Coffee heat rising

Reporting from the Hubs of Hades…

6:45 p.m. and it’s 109 on the back porch. In the shade. Under a shade structure, inside the canopy of a hefty ficus plant.


And now, f’rhevvinsake it’s 7:54 p.m. and…and…what have I done to make an hour and 10 minutes disappear without a trace?

* Unloaded the dishwasher
* Reloaded with the current set of dirties
* Fed the dawg
* Sprayed hose water over all the backyard plants I could reach
* Intercepted a fraudulent-looking email supposedly from a church friend
* Clued church friend that her name and email are being taken in vain
* Heard back from friend: “This was not me.  I’ve even had this one sent to me in the past.  Not sure how they got my address but passwords are changed.  What a pain.”



Fell asleep. It’s now 11:45 p.m. Awoke with a choking fit. Dayum! Thought this effing covid horror was about over! Dunno whether this episode was actually choking, or in fact another covid coughing fit.

Don’t see how that scamming attempt could indicate that the b*stards have any of my passwords. But tomorrow I suppose I should run down to the tech guys and have them help me change the Apple ID password. That really WILL be a PITA…of the first water.

And it’s unclear to me how a fake email purportedly coming from a friend indicates that anyone has any of my passwords.

On the other hand, I assumed the perp got my email from my website, since it uses my FaM address.

Ohhhh well. At midnight, I’m not up for fussing over that fragment of madness.

Eff Facebook!

Well, that was charming.

All of a sudden — for no reason that I could discern — Facebook decided I was not allowed in. My password did not work.

THREE TIMES did I jump through hoop after hoop to get their effing machine to send me a new temporary password. THREE TIMES the damn thing didn’t work, or when I did get in and attempted to create a new password for myself, it didn’t work.

So. I guess I’m permanently off of Facebook

That’s probably a good thing, actually. One fewer way to waste time.

And waste time I do: copiously. Mostly on this dayum computer. Really: I’ve blown the entire day sitting here in front of this thing. Watered a few plants, entered some data in Excel, and…and…that was it.

What else could I have done?

  • It’s after 9 p.m. The sidewalks have no doubt cooled enough for Ruby to walk on them. She and I could have gone a mile by now. Or even two.
  • It’s still plenty hot out there, though. I could have jumped in the pool and got this chunk of exercise by swimming.
  • I could have written a blog post. 😀
  • I could have started working on the proposed project to record my father’s family history.

How is this a disaster?

Not exactly a disaster, but a real inconvenience. The neighborhood organization has a Facebook page where they post frequently and cogently. Not being able to see and participate in that puts me on the outside. And that does pi$$ me off royally.

And I use(d) Facebook to plug new posts as they appear here at Funny. Anyone else who would like to do that now is welcome to do so!

So the Hell What?

Good question. I do have another computer and may be able to log in on that. Probably not, after the flap I’ve made trying to get in from the laptop. But it’s worth a try.


Never Rains But It Pours….

For CRYIN’ out loud! 

Firefox is the default browser on this computer. So along about 15 or 20 minutes ago, I come back from whatever I was doing to try to get into Funny…and LO!!!

I can’t get in! Apparently somehow the default browser has been switched to Chrome!

I don’t WANT to use Chrome. Chrome has NEVER been installed on this computer! But apparently it is now!

Getting rid of it was a trick! But it looks like, at least for the nonce, we’re back in Firefox and at least SOME of its pages are working more or less normally.

Since I have no idea why this happened, I also have no idea whether it’s going to happen again, and when, and why.

Honest-ta-Gawd! If my head didn’t already ache like Hell from this damned disease, it would hurt a lot now.

Hmmmm…  I see that somehow an icon for Chrome has popped up in toolbar. How or why, I have nooo clue.

Like I didn’t have ENOUGH headaches (heee! literally)?

No. Evidently not. Over to Facebook, only to find it no longer recognizes my log-in credentials.

Now, this is no great tragedy…EXCEPT that I do use FB to keep in touch with friends, and also to promote Funny about Money. So…both of those activities are now things of the past.

Speaking of the past, wouldn’t it be cool if you could walk through a Hole in Time and come out back in the Good Ole Days, when our worst headache was whether the Soviets were going to blow us to kingdom come?



Holeee shee-UT! What a day.

I’ve been around and around and around Robin Hood’s barn today, metaphorically and literally. The headaches and the hassles have gone on and on and ON, so many I can’t even remember them all.

Phoenix is Southern California Redux. I hated living in Southern California. Hated the crowds. Hated the traffic. Hated the smog. Hated the ubiquitous ticky-tacky.

And Late Ticky-Tacky is the dominant style here. Everyplace you look here is tacky. The tacky apartment buildings, the tired cheaply built ranch houses, the brain-banging maze of surface streets, the unholy freeways: tacky, tackier, and tackiest. This characteristic strikes you most strongly when you’re weary from trudging through bumper-to-bumper traffic over bland, faceless streets that carry you past bland, faceless neighborhoods and bland, faceless strip malls.

The high point of the day was weaving my way over and through this lovely landscape, down to the Best Buy. There I was told what I already knew: my laptop (admittedly, my aged laptop) is about done for. It’s just plain worn out.

So now I get to buy a new laptop. That’ll be another two or three thousand bucks. AND naturally — yes, naturally — my software won’t run on it. The Geek Squad is going to try to keep the present incumbent running a while longer. But you can be sure “a while” represents a limited stretch of time.

How can I count the ways I don’t wanna spend hours and hours and days and days running into weeks learning new programs that don’t do what I need them to do? Ugh!

Oh well.

Speaking of things one would think have Gone Away, at Amazon what should I find but some real, old-fashioned Mentholatum! Who’d’ve thunk it was still being made, anywhere?

This, I hope, will work on the peripheral neuropathy as it affects the lips.

Then at the Walmart I found something with lidocaine in it. One would hesitate to put that anywhere near one’s mouth…but I sincerely hope it will help with the mad tingling in the hands, the feet, and the legs.

A-n-n-d in the ether that is the Internet, once again I came across evidence that my grandmother did NOT die when my mother was led to believe she did. Apparently the cancer and the suffering and the drug taking and my 18-year-old mother being made to tend her was all a show. In fact she married a prominent San Francisco businessman, had a street named after her, and hung out in Hemet.

I knew those people were weird. But this stuff takes the cake.


Wow! Virusified!!

Welp, the Beloved Laptop is at Best Buy to be decontaminated (we hope!). It was zapped by a virus along about noon and rendered basically nonfunctional.

This came from an e-mail ostensibly from a choir friend, whose subject line invited me to see a recently posted display of her photos. Soon as I clicked on the link, ZAP!!!

So now my laptop is trashed, and I’m writing this from the ancient desktop. Since my hips hurt like Hell when I have to sit in a desk chair, not much is gonna get done….

If you get an email inviting you to view a display of a friend’s images, DON’T OPEN IT! The subject line says “pictures posted by [name of friend].”

Thank goodness I signed up for Best Buy’s fancy customer service contract. This is the second time it’s been well worth it! You might want to check it out, if you have a BB in your parts.

Whoops! Here’s a new message from Connie the Long-Haul Trucker: she says she got a similar message!

Wow! If you get anything like this, let your friends know not to click on it.

Monday: The Only Pretty Costco Day?

Here’s an experience of note: This afternoon I made a Costco run — normally a trying project plagued with crowds and fraught traffic. But today, for the first time in memory, it was not bad!


Got there around 1:00 p.m.

  • No problem parking — not far from the door. No crazies in the parking lot.
  • Plenty of shopping carts (but then, there usually are).
  • No gotta-get-in-the-door-firsters (usually plenty of those, too).
  • Navigable aisles, for a change. Few chuckleheads parked smack in the aisle, holding everyone up as they gaze slack-jawed at the piles and piles and piles of offerings. No cranky crying babies. No wild-a$$ed kids running up and down the corridors.

A miracle.

Snabbed the stuff I needed quickly and without hassle. (Another miracle!)

Short lines at the check-out counters: yet another miracle!!! Got through the line and out the door in a matter of minutes. (Are we sure we’re in Costco????)

  • Got a package of totally GORGEOUS lamb chops. A box of delicious quinoa salad. A package of doggy dental chews! Found THE cutest little casual top that will look pretty awesome with my cranberry-red jeans.
  • And made my way back to the Appliances aisle.
  • There I found that yes. Yes, indeed. I got ripped off ROYALLY by the inelegant B&B Appliances. That unholy outfit charged me almost twice as much for the crummy rip-off GE fridge as Costco is charging for a comparably sized LG refrigerator, the latter highly recommended by reviewers. And they have microwaves that probably out-quality the laughable GE micro by about ten to one.
  • Whenever the dust settles from that fiasco, I’ll betake myself back to Costco to replace the rip-off junk with LG’s.

But later. Got enough to deal with right this instant.

  • Left the Costco in time to hit the main homeward-bound drag around 3:00 p.m. This is the start of rush hour here in unlovely uptown Phoenix.
  • But interestingly, the traffic was not too bad yet. Got across town to the freeway. Entered the freeway without obviously risking my life or anyone else’s. Traffic started to thicken when I got off the freeway, westbound on Main Drag South, but it wasn’t too bad. Got into the hood with no major incidents, no major frustrations.

Yet another miracle.


Lesson #1: Never buy local!

If I’d gone to Costco from the git-go in search of a fridge, I would have come away with the highest-rated model on the market and would not now be in a clench with American Express as we do battle with the noxious local dealer, B&B Appliances. By now I would have a nice LG refrigerator, no argument engaged, and I would know nothing of the elaborate workings of American Express as its lawyers take on miscreant local marketers.

Lesson #2: Avoid the rush hour!

If there’s any way you can swing it, try to surface at Costco’s entrance along about 1:00 or 2:00 p.m. If you can hit the homeward leg of your trip home by 3:00 p.m., you have a shot at getting home without too much torture.

Driving in Phoenix is, in general, just that: torture. But because I’d managed to skirt the afternoon rush hour, most of the trip to and from the store was…well…not too, too bad.

Phoenix, whose city parents pride themselves on having created a clone of L.A., is — like the beloved Los Angeles — a perfectly horrible place to drive in the rush hour, the pre-rush hour, and the post-rush hour periods. If you can contrive to get on the road after 10 a.m. and before 3:00 p.m., you have a shot at preserving your sanity and your life. Otherwise…well…hang onto your marbles!

Whilst perambulating, I noticed that Costco has nice new iMacs for much better prices than Best Buy’s. As advertised, the damn things are much shrunk in size, so if I have to get one to replace the sickly unit, using it as a television will not be good.

Yeah: I ain’t a-payin’ for cable TV, which is now the only way you can get television reception here in lovely uptown Phoenix. After our honored City Parents installed that innovation, I started using the iMac to watch the few TV offerings that are worth watching — news programs, PBS and BBC dramas, and whatnot. Those go away if an iMac can’t be persuaded to work. That, we’ll see about tomorrow, when a Best Buy fella is supposed to come over and connect the expensive new iMac to the Internet and upload data from the MacBook.