Coffee heat rising

Life in the Land of the Dumb and the Feckless

Correct position behind steering wheel for driving on Phoenix roads.

So you say you’re bored? Life is too calm? People around you persist in behaving like normal, sane human beings?

Welp, there’s a way to get around that predicament. It’s easy: Come to Phoenix, get in a car, and start driving!


If Days from Hell are crazy in normal times, in the Christmas season they’re BATSH!T crazy!

So I make my way to the Best Buy at about Camelback and 20th Street, there to glom a gift card for my son, as something that will pass for a Christmas present. Wander around ogling the technological wonders. Finally lose interest and roam back to the car. Start driving toward the’Hood, westerly ever westerly, and….

Ohhhhh yah. Wouldn’tcha know it? Traffic jam, traffic jam…and traffic jam on Camelback, one of the biggest surface streets in the city.

Crawl westward. Crawl…crawl…cr…HOLEE sh!t they’ve got the whole dam road, east AND westbound shut down at 12th street.

Guy ahead of me, bless his heart, drives like an old-time Phoenician. He’s assertive (read “aggressive as a hyena”) and he knows where he’s going. I settle into his tailwind.

We jerk north on 12th Street and proceed ever northerly. North. North. North. Now we’re in a neighborhood that I’ve never passed through slowly enough to examine. Twelfth is bordered on both sides by aging single- and two-story apartment buildings (once rentals, no doubt, but now condos). Lookin’ around, I think holeee maquerel, THIS is where we should have put Tootsie (SDXB’s mother) when we were forced to move her out of her beloved little condo after the damn place went to Hell on a Handcart. Why on earth didn’t we look in this area?”

Why…why…why, indeed?

Well, to begin with, I did look for places like that, but everything in our part of town — i.e., the area I knew anything about — was way too expensive. These places look like they would have been in the general price range of her soon-to-be abandoned garden apartment…and since her daughter, who was in on the project, was married to THE premier cardiac anesthesiologist in the Pacific Northwest…well, yes: they certainly COULD have afforded to get her into one of them. None of these places looked any fancier than Tootsie’s place, except (ahem) for the location.

But noooooooooo.

Some friend/distant relative of hers had bought a trailer on the far west side, where they would decamp to escape Michigan’s lovely winter months. Nothing would do but what, forgodsake, we had to put her in a trailer.

CAN you spell “stupid”?

It’s spelled t-r-a-i-l-e-r p-a-r-k,

So we get her into this tin can.

You understand: temps in the summers here range up to 120 degrees. Her relatives went home to Michigan in the summertime, so were unable to advise about the power bills in the multiple hundreds of dollars. You cannot air-condition a trailer…BECAUSE it effectively has no insulation.

Meanwhile, nothing would do but what she had to buy a trailer way to Hell and gone on the west side: a good hour’s drive from where SDXB and I were living.

You have not heard bitching until you’ve heard SDXB bellyache about having to drive (and drive and drive and drive and…) through the hideous westside traffic to attend to his mother. Wow!

Can’t say I blame him. It was a horrid drive.

He had an ex-girlfriend who was a Realtor. He asked her to advise…and…what a joke! She came up with exactly nothing viable. I looked around, but i are not a Realtor i are a english major…. I knew of a few patio home developments not far from here, but they were too expensive…and I was completely ignorant of the places to the east of 7th Street, where we could easily have found something that would have worked.

Picked up a Best Buy gift card for my son’s Christmas present. Now all I have to do is not lose it between now and the 25th. Easier said than done.

Son’s dog was surged yesterday. Nothing serious, he says: the dog grows these strange cysts…probably fatty tumors, I imagine. Greta the Gershep had a couple, but she didn’t develop them until she was well into her dotage. Charley the Golden Retriever has had these things since he was an addled-escent pup. M’hijito recently acquired a new vet — our old bunch having gone out of business and scattered to the winds.

Poor dog apparently was suffering somewhat yesterday. That — me being the skeptic that I am — would raise some real concern if he were mine. Not that I wouldn’t want to treat something that might harm him or cause him discomfort. But these things are apparently benign. Not at all sure I would subject an 11-year-old dog — who probably has just another year or two before the end of his normal lifespan — to any kind of unnecessary surgery.

ooooh wellll… Stop the world…i wanna get off!