The Gull Reef Club

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9/17/2019 · 2:03 am· Trouble · Good Bye Blue Sky
sometimes waiting and watching is all you can do. The weather has been oscillating quite a bit this... | Read More

9/1/2019 · 1:30 pm· Jaime · Good Bye Blue Sky
It's summer. We don't adventure much in the summer. It's too hot & buggy. We hibernate and wait... | Read More

9/1/2019 · 2:25 am· Trouble · Good Bye Blue Sky
So how goes the summer of adventure? Inquiring minds want to know.... | Read More

6/6/2018 · 12:46 am· Michael (Net2007) · My friend, my friend, (s)he’s got a knife
I've often felt this way, it's strange and divisive times in many ways. As far as this goes, I... | Read More

7/12/2017 · 4:22 pm· Trouble · Half of Us Are Wrong or in the Alternative, Half of Us Are Right
I've been following the saga and cataloging links of interest that contain more than mere rhetoric.... | Read More


Time Change – Let’s Compromise

Filed under: — Jaime @ 1:59 pm

Since we Americans continually, collectively complain about the semi-annual time change, and since we can’t rely on Congress* to do anything useful (about it or anything at all), I have a suggestion for compromise.

Assuming we don’t stop this insanity at some point (which we really should), we should start the time change 24 hours earlier than we currently do. This would allow us to spring ahead or fall back on Friday night (technically Saturday at 2a) and give us a whole weekend to get used to it. As it is now, we only get one Sunday evening to get used to it then it’s suck-it-up-for Monday! I would wager that we would all be more productive if we had a wee bit of extra time to adjust.

Of course, this is an antiquated system and needs to be relegated to the history books, but if we are going to cling to it, we might as well try to make as best as we can.

*I recognize that many states have taken the burden on themselves of establishing whether they will adhere to a time change, but that is because these states have been failed by our Congress, who truly is the proper authority to establish this.


Requiescat in Pace, Reflections of 9/11/01

Filed under: — Jaime @ 2:17 pm

In looking back at my writings here at the Gull Reef Club, I realize I have never shared my experiences on 9/11/01. I wrote this up a long time ago and have posted it elsewhere. Today is a good day to reflect on this, and share what I went through on that day. Please share your experience if you are so compelled; I’d really like to read it.

My morning, 9/11/2001:
It was a typical workday. I began the morning rituals around 8:45 am. First, I turn on the TV to CNN. Next, I feed the cats. Third, I prepare the coffee.

Mike was either in the shower or working on getting there. As I was preparing the coffee, the anchors interrupted with a “this just in” reporting “something” had hit the World Trade Center, most likely a plane. I watched the speculators continue for a minute and then yelled to Mike that a plane may have hit the World Trade Center. The anchors slipped into presumption mode and seemed to be coming to a conclusion that it was most likely an accident.

I resumed the morning ritual but with an ear tuned to the TV (it was an open kitchen/living room) and Mike went out to have a smoke. I began washing the coffee cups. I heard the anchors become very excited and say something about seeing a second plane. I turned to look at the TV just in time to fully witness the second plane fly into the building.

I became really weak. I knew this wasn’t an accident. I called to Mike but I couldn’t quite find the words, so I ran to the door to tell him what happened. We both returned to the living room and watched in disbelief for awhile. When we heard there were other hijacked planes, I said to Mike, “We’re being attacked.” And while the reporters on the TV would not confirm the same thing, Mike did to me, “I know. This was no coincidence, not an accident.”

The day was spent in front of various TVs, radios and computers, telephone calls made, the ‘I love yous’ and ‘are you safes’ exchanged. And as the day wore on and day gave way to night, the doubt settled in. The questions started coming like a flood. I have never in my life experienced such uncertainty and fear.

It changed everything.


Drowning Doesn’t Look Like Drowning

Filed under: — Jaime @ 2:04 pm

This morning, I read of the tragic drowning death of goalie Ray Emery in Lake Ontario. Such sad news about a classy guy.

Water safety is nothing to shrug off. If you plan on being on or near the water, please take the time to learn basic safety and response skills. The sea is unforgiving.

For the past few years, GCaptain has run this public domain article about drowning, Drowning Doesn’t Look Like Drowning. I implore you to read it, share it.

Be safe and have fun out there.


Virtue Strawgnaling

Filed under: — Jaime @ 2:49 pm

It’s summer, which means it’s bogus outrage season for so many Americans. Bored? Why not get angry over something that is relatively unimportant and will assuage your insecurities about being on the right side of history? It’s the 21st century American way.

This year’s outrage topic de jour? Plastic straws. Let’s ignore the fact that plastic straw waste makes up a whopping .02% of all the world’s plastic waste, and let’s also ignore the fact that we Americans only contribute about 1% of the world’s plastic waste altogether. We have to ignore that if we want to be outraged. We also have to ignore these facts if we want to give the illusion that we are “doing something” about said outrage.

Go ahead, “do something” you amazing anti-pollution advocate you. Go ahead and declare your self-righteousness to the world and let us know that you won’t be using plastic straws anymore. That will fix things, and it sure will make you feel good about yourself. Stroke that ego with your paper straw.

Hopefully next summer’s outrage will be more interesting. Maybe I will get on board. In the meantime, I will be over here, sipping a cool drink from a plastic straw.

Source on plastic waste facts


My friend, my friend, (s)he’s got a knife

Filed under: — Jaime @ 2:05 pm

As much as I am trying to move away from following current politics for the sake of my own sanity, the occasional stupidity bleeds in and I feel compelled to comment.

The most recent, bleeding stupidity comes from the Mayor of London, who stated, after a rash of stabbings in his city, “No excuses: there is never a reason to carry a knife.” (Reference: Mayor of London, Twitter Feed)

Oh yeah, Mayor Khan? I guess this tiny woman didn’t need her daily-carry knife to open all her mail? Nor did I need it when I cut off a loose string from my sweater? What about my dinner plans? That delicious butcher beef is not going to cut itself.

There are times when politicians say the most ridiculous things to convey the illusion that they are reacting to issues of popular concern. This is one of them.

Just another reason to be thankful that I live in the great state of Georgia where knives are not weapons, but people-stabbers are criminals. It is sad someone of such education is unable or unwilling to make the distinction, and chooses histrionics instead.


Version 2.1 – Official Release

Filed under: — Jaime @ 1:06 pm

Using a rather hot birthday to lounge about and be lazy. We had our fun yesterday in the boat. Mike caught dinner (a redfish/trout combo), and the weather was great. A Hawks OT win was a nice bonus.

Tonight’s dinner will be Mike-made pizza. I’m hoping to summons the energy to make some snickerdoodles, but don’t hold your breath. I was delighted that I got one of my favorite treats as an early birthday present – a toasted coconut donut from a shop way out in Rincon, brought to me by a friend (I apologize for not remembering the shop’s name or I’d give them credit.) – bdaydonut

I also got these adorable pens, one representing each of my kitties – kittypens.
I errantly referred to them as ‘kitty pens’ when I first described them to Mike, and some funny inferences arose involving cats being used as livestock. On top of this, I was gifted a lovely mana-tea set. I also appreciate all of the kind greeting you all have sent me on FB and elsewhere. Feeling lots of love this year. Thanks!

Now, off to indulge in some laziness.


AHS: American Hockey Story

Filed under: — Jaime @ 6:03 pm

Any of you watching this season of American Horror Story? How about you Blackhawks fans? If so, have you noticed the remarkable similarity to Evan Peters and Jonathan Toews? Like brothers from another mother (but probably not Kai’s mother). See for yourself:



Half of Us Are Wrong or in the Alternative, Half of Us Are Right

Filed under: — Jaime @ 2:12 pm

Pandora is yelling at me to leave the box alone, but here I go anyway…

I really want to talk (or ‘open a dialogue’ in modern parlance) about the alleged Russian collusion in the 2016 presidential election, but am finding it quite difficult. The difficulty for me lies in the fact that half of you have come to a completely different position than I have, and that the facts upon which you base your position is a completely different set of facts than I am using. We can’t have this discussion if our realities are different. I end up thinking you are crazy or ignorant and you will think the same of me.

In the civil litigation world, we address fact issues in summary judgment by submitting a Statement of Undisputed Facts or in pre-trial by submitting a list of evidence we intend on relying upon at trial. Leading up to that, we often swap expert reports in an effort to show our expert has the most proper understanding of the facts. We don’t have it so clean or easy here. We can’t even agree whose experts to believe (Washington Post? CNN? NYTimes? Zerohedge? Breitbart? Wikileaks?).

At this spot in my post, I’m supposed to come up with some sort of conclusion statement to close things out. I can’t even do that. So – конец. Feel free to use my space to discuss this, but know that there’s a 50% chance 50% of us think you’re wrong.


Time to Pay the Piper, Illinois

Filed under: — Jaime @ 1:58 pm

The dire financial situation of the Illinois state government has been in the news a lot lately. Their lack of proper budgets due to politicians who can’t get their act together is at the heart of this issue. Every government funded agency is suffering up there right now, including the state-run universities, one of which is my alma matter.

The desperation is now being put on full display in the notable increase of third-party solicitations I am receiving through my alumni society. In the past, I would get one maybe every six months. I was hit with two of them today, before noon, and one over the weekend. So I guess I need to expect that my alma mater is now selling my alumni information to any third-party that will buy it. This is not going to earn them much money but it will certainly bring the animosity of those who dislike their information being sold. I’m leaning toward leaving the the alumni society over this. I’m not your band aid, and at this point Illinois, you need far more than any band aid could offer anyway. Perhaps it’s time to start selling your assets, Land of Lincoln?

Reason #6226 I am glad I left that stink state almost 16 years ago.


Fly’s Eyes

Filed under: — Jaime @ 1:57 pm

Anyone remember this little gem, c. 1988?

Fly’s Eyes, Heywood Banks


Life as a Libra (perpetually seeking balance)

Filed under: — Jaime @ 1:42 pm

Half of me can’t help but think that we’re living in a Roger Waters scored dystopia and the other half chortles, then reminds the 1st half that this is nothing new and to keep studying history just to be sure.

Goodbye little spy in the sky.
They say that cameras don’t lie.
Am I happy, am I sad, am I good, am I bad?



Filed under: — Jaime @ 2:37 pm

Not able to get to any uke practice today like I had anticipated so lucky you – I’ll blog instead. I’ve recently consumed a few media items so time to share and review.

Gone Girl, a novel by Gillian Flynn. I read this about a month ago. I have not seen and probably never will see the movie that was made based on this book. (I really don’t watch movies, please stop asking if I’ve seen _______). The story was fantastic. It developed quickly and moved along swiftly the entire time. The one and only thing I disliked was the ending. I understand why the ending was done the way it was, but I was left feeling ‘robbed’. There was no justice served and that is not a normal ending for a western-style novel. It’s hard to get over that. All in all, I liked it, and will probably seek out some of Flynn’s other work when I remember.

Not long after that, I read the first graphic novel series I’ve read in probably decades. This was Tatsuhiko Takimoto’s Welcome to the NHK. Like Gone Girl, I wasn’t a fan of the ending. They actually both ended similarly with an Asian-style ending, which is no end – they just keep repeating cycles. People making the same mistakes and history repeating itself. It’s a rather Hindu/Buddhist style ending, which is just hard to accept, although reflect reality quite well. All in all, this was quite a compelling story. I also came away with a new perspective on some Japanese-related cultural aspects, which is cool.

For both of these novels, if you are looking for a typical Western ending (boy gets girl, hero saves the day, the bully is embarrassed/quashed, etc.) you will be disappointed. If you can handle that things just end the way they started, you’ll probably like these a lot more.

Two weeks ago, I was listening to the OTR show, Suspense. One of the episodes I heard was Diamond as Big as the Ritz. Wait?! What? Isn’t that just the name of a Jimmy Buffet song? Turns out the answer is no. It was actually a story written by F. Scott Fitzgerald (or probably Zelda and he just stole it from her). It is a historically dated story, but still a good and fast read. It covers the usual theme for Fitzgerald – the excessively rich and what they do with their money. Find a copy online (it’s everywhere) and read it. It’s short and worth your time.

On the TV end of things, we’re on the precipice of NHL Hockey playoffs. Huzzah! I really want to wax on how stupid the NHL is in their decision regarding the 2018 Olympics, but I will save that for another day.

My favorite new TV show is Designated Survivor, staring Keifer Sutherland. In talking to some family, we learned a lot of us are watching this. Are you also? If not, start now! It is hands-down the best new show I’ve seen on TV in a long time (last time I liked a show this much was Breaking Bad.)

OK, the clock is ticking down and my lunch hour is almost over. Go Hawks!


Help A Sister Out

Filed under: — Jaime @ 2:43 pm

Today is International Women’s Day. Social media is informing me that many females are participating in protests to recognize this date. The encouraged protests are apparently to wear the color red and to not go to work or shop.

So help a sister out here – I understand that a lot of my fellow citizens feel a need to protest their government. While I usually don’t agree with the reasons, I understand it. Peaceable assembly and seeking redress are inalienable rights that should be exercised and often. But that is all centered on protests of the government…so why are women protesting their employers and not the government? It seems like they are missing the forest for the trees and/or shooting themselves in the foot. Can anyone explain this?


Like the Indians

Filed under: — Jaime @ 2:21 pm

I have one more George L. Smith State Park story for you that I forgot in my last post. Really, it’s not GLS-specific, but something that happened there. Truly, I’m sure I could have overheard a conversation like this in a lot of places.

Here’s the scene – Mike and my friend, Kim, walk to the rental station to pick out a paddle for her to rent. I stayed in my kayak on the water and paddled around the launch area while they did this. While paddling and killing time (I was mostly circling and practicing turns), I notice a group of young men approach the boat-rental area. I think there were about 6 or 7 of them and they all appeared to be early 20s in age.

The boat rental area is not very complex, but there is no one on site to explain anything (there is construction going on there so the actual staffed rental area was up a slight hill and around a corner). Of course, there really isn’t much to explain. There is a line of worn-looking jon boats, canoes, and kayaks. After you pay the staff in the rental office, you walk to the boats, pick one out and go. Seems easy enough…unless you are one of these young men.

This is what ensued as they approached the line of available rental boats:
Six to seven Dudes gather around a jon boat and inspect it, many of them scratching their heads and looking confused. They then group-wandered to a canoe and stared at that for a minute. Then I begin overhear things like, “well, which one is the canoe?” “They’re both canoes” and so on and so forth as they tried to determine what they had just rented and which boat to take out.

Eventually, one of them decides to turn the jon boat over – because clearly – that will help them see the difference. After turning it over, the same dude then stands in the jon boat in a sort of Washington Crossing the Delaware pose. His friends seem delighted, and I hear things like “So that’s the canoe?” “Are you sure that’s it?” Washington-Wannabe responds, “Yeah, I can stand in it. Like the Indians. It must be the canoe!” So they piled into the jon boat and paddled off (with a lot of strain & effort because you know, it wasn’t a canoe. Although, I suspect that paddling wasn’t going to be easy for them regardless of the boat).

It was a perfect coda to their story when we spot them later in the day at one of the other boat launches. This time all but one of our intrepid boaters have abandoned their jon boat in lieu of a four (small) person paddle boat. Their numbers and weight was far, far exceeding what the paddle boat could handle. They nearly tipped the thing and drown themselves. Meanwhile, they left one – just one – dude to paddle the jonboat. We have video of him nearly doing the splits just to get in the boat. I will spare him and refrain from posting it. He ended up getting on and not falling in. If he fell in, you’d have seen the video already. I love laughing at fools as much as the rest of you do.

I honestly wonder if they ever made it back home. Good luck fellas, you’re going to need it. Your future does not appear to have smooth paddling ahead.


Trolling on Election Day

Filed under: — Jaime @ 5:28 pm

Alright – which one of you wise guys gave the Democratic Party my home phone number? We’ve been subject to many, many pre-recorded voicemails since last night, including one from Jessie Jackson! Very hilarious. I suppose they may have just bought my info, but if that is the case, their desperation is showing. I don’t think I’ve voted as a Democrat in the general election since I moved here over 15 years ago. Oh well, they can spend their money any way they want I guess. It’s not like I ever answer my phone.


See Something, Say Something, A First Hand Account

Filed under: — Jaime @ 2:17 pm

It was less than a month ago that I was waxing poetic about how wonderful my neighbors were after Hurricane Matthew. It didn’t take very long for things to return to normal and for me to resume having little to no faith in humanity. It’s not my neighbors who caused this, though, so please don’t think they are involved at all. My neighbors still rock. Other people who live in my city – not so much.

Here’s what happened –

Yesterday, Mike picked me up from work and we headed on our usual route home. We hit the main road that takes us toward our house, and once on this road, we encountered a suspicious driver. The person was driving a large pick-up truck towing a trailer with a log splitter on it. This person almost hit us and then almost hit a Cadillac that was driving in the lane next to him. At that point, I pull out my tablet to start recording this guy. He ends up crossing the middle white line 4 different times and swings back to the side of the road where he drove in dirt at least twice. This is all within 3-4 miles. We and the other drivers were giving him some distance because clearly something was wrong. Unfortunately, we did not have a phone on us at the time or we would have called the police immediately.

We continued to follow this guy to his destination, all while filming. We were truly concerned he was going to hurt himself, others, or both. When he finally gets to where he wanted to turn, he completely overshot it and had to do a 180 just to make his turn. We see he is turning into an exclusive, gated community. “Great!” We think. The security guard at the gate will be able to call the police for us. We were wrong, so very wrong. At this point is when things took a stunningly bad turn…

We watched as the guard just waived the driver in. That’s odd, we think, since the driver had a South Carolina plate. He shouldn’t be a resident of that community. How did he get waived in so easily?

We follow and pull up to the guard house. We informed the guard that the person who she has just waived in was either drunk or having a medical problem and needed police assistance immediately. She gets her hackles up and goes on the hard-core defense for him – like, immediately. “I know him. He’s a resident. I’m not calling the police on him.” What?!?!

We offer to show her the video. We explain that he could be having a stroke or something and could need medical assistance. We simply didn’t know what was wrong with the driver, which is why we wanted the police to come. They are the ones with the training and ability to figure it out.

The guard continues to refuse adamantly, and will not watch the video or call the police. She begins yelling at us to leave the property. At this point, Mike and I are simply stunned. Here we are trying to do the right thing. We’ve been told for 15 years that if we “See Something. Say Something.” We did, and this guard, who we errantly believed was charged with doing the right thing as her occupation, was shutting us down and protecting a potential criminal or hampering medical response to someone having an emergency. We were at a bit of a loss on what to do.

In comes a resident to the community. We ask her if she would call the police for us since the guard was refusing. The resident refused to help. First she tries to tell us that she didn’t see what happened so she didn’t want to get involved. We understand that, stated so, and offered to show her the video. She refused to watch it. She was so peckish and cowardly. The guard is now yelling at us to stop harassing her residents. We responded by telling the guard to call the police on us then. Whatever we needed to do to get the cops there. Chicken resident goes into the subdivision while we’re telling the guard to call the cops.

Another resident pulls up, this time a man. Well, he looked like man anyway, but I gotta wonder. He was a little nicer than the chicken lady, and was willing to listen to us, but then sarcastically asked, “Well, why don’t you have a phone?” Uh…not relevant. He, like the chicken lady, refused to call the police and went into the neighborhood.

The guard is now on the phone…correction – she is on two phones. One to each ear. I really don’t even know if she was talking to anyone or just doing it to avoid talking to us. As a bit of an aside, I want to describe this guard. She was female and dressed well (lots of bling and expensive looking hair). She had this little yappy shi-tzu in the guard house with her who barked nearly the entire time we were there. In the distance we could see her automobile – a sparkly, new, white Mercedes. We got the impression she had no formal guard training and was likely some resident who wanted to earn a little extra cash. I got a little loud at this point and just kept shouting to her, “Call the Police. Did you call the Police yet?” etc. She would interrupt her “calls” to tell us not to talk to her but that was about it.

As I was repeatedly asking the guard if she had called the police, a third resident comes on the scene. This guy came from within the subdivision, and seemed to roll up simply to get nosey. While we can’t say so for sure, we suspect that this guy may actually have been the driver of the truck or an immediate neighbor. I didn’t hear the start of the conversation between him and Mike, but I started paying attention to it when I overhear Mike tell the guy to back off. I turn around and start filming them. Mike later told me this dude chest bumped him. Dude is yelling at us saying that we had no idea if the truck driver was drunk or not. We agreed with him –which I think threw him off. He was expecting a fight. We informed him we had no idea but we had film showing there was indeed SOME sort of problem with the driver and the police were needed to figure it out. He really did not like the fact that I was filming him so he got back in his car and started to head back into the neighborhood. As he did so, he pulled out a little walkie-talkie and whispered something into it. Mike asks him if he was a fire fighter or law enforcement. The guy laughed at us and Mike said he said he was a cop (I didn’t hear him say that). I suspect he was not a cop or he would have been happy to show us his badge and push around his authority a little. I think he was communicating with whomever it was back at his house.

Realizing we were getting nowhere, and there were at least four people in this ritzy subdivision, including a uniformed security guard, who were more interested in protecting their own (a potential criminal or medical patient) than doing the right thing, we left and headed to the police department.

Much thanks to the SCMPD for their williness to listen to us and to follow up on this. Everyone at the Police Department was very helpful. They took a copy of our video, the tag information for the truck, and our information. They said they would go over there and pay the driver a visit (and hopefully the guard). As of right now, I’m not sure where things stand, so I don’t really want to post any of the video, in case an investigation was opened and is on-going.

Now I’m here on lunch, listening to Roger Waters remind me that ‘What God Wants, God Gets (God Help Us All)’ and wondering what the hell has happened to my fellow humans. Those four cowards we encountered at Richy Neighborhood sicken me. I hate them, and I hate hating. It would be now that I would like to curse those people and hope they all have someone dear to them die because of a drunk/impaired driver, but I won’t wish that. If karma wants that, karma will get that (karma help us all!). In the end, I know that we did the right thing by reporting this.


Division Bell

Filed under: — Jaime @ 2:19 pm

This morning, I logged into Facebook (I know, I know.) With the pre-election anger mounting in this country, I was curious as to where my friends and family are aligning themselves on one of the hottest topics of the summer – race and the police. Obviously, this is not a scientific work by any stretch of the imagination, but it seems people are falling into three categories: a) the obeyers b) civil rights advocates (not to be confused with sjws – I don’t/won’t have any of those as friends) and c) the checked out.

Personally, I find myself falling somewhere between b) and c). I can’t blame those who have checked out. I understand the appeal of not wanting to pay any attention to what is happening around us. Sometimes, it’s just easier on our brains and bodies to post pics of your kids/pets/food/vacation. Plus, I suspect many of us intentionally avoid discussing hot topic items on FB so as to avoid any conflict with people we otherwise care for and respect.

On the other hand, I also have strong sympathies for those who are recognizing injustice in our country, and are willing to say something about it. And this is where this post really starts to get difficult to write. I now feel a need to qualify anything I say going forward with the usual disclaimers – I have a number of friends and family members who are police officers. I love them all very much….however….I can’t be their automatic cheerleader. You won’t see me wearing a blue ribbon or putting up a blue light on my house. I can’t be in the obey category. I’ve seen too much injustice to know I can’t default to “the police are always right, obey them”.

Police officers are not military, but more and more they act as if they are. A standing army is unconstitutional, and should not be tolerated. Although, the way our police departments act these days are not really their fault. They are only following orders – the laws the politicians set down for all of us. Ultimately, what I would like to see is our police forces collectively standing up to those that put them in the uncomfortable and dangerous situations – the politicians. They are the ones who have the power. They are the ones who have created a system whereby the police feel like they need to act like militarized soldiers in a war zone. The politicians are the ones who have criminalized non-violent offenses. The politicians are the ones who have established the sentencing laws that see the incarceration of our minorities at a significantly higher rates than white people. The politicians are the ones who have created an us-versus-them mentality, all the while raking in the cash and being above the fray, and sometimes even prosecution (Hillary, I’m looking in your direction).

It should not be this way. The police should put down their arms and attitudes, and join the protesters. Join them and say they will not enforce unjust laws. They will no longer participate in a system where they are locking up their brothers and sisters for non-violent offenses and destroying their lives with criminal records. I’m open to other ideas, but this seems the best way to mend the fences between the citizenry and the police, and at the same time creating an alliance against politicians. They are the ones we all need to focus on. The politicians are dividing us – so let’s not obey them, and if you’re police, don’t do their dirty work for them.

There’s two cents from a chicken shit white person who will never actually protest anything. No matter where you stand on this issue, remember – we all have to live together in the end. Your choice in what kind of house it will be.


Just Super

Filed under: — Jaime @ 9:58 pm

Georgia’s primary is tomorrow, wonkishly known as Super Tuesday. We’re an open primary state, meaning I don’t have to declare myself a member of any party to go in and vote. The issue I’ve avoided until now, is that I really don’t care much for any of the presidential primary candidates. I therefore, have no idea for whom to to vote. I don’t even know if I should vote R or D. I plan on heading to the polls tomorrow, but mostly because I want to vote for Sheriff. I’m obviously not compelled to even vote for any primary candidate, but I want to, if only to keep things interesting (and I can later say, ‘don’t blame me, I voted for Kodos’). So, I appeal to you – if you had my option, who would you vote for? And if you’re up for it – why?


Scary (with Jerry)

Filed under: — Jaime @ 2:31 pm

Well over a year ago, I promised I would share with you my ‘first’ ghost story involving my nearly 100 year old home (see: Ghost or Gravity). As we’re drawing near one of my favorite holidays, Halloween, I thought I’d finally share this.

I can’t specifically recall when this happened, but my guess is sometime between 2006-2010. It was a nice day and we had the windows open. I was in the laundry room, which is in the far back, downstairs corner of the house. My beloved Jerry Garcia was in that room as well, chilling on a shelf we made so he could look out the window. Mike was upstairs in our home office, which is on the exact opposite side of where Jerry and I were.

I was loading up the washer when I heard a man’s voice, very deep, very gravelly, rasp, “Jerry!” in a quite angry tone. I looked up to see why Mike was messing with our cat like that (this was not something that he’d ever do in jest), and saw Jerry rise up with the hairs sticking up all over his back. Jerry’s eyes were wide and he was clearly upset that he just got yelled at. “Mike?” No response. I calmed Jerry down a bit, and then proceeded to go upstairs. There, I found Mike, who was completely oblivious to everything that had just gone down in the laundry room. After a few go-rounds, I was convinced it wasn’t him messing with us.

To this day, I have never been able to figure out what it is I heard. I probably would have chalked it up to something innocuous had Jerry not reacted the way he did. I’ll never know what it was I heard that day, but as Jerry was my witness, I know we both heard something. Speculate on that as you will.

Happy Halloween!


Don’t Anecdotally Diminish Me!

Filed under: — Jaime @ 2:05 pm

This lunch hour was supposed to be spent either shopping for a bridal shower gift or for working on a writing contest entry, but no. Instead, it’s rant time. You have been warned.

The topic of this rant is about those who anecdotally diminish my/others’ experiences. This is something that occurs all the time, but it’s been rather prevalent as of late (in my personal, anecdotal, experience, of course).

Let me give you some real examples (going further into the irony/more anecdotes territory):
1) Me and a friend are in an elevator. I was grumpy and my friend asked why. I told her I was very cold because the a/c had been on too low all day and it made me miserable. Out of the blue, two old ladies in the elevator decide they need to get involved in our conversation and lecture us on how we should be grateful for the cold air because once we get to be their age and experience menopause we are going to need the a/c at a near freezing level. You know what? STFU old ladies. I was cold. I am not menopausal and your useless anecdote is just that – useless. Not only that, it pissed me off. Why are you trying to diminish my feelings? What good does that do? I WAS cold. You old ladies being menopausal and having a different preference for climate control does not mean that my experience being cold was any less.

2) A college-bound person I know (trying to preserve his/her anonymity here,so “CBP”) was at an event and needed to leave. CBP’s leaving was contingent on another person at the event giving him/her a ride. The ride-provider was slacking and not really wanting to leave the event, so CBP was getting more and more stressed to the point where he/she had to step away from the event because the stress was about to turn into a panic attack.

A few of the older people at the event became aware of CBP’s actions and instead of trying to help the situation or merely stay out of it, they had to voice their anecdotal opinions of, “CBP is stressed? Please. CBP doesn’t KNOW stress. Try living MY life. THAT’S stressful.” So again, STFU older people. CBP’s stress was real. Just because you, as an older, and in theory wiser, person, have the tools to deal with the kind of stress CBP was learning to deal with, doesn’t mean CBP’s experience was NOT stressful. How about a little empathy instead? How about sharing some of those great tools you have learned to teach CBP on how to handle his/her stress? How about just not being a jerk?

3) This one is far more general. This example is one I’m sure we’ve all heard with much frequency, especially if you happen to watch/listen to any right-leaning talk shows. “You can’t have an opinion on the military (and now more recently, the police) unless you have served yourself.” This one is pretty easily defeated with ye olde, “Well, I’ve never murdered either, but I have an opinion on murderers.”

I don’t really have any goal to this post. It’s a rant for rant’s sake. I guess I am mostly trying to bring to light something that is very annoying, and quite, frankly, rude.

TL; DR: Don’t diminish other people’s experiences because their anecdotes don’t match up to yours.

Next rant: rude joggers. See you soon.

The Gull Reef Club