Monday, December 21, 2015

Socks and underwear

As a kid, I thought socks and underwear were shitty holiday gifts. But the week before Christmas, we delivered socks at a place that also gives out underwear, and the recipents couldn't be happier.

Each year, my organization gets donations for and puts together bags of toiletry items, socks and a warm item (hat, scarf, gloves, etc.) for people living with mental illness who are homeless. I'm super proud of our outreach committee because we put this on ourselves this year, with no corporate sponsorship, and we got more than 500 bags of donations!

I volunteer at the organization where we donated them, and got to help at the holiday party last Saturday. People were so happy to get the basics. It was humbling. I've never had to get socks or toothpaste from complete strangers.

That's me and my friend K with Donnie, "Red," and Rick. 

What never ceases to amaze me, however, is that some idiots give us USED things that no one would want.

A tip for the uninitiated: no one wants your used socks or chapsticks! Or condoms, for that matter. 
We also got condoms donated from the health department, which cracked up some of the guests.
One lady asked me, "Why did we get condoms?" And I replied, "We want everyone to have as Merry a Christmas as possible!"

Hope you enjoy the holidays. If you are able, think about taking some new socks or undies to your local organization that helps the homeless. It will be much appreciated.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

You can has social skillz?

Sometimes my social filters just disappear. Not often, but always at an inopportune time. And horribly. (Like remarking to a person with low vision the other day, "Put on your sunglasses! Otherwise the sun will blind you!" Yes, really.)

But a few times lately I've had the joy of hearing someone goof this way with me, and it made me feel so good to not be on the "oops" side of a social situation!

As with everything, I would not, could not make this up. To make you even more proud, I managed not to snicker until after situation #1 and situation #2.

Situation #1, over coffee with a volunteer.
Me: Referring to 20 years ago when I was in college and there weren't many mental health resources for students.
Volunteer: "You're that old?"
(Note: she is 70.)

Situation #2, at a work event with another volunteer.
Volunteer: "I really appreciate your help, and all that you do! AND you're bipolar!"
Me: "No, I'm not."
Volunteer: "Well, I know you're something. What are you?"
Me: "I have major depressive disorder."
Volunteer: "Well, that's even worse!"

Situation #3, on Thanksgiving with friends.
Me to friend A (who is a guy): "So how was that date with that girl Jennifer?"
Friend B to friend A: "Oh my God! I thought you were gay!"

We all laughed (including friend A) for five solid minutes. Meanwhile, friend A posted that exchange on his Facebook page, and one of his gay friends wrote back, "Boy, is her gaydar off!"

Just glad none of these were from me.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Apocalpyse later

I'm seriously overdue (again) for a post and visiting blogs. Don't hate me!

Things have been seriously busy at home and work. I know you can relate. This weekend I had to drive down to small town about 2 1/2 hours away from here (I made it home in two hours last night with no tickets, yay!) for our conference for work. We choose this location because it's about 2 or 3 hours from just about everywhere in the state (yes, Oregon is that small.) But aside from the hotel, there's basically nothing there. (Tip for the uninitiated: Carl's Jr. is ranked the #9 restaurant in town by Trip Advisor. No, I am not making this up.)
On the drive down from Portland, you very quickly realize that you're in bumblefuck Egypt and start seeing apocalyptic billboards.

Billboard #1: "Lust damns you to HELL!" (Complete with a picture of flames.) Damn, I'm already fucked.

Billboard #2: "Saturday is the true Sabbath, hijacked by the antichrist! Free booklet! For more information, call..."

Billboard #3: "Addicted to porn? Jesus came to set captives free!" Picture of an ecstatic looking man jumping up in the air like the old Toyota commercials. (If you're too young to remember those, don't tell me.)

Clearly everyone in this part of the state is voting for Donald Trump.

However, I'm pleased to say that the apocalypse didn't happen when I was there. As my friend K noted, "If you lived in that town, you'd be waiting for the apocalypse too!"

I have to say that the highlight of my week was seeing this waiting for me at the health department:
A show of hands, please. Anyone else pick up 1,000 condoms and 500 packets of lube for work? No?
These are actually for holiday bags of toiletries and small warm items and gifts that we put together at work for people who are low-income and often homeless and live with mental illness. That would be a hell of an isolating combination, I think.

The person from the county health department picked up a packet of lube and asked me, "You don't think we'll have a problem with these, right? I mean, people won't think it's to put in their coffee?"

I went back to work and laughed so hard I almost peed my pants.

Friday, October 23, 2015

A protest? I'll bring the goat, of course...

Pardon the long absence. I've been dealing with some stuff. Everyone is safe and sound, but moods (mine) have been in the tank. I promise I will visit your blogs soon!

On the plus side...there is always something to make us laugh.

There is a movement in Portlandia now that has some validity, IMHO - "Stop Demolishing Portland." Essentially residents want developers to stop building up lots, tearing down houses, and putting up monstrosities that ruin the local character and take up most of the greenspace.

We're generally a peaceful bunch, but protesting probably originated in Portland...and we're weird.

So of course, if there's a protest about pulling down an old house, why not bring your pet goat? On a leash? And put it on top of a car?

Photo by Thomas Boyd

It should be noted that the site of the protest was not far from my office, which is now smack dab in the middle of marijuana sales central. Unrelated? I think not...

And what other city in America would have this as a news headline?

Naked burglar climbs into bed with couple, is chased by armed resident, police say

Well, never a dull moment here. How about you?

Monday, October 05, 2015


Just when I had some time to post, we had another mass shooting tragedy - this time three hours away.

These have become so common that we weren't flooded with messages from friends and family. Another day, another body count, another group of people jumping in with politics.

How to express how we feel? Raw. Hurt. Outraged.

I work in mental health advocacy and I live with major depression. After the initial shock of hearing what happened on the radio, we had to prepare for the inevitable media idiocy.

Please question your news agencies and the information that spreads like wildfire. The fact is that study after study has shown that people living with mental illness - like me - are much more likely to be the victims of violent crime, not the perpetrators of it. When we are the perpetrators, we are overwhelmingly more likely to harm ourselves.

One of my friends said it very well: "When it's a white guy who is the perpetrator of something like this, they say it's mental illness. When it's someone of any other color, they say it's terrorism."

The definition of "mental illness" is a misnomer. The majority of the time, you won't know when someone is living with something in the DSM 5.

Someone you know - a family member, a coworker, a friend, a neighbor - lives with some type of mental illness. Does that change how you feel about them?

The same week, we had a conversation with a local high school that was producing a program called "Insanity." They had students dressing up in straightjackets and sold sweatshirts with the name of the high school that said "Psychiatric Hospital" after the name. They responded to our concerns very quickly, but it still stings that people mock and fear illness in your brain rather than illness anywhere else in your body.

We're not monsters. We're your friends, and neighbors, and right now, we are grieving. It would be nice to see some real data and real solutions offered up rather than fear mongering.

If you suspect someone you know is having mental health issues, be kind. Offer them support. It will be appreciated more than you think.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

The cat ate my valium, and other tales from the pharmacy

One of my good friends works as a pharmacy technician, and she has so many fucking incredible stories that I told her she needs to blog. She hasn't started yet (she's busy studying for/applying for grad school), so I thought I would share a few of her tales from the pharmacy.

Once again, they're all true. We aren't creative enough to make this stuff up.

1. RX with my name on it for sale... The pharmacy gets a phone call from a pissed off mom whose daughter bought someone's prescription pain pills - and his name was still on the label on the bottle. This same work of brilliance was always "losing" his pills and needing more - down the sink, down the toilet, and yes, one time, he claimed his cat ate them. (Can you imagine a cat on pain pills? Don't they already sleep enough?)
2. Viagra Friday My friend says the most popular day for Viagra refills is Friday. Right before a weekend out on the town, or the bait for a Craigslist post for older guys? "Hey ladies, just picked up my Viagra...for a good time, call..."

3. Everyone in my family works out A LOT There is a family who is apparently all on muscle relaxers. Parents, kids. And lots of them. Mysteriously enough, the manufacturer is the same as Vicodin, and the size/shape/imprint on the pill are all the same as Vicodin. So my friend is guessing they're selling them like someone selling oregano as pot.

4. My boyfriend's in jail, so I'll take his Oxycontin...Someone tried to pick up a controlled substance prescription for her boyfriend. Only problem: he's in jail at the moment. (Yes, really.) Needless to say, she didn't volunteer this information - they knew already.

5. Everything's easy to keep track of except the Atavan. Our board president works for a pharmacy as well. She said when they did medication packs for group homes, people kept "losing" the Atavan. Nothing else. Even though it's all in the same pack.

How about you? Any doozies from work (or home) lately?

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

I've been bitching for how long?

I realized last month that I have been blogging for 10 years. (This blog only goes back to 2006; the first one, I started in 2005 and then deleted the year after - for like a week.)

I started this as a place for political ranting, which was driving Mr. RK nuts. We're aligned on 99% of our political thoughts, which mainly come down to the fact that no one has anyone else's best interest in mind, unless you count cronies and megacorporations. I realized eventually that we agreed, so I didn't have to rant as much. Maybe I'm getting mellower, or just old! So it morphed into general ranting.

At some point I found myself inadvertently - and later, on purpose - adding humor to the grumps when I posted. This was therapeutic for me and it surprised me to hear, in a time of family crisis a few years ago, that it was therapeutic for some of you and cheered you up on shitty days as well. That was so cool to find out.

Things are up and down, as always, with work, with family, etc. But I am feeling really spoiled by friends, and that includes you. Merci!

A friend sent me this and told me it was right up my alley! He knows me too well.

It's funny how you can only know people "virtually" and feel like they know you better than many of the people you interact with every day. I am thankful for you all, as you have made my day more times than I can count, when I really felt like going out and stepping on ants.

There, that is your mushy post from me for 2015.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Save yourself! Tips for not getting bumped off in a British mystery

As you all know, I am a bit of an Anglophile, and particularly love BBC mysteries, as well as several of the "Golden Age" British mystery novelists. I have posted several times about what to expect from said BBC mysteries, but realized recently that I have neglected to forewarn about how to prevent yourself from getting bumped off on such a series.

Consider this a public service announcement, should you consider becoming a character in such a series.
1. Don't blackmail anyone. This is a universal truth: the blackmailer always gets killed. Period. End. Of. Story. (Or end of blackmailer.)

2. Especially don't blackmail the person you believe to be the murderer! Characters do this all the time. Do they think the suspected killer will suddenly have a change of heart, or a religious conversion, as well as an inclination to lighten their wallet? I'm pretty sure no one has ever had this thought: "Hmm. Mary is blackmailing me because she knows I killed Beth. I'll pay up and hope she doesn't say anything, and ignore the gun that I used to shoot Beth."

3. For that matter, don't confront the person you suspect to be the murderer on your own, without the police.  Because duh.

4. Don't arrange to meet anyone in person with a clue that's going to reveal who the murderer is, or one that's central to the case. For the love of God, tell them over the phone! Text them! Email them! Because if you arrange a meeting, you'll always get bumped off on the way there. We know this to be true.

5. If you are dealing with monsters or aliens (e.g. Dr. Who, which is essentially sci-fi mystery), DO NOT assume they are friendly. That assumption means they will eat you. The people who assume the aliens or monsters are unfriendly have a 50/50 chance of being accurate, and they are much more likely to live than the people who assume otherwise (who have a zero percent chance.)

6. This applies even if it's a cute monster or alien. Remember Adipose?
7. Get backup. You know the characters who venture out on their own, even whilst others say, "No, don't!" ? They all end up as toast.

8.  If you are working with the killer, don't double cross them. Because, once again, duh.

9. If you find out about the family secret of some old artistocratic family, just keep it to yourself. These characters tend to get rather touchy about out questionable parentage, and death is usually preferable being caught with the wrong trousers down.

10. Don't drink the scotch! If you suspect someone is a murderer, don't accept their offer of alcohol. Questions? refer to points #3 and #8.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Writer's block SUCKS

It's not that I haven't wanted to write, or haven't had things to write is the dreaded...

So I'll just give you my odds and ends.
  •  A new insult from girls' night out, for future bumper stickers to slap on the cars of exes: "He's small, AND he doesn't call!" (This was dreamed up by my single friends. I have already told Mr. RK that God forbid anything happens to him, or one day he decides that he prefers men, I'm never dating again.) 
  •  Has it occurred to anyone that Donald Trump has some serious mental health issues? I work at an advocacy agency and we were analyzing his symptoms the other day.
  • A local bakery that refused to sell a cake to a gay couple for their wedding claims they broke the law for religious reasons (never mind that Jesus said not to judge, apparently they don't read their own Bibles), but apparently they have no problems making cakes for divorce parties, a pagan solstice festival, an out-of-wedlock baby, or a stem cell research grant celebration. Oh, and they got pissed off at the newspaper that reported this. Hello, McFly! These people should buy their own island of assholity (is that a word? It is now) and open a shop called Cakes for Bigots Like Us. And then they can have their cake and eat it too!
  • One of the participants in a training I took this week pissed me off to high heaven. A friend said, "Take pity on her, for self-centered people are miserable." I said, "I can't use up pity on her!" Methinks she doth pissed me off too much.
  • I found out the reason that driving is so fucked up around here (meaning roads, not drivers - I haven't found an explanation for that): instead of being laid out on a grid, Oregon's road and street system is based on old trails. I kid you not. And you thought *your* municipality had it backwards.
  • My cats are sexist - they won't play with girls. Apparently boys are playmates and I am only fit for cuddles and feeding them. I thought they might cave while Mr. RK was on his business trip, but instead, they only played with a visiting brother.
  • My friend works in a pharmacy and has the funniest stories. My favorite one so far was from a patient picking up a prescription for Ambien: "My husband hates it when I take this, because we have sex and I never remember it!"

I told her she should start a blog.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Call in the goats, after we solve our dildo epidemic...

Sorry about the absence, with Mr. RK in Asia on business I've had my hands full keeping up. Luckily I have a helpful sibling staying with me. I promise I will visit your blogs soon!

After the last post about the ridiculousness of (halfassedly) legalizing marijuana here, I thought I'd offer a few other choice tidbits that you could see on an episode of Portlandia, and they'd be true!

#1 - Call in the goats! What to do with invasive plants? Click on this picture for details.
The funny thing is that this is a pretty redneck county - only in Oregon would you have rednecks calling for environmentally friendly solutions to noxious weeds. (Question for gardeners: what are non-noxious weeds?) This county has two reasonable people and three Tea party nuts (wait, that's redundant) on its board of commissioners. I had to seat two of the commissioners separately at a work event because one of them had threatened, at a public meeting, to assault the other. True story.
#2 - Portland's dildo epidemic, hanging from a power line near you.
Every week or so, I send family in other parts of the country an "only in Portland" story. You can't help but read a story whose headline is "Woman says she is responsible for hundreds of sex toys dangling from Portland power lines." Funny thing about how she got them - she says "friends" amassed about 10,000 "defective" sex toys. HOW?! AND HOW MANY FRIENDS?! Inquiring minds want to know, and the article doesn't say, damn it. You talk about irresponsible journalism.

#3 - I want my fetish title back, and I'll sue!
Ditto with a headline that reads, "Ms. Oregon State Leather, stripped of sexual fetish title, wants it back, plus $100,000." My dad said, "Well, let her prove that she deserves it! (Here's a link to the story. It's clean.) I'd love to be the attorney representing her - or at least hear the oral arguments. No pun intended.

Anything going on unique to your neck of the woods?

Monday, July 06, 2015

How to legalize drugs without making any sense (or cents)

Lo and behold, marijuana became legal in my state last week. Yet as with everything that follows a citizens' ballot initiative, the bureaucracy has to take time to catch up.

So get this (and this is all true - I don't have enough patience to invent something so nonsensical):

Marijuana is legal to possess (in certain quantities, depending on whether you're at home or in public), to smoke (in some places and if you're 21 and over), and grow (ditto on quantities and age.)

However,  you can't buy it yet, unless you've got a medical marijuana card (medical marijuana was legal for several years here before last fall's ballot measure passed, making marijuana legal. Also, it is worth noting that more people turned in votes on the measure than cast votes for governor.)
 In what other metro area would the police department post a graphic like this on Twitter? And who the hell is that little clay guy? Do I have to get stoned to figure that out?

The state's new bureau of marijuana has not yet set up a system of stores. God forbid you let private enterprise do it; all hard liquor sales are controlled by the state here - sort of like Communism, but without the bribery handshake - and they're the agency in charge of sorting out pot.

So, you think, can we drive 20 minutes and buy it legally in Washington, and smoke it there, or bring it back here? No. Because that would be trafficking, according to federal law, which still makes marijuana illegal. (You don't have to be stoned to be confused about this.)
At any rate, our local rag published a guide to the new law AND a guide to growing. I kid you not. The same company that owns this paper is opposed to raising the minimum wage, but they must instinctively know, on some level, where their bread is buttered.

So in effect what we have is a kind of de facto amnesty law. You are allowed to possess plants and the dried stuff for smoking, and the oils (I think that's what is used, but I haven't ever baked anything illegal - I have enough trouble preventing legal recipes from catching on fire) used to make food that can make you high. And how, I ask, do you get this stuff? You can get it as a gift.

Yes, really. So in essence, you have to have a friend who probably dabbles in illegal drug sales or purchasing give you legal pot.

There are some things about this state that are so fucking backward, I don't know why I'm surprised.

Maybe everyone started smoking before they wrote the new laws.

Monday, June 29, 2015

I may be waiting with marshmallows, but I'm not done.

I've been agitating on LGBTQ rights since high school. The Supreme Court decision was exhilarating, but incomplete - I've found it hard to find words to write about this and have been mulling it the past several days.

My favorite response came from a gay friend who is American, but has lived in England for years because she and her wife could legally get married there. "Some pastor's gonna set himself on fire. And I have a marshmallow."

Of course he backpedaled and said, Uh, he really didn't plan to do it...probably because so many of us were standing by with ingredients for smores!

We've come a long way in one generation - but not far enough. I remember, years ago, explaining to my little brother why marriage equality was important to me. At age 8 or 9, he laughed at the idea that anyone would object to same-sex couples marrying. I wish more adults would have such maturity.

I remember there being just one openly gay guy at my high school. He was mocked and ridiculed, and his parents kicked him out of the house. Today, there is a gay/straight alliance at my high school and lots of student resources, but it's easy to get too comfortable. There are still states where you can lose your housing or your job if you're openly LGBTQ. This is beyond wrong, it's unconscionable.

I'm lucky enough to have an amazing, loving, smart, funny spouse who happens to be my soulmate. I can't imagine us getting evicted or losing our jobs because we're in love.

It is outrageous for "religious" people to duck under the "I should be legally able to discriminate against you because of my own feelings" caveat. No way. My family is Lutheran and Jewish and I am the daughter and granddaughter of pastors. There is room for people of faith to be accepting, and frankly, if anyone has read the fucking Bible, you'll see that that's what Jesus did and encouraged us to do. Plus, not everyone's religious.

The same arguments - literally the same arguments - were made against interracial marriage, of which I am a product.

Take the hate elsewhere. If you are concerned about humanity, go do some meaningful volunteer work. Get your hands dirty.

Meanwhile, don't rest. Keep active. Segregation shouldn't exist in this country anymore. This is but one small step. Let us eat cake!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Aw, nuts!

Sorry for the delay in posting! Things have been super busy here (I guess busy is the new normal) with preparations for comings and goings.

Meanwhile, our neighbors have installed a squirrel feeder. I know you're not supposed to feed wildlife, but these guys seem rather domesticated - and so far, it's keeping them from my strawberries.

Last year, they literally took one bite out of each berry like fucking Goldilocks. They'd rather have nuts anyway, right?

So before I embarked on the distribution of nuts yesterday, Mr. RK set up his "squirrel cam" and made this video. (Watch with the sound on. You'll be glad you did.) We wanted to have the theme music be, "I Want it All, and I Want it Now," by Queen, but they aren't licensing their songs on You Tube yet.

And speaking of back yards (or patios), I've been inspired to get some rainbow tea lights.  To make my yard relentlessly gay.

Seriously, does anyone else wish they had that much time on their hands? I LOVE this (straight) woman's response. You go, rainbow girl! I wonder what her idiot neighbors would think about Rainbow Brite.

Monday, June 08, 2015

An open letter to the fluffy killers in my house

SURE, you two look innocent enough.
But I will never look at either of you the same way again.
Yes, I grew up in the suburbs, a fact which is now painfully obvious to you, Mr. RK, and my friends. I have never, in fact, seriously thought you might eat something that didn't come from a can. Perhaps you'd give it a small chase, then get bored, like you do with your tiny soccer balls? Maybe you'd run away?

And yet somehow, a poor field mouse (make that ex-field mouse) somehow ran into the house last week, and you two ate it like a fucking hot pocket.

At least that's what I'm told. God bless Mr. RK for getting home first and cleaning up all evidence of your nasty snack.
I get that there is a food chain. I get that nature is a cruel place. But seriously, why did this poor little thing have to run in and meet its doom with you? I am so disillusioned. Here I am thinking you love us, and the fact is that if we croaked, you'd probably say, "YUM! Fresh meat!"

Now I have no illusions when you sit and flick your tail at a squirrel or a blue Jay on the other side of the sliding glass door.

I've been obsessing about this the past few days, wondering WHICH ONE OF YOU was the killer. Or maybe you both were?

PS You know what else bothers me? YOU ATE THE WHOLE THING. Not that I want to eat a fucking mouse, or find a dead mouse in my living room, but still. Other cats are selfless and bring the entire mouse for their masters, but clearly, you two have no such consideration. All you left were the...well, never mind. Let's just say I owe Mr. RK a big favor.

Yours truly,

A vegetarian. A BIG one.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

How about no?

Ever get crap complaints and then the hero complainer offers to fly in and fix them? I would like to tell all of these potential Mr. and Ms. Fix-its to fuck off. Don't call us, we'll call you.
An email I received today at work started out like this:


Do you plan on updating your website anytime soon? I love your organization and all that it has done for me in the past (and for others), but your website should be updated to reflect current standards. Unfortunately, your site is not accessible to people with vision, learning, cognitive and other impairments that may make it hard to navigate your site.

Mind you - I have a sibling who is visually impaired and I know you can adjust font size. I'm not trying to be insensitive, but I'm just curious - what are "current standards," (is this a test?) and how exactly do you implement them? Guess what - it's also not friendly for tech un-savvy people. Probably also for people who can't read.
It continues:

Do you have a dedicated staff member who runs the website? If not, do you have a volunteer? I would love to help with this. I would also be happy to simply give you some recommendations.

And a passion for being a pain in the ass, apparently.

Tip for the uninitiated: we're probably not going to reply to your email with one that says, "Why, yes! You negative complainer, you, I'd freaking love to take advantage of your offers to help. You're probably more fun in the flesh even than over email! When would you like to stop by?"

How about no? Is that a good answer for you?

I think there should be a time limit on the amount we have to spend dealing with those who aren't the brightest crayons in the box. Take this email I got from a student:

I would like to finish my internship with your organization. Attached is my resume.

Um. How about some details? Such as availability? Why you want to work here? Did you just copy and paste to every organization that came up with a "mental health" search online? And...why didn't you finish the last one?

And my answer will probably be...wait for about no? I need a shirt with those words on it. Or maybe I'll tattoo them on my forehead.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Staggering genius

You know I love my job and more importantly, the cause we work for.

You know what I love even more? You fellow blogging buddies, because you will read my rants when it gets near event time! The event is Sunday. I am getting bombarded by stupid until then.

Once again, I could not, would not make this stuff up. In fact, I could probably inspire a whole study about the human brain (or lack thereof, in some folks) just based on calls and emails from today. But here you go:

Caller: "We're from out of town - Salem. Where do we park?"
What I wanted to say: "Well, in the glow-in-the-dark spots, obviously."
What my friend texted: "In the witch spots, obviously. Wait - wrong Salem!"
I sent out the FAQ to our entire email list today - everyone who participated in the event last year and signed up this year. My friend, who is on the email list, emailed in response, "Hey, RK! How about I ask you questions you've already answered here, instead of reading the email? Just kidding!"

And lo and behold, not 15 minutes later, that's what someone did.

First she called our office. Then she called a county chapter's executive director. Then she emailed me. All of the questions had been answered verbatim in the email she said she read before calling and emailing.

Example: "The FAQ says team captains can turn in money for the entire team. So if one of my team members gives me money, and I'm the captain, I can turn it in for her?"

No, sunshine, you should eat it. 
Before you think I'm an uber bitch, please keep in mind that 1. I have no assistant, 2. this event has 4,000 people, and 3. I've already sent out all of the information, as well as posted it in multiple places, that people are asking about.

But the one that actually made me laugh was sent last night. And it started with, "Good morning..."

This person said she had emailed people asking for donations during registration but forgot who she emailed. Could I let her know?

Not being a clairvoyant, not so much.

I said I had no way of tracking this, suggesting she add a line in her email apologizing if people got it twice.

She wrote back asking the same question.

I had to sit on my hands to resist the urge to type, "I'm still not psychic, but I may become so if you ask one more time, nicely."

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

Sh*t I don't understand

Tell me if you do. Once again, I would not, could not make this stuff up.

- Driving down the street with sloppy, handwritten signs decrying a political party and saying "the worst cities and states" are run by them. What exactly is the driver hoping for? That passing vehicles will suddenly jump up and say, "Why, YES, my good man! You must be right! Let me go change my voter registration RIGHT THIS VERY MINUTE, and let's all move to a state run by your guys!"
- Someone who thinks that 10 days before an event with 4,000 people - which I am in charge of - I  have time for her to come to my office and SIT AND WALK HER THROUGH THE EVENT WEBSITE, step by step. And show her how it works. Because she signed up online, and she's not very good with computers. (Her words, not mine.)
- Someone whining to me that she was doing "the work of three people!" When I inquired what that entailed, it was three kinds of work. So the rest of us are all doing the jobs of about 27 people, methinks.

- Another genius calling me last week and insisting that we should move this event (the location of which is printed on posters, brochures, etc., and scheduled with vendors and volunteers) right into downtown. "Because," she said, "Lots of groups get permits at the last minute and do that." Yeah - protesters!

I simplified my reply: "There's no parking downtown."

Caller: "Oh! Okay."

Since that worked so well, perhaps it should be my answer to everything from now on! It might work. It's Portlandia, after all.

Monday, April 27, 2015

I'm in charge

At least, my buddy Charles at Razored Zen said so. So it must be true.
I just liked typing that as a post title, and it was also more G-rated than "an afternoon of cocks," which is the title that was zipping through my head. Let me explain.

My friend L and I went to the Chinese Garden in Portland last Saturday because I had passes to get in free. It's a rather beautiful place tucked into a rather sad neighborhood - lots of people sleeping on streets. Since it was an unexpectedly nice day (read: it did not rain for a couple of hours), we walked a couple of miles from her house and strolled through some neighborhoods I had only driven through before.

Note to self: do this more often. This is what you do when you're on vacation out of town - exploring neighborhoods and people watching, finding new cafes.

Anyhow, along the way we found an art gallery called "Cock Gallery." It was moving (the owner said he was moving to an "art monastery" - I've never heard of one, so if anyone else has, please enlighten me) and thus there was a moving sale. By the time we had arrived most of the art was gone (and I'm really sorry to have missed it, given the gallery's name), but there were housewares and other odds and ends for sale.
Me: "Check this out. Cock Gallery!"
L (nonplussed): "Oh, okay."

She bought a few non-naughty kitchen items, and as we were walking out, she said, "I almost bought that glittery purse for my daughter."

Me: "Um, that glittery purse was an S&M bondage mask."
L (pausing): "OH! COCK GALLERY! Now I get it!!!"

Yes, really.

I have a picture to prove it, so there.

Then on the way back from the Chinese Garden, we stopped and had a late lunch at this restaurant. In Italian, it means the Black Rooster.

So naturally, since we are really both in the fourth grade, we laughed and laughed about having an afternoon full of cocks.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

No matter how you get your grump on...

...there will always be something to make you laugh.

I know this to be true. In the past week, my grandfather had a major stroke, my poor brother got sick here for half of his vacation, and I've been dealing with the usual dumbfucks (who email me at work knowing I'm on vacation too.) My grandmother on the opposite side of the family has been having mental health problems and that's the side that won't discuss mental illness, so I don't know what the fuck is going on.

One of my aunts even said, "I wish she was more normal, for all of our sakes." Right...she chooses to have severe bipolar disorder and it's a bag of giggles. I wonder what my aunt thinks of me?

Then I think in addition to dairy (I love cheese and basically can't eat it) being an inflammatory, wheat probably is as well, I'm finding (I also love everything made of whole wheat.) Why can't I have, say, inflammation from some food I can't stand, like beets or brussel sprouts?

Grump, grump, grump. Thank you, Elephant's Child, for listening to me grump with my thumbs today!
But then Mr. RK snapped this unwittingly funny picture on a bike trip today, and I howled:
Why is this so funny?

Because my ex's name is on this truck, which was literally moving shit from one place to another.

So apt. I invite one and all to photoshop this picture and add your own ex's name to the shit mover.

So you see, no matter how hard you get your grump on, there's always a laugh out there. You might not even have to look for it. You might even find it here!

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Stupid, stupid, everywhere

One of my events was today. It was great, mainly because the keynote was the best I've ever had, but as you know, all greatness in my world must be preceded by bunches of stupid.

And I find myself wanting to bonk my head on my desk and ask, "Is it just me?"

Here's a snippet of this event's nonsense.

Question #1
From a past-the-deadline RSVP, a few days before the event: "Do we know who the speaker is yet?"

No. I thought I'd just pull someone from the audience to volunteer.
Question #2
Asked today at my event, about an upcoming event: "Why don't you bring wheelchairs to the event, like in case my parents get tired and want to be pushed around?"

Right - we're not a nonprofit group, we're a hospital supply company for lazy people. For that matter, why don't we bring volunteers to push them?
Act of rudeness
My volunteer's mom gave him a ride to the event. When they showed up half an hour late, the job he was scheduled for was already done. I explained this and asked if something had come up. Her reply: "I had to take my morning walk."

I'd have been more sympathetic if you had told me you had to take your morning shit.

Act of complete cluelessness
A question from someone who showed up with no RSVP: "Where is the table of company X? I wanted to sit close to that table."

It's good to want things. It's also good to pull your head out of your ass once in awhile.

Thursday, April 02, 2015

Alive and kicking (mostly kicking)

I feel bad now, as several of you have been in touch to see if I was ok! I'm ok. Things have just been 1. hectic and 2. I've been uninspired to write. I will visit blogs ASAP! Starting with this one.

As usual, there has been no shortage of idiocy to observe.

To wit, I had coffee last week with a colleague who works for a LGBTQ rights organization. She is moving onto another gig, but said her life's wish was to see a dramatic reading of some of the more absurd hate mail they get. Including a letter from an older lady who accused "you" - the organization, or the LGBTQ community, we're not sure which - of "stealing" the word gay.

"I used to be able to read children's books with that word in it to my children, but now you have stolen it and I can't read them to my grandchildren!" Good God. I'd hate to be gay in that family.

The same twit also accused "you" - get this - of stealing the rainbow. I could not make this up - I'm simply not that creative.

"I wanted to crochet a blanket with rainbow zebras on it for my grandchild, and now I can't, because you've stolen that, too!" Yes, damn it, that rainbow is copyrighted!

More idiocy - and I can rant about this now, since it's been a few days and my anxiety is no longer through the roof about it - from the resident filling in for my doctor, who is on vacation.

Mind you, she has seen my chart, which says "Major Depressive Disorder." Not "occasionally, patient feels a bit sad." I kiss my toes that I have a medication that helps with minimal side effects. I've been taking it since she was probably about eight years old.

Guess who suggested I taper off and then quit cold turkey? I tell her when I have done that in the past, I quickly get the urge to bump myself off.

Guess what genius suggests I take vitamin D shots because a vitamin D deficiency could be making me "sad"? And tells me to let her know when I want to taper off?

Fuck me, that pissed me off. Guess whose supervising doctor got a call from Riot Kitty, who dropped the name of the mental health nonprofit she works for?

I asked my friend from the LGBTQ organization (she also happens to be queer) how that movement has made so much social progress in a relatively short (way too long, I know) time period in history. She said there was a parallel between our movements, which also overlap quite a bit.

"Basically, we asked people to be brave - to come out and tell their stories - when it could get them fired, or they could face discrimination from their own families," she said. "But it made people realize that we were people, not just 'gays.' We had people challenge their own prejudices by opening up the conversation."

We have to do the same for mental illness. So give me my fucking happy pills, please, because the show must go on.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Waste my time. Please!

Again - sorry for the delay in posting. It has been busy (still)...which brings me to the current topic to post about.

Time. We all want more of it, and I'm assuming none of us want it to flutter away.

I've decided that people wasting my time has become one of my top pet peeves (and it takes a lot to get into that upper echelon, my friends.) At work, where things are already hectic, this is amplified.

To wit, can I just say, I am SICK of students who don't do their homework. There has been a slew (or a plague) of wannabe interns recently.  It's great to want to intern at a nonprofit, since we can't pay you - we can hopefully impart some real world experience and plump up your resume a bit. (I don't have interns label brochures, I give them real stuff to do.)

There are just a few things I ask for on my end.
1. Use spellcheck. It's not hard, right? So it's very, VERY telling to me when someone sends me an email like this:

Subject line: Hello
You didn't have me at hello. This subject line actually looks like spam to me, and I half expect the next line to read something like, "RK, cuddle up with some hot bored housewives tonight!" Yes, I have gotten that email. Talk about barking up the wrong, um, tree.

Email: "I my name is Jessica Rabbit (OK, not her real name, but wouldn't it be fun if it was?) and I am a stutdent at XX College. I am geting my BA..."

I mean we live in the age of technology! We no longer have to hand-write letters and even then, well shit - you could use a dictionary. How good of a student are you if you can't even spell student? I'm not looking for any stutdents, Jessica.
This tells me you A. Didn't take the time to use spellcheck, B. Didn't think about it, which makes you a bit of an idiot, or C. Didn't think it mattered, which also makes you a bit of an idiot. It also makes me think that D. You don't pay attention to detail, which WILL NOT HELP YOU in a nonprofit setting. We don't have drones or worker bees to clean up after your mistakes.

2. Do some freaking homework. 
"I would love to learn more about your organization and what you do and how it functions." 

Would you? Too bad. Because I have a whole damn website which YOU SAW TO GET MY CONTACT INFORMATION, but obviously did not read.

3.  Get a semi-professional-sounding email. 
Or use the free one that comes with your student registration. 
Because "iadorerainbowsandunicorns@..." just doesn't sound like you're very serious about...well, anything. Or maybe you just drop a lot of acid in your spare time. 

Incidentally, our board president once got an application from someone who not only had zero experience, but whose email began with "hotpussy99@..."

It's like Mr. RK says. It doesn't take all kinds of people to make a world, we're stuck with the kinds we have.