vacation so, since I consider him a friend, I asked him if he did anything and so forth… that’s when the conversation took a turn for the worst.

He said he didn’t go anywhere. I knew he had planned on going to Jamaica with his kids (He is a single father bringing up 2 boys) so I told him I thought he had taken them back to Jamaica.

He stated it was too expensive and when he goes he needs at least 2 weeks. Hey, that sounds great to me. But I asked him if he did anything during his stay-cation. He said “NOOOOO! What are you crazy?”

Huh? Ok, so you take vacation from work. You can’t go back to Jamaica (where you are from originally) to see your family, you didn’t do anything while on vacation, what is the purpose? Now I didn’t say any of this. At this point I am still thinking this, but my way of thinking is – if you are going to take a vacation… do SOMETHING. You can sit home and watch TV anytime. When you have a day off or something, take advantage and do something… ANYTHING. Go to six-flags or go rollerblading, take the kids to see something you wanted to like the Statue of Liberty or the beach at Montauk Point. To me taking a vacation and doing nothing at all is useless… unless you have things you may need/want to get done like home project or just an overload of errands you have been trying to finish. But if you are going to do NOTHING, then go to work and make money, earn more vacation days and then take a vacation when you find something you want to do or a place to go.

Ok, so here we are, talking about his stay-cation and how he didn’t do anything and he thinks I am nuts for suggesting he did something on his week off from work. And now THIS is why I may have become a little annoyed at his thinking.

I suggested he should have done something and he looked at me and he said “there is nothing to do around… not like down in the Carribean.”

WHAT?!?! I think that is BS. I totally agree that the carribbean is gorgeous.. WHICH IS WHY PEOPLE GO ON VACATION DOWN THERE. But if you can’t afford to go or just don’t want to at this time, anything you can do down there you can easily do here in the US.

He said people cannot go snorkeling here. I called BS. I stated I agree I would not WANT to, but then if you want clear water, jump in your car and drive down to the Jersey shore or even go to Virginia beach or the Outer Banks. The water is VERY clear and they even have shipwrecks you can dive down to, if that is your thing.

Then, this is the part where he said he would never do that with his kids because here in the US you have to watch your kids like a hawk, but in Jamaica you don’t.

Again, my brain screamed WHAT?!?!

I told him I completely disagree with him on that because I know many people who went to Jamaica and they had much more stolen then if they stayed in the US. So I looked it up and the murder rate for countries in the world – North America is listed as 6.5 while the Caribbean is listed as 18.1! So the murder rate is just about 3 times that of the US. I also looked up what Jamaican websites state about their own country.

They state if you stay in your vacation resort, your fine. If you are crazy enough to leave (barring excursions to tourist attractions) expect to be violently harassed. They also state if it is not nailed down, expect it to be stolen. Farmers, residents, everyone has their items stolen and cars are expected to be broken into unless you have someone watching it.

I think what also annoyed me is that someone left “their country” to come here to the US and then, in a round about sort of way, bad mouth this country. My country. The good ol’ US of A.

My though is, if your country is so awesome and amazing and so much better than my country of birth… why the heck did you leave it and come here? That tells me that you have a VERY vivid imagination of how “awesome” your country is and you know that the US is much better!

Who would leave a place they love and is great to go somewhere that they do not feel safe with their family?

I am all for relocation and remembering your roots and customs. I love learning new customs in every way. But if I am going to move to a country to live and make a living for my family, I am not only going to learn the language and customs, but I am going to respect the country and the people in it.

It is daily that I help patients in the ER who do not know any English at all. My first thought is that they are visiting or recently relocated, but after talking to them I find they have lived here for DECADES?!? This blows my mind! How can you live in an English speaking country and not learn the language? I would be embarrassed for myself if I moved to Russia or Spain and refused to learn Russian or Spanish, besides thinking that I am disrespecting the residents.

Part of me thinks I am being too harsh. I mean, the United States is a GREAT place. There is someplace here for everyone. There is the ability to create a much better life because our payscale is higher, but then again so is our cost of living.

Sometimes I feel a little spoiled to have the lifestyle I have when there are places that could only dream of these things. I know a lot of people think “well if your situation is really that bad, then do something about it to make it better!” Unfortunately it is not always that easy.

But I do think you should have respect for the country you choose to live in, to be a citizen in. I think that if work to become an American citizen the LAST thing you should do is say how everything here sucks and where you are from originally is so much better. If it is… go back there.

What I think is even more annoying is how close minded these people are. Even with the arguments and the facts about which they are speaking, they still turn it around to make it positive… but only in their mind and they are not smart enough (in my opinion) to realize it.

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