Trashy.

A new house project commenced this weekend. It should be the last one for a while, but it’ll be a big one – restoration of the hardwood floors, plus painting, new baseboards, all that crap. On Sunday we moved everything out of our bedroom, and we’re sleeping in Kate’s old room. Since we intend to replace our mattress, it went to the curb, along with the rolled-up old carpet from our bedroom. By Monday at noon, it had been taken away as part of our regular trash pickup.

I thought the same thing I did after a storm a couple of years ago toppled trees and tore off branches all over the neighborhood: Thank you, civilization. Thanks, tax dollars at work. Thanks for everything. The branches were all gone, chipped into mulch, within days. But for the still-ragged broken edges high up on a few trunks, you’d never have known what happened.

Trash, of course, never really goes away, it just goes someplace else. And I do my part to minimize ours. But I’m glad I don’t live on a farm, where there’s a pile of Mystery Junk behind every barn, or shoved into a long-vacant livestock stall. I recall those scenes in “Contagion,” deep into a deadly pandemic, when trash piles lined the streets of San Francisco. Rats were no doubt waiting off-camera.

An archaeologist friend (Sammy, John’s wife) introduced me to the concept of the “toss zone,” the area around early human settlements where early humans threw their trash – out the window, basically. (You wonder why so many pots ended up as shards?) There’s a group of grad students doing a “dig,” of sorts, outside a small house once lived in by Malcolm X in Inkster. Malcolm lived there for a year in the early ’50s, well after municipal garbage pickup, so I’m not sure what they’re looking for, other than period stuff, like the junk we’ve dug up around our house – coins, a couple of milk bottles with 3-cent deposit, a forgotten statue of St. Joseph, buried to make the house sell.

The milk bottles kinda touched me, as they likely came from the original workers who built our house in 1947. Today, those guys would drink Red Bull, or Mountain Dew, or some other swill.

Anyway, not much to say today. The Justice Department is finally doing its job, maybe:

The Justice Department is investigating President Donald Trump’s actions as part of its criminal probe of efforts to overturn the 2020 election results, according to four people familiar with the matter.

Prosecutors who are questioning witnesses before a grand jury — including two top aides to Vice President Mike Pence — have asked in recent days about conversations with Trump, his lawyers, and others in his inner circle who sought to substitute Trump allies for certified electors from some states Joe Biden won, according to two people familiar with the matter. Both spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation.

The prosecutors have asked hours of detailed questions about meetings Trump led in December 2020 and January 2021; his pressure campaign on Pence to overturn the election; and what instructions Trump gave his lawyers and advisers about fake electors and sending electors back to the states, the people said. Some of the questions focused directly on the extent of Trump’s involvement in the fake-elector effort led by his outside lawyers, including John Eastman and Rudy Giuliani, these people said.

We shall see, I’d say.

As for the rest of the week, let’s get through it. It’s Wednesday.

Posted at 9:21 pm in Current events |
 

41 responses to “Trashy.”

  1. Jeff Gill said on July 26, 2022 at 10:16 pm

    I have hopes for Wednesday. Not expectations, but at the very least, hopes. Onward!

    (From the last thread, I’ve driven past Deborah’s road where it meets the not-quite-paved-either county thoroughfare, and it would take a great deal of faith for a postal worker to head up there to make a delivery! Beautiful country to get lost in, though.)

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  2. Sherri said on July 26, 2022 at 11:16 pm

    It does not help my mood to have to regularly drive past political signs that proclaim “America First” and “Make Crime Illegal Again”. One of the America First candidates is running for Secretary of State; perhaps he is confused about the duties and responsibilities of that office and think that it involves foreign policy? The other, along with the one who thinks that crime is legal now, is running for Congress, not in my district, and the street they’ve littered with their signs isn’t in the district they’re running in, either.

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  3. FDChief said on July 27, 2022 at 12:01 am

    Trump will never be indicted, let alone tried. He’s insured his immunity through raising an army of violent chucklefucks that will burn as much of the country as they can down rather than see their god-king disrespected.

    To try Tubby would be to turn the cold Civil War hot, and no one on our side has the nerve to pronounce fiat justicia ruat coelum.

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  4. MarkH said on July 27, 2022 at 1:00 am

    Also from the last thread re: various USPS topics. Here’s some firsthand insight on the subjects discussed and maybe more. I retired from banking in 2016 and am on my third ‘retirement job’. My second was as a contract rural postal carrier, lasted two years, I left it October of last year. I loved the job, but when it got to 10-12 hours a day for those six days a week, due mostly to ever increasing parcel loads, and only me on the route, I needed to look for something different. There are rules for contractors to follow to ensure delivery to everyone, but it can vary by PO or postmaster.

    Informed Delivery is not universal, not available to every mail recipient in the country. It’s right there in the link Dorothy provided. You type in your address and it will tell you if you can sign up. I’m not sure of the criteria, it should be based on size of the ZIP PO. That Deborah struck out with a Santa Fe address is puzzling. Santa Fe is certainly large enough. Three out of the six POs here do not qualify; too small. Also, all electronic sorting and Informed Delivery scanning takes place at what is called “the Plant”, that is any one of the many regional distribution hubs where mail goes for sorting, bundling, then off to its destination. Ours is in Salt Lake City. No local post office has anything like the equipment to provide ID images, according to my former associates. It is amazing how the sorting equipment can read the worst cat-scratch handwriting on an envelope and keep it in order to its rightful address.

    Also, mail theft is a federal crime the PO takes seriously and inspection agents, among the most aggressive federal enforcement agents out there, pursue pretty relentlessly. If you see a pattern of frequent mail theft, file a complaint with your PO asap and it will get pursued.

    Delay of Mail is a serious policy violation as well that could lead to employee sanctioning. If you are experiencing non-delivery consistently one day a week Monday through Saturday, let your postmaster know and demand a reason. It could be there was just no mail for you on a very light day. Most likely it comes down to sheer manpower. The entire system is short of personnel to one extent or another (our two larger POs should be fully staffed with 28; it’s usually only 13-15). That could also account for late day delivery. That happened to me frequently, sometimes keeping me out solo way after dark. The rule is this: if it arrives that morning and is checked in and scanned for delivery that day, it gets delivered that day. Whether its regular DPS mail or parcels. Regular mail has the highest priority by the rules, but carriers have a lot of pressure to get the parcels out because that’s where the profits are and it is tracked closely. But sometimes delivery sacrifices are made out of practicality. I will say that I marveled at how quickly and accurately things got done at my PO. The system has flaws, of course (people) but it works incredibly well.

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  5. Dexter Friend said on July 27, 2022 at 3:35 am

    Here accurate house delivery of mail isn’t taken seriously. Two weeks ago, I had my neighbors letters in my mailbox three separate days, no exaggeration. Instead of just taking them to my neighbor, I took them to the local P.O. and complained, hoping to get the mail carrier to shape up, because I get my medicines via mail, and more than once they have been delivered to the next street over. No more neighbor’s mail since.
    This morning in the cool I was trimming weeds and the neighbor said she had pruners and later she would help, and wouldn’t take my declining of help at all. I have rose bushes that bloom beautifully every June 1, but they were getting infested by those thin fast-growing tree-weeds. Later in the day, I noticed she or her husband had toppled my basketball unit, with the pole and base, into the yard , rim-down. And…my junk trees were gone but the rose bushes were cut completely down. Roses are tough and I anticipate a quick grow-back.

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  6. alex said on July 27, 2022 at 7:30 am

    Dex, those tree-weeds really need to be pulled out roots and all with a lever device, or they just come back bigger and stronger. I have a flowerbed where the redbud saplings spring from fat underground cables that have formed due to years of cutting them off at the ground.

    Sometimes help in the garden is no help at all. We have an elderly friend who hired a woman to clean up his yard after she claimed to be a gardening expert and offered her services. Her expertise was quite evident this summer when we noted poison ivy thriving throughout his flowerbed where prized hibiscus bushes and other plantings have been eviscerated.

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  7. Jeff Gill said on July 27, 2022 at 7:39 am

    MarkH, I tip my hat to you, and appreciate the insights. Locally, I have to weigh in with Dexter though: I’m at 120 [Name] and every week I get a piece or two or three sometimes of the mail for 120 [Othername] which is a block away. I put it in their mail box the next day on my way out to wherever, but always wonder “how much of my 120 mail goes to them, and do they return the favor?”

    And it’s the “actual” mail I’m getting mistakenly delivered, not their fliers and bulk mail dreck or voluminous political giant postcardy things.

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  8. Dorothy said on July 27, 2022 at 8:43 am

    And here I was thinking this habit of mail going to a house with the same number in our new subdivision was limited to us?! Also who the f does that – puts in brand new houses but has house numbers identical throughout the plan. Use some imagination and use DIFFERENT NUMBERS on each street! If there’s a 6108 on one street, don’t put it on a parallel street! Whoever assigned the addresses must have been high or drunk to do stupid stuff like that.

    Mark that was all very informative and helpful. Thanks very much.

    We finally got landscaping (but no sod) yesterday and it looks really nice. It’s amazing how much it improves my mood to look at it. And the stone facade that got ripped off our first porch in mid May when they jackhammered the porch and sidewalk to pour the new porch and sidewalk FINALLY got picked up this morning. Really sharp wire mesh behind the stone was exposed, and both of us cut fingers when trying to pick it up and move it somewhere the dog (and the neighbor dog) would not land on it while they romped a little bit in the rocky dirt. I know these builders have a lot to keep track of and follow through on but it’s really getting old. My next door neighbor and I kabitz outside sometimes and she has had way more issues than we have. Last night she said she’d happily put a for sale sign in front of her house because they just can’t get things fixed satisfactorily for her. Leaking shower heads, cracked vanity tops, the outside air conditioner had something heavy dropped on it before they closed and they just wanted to try and repair it. She insisted they replace it so they did. I’m glad my complaints have been really minor by comparison.

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  9. Mark P said on July 27, 2022 at 9:27 am

    We live outside the city limits and have no garbage pickup. We have to take our garbage and recycling to one of several transfer stations in the county, but anything large, like a mattress or couch, has to be taken to the landfill, quite a drive from almost anywhere in the county. I was at the transfer station once when someone wanted to dump an old picnic table. They were told they had to take it to the landfill. I saw it dumped on the side of the road on my way home. Dumped furniture is pretty common around here. The county picks it up if you call and complain, but apparently they aren’t smart enough to realize it would be faster and cheaper to just let people dump it for free at the transfer station. A year or so ago the county commission put together a citizens’ committee to try to solve the problem of trashy roadsides. Their suggestion was to have anti-littering programs for Boy Scouts. I was thinking, “Boy Scouts are not the ones dumping crap on the roadside.”

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  10. Jeff Borden said on July 27, 2022 at 9:43 am

    Chicago can be a maddening place to live, but one area where it excels is Streets and Sanitation. Garbage and recycling pickups are usually on schedule and expressways, major thoroughfares and larger streets are usually plowed quickly and efficiently after any snowfall. The side streets are always the last to be plowed and it can be hell to maneuver through them to reach a cleared roadway, but eventually, even the side streets are cleared.

    If only we could get the Chicago Police Department to perform at the level of Streets and San. If only. . .

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  11. Julie Robinson said on July 27, 2022 at 10:41 am

    Dorothy, I’m not sure about where you live, but in most places street numbers indicate distance from a fixed point, downtown or a certain street. So the developers may not have had a choice. Reading about your construction issues brings back many many many bad memories of ours last year. I still haven’t been able to let that pass.

    I’m headed off to four hours of poll worker training, yippee. I’ve been told it’s stultifying, and I’m not good at sitting still in one place for that many hours. Still, patriotic duty and all.

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  12. Dorothy said on July 27, 2022 at 10:51 am

    Nancy did you have to wrap the mattress in plastic when you put it out for trash? We got a new mattress a year ago and it was delivered in September. At this new house we got a third bedroom put in the basement so we got furniture at IKEA, necessitating another mattress purchase. And the guest bedroom mattress was one we got 20 years ago when my brother Joe remarried and moved into his new wife’s home. They didn’t need some of his furniture so we got what he couldn’t use. One of those things was a mattress. So – we bought two new mattresses last month and we had the old one taken away by the company that delivered the new ones. It cost $25 but it was worth it. We would have had to buy heavy duty plastic to wrap them if we put them out for trash. The plastic wrap is required because of the worry about bed bugs.

    Julie a neighbor who retired from the post office in the last year told me it’s actually the utility company (electric) that gives out the address house numbers, not the developers. II forget why but he’s the one who told me. Still, if they have 6108 on one street, on another street why could they not have 6112? Each street seems to have the numbers increased by sixes, so after 6108 would be 6114. A slight adjustment could have avoided this mail confusion.

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  13. Deborah said on July 27, 2022 at 10:55 am

    Jeff G, you should have seen the long flat bed delivering the building materials drive up our road, that and then the cement truck, and later the truck with the crane. Some friends drove their 40 ft RV up on to our land and spent a couple of days up there. Courage. The first time we drove up I was terrified, now it’s nothing to me except when it rains a lot and we have to cross the arroyo (no bridge).

    Speaking of rain we got almost an inch last night in Santa Fe, very rare. Nothing like what happened in St. Louis, I have a good friend there who had 12″ in their basement. It rained there more than it ever has in recorded history. But no, there’s no climate crisis. Also in Albuquerque (60 miles away) yesterday the Rio Grande was completely dry.

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  14. Mark P said on July 27, 2022 at 10:58 am

    When I built our first house 20 years ago, I contacted the Post Office, and they assigned an address. Same with our current house. The first house was the first on the left after a cross street. It was 109. The second house is first on the right after a cross street. It’s 52. Neither number appears to have any correlation with distance from anything in particular, but I assume there is some method.

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  15. David C said on July 27, 2022 at 10:58 am

    There’s no dust quite as persistent as floor sanding dust. It’s worse than drywall dust. It’s sticky and hangs out in little corners forever. The end result is worth it though.

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  16. Heather said on July 27, 2022 at 11:38 am

    There is a huge hill in Rome called Monte Testaccio that is made up entirely of pottery shards people threw there in antiquity. Today there are various businesses carved out of it on the street level, especially dance clubs. I’ve always wanted to go on a tour of the top of the hill, but they’re pretty rare. I was actually scheduled to go on one on my last trip there, but it rained a lot and it was canceled. It’s one of the few things on my bucket list for Rome that I haven’t done.

    In Chicago buildings larger than six units have to arrange for private garbage pickup. Our condo has 12 so we have a private service. People always dump furniture and other stuff by our Dumpsters in the alley as it’s right by the street, and then we have to pay extra for our garbage company to take it. It’s annoying. I’ve had to stop people from leaving their crap there before.

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  17. Deborah said on July 27, 2022 at 1:08 pm

    Mattress dumping in other people’s neighborhoods is a time honored tradition in Santa Fe. Aholes drive over with a mattress in their pickup and prop it up on someone’s fence. The saggy filthy thing sits there for a couple of days and then magically disappears. Neighbors put things they don’t want or need out to the sidewalk for anyone to take. We got a cool handmade rustic potting table that we had for awhile outside until it fell apart. A friend of LBs got a nice wicker chair that way. The stuff is usually scarfed up quickly.

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  18. Jeff Borden said on July 27, 2022 at 3:17 pm

    Heather,

    I’m surprised the alley gleaners didn’t grab the stuff. Most everything we put out in the alley is scarfed up within hours.

    BTW, if you haven’t heard the latest rant by tRump, it’s straight out fascist terrorism. No rules for cops (including no liability judgements), relocation of the homeless to tent cities outside of town, federal domination of states that act in ways the preznit doesn’t like, immediate execution of drug dealers, “shortened” trials for quicker verdicts and punishment. Of course, his fans ate that shit right up.

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  19. basset said on July 27, 2022 at 3:28 pm

    Looks like One America News is circling the drain… NYT story appears to be paywalled but is repeated elsewhere. Search “OAN” and “death blow,” the latter being Verizon’s decision to censor the true voice of America… no, make that dump an underperforming channel, the last major cable outlet to pull the plug on em.

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  20. Icarus said on July 27, 2022 at 4:46 pm

    Dorothy,

    I’m not sure I’m understanding the using different numbers thing? Is it different elsewhere, because Chicago streets are mostly grid and we repeat numbers on every block as far as I know?

    Heather, I feel your pain. We had two dumpsters at my condo and we tried to make one dedicated to recycling and the other to trash. You can imagine how that turned out. One of my happiest days was when we got our Portage Park house with a driveway. Even with all its warts, I miss having a basement.

    Out here in Mississippi-stan, we have a truck with a claw that comes along and takes anything you leave out by the road that cannot go into normal trash. The downside is it doesn’t have a set schedule. I’d be okay if it was like “well your day is Wednesday but it might not come until Thursday” versus “well it might come Friday, Tuesday, or whenever”.

    We also have a dump where we can bring stuff to if we cannot wait for the claw, but you are just asking for a flat tire with all the debris scattered around.

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  21. alex said on July 27, 2022 at 6:37 pm

    Our garbage company doesn’t take furniture and mattresses and appliances, so you see lots of it dumped on country roads. When I was a kid (and a pyro) I used to take great delight in torching that kind of stuff. When we replaced our toilets the old ones went into our garbage totes and the thuds they made when the mechanical arm raised and flipped the totes and emptied them into the truck bed was earth-shaking. And more gratifying than a garbage fire.

    RIP OAN. And may the voting machine companies v. Fox and Newsmax put them out of business as well.

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  22. Julie Robinson said on July 27, 2022 at 8:15 pm

    So I survived my poll worker training, and I’m looking forward to primary day. I’ll be one of three people checking in voters for the two precincts together.

    Florida has a system where volunteer groups who staff the polls earn money for their group. That’s what I’m doing, for our daughter’s church. A gal I was chatting with was volunteering for her daughter’s marching band. In 2020 they staffed seven precincts for the three elections thay year, and earned 10K. As she said, thats a lot of car washes and bake sales!

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  23. LAMary said on July 27, 2022 at 9:19 pm

    In my neighborhood we’re not exactly in a grid pattern street-wise but I know that there are houses with the same numeric address as mine on the next street over and the next after that and so on. When I lived in NYC same thing. I know when I watch Law and Order they often give addresses that don’t exist unless people are living in the Hudson River.

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  24. alex said on July 27, 2022 at 10:18 pm

    I remember spending a college summer in NYC and not comprehending the address numbering system at all. I was staying in an extremely narrow building of flats in Brooklyn and the house number was 900-something. I planned to connect with some former Fort Wayners who were living on a parallel street but their address was 100-something. I figured we were quite a distance apart. When we finally got together I was astounded to learn that we were living practically back to back and could wave to each other. Small world indeed. But what a weird non-grid they have there. I remember Bergen Street being the nearest major through-street.

    Today was surprised to see a local news story in the Washington Post. Some 79-year-old nutter from Fort Wayne, who carried a 36-year-old grudge against an automotive dealership, got himself arrested for setting cars on fire in the dealer’s lot: https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2022/07/27/jeep-lemon-indiana-arson/

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  25. Peter said on July 27, 2022 at 11:02 pm

    Nancy, those milk bottles you found buried at your house may have been used by the workers to relieve themselves during the workday – especially if it was raining or snowing outside. Kind of like the Snapple bottles that truckers have in their cabs. Back then toilets and sinks were the last items to be installed in a house.

    House numbers: In Chicago, the City’s Department of Transportation issues house numbers – you have to have a certificate when you file a permit for a new building. If you look at city maps (in Chicago, the 80 acre maps) you’ll see the individual lot lines, and in the street, corresponding address numbers, for each block.

    Dorothy, here’s going down the wormhole: When I worked on projects at the World Trade Center, you had to get a suite number certificate from the Port Authority – that way a suite in tower 1 wouldn’t have the same number as a suite in Tower 2. But did they have odd suite numbers in one building and evens in the other? NO, because that would have made sense.

    One last one – In Tokyo, address numbers on a street are handed out as buildings go up. As a result, on most streets the numbers aren’t in a sequence.

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  26. Mark P said on July 28, 2022 at 12:12 am

    I forgot the other disincentive for people to take their mattresses and other large items to the county landfill. They charge to dump it. It’s like they are trying to get people to dump stuff on the side of the road. And they have had great success over many years.

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  27. Dexter Friend said on July 28, 2022 at 4:28 am

    I have lived in this house now for over 41 years; three giant maple trees have caused horrible damage to my house, and one cracked the house in two like an egg and we were in a motel for months as it was repaired/rebuilt.
    A YouTube guy named ArtistMac lives near 47th in Chicago in his own house. He wrote of a time a storm caused fallen branch damage to his property, and all he had to do was call Chicago Forestry Department and they came right away to clear up the tree limbs and the mess. Of course his homeowner’s insurance stood tall for the structure damage. I was amazed! Here, we try to get a tree service person here ASAP. When the big tree cracked the house in two, the city did race here and tarp the roof around the damn tree to ward off the rain damage. Those 3 maples were on the “terrace”, which belongs to the city…the strip of grass between the sidewalk and the street curb, otherwise, I’d have had to cover the cost. (The second tree flattened my pickup truck, the third was taken down by the city, the fourth, in the side yard, cracked my kitchen area and destroyed my garage.) Goddam maple trees!
    TY Alex about those fast growing tree-weeds; they grow strong and fast for sure.

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  28. Dorothy said on July 28, 2022 at 6:15 am

    Icarus @20: Definitely NOT a grid in this suburban plan. People here are have had their mail and/or packages delivered to the wrong house so many times that now they have each other’s cell phone numbers and just text each other if they have the other person’s stuff. That way they just communicate with each other instead of blasting it all over the Facebook neighborhood page. That’s f’d up. The USPS needs to be doing their job.

    If you have a package that can fit into one of the two storage lockers in the stack of mailboxes on our blocks, they put a key in your individual mail slot. Then you use that key to unlock the corresponding locker and get your package out. My next door pal Rene got a message via Informed Delivery a week ago saying a package was left for her in a locker. But the key to the locker was never given to her. She wrote a note to the mail guy on Tuesday, and yesterday he responded. He blathered about being blocked to get to the mail boxes this week due to contractors being parked all over the street. (We’ve had landscapers here putting in our shrubs and trees and mulch). He completely ignored the fact that it was LAST THURSDAY that she didn’t get her package. What do vehicles parked near the mailboxes this week have to do with last Thursday?! Rene is really pissed. She ordered a new top to take on their vacation. I wear size 2X tops and Rene probably wears another size or two up. So clothing is not always easy to find when you are shaped like that. This is why she’s so upset about that missing package. I told her yesterday she needs to go in person to the post office instead of dropping notes in the slot for the mail guy.

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  29. basset said on July 28, 2022 at 6:54 am

    Got through my poll-worker refresher training, a few minutes online. the last few elections I’ve expected to see camo-wearing, AR-toting “patriots” around the polling place calling themselves poll watchers, maybe it won’t happen this time either. Closest I’ve come to that was some clown slapping a carry permit down on the table and acting like he expected to be challenged… no big deal, I have one too. Not that it makes any difference any more, Tennessee law has changed since I got it and now no permit is needed, you just carry your weapon and enjoy liberty. Or something.
    House project starts next Friday – jack up a floor joist that was built out of line with the supports it was supposed to rest on, once everything’s level put in some braces to keep it there.

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  30. Dexter Friend said on July 28, 2022 at 9:46 am

    *the terrace area I mentioned is called an easement elsewhere, just not here.
    I just took the mulching mower and destroyed the bush and big weed residue but my heavy basketball set-up with the heavy base and thick steel pole which I used to handle easily just showed me how age wins over heavy stuff. Damn, either that or that hoop assembly got heavier in the last few years. I gotta get my brother here to rise it up again…the neighbors just toppled it when they were helping with the thick weeds, then left one heluva mess.

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  31. Mark H said on July 28, 2022 at 11:08 am

    Dorothy – you were absolutely correct to tell your friend to see the postmaster on that missing parcel. Contract carriers sometimes don’t get or fully embrace the message on customer service aspect of postal delivery. Just because they aren’t actual USPS employees doesn’t absolve them of responsibility, especially in this case. Also blocking access to any postal facility (post office, remote blue mailbox, customer receptical, like your friend’s cluster box unit or CBU) is illegal. Your PM can take action against those landscapers or anyone else blocking a facility.

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  32. Suzanne said on July 28, 2022 at 12:46 pm

    This is righteous anger:

    https://twitter.com/wutangkids/status/1552685990980059138?s=21&t=CGA3uwxolxb6uQN-KIQO0A

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  33. LAMary said on July 28, 2022 at 12:51 pm

    Here’s my very non-grid neighborhood:

    https://maps.latimes.com/neighborhoods/neighborhood/mount-washington/index.html

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  34. Deborah said on July 28, 2022 at 1:00 pm

    Dexter, do you still shoot baskets?

    Seems like allowing someone to carry a gun into a polling place would be asking for it these days.

    We’ve been spending a fortune on food and we’re trying an experiment to see how long we can go without buying more food. We only allow ourselves to buy things to drink during this effort. Our downfall is that we decide to make something for dinner and just need one small ingredient so we run to the store to get that one thing and end up buying 10 more items that seem important (or tasty) at the time. So we end up with bunches of stuff in the freezer or the cabinet that doesn’t get used right away and then we forget about it or it doesn’t appeal to us as much later. This experiment is making us be creative about what to make and how to substitute for an ingredient we’re missing. Also long term planning menus is helpful. How to discipline ourselves once we get to the store is another matter. I’m a sucker for stuff on sale just because it’s on sale, not because I need it. Stores are always rearranging their shelves so I have to search for stuff and while searching I spontaneously pick up stuff I pass by. They’ve got me pegged.

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  35. basset said on July 28, 2022 at 1:06 pm

    Deborah, “allowed” is not how I’d describe it – more like “standing outside the entrance armed and claiming you have a Constitutional right, no, duty to inspect what’s going on.” We’ve all seen it elsewhere, in parks and so forth.

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  36. Julie Robinson said on July 28, 2022 at 1:43 pm

    Our trainer was most emphatic that guns are not allowed in the polls. He said we may get poll watchers from the parties, but only one is allowed from each party, and they have to be certified in advance through the election board. They are only allowed to speak to the poll clerk, who is overall in charge for the day; they are not allowed to talk to any other poll workers. I don’t expect issues for the primary, and I haven’t decided if I’m working the general election. We’ll see how I survive a 13+ hour day.

    Incidentally, my husband is also working and got all excited when I mentioned bringing in food for the day. Sarah says everyone brings something and it’s potluck. I suggested meatballs in a crock pot and his eyes lit up. I mean, save for vegans, who doesn’t like those?

    basset, hope your jack project goes well. Did they tell you to expect new cracks in the walls as it straightens out? That was disheartening to me.

    Food has become ridiculous. Aldi is now priced like Publix, Publix like Whole Foods, and WF, who knows since there isn’t one close by. We do make a menu each week but I’m not sure if it helps save money. It’s more because otherwise no one can think when it’s five o’clock and they’re hungry.

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  37. basset said on July 28, 2022 at 1:49 pm

    We must be in the sweet spot for grocery store demographics – two Publix, two Krogers, an Aldi and a Sprouts within three miles.

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  38. basset said on July 28, 2022 at 2:03 pm

    Nobody mentioned any new cracks, but I can see how it’d happen. Just an inch or two of lift, so maybe we’ll get away with it.
    At the polling place, I thought some knucklehead might take a mind to stand outside with his AR at port arms feeling like he’s protecting our true way of life. Probably not, though.

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  39. Icarus said on July 28, 2022 at 2:13 pm

    We were warned that food prices were going to go up and shortages were going to occur. Thus my wife started stocking up on essentials. We bought an upright freezer to go along with the 2nd refrigerator in the garage and it is pretty well stocked.

    I know what you mean Deborah, it seems every time I try a new recipe it calls for an ingredient I don’t have on hand. And I don’t really want to buy something just so I have a tablespoon or less, especially if I don’t have other recipes that need it.

    Fortunately, many things can be substituted. I was on a quesadilla kick a few weeks ago and found a cool recipe. I was able to use smokey paprika instead of Ancho chile and it turned out fine.

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  40. LAMary said on July 28, 2022 at 2:19 pm

    Whenever I buy something that’s not one of my usual grocery items specifically for a recipe I end up with a half container of it hanging out in the fridge until it rots. I know there’s a half container of mascarpone leftover from a farro recipe in the fridge right now. Nice recipe, but not worth me going back to get the assortment of other things needed right now.

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  41. JodiP said on July 28, 2022 at 3:03 pm

    My refresher training was 2 hours, and I appreciated it. We use electronic pollbooks to look people up and there are a few tricks to that. We also do same day voter registration, so we need to know what is required and how to get them into the pollbook.

    As far as the grocery scene here, I’m thankful we have food coops. All the spices are in bulk so we can get just what we need if it’s an ingredient we don’t use often. If we use just a half a container of something like marscarpone, I try to use it in something the next week. Not always successful at that but we try!

    I’ve done meal planning since forever–it’s our Saturday morning ritual. I still forget things though so there is always one quick trip to a store during the week.

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