Funny about Money

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. ―Edmund Burke

One Damnfool Thing after Another

It’s 9 a..m. sharp. Cox’s internet (and consquently its phone service) has been down since 10 p.m. That’s right: last night.

Uh huh. If you’ve got business to do or calls to make, f’get it!

At 1 a.m., I woke up with pain in…something. Chest? Belly? Whaaa? Did I need to go to the Mayo’s effing ER again??? Decided maybe I was going to be forced to take those blood pressure meds the last ER doc prescribed. But when you read the package insert, you find they say you must proceed with caution if you have a sulfa allergy.

Allergy? Are they kidding? As a toddler I had a monster reaction when my mother’s cat scratched my face and a doctor gave me a sulfa drug to fight off “cat fever,” whateverthehell that was supposed to be. At the intensive care ward, a doctor told my mother I would not live through the night.

So…ohhhkay…. Tried to get online to check out the sulfa connection: nope. Picked up the phone to check for a dial tone: busy signal. Reset the modem: nope.

The same holds forth just now.

Luckily, I seem not to have died of a heart attack. At 7:30 in the morning, I neurotically take my blood pressure: 117/79. Whatever ails me, apparently it’s not a near-death experience.

Morning having dawned with Cox’s internet system still not working, I figure I’ll have to drive to The Little Guy’s coffee shop and buy some token product so as to get online. But right at 10 a.m., the service (and phone) came back on.

In the phone department, I’m slowly getting used to the new Panasonic landline. It’s really a pretty nice production, as those things go. To my astonishment, its built-in call blocker works – only three or four calls have gotten through since I installed it. That is at least as good as the CPR V5000’s performance; possibly better. My attempt to block “Name Unavailable” calls failed, but otherwise it apparently detects and blocks most robocalls.

Far as I know, nothing like that exists for cell phones. Which is one of several reasons I do not want to go out and blow a jillion bucks on an iPhone.

We’re told, though, that Apple is about to promulgate a low-rent iPhone. When that happens, I may get one. In that case, will discontinue Cox’s overpriced VoIP service. Since I got the phone at Costco, I can take it back if I decide to get rid of the fake landline.

At 9:30, I figure I’d better start to fly, so as to get dressed and start batting from pillar to post.

Before the outage, Costco did get through to report the repaired glasses were ready to pick up, so willy-nilly I had to schlep across the city to retrieve those.

Stopped by the Home Depot on the way.  I’ve let the side yard go wayyy too long, so want to pick up some plants to replace a number of very tired critters that did not survive the period over the summer when the watering system quit working (it only takes a day or two without water to kill a potted plant here).

Looks like those dwarf bougainvillea I put in front are going to croak over. Annoying. It may be that they’re just suffering from the cold…but it hasn’t been that cold. We haven’t had a hard frost this winter. I’m thinking I may pull them out and replace them with roses, which I know do well in that exposure. But it frosts my cookies…speaking of frost.

The huge rubber plant in a vast pot on the side deck is dying. Why, I do not know, but it’s just as well because those things do tend to get out of control. I figure a ficus or a scheffleria (sp?) would do well in that spot. A bunch of smaller pots need new plants. Plus I’m determined to get the coveted rose food.


But alas. The Depot has neither a ficus benjamina nor Bayer rose food.

Apparently ficus has gone out of style as a house plant.

I mean…really???

I guess it’s obvious to normal humans: of course there are styles in houseplants, evolving tastes, even a strong non-taste for plants that have to be watered couple days or even just a couple times a week. But…dayum! Ficus????

As for the rose food, apparently the product or the company has been acquired. The maker is now called “Bio.” Same blue bottle. Same size bottle. Same shape bottle. Except instead of Bayer Rose and Flower Care, now it’s Bio Rose and Flower Care. The Home Depot dude was…nonplussed. He looked it up on his smartphone and found that yea verily: Bayer has been taken over by something called “Bio.”

WhatEVER. Grab!

From there it was on to Lowe’s, a straight shot across T-Bird, in search of a ficus plant.

Not without, however, having grabbed some spectacularly gorgeous orange poppies (ostentatiously labeled with a cancer warning, for those of you who hope to distill them into something…ahem…usable).

Lowe’s had three, count’em, three little Ficus benjamina. Two were ratty and tatty. One was in OK shape. Grab!

By now I’ve driven miles and miles and fuckin miles to pick up three, count’em, three items.

Back at the Funny Farm, the MacMail is still out of whack.


This means a call to Apple Support.

Don’t get me wrong: I love Apple’s support staff. They are wonderful. They are endlessly patient, and they are freakin’ geniuses. They can solve problems that God Herself could not figure out (or would prefer not to expend Her infinity on). But ohhhh…God in Hevvin….

Two hours later We have MacMail operating, and we have finally figured out why I get nuisance pop-up after nuisance pop-up after nuisance pop-up, all day long and all night long, informing me that my iCloud sign-in is…well, out of whack.

These annoying messages are stimulated by a fuckup among Apple Geniuses. Last time I dragged the MacBook to Scottsdale to be fixed, some moron…uhm. sorry, Genius took it upon him/herself to change the iCloud password for the MacBook. It did not register with this person that I own another Mac computer…but then, forgodsake, why should it.

Well, it develops that if one personoid ends up with two Apple ID, havoc is sown. And that explains the puzzling panoply of hassles.

Both computers have to have the same iCloud password, quoth this young(-sounding) fella. The way to do this is to arrange something arcane that I do not understand no matter how clearly he explains it (and the guy is a master of clarity). All I understand is that I will get a phone call that will announce a four-hour window in which I have to be available and ready to rise to this challenge.

Don’t call them. They’ll call me.

I explain that I have…you know…a life.

He explains that the life will need to be adjusted accordingly.

Holy ess aitch ai.

At any rate, he seems to have the mail program running adequately for the nonce. But experience shows that with Apple, “for the nonce” most decidedly does not mean “forever and ever, amen.”

Ohhh dear God.


Now, right along in here, after I get off the phone from this worthy, somehow it crosses my mind that I do not have the old pair of glasses that the new swell pair of glasses replace. Where TF are they?

Well, the optical department folk gave them to me in a strange little three-dimensional case, which one of them tossed in the bottom of the cart I was pushing around. From the optical dept I made my way through the store to pick up four or five items on my list. Then rolled the cart out to the parking lot and packed the debris into the back of the Venza.

Was the glasses case amongst the debris?

I do not remember.

Ohhhh cripes. That was a $400 pair of glasses, which I planned to use as a back-up for the new $150 pair of (not as stylish but functionally better…) Costco glasses.

Where TF were those elegantly, expensively stylish old glasses?

Gone, that’s where they were.

Now I call the Paradise Valley Costco and ask if they’ve been turned in to Lost & Found. And lo! They have. The guy says it looks like the case was run over by a cart, but the glasses themselves are fine.

Holy ess aitch ai, indeed!

It’s now 4 p.m.

I’ve had nothing to eat since 6 in the morning. It’s been one hassle and one frustration after another. But I need those damn glasses.

Soooo… back into the car and off to the East Side.

Well. Sort of east. Closer to Richistan than the ‘Hood, anyway.

Bat my way through the rush-hour traffic.

Yes. They do have the honored vintage glasses. They are undamaged. Collect these and head back to the Funny Farm through now even thicker rush-hour traffic.

This is a sixteen-mile round trip. Times 2? That would be 32 miles of junketing back and forth between the Funny Farm and the Paradise Valley Costco.

Running low on gas, but cannot contemplate either paying a premium to refill in a rapacious gas station nearer my house or schlepping to the mid-town (lowest prices in the city!) Costco and standing in line there until the Northern Star traverses its nightly path.

Make into the ‘Hood. Ghosting across the neighborhood lane that leads toward the Funny Farm, I come across a gaggle of young children playing on the sidewalks, in the front yards, riding bicycles and assorted contraptions.

Thank the Good Goddess and All Her Minions that I slow down — a lot — to enjoy the sight of these beautiful young creatures playing. Because…

One of them, a lovely, heedless little girl, decides to veer into the street and then make a U-turn on her bike…right in front of my car.

Hm. Well, we now can say something good about the hated Venza: its brakes work.

At least, they work very well, indeed, at excruciatingly slow speeds.

The beast managed to stop just as the child swerved straight out in front of me.

omigod omigod omigod

The child appeared not even to register how close she came to ending her life at about the age of seven.

But you may be quite sure the Fatlady registered it. Holeee shit!

What. A. Day!


Author: funny

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  1. That was lucky about your glasses. And thanks for the info on the new name of the rose food. I just need to keep it in my brain until I buy the next one.

    • For the nonce, the package design is identical — only change is “Baker” to “Bio.” So the bright blue jumps right out at you from the shelf.