ABC, GDP, 123

Baby you and me girlllll… Listening to the radio today I was alerted to yet more information about our gross domestic product numbers, or GDP, and what it should “mean” to me. According to the powers that be (aka the media covering the government, aka the government, aka the people who buy our legislators), our economy shrank recently. Yet the unemployment rate and the utilization of food stamps fell at the same. So is the economy still in the toilet or are things getting better?

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Side note: When I was a kid, I flushed change down the toilet for fun.

There are a lot of reasons GDP can rise and fall, just like empires, temperatures, and Fergie’s London Bridge. Which irks me to no end, as the London Bridge doesn’t go up and down; that’s the London Tower Bridge. But the song was admittedly catchy, and frankly, most heterosexual men were not watching the music video for the lyrics…

 london bridge fergie musica blog gabbyestevao moda fashion unhas acessorios nail art cultura

That looks more like a milkshake bringing boys… nevermind.

To stay focused, maybe I’m just becoming numb to the daily fracas surrounding whether or not we are in recovery or still climbing out of recession. With the oversaturation of “news” in the media concerning the state of financial affairs in the U S of A and globally, maybe the most recent cries for and against things improving are simply bouncing off of my psyche, my body becoming the proverbial Rubber Duckie.

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Who, admittedly, made bath time lots of fun.

So I’ll soldier on, clipping coupons while checking out Buzzfeed articles and listening to stories alerting me to either upcoming crises or the sunny way forward. Either way, we all know that in the end, I’ll end up reading a trash zombie novel or catching up on shows on Hulu while trying to keep the cat from destroying what’s left of my houseplants. In the meantime, stay classy (and solvent) Salt Lake.

The Century Mark

A Dry Heat. Desert Summer. The aforementioned Century Mark. These pseudonyms and alleged witticisms are what I am forced to live by for three months of the year, starting today apparently. Now don’t get me wrong, I grew up on the East Coast and at least partially in the South. I remember taking a shower at 6am on a Virginia morning in July and walking outside, only to feel like I was still in the bathtub, just fully clothed this time.

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Also not a pleasant feeling.

That said, when the radio disc jockeys (which is what DJ stands for, the more you knowwww), try to placate me on my drive home by mentioning that it will be “only 92” tomorrow compared to “the century mark” down in Saint George, I shake my head in disgust. I recognize that it doesn’t feel as gross when you can cook food on the sidewalk without feeling like you’re in a warm pool of sweat. But it’s not pleasant either. So let’s not sugarcoat, ok?

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I’ll take mine Sunnyside up or Benedict please.

The fact that it’s gotten this hot this fast is not a good omen for the summer. We didn’t get enough snow as it is over the winter. The way some people over-landscape their yards here, somehow forgetting that we live in a desert, makes me worry that the rich people on the hills will have green lush lawns while I’m trying to maintain decent water pressure in the shower. Plus, I am a cheap-ass (others use the term thrifty; not me) and like to wait until it’s scorching out to close the windows and finally turn on the air conditioning.

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And living in a glass house, I hate to close the blinds if at all possible.

So I’ll allow myself to scorn the radio while hoping that we can at least get to July before I have to close up the house and live in the dark; as I have told many people in the past, I apologize in advance for my negative Nancy attitude in July and August. You’ve been forewarned. Until next time, stay classy (and cool) Salt Lake.

My Continued Angst with Airlines

Seriously. This is getting ridiculous. As many of you know, my ten year college reunion is fast approaching, and I didn’t have time before the conference and the family cruise to book my flights. In looking at the costs of flights two weeks out, I either need to hit the stripper pole, sell a kidney, or investigate whether there’s one of those warp zone pipes from the Mario Bros that can drop me off within walking distance of VC.

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And why would you not choose the highest level? Honestly.

It’s stupid expensive to fly in the summer. By design, because the airlines know you don’t have a whole of choice in the matter when the wedding season begins in earnest. It’s also stupid expensive to fly out of Salt Lake. Because it’s in Utah. Which isn’t much of a destination when the snow melts.

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Mmmmm. The smog is so tasty in July.

 Actually, it’s pretty much all of the time stupid expensive to fly out of Salt Lake. I mean, unless traveling by freight. So until I can get the phone number from that kid who flew to Hawaii in a wheel well, I’m going to have to figure out flying into <GASP> Newark (which I hate) or Albany (which I also hate). And even though I have two credit cards with reward travel points, I am apparently nowhere near being able to use them even on a one-way ticket. Which makes me angry.

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Seriously, Southworst, figure it out. You too, Jetblew.

If anyone wants to pack me into their suitcase or knows of a super-secret train a la Hogwarts to Po’town, do let me know. In the meantime, stay classy (and travel lightly) Salt Lake.

Memorial Day

A story on NPR reminded me as to why I have a three day weekend. Memorial Day. A day where we are to remember those who died defending this country. Truth be told, I would not consider myself an incredibly patriotic American. I take pot shots at our government on an almost daily basis. The only thing I have with red, white and blue on it is a rubber ducky. But I do respect and remember those who gave their lives so that I can live mine in this admittedly flawed but stable and positive democratic place I call home.

The first Memorial Day of note was held by freed black Southerners who exhumed and re-buried Union soldiers held as prisoners of war during the Civil War (though its official founding would wait for LBJ in the ’60s). My grandfather served in the US armed forces about a century later. I’m here on this earth because he lived to tell the tale. While I have serious reservations about our country’s impetus for involvement in a series of conflicts and wars during my lifetime, I still admire, respect and believe in those who have served in the armed forces.

I hope and pray that our brothers and sisters currently serving in the military come home safe and sound from their calls of duty, and that those who lose their life in service are remembered and respected. Independent of the political sniping in Washington and arguments surrounding which conflicts we get involved in, people put their lives on the line so that I can post this blog, something I wouldn’t be able to do in a lot of places in the world that I admittedly take for granted. For that I am grateful.

On this Memorial Day weekend, be sure to let your friends and family in uniform know how much they mean to you. I know I will. Until next time, stay classy (and always remember) Salt Lake.

Sprinklers in the Rain

So much for sunshine and rainbows today. As is typical, the Salt Lake meteorologists were famously terrible in their forecast for today, where instead of a bright sunny day with a chance of showers we’ve gotten a solid, steady rain with potential for thunderstorms. Which, to be clear, I don’t mind. Seeing automatic sprinklers activated in a neighborhood close to my house in the rain, however, sort of pissed me off. Why, you ask?

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Because I live in a desert. Which no one seems to remember here.

Don’t get me wrong. I am just as bad as everyone else when it comes to conservation. I don’t always recycle. I take ridiculously long showers. Hell, I’ve got a fricking jungle of thirsty houseplants and workplants that I try to water just enough for them not to sh%t the bed.

DEAD-HOUSEPLANTSI haven’t been as successful in that recently.

But I’m also semi-responsible. I typically don’t use the heat or AC unless I can see my breath in the air or start sweating through my clothes, respectively. And while I know that automated systems have revolutionized our lives for the better (that’s sarcasm by the by), is it that hard for someone to flick a switch to manual and turn off the damned sprinklers?

rain_sprinkler-520x245Apparently so. It’s like the U of U all. the. time.

So I’m crying foul, in a borderline hippie way, which is anathema to my very being. Resigned to watching cooking shows, making food for the upcoming week, and doing laundry (you’re welcome Davey), I’m staying housebound today. Which is good, considering it’s Memorial Day weekend which means S A L E S all over the place. I must resist the temptation, for fear of Big G beating the hell out of me. Until next time, stay classy (and dry) Salt Lake.

A House in Order

I did something to day that I seldom, if ever, do. I called in. I took a legitimate sick day. Yesterday’s cough and sniffle turned into a full blown sinus infection slash cold this morning. I would go to the doctor for an actual diagnosis, but the wonderful world of insurance nonsense is in and of itself another topic for another day. But I did make an effort. Truly.

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The effort was to get up, make my bed and limp to the couch.

Truth be told, I tried valiantly to drag myself out of bed and into work. I was unsuccessful. Big time. However, if there’s one thing I learned working in a homeless clinic, it’s that the last thing you should do when your immune system is rebelling against you is to “power through.” Because you won’t. And you’ll probably infect your coworkers. Who will hate you for it.

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Your ideas, in point of fact, are terrible. They just won’t tell you.

So I started to begin the now annual process of spring (and almost summer) cleaning, going through all of my stuff to determine what stays and what goes. I hung some pictures, did some laundry. I am in the day-long process of ironing everything that the status quo dictates should not have creases. Which is the biggest load of horseh%t boojie garbage I live with in terms of expectations, but c’est la vie. I’m also convinced at this point that DayQuil is nothing more than sugar water injected into orange pills designed as a placebo for those of us who can no longer tolerate the few remaining soap operas left on daytime television.

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Oh GH. I hate you, but I love you.

So I guess I’ll take solace in reading yet another trash novel, watching some trash DVDs now that I have a proper connection (thank you RadioShack baby-gay for your assistance!) and continue to search for low-carb ways of dealing with a cough and cold. Which are frankly few and far between. Alas. Until tomorrow or next time, stay classy (and disease-free) Salt Lake.

Cutting the (Wireless) Cord

It was inevitable. As are lunar eclipses, leap years, and taxes. I am fast coming to the end of my electronic rope when it comes to my relationship with Verizon Wireless. Granted, it is one of the longest relationships I’ve had, romantic or otherwise. The only thing I’ve been committed to longer is living in Utah, which in and of itself is its own quandary.

ImageAs if Carmen Sandiego and The Oregon Trail had a gay e-baby.

After another good conversation with a third party, continuous handwringing, an open detestation of text messages and the woe of trying unsuccessfully to check my email from my “smartphone” I am getting ready to travel back in time to the land of the hard-wired landline. I know what you’re thinking. “But you won’t be available 24/7/365! How will I reach you?! What if I need you electronically?!!!”

ImageMeet my new secretary. Her name is Old School.

Will being tethered to Castle Graystone be a hassle? Potentially. Will it be liberating? Absolutely. The swap will also free me from the e-ties that bind me to being constantly checking my Android (brilliant irony in the name, by the way) when I should be sleeping, cooking, or otherwise not being constantly fishing into my pocket, which coincidentally was something that most people considered pervy a few dozen years ago.

ImageUnless it’s a baker’s dozen. Which is for people who can’t MATH.

Now don’t sound the alarms quite yet. The transition will occur in the next few months. And frankly I look forward to a simpler time, where I can check my answering machine, which I will be forced to purchase at the DI in the near future mind you, when I get home and not be so concerned with power adapters, data usage, and all other such nonsense. Until next time, stay classy (and stuck in the 1980’s) Salt Lake.