Taking a break from the blog

Hello all,

I’m very sorry for my sudden disappearance.  My workload has increased sufficiently lately and is going to continue to increase over the next couple of months.  I’m having trouble finding times for simple errands/chores in my life. 

So I have to take some time off from my blogging until the dust settles.  For good reasons at least, the company is doing well and expanding.  🙂

I hope you all continue to do well, and I will return as soon as my schedule allows.

“Survive Reality, Live the Dream”

-SR

 

 

Say Hello back atleast….

Hello All!

I’ve been extremely busy at work and in my personal life lately, sorry my posts have become sporadic.  I had to share this though…

I work in a sports store, as I have mentioned in earlier posts.  One of the few things I agreed with corporate on (previous job) was greeting customers.  No pushy sales jarble, I simply ask my employees to say hello to everyone who walks in, “hi, how are you today?” “let me know if you need any help”.  I think it’s nice, a way to make people feel more at ease while they shop in the store and let them know who works here (no uniforms). 

I HATE when people can’t handle a simple “hi” back.   I know some people have issues making eye contact.  I was taught to look people in the eyes because it is a form of respect, but that’s me.  Some people (quite a few today) though will walk in, and I’ll say “Hey, how are you doin’ today?”  and they’ll just stare at me, or pretend they didn’t hear me.  I worked in Seaside Heights for a long time, I know how to throw my voice, and I know you heard me. 

Are people becoming so socially inept due to technology that they can’t even handle saying hello anymore?  Or are they just rude?

Ugh,

-SR

Survive Reality, Live the Dream

 

 

 

 

Alex Grey – Gaia

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Alex Grey is one of my favorite artists,  for obvious reasons.  He creates stunning paintings using nature, biology, and spirituality.  I’m lucky enough to own a signed poster of this painting (a gift from my wonderful younger brother). 

Gaia was the goddess of the Earth in ancient Greece.  The great mother of all of the universe, the heavenly gods, and the titans.

Alex Grey used half of the painting to show the wonder and beauty of nature, while the other half balances out with the destruction of the Earth mother by man.  A truely beautiful and detailed piece that speaks volumes to me.

If you have the time, I highly recommend checking out more of his body of works.  He is also known for doing a lot of the artwork for the band Tool.

-SR
Survive Reality, Live the Dream

The Black Crowes – Bad Luck Blue Eyes Goodbye

Artist: The Black Crowes
Song: Bad Luck Blue Eyes Goodbye
Album: The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion

I’m a big Black Crowes fan, and I would have to say this is my favorite album by them. The whole disc is a treasure trove of songs to soothe your soul. Including a cover of Bob Marley’s “Time Will Tell”. Hopefully I’ll be able to see them this summer, I know they are touring.

C-ya on the flip side!
-SR
Survive Reality, Live the Dream

The Heavy – Curse Me Good

Artist – The Heavy
Song – Curse Me Good
Album – The Glorious Dead

I now have a new car with a working CD player! Now I get to listen to all of the songs on the albums that have stacked up on my desk since my old car’s CD player crapped out months ago (I can’t really complain, that one lasted 14 years and 2 cars). This Motown/Rock sounding number has caught my ears. Whatever you do, go all out!

-SR
Survive Reality, Live the Dream

My blueberry addiction…

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I go blueberry picking every year.  This summer’s haul was 14.37 pounds.   They never last long, a few select people get some containers from me.  The rest I will eat, or bake with then eat.  I will eat blueberries day in and out to the point of overdosing.  That quarter size guy was the first to go.  Not much can get me up at 6AM on a day off, but I’ll do it for these beauties every year!

-SR
Survive Reality, Live the Dream

Jimi Hendrix – Star Spangled Banner

Artist: Jimi Hendrix
Song: Star Spangled Banner
Album: Woodstock

Happy 4th of July everyone! You can remain angry at the government, but support your country today. Here’s a classic gem from Woodstock 1969 to put you in the spirit.

I’ve always been obsessed with Jimi Hendrix, I know he died of an overdose, but the whole conspiracy behind his death is my guilty pleasure. I buy every magazine I see with a story on it. I remember when I was 6 and decided I want to be a rock star, my father signed me up for electric guitar lessons. We found out then that I play guitar left handed, and my instructor went to correct me (since I am primarily right handed), but then stopped and told me to hold the guitar both ways and tell him which felt right. I did, and left handed was the answer, to which he replied, “just like Hendrix”. I felt like a superstar that day. About a year into my lessons my parents got a divorce, and we moved an hour away. My mother signed me up for guitar lessons in our new town, but it was a guy in a bow tie who wanted to teach me Green Sleeves, and I wasn’t having any of that so I quit after a little while.

Have a safe and happy weekend everyone!
-SR
Survive Reality, Live the Dream

Brokedown Palace – The Grateful Dead

Song: Brokedown Palace
Artist: The Grateful Dead
Album: American Beauty

I’m not a huge Grateful Dead fan, but I do enjoy certain songs and albums. This is a beautiful song, and today, when it played on my store iPod it spoke to me. The perfect song for the mood I’m in at the perfect moment. Ever have that happen?

-SR
Survive Reality, Live the Dream

*New* (used) Car!!!

Hello all,

Yesterday was an incredibly busy day for me.  My boyfriend picked me up and drove me to work in the morning.  I then opened the store and my boss stopped by to drop off some more inventory to enter and set up.  By the time I finished that a delivery came with more inventory to process and put out.  I then got a call from my insurance agent (FINALLY!), and I explained to her the trouble I’ve been having getting the title for my totaled car.  I gave her all the information I had on where it was bought and the original bank it was financed through, she said she would see what she could find out and get back to me.  Then I got a call from the dealer who had the used car I liked that was out of my price range.  He had gotten financing for a lower payment, but it was still a little too high for me.  He then called me about 2 hours later and told me he knocked $1000 off the price and was able to get financing for a monthly payment that was in my price range!  I had him start writing up the paperwork and told him I would shoot over right after work. 

My boyfriend came to pick me up from work, and I told him the good news.  He had to help a friend (old boss) that night right after he was dropping me off.  His friend has been solid drinking for at least 2 months straight, he had gotten so bad his wife kicked him out of the house and filed for a divorce.  She called my boyfriend last night, and I told him to answer because she never does and it must be important.  She explained her side of what had been going on and asked him if he could help her husband.  His family already gave up on him, she has given up on him, my boyfriend is the only one left.  He picked his friend  up after dropping me off, he had to search for him because he has been living in his work trailer that is attached to his truck.  He was drunk as a skunk.  My boyfriend then took him to the local hospital and his friend admitted that he was suicidal and needed help.  They took him in and will hopefully transfer him to a rehab center where he can get, and will accept some help.

Meanwhile I had my mother pick me up shortly after I was dropped off and shot up to the used car dealership (I get home around 7:15pm, the dealership closes at 8:00pm).  We went over everything, clean car fax, passed inspection, signed my life away, and switched my insurance over.  Hooray!!!! I have a new used car to drive!  No more relying on other people to get where I need to go!  It’s good to have my freedom back. 

I then drove to my mother’s house, where family from Indiana are staying while they visit this week.  I said hi to everyone and caught up a little, then showed off my new ride.  I got a call from my boyfriend and he said he was near my house because he had to go back and lock up his friend’s truck and trailer.  We decided to meet back at my house, so I said my goodbyes and headed home. 

We filled each other in on the night’s events, and by then it was time to go to bed.  He left, and I got ready for bed, feeling like I could pass out standing up.  As soon as I curled up in bed, that feeling passed.  All of a sudden I felt very anxious, my heart was racing and I was wide awake.  Why???  I have no answer, maybe it was residual from not having a car, maybe it was because I was anxious about driving the new one to work today, maybe something else entirely.  I walked around the house for awhile, then watched some TV.  Around 3AM I finally fell asleep.  I woke up this morning with the same feeling though.  Am I forgetting something?  Is my subconscious worried about something that I haven’t realized yet?  When am I going to feel relaxed again?

Oh well, suppose there’s nothing I can do but keep trucking along, and hope it will pass.

-SR

Survive Reality, Live the Dream

 

 

Totalled car to new used car, trials and tribulations

car

Hello all,

I have been having the most frustrating, everything that can go wrong will, experience with this whole car thing.  It has brought me to my brink of absolutely losing my mind.  My emotions have run rampant on me, and anyone close to me. 

It all started when I picked up my boyfriend after work (he had recently lost his truck in an accident, and I was the only one with transportation at the moment).  It was raining off and on all day, and we were headed back to my place to watch a movie.  As I went through an intersection the light turned yellow and an off-road jeep decided to turn left to beat the light…into my car.  Thank goodness my little VW was a very safe car, I sustained air bag burns and major bruising on my right arm and leg.  My boyfriend took most of the hit to his chest, but had trouble remembering simple information.  I decided to ride with him to the hospital, the kind police officers said they would bring my information to me there. 

My boyfriend was taken for tests and I made the proper calls to work (not coming in tomorrow!) and my mother to come pick us up.  He was cleared with the tests, but they told me to stay awake with him, because he might have sustained a minor concussion (he has had a few too many already). 

The next day I called my insurance, since I had to wait for the police report to be ready (1 week!!) to get the other drivers’ information.  I gave them all the information I had and emailed pictures I had taken of the crash.  I used the bulk of my vacation time to take the rest of the week off (mind you I had planned it to be my first vacation with this job, 4-day weekend). 

Over the next couple of days I talked to multiple insurance agents (they have a different agent for everything you do!?), cleaned out my car and said goodbye to “Frankie”.  Frankie was my VW Golf, it was my second car, and it lasted me 13 years and a little over 195,000 miles.  I then scheduled a rental car for the next week since I knew it would take at least that long to have all this paperwork go through.   

The car had been paid off for 10 years, but was in my father’s name since he put the down payment up for me.  I took over payments afterward, and never really thought getting the title would be a problem.  He had been through a lot during those 10 years, he was laid off from his job around Christmas time the year before 9-11.  He then struggled for a few years looking for a new job, living off his savings.  It then got to the point that he took up a few part time jobs to try and bring in some money.  I had to drop out of college, and go back to work full-time to try and help my father (and younger brother) keep a roof over their heads and phone on.  This ended up draining my savings, my younger brother moved in with a friend, and my father went homeless.  I didn’t hear from him for just over two years.  Then finally I got a phone call that he got a good job offer, and was moving to Louisiana.  I went and met up with him (and cried a lot), he told me about all he had been through during those two years.  I didn’t know it then, but during that time the bank held my car title and put a lean against it.  My father was able to get back on his feet and he paid off what he needed to, to start over again.

  I called him to tell him I needed the title for the car to get my settlement from the insurance after the accident. He found the form we needed online to get it, printed it, filled out what he could and overnighted it to me to fill out the rest. I did that and went to the DMV to get my title, to which the lady at the reception desk told me I needed power of attorney to get the title. I got that form, and overnighted it to my father, he filled it out and overnighted it back to me. I go back to the DMV with all the paperwork I needed and then some. This time I got through to the counter, when the woman behind the counter told me there was still a lean on my car and I need a letter from the bank to clear it. Now, I’m flipping back and forth emotionally between rage and depression. I tell my father what happened and he said their system is not up to date. It changed banks a few times before it was taken care of so they don’t even have the right bank on file, so we can’t get a letter from them. Perfect. My insurance agent keeps calling (the one handling the totaling of the car anyway) asking about the title, I have to tell her again that maybe I’ll be able to get it next week.

In the meantime I scrambled together some money, and borrowed the rest from my mother (which she doesn’t really have to lend). All together I figured out that I could get a $7,000 used car with a little financing. I thought that was enough to get a decent car that could handle my daily 180 mile commute. I’m past thinking I need a fancy car, this shouldn’t be too hard. Ha! I’m sure it doesn’t help that I live in the area that Hurricane Sandy hit dead on, there were/are still a lot of people who lost their cars not to mention everything/anything else in that monster storm. All I have been finding in my price range though are rust covered cars that drive horrible and have 120,000+ miles on them! That’s what I get for $7,000 that I don’t even really have!? I know it’s been 13 years since I’ve thought about buying a new car, but holy guacamole! Did you know that they will now finance you for 6 years to afford a car??? This is absurd, how is a normal blue-collar working person supposed to afford that? No, I’m not financing for 6 years, half way through that I’d probably owe more in interest than what the car would be deemed worth.

I did find one car, a 2008 Hyundai Sonata, with 76,410 miles on it. I took it for a test drive, and oh man did it drive nice, perfect for my long commutes. The price? $10,995, ouch, a little out of my price range. I haggled with the salesman for awhile, then had to walk away. I spent the whole next day looking at cars as well, 13 used dealerships, and only 2 possibilities in my price range. I did not test drive them yet either. Ah, depression, hello old friend. Looks like I’m going to have to spend all of my money on a P.O.S. car, cross my fingers, and make sure my AAA is up to date.

Monday, I was at work when I received a call from a weird number. It was the used car salesman who had the Sonata that I liked, he said he may be able to finance it at the monthly payment I can afford. He needed some more information from me, so I faxed over what he needed.

In the meantime, I also have two of the other used car salesman looking at auctions for me this week for a good commuter car in my price range.

Sigh, and now I’m at work, having trouble thinking about anything besides that I HAVE to get a car this week. I feel like Murphy’s law had directed all of it’s energy on me lately, and it’s wearing me down.

-SR

Survive Reality, Live the dream