Mid-December general update

Back to life…back to reality…

So anyway, that was a fairly dumb weekend. But it’s behind us now. Returned to listening to Thomas Sowell’s audiobook Black Rednecks and White Liberals, which I’m seriously appreciating. It’s been teaching me a lot of details about my own background as a Southerner that I’d never known much about. Basically it’s a collection of essays spanning from looking at the U.S. Deep South’s history, then moving on to explore slavery in both the U.S. and elsewhere up through time (VERY illuminating information there), then an exploration into Germany and the rise of Nazism and why we should take seriously the possibility of such a movement arising in any culture, and now I’m listening to the portion on the history of black education in the U.S. This is just an amazing book that I’m tempted to share with others this Christmas season. Very well-sourced and eye-opening, challenging so much of the propaganda we’ve come to accept as factual.

Next in line is Thomas Sowell’s audiobook The Vision of the Anointed: Self-Congratulation as a Basis for Social Policy. Looking forward to what he had to say there.

For Christmas, I did send my cousin print copies of Edward Edinger’s Ego and Archetype and Fyodor Dostoevsky’s Notes From Underground. Hope he gets something out of them as well.

An eerie thing occurred today while out walking a pup. We were turning the corner and just as we got to the top of the hill I could see a couple blocks down the way that a car accident had just happened, causing one of the cars involved to careen into a street light. It was smoking and I could make out people from the other involved car walking over to that vehicle. Then the car that hit the light-post caught fire. Firetrucks were on the scene before we made it down the hill, so I watched as the firemen sprayed some sort of substance (not water) toward the hood of the car. An ambulance hadn’t arrived yet but no one appeared seriously injured, thankfully. Sad situation though. Bad enough to wreck in 20-degree weather and have to huddle outside awaiting help but also only a couple weeks before Christmas. Hope their insurance deductible is reasonable, though I can’t claim to know which car was at fault. Always jolts me to see a car accident, thinking about how scared people must be in that moment when they feel their vehicle lose control. Worries me daily for my loved ones and always has, probably because we drive so much that it feels like we’ve all been very lucky to avoid anything major for many years now. But we just never know when another driver might accidentally force our hand and change everything. I do hope those people involved are all going to be okay. Pretty shocking to see a car catch fire right there in the suburbs. But our emergency personnel are pretty amazing in these parts so hopefully they were able to set the situation right to the best of their ability.

Went grocery shopping after that with my list of items pulled from an Atkins diet-related site. Thinking about giving that a whirl once again. Lost weight on that diet in the past and could use a jumpstart once again since I haven’t been as active in the gym the last couple of weeks. Again, thanks to this cold weather and before that the Thanksgiving holiday keeping me busy with work. Just not felt as motivated this past month, but that needs to change. It’s one area in my life I’ve been proud of and wish to maintain. Going on 1.5 years now…so yeah, it’s become a routine I care about and get a lot of satisfaction from. So I picked up oodles of frozen vegetables and a few steaks and a rotisserie chicken and a case of the seltzer water I’ve grown fond of. As my former partner stated last night, people will cease taking me seriously if I fail to follow through on these ambitions I regularly speak of. So, here I go again…

What else? Picked up another one of those Blu e-cigarettes in hopes of smoking it part of the time so as to cut down on these Natural American Spirits. Lungs have been killing me lately. That’s what 21 years of smoking brings. Tried e-cigs in the past but wasn’t taken with them. Ah well. Try, try again.

Work is done for the day. So now I’m just tasked with paying bills and forwarding along some YT videos of interest to a buddy of mine.

Oh, and did I ever mention on here what went down with the IRS once I filed my taxes after taking an extension? Yeah, well, I sent in the remaining money I owed them, having prepaid a few hundred back in the spring. All seemed fine and I received a confirmation number from the DirectPay page on the IRS website, only to later receive two letters in the mail on the same day. One was a refund of part of the last bit of money I submitted to them; the other was a letter explaining that the funds I paid in somehow had not been credited to my account and so I need to resubmit it. Figured it wasn’t worth battling over seeing as how I’m not interested in attracting their scrutiny at present, so I mailed a check in this time. Oy. Kinda weird to find out that their left hand doesn’t know what their right hand is doing apparently. But ah well. Hopefully that’s resolved now. And, for the record, despite several claims that this time I would be charged a penalty for remaining an Obamacare (ACA) holdout, no penalty proved forthcoming. Not sure what to make of that. Twas the whole reason I filed for an extension in the first place, thinking I’d need more time to scrape together funds to pay that. They threatened up a storm and had me a bit nervous, but nothing came of it once again. And so I remain a holdout for yet another year. Very rarely go to the doctor for anything and am not on any necessary prescribed medications, so it doesn’t make sense that I should be forced to pay around $200/mo. for insurance I don’t want. Been uninsured this long, so I’ll take my chances there.

Fixed my phone up with an SD card over the weekend so that annoying “low storage” message finally went away. Still lagging in my understanding of that technology and required help from a friend. My Luddite tendencies apparently will not allow me to grasp smartphone technology. Don’t even like referring to the phone as “smart.”  Ha!  Seems like a misnomer. Especially for those who use them as their only computing device. My good ol’ desktop computer is SO much more user-friendly and has functionality a handheld simply cannot touch. And yet, these desktops are going the way of the dinosaurs, according to millennials.  tongue_out

That’s about it for now.

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