Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado

Frank da Druid

Insight from this sports-crazed druid

End of the line
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
This is going to be my last post in this post, and my last journal on Livejournal. Ever since my last relation and its breakup, this place has felt sour. I've since then gotten over the breakup. Yet, I'm not comfortable here, and I can't keep up with the writing on a decent pace here. I guess it doesn't help that I still have a stalker on livejournal, and that LJ's development has made things worse.

To whatever friends are still here, I'm taking my writing elsewhere. You're free to find me and follow me (or ask in twitter). To the stalker(s)... I don't care if you won. I'm done here anyways, and you can go leave my life alone. To my ex, I'm done with you. I don't care if you're here or not, I'm done. And to Livejournal, thanks for ruining your service. If I wanted tumblr, i'd go there.

I'm leaving this journal up for a while, at least until I archive it (for the last time). But you can feel free to comment in here if you want to know where I've gone. Thanks for all your reads.

Good travel turn
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
Most of my daily good turns (Yeah, I was a scout, so the motto "Do a good turn daily") can be easily tweeted on twitter. However, today's goodwill action is a bit longer that I need to blog about. Before I begin, this involves my trip home from work via RTD. What I'm not going to discuss is why I'm taking RTD instead of car, bike, walk etc. I'm also not going to explain the legal shortcuts around the system. But let me begin...

First of all, on a Sunday morning, as I get off work, I have a routine of bus/light rail/bus getting home. So far, so good. Now, we get to downtown, and a older lady is asking how to get to the 16 (West Colfax) bus. The driver tries to explain to walk one block to the next stop, take a 0 to Colfax, and then take a 16. She looks distressed and starts a scene asking for help.

As I take the 16 as my last leg, I offer to help her to the 16, as we go to the light rail station (next stop). I may not know all the schedules, but I know enough to get me around... and can easily get around when I'm not so certain on exact times. That's me traveling around town. :) The bus driver also looks at me like I'm crazy at my final destination, but I quickly reply that the intended connection doesn't start until 7am on Sundays, an hour later--which is the truth. Now we continue to the light rail station and get off.

We walk across the street to the station, and I ask her where she's going. "To the 31" (North Federal Blvd bus). That's easily doable in my mind. Then she says she forgot to get her transfer. Now THAT is a problem. Fortunately, it isn't a problem on the light rail (especially in this part of downtown), and there could be a workaround on the 16 bus me going as her caretaker with my pass. But at Federal (or she put it, the old name "Invesco"), where we'd go separate ways, I couldn't help her any more. Fortunately, I had time to think of the solution, as we got up the handicapped ramp and waited for the train going as "caretaker".

She kept rambling about her brain surgery, and a bunch of TMI stuff that I completely ignored. Also she told me not to catch "the long bus" (which is the 16Ltd) because it doesn't stop at "Invesco". This is not new news to me. Once we get on the train, the driver asks where we are going, and I reply "Colfax at Auraria". We are on our way. Par for the course, she notices my Rockies sweatshirt, and we start talking baseball. ... Now that will get me up a bit, even if I didn't want to talk about the Rox.

At the Auraria stop, we get off and walk to the bus stop. I briefly explain how she's going to catch the 31, while I'm thinking inside how to get past the fare issue. At the last second, I dig in my backpack, and do something I almost never do. I got the coins out for the fare, and as we get on the bus, I paid for her trip, and let the driver give her the transfer she needs. I sit close to the front, as it's just 1 stop for her to ride and then she switches. Between me, her and the driver, trying to give her instructions on catching her 31 bus, we get to Federal, and she alights, and waits at that same stop for the next bus. I then go back to a seat near the back door, and ride the way home.

Sometimes, my good turn is to give information. But today, it really was me being a gentleman, helping an old lady--not just across the street, but to a portion where she can get on her way. Yeah, I hardly ever pay for anyone's fare or part of it, but this was a necessary part. Talk about one good druid deserves another.

Talk about deja vu with work.
druid
slxception
Oh boy, something at work is like deja vu. I've been there, done that. What I can say on this public blog is this: this is a week of hell. I've already blogged about Labor Day weekend problems. But now, I have something to add. Something happened on my days off. I don't know what exactly happened, nor do I really care or feel it is my business. I noticed it on Thursday's shift as bits and pieces were piling up. I didn't have the source, but I knew what happened. Then I knew the effect it had on me. And I felt the best solution was just to retreat back (again)--or what I call "hitting the reset button on me".

To put it short, something happened with my boss, and it doesn't sound good. That's all I really want to know. As I got along with him so well, I knew that whatever progress I was making was really cut short. And I needed to be put back in my place. The easiest thing was to revert back to basics. I'd rather have a new system take place, than to get in trouble when old system and new system clash. And if no one likes it, well, let them start over.

I've been in similar situations before... many times. While I was still working in 7-11 Ft. Collins, I've seen turnovers with staff and even bosses, it wasn't even funny (and this was while 7-11 was still corporate, and the job unemployment was half as much as it is now.) People have said many things to me, and most of it was empty promises. In fact, I did get screwed over a few times. But it feels eerie that I never thought it'd happen, and yet it happens, so close to my anniversary (like most things). Oh well, life goes on

Labor day weekend, the painful version
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
Labor day is one of the most mis-named holidays on the US calendar. It has absolutely nothing to do with giving birth (being in labor on Labor Day). And it seems to have lost most of its focus on doing hard work like the original meaning, and its union ideals. (Though recent economic problems with higher unemployment is starting to revive this meaning.) In the US, it has largely symbolized the unofficial end of summer, as it is the last 3 day weekend (Labor day itself is a bank holiday) with nice weather. School usually starts right around this time for most kids, and the weather starts to get colder shortly after. I won't go into the description of why it was chosen in September, but Wikipedia helps.

As for me, I've been a wreck this weekend. And I mean it literally. First of all, my schedule has (this week) has virtually no free time before I hit overtime, and we know that employers really hate OT. I'll talk about my cow-orker soon. But after I got off work and had breakfast, I was on my way home. Suddenly this happened:
iPhone, meet sidewalk.
Sidewalk, meet iPho-nooooooooooOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!
Look at that glass! Your screen is spiked!
.... [hits standby button]
Well, at least you are still functioning.
[holds power button and slides screen to power off]


Yeah, that fall, which came early (mind the pun), the phone is a mess. Amazing, the touch screen still works 100%, though readibilty leaves something to be desired. I think the plastic screen protector helped even more. But I'm treating it like it is an egg until I get my new screen in that I've ordered. Oh well.

What also messed up with me is the fact that I have a cow-orker of an ass-istant manager* (yeah you'll have to mind my puns again. I'll just say a-mgr.) Unfortunately, he's given me all the reason not to trust him, and another cow-orker helped ensure that. To start with, the same Saturday that I had crashed my iphone screen (there's another computer pun), the a-mgr doesn't show up at 6am. In fact I've tried calling a few times only to be directly put through to voicemail. (meaning his phone was off.) Now, the work week might have just started, but I had only 1 hour before I hit the magical 40 rule, and the next cow-orker shows up at 10am, which is the magical 12 rule.** No word from my boss, which I didn't expect on his day off, so I almost called in cow-orker to come in early so I can go home and get some sleep. At 7am, a-mgr finally calls in says he is on his way, and shows up at 7:14am so I can leave.

Between him and my boss, who I did leave vm messages for about the situation, they both tell me he will be in at 4:45am the next day, so I can go early at that time. It's a little frustrating, but I understand. I was hoping I can go by 4:52 so I can get my ride home. (4:45am by the way, is the 1¼ that I went over the previous day, to get me back on proper schedule.) Sure enough, he shows up, and I finish shift stuff. I do ask if I can go home, and he says "wait till 5am". I'm now quite a bit peeved here since this defeated the purpose, and I'd have to walk home on a Sunday, but I grudgedly stay till 5am, silently punch out, and left.

I guess there was an incident on Monday, because Tuesday morning, as I got off work, the cow-orker replacing me asks about something on Monday. I can't get into details with it there because it's at work, and was an ongoing investigation. But I know it wasn't something of my fault, but seems to be something of a-mgr's fault. Hmm, seems like he's had the same amount of respect the last a-mgr had, and I'll be reusing my tactics with him (virtual silent treatment). sigh.

* cow-orker is trademarked by this Druid, as well as ass-t manager for those assistant managers who are really more like asshats.
** magic 40 rule is 40 hours in a work week before overtime is paid out. Companies really hate that part, so that's why it's magic. Similar principle for the magic 12 rule except that it's a CO rule stating after 12 hours in a a 24h period is OT.
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Talk is indeed cheap
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
I had a busy week last week. On my offdays, during the day, I had lunch. Unfortunately this led me to screw up my sleeping and eating for the west. Sadly, those two things go hand-in-hand, and I felt miserable. Add that to an already extremely stressed out work schedule due to big events, called in early, etc, and you have the recipes for a disaster. So, I think this week will be taking it calm and easy so I can reset myself to normal.

One thing that I was a bit perturbed about was I lost a friend because of a new trend: subtweeting. This is the online (Twitter) version of talking behind someone's back. Sadly, I think everyone has done this before. You don't like what some says or does, and instead of telling the person directly, you wait until he/she is out of earshot. Maybe you told that best friend, or maybe it was just to someone random. But you got it out, and it's off your chest, right? Maybe so. And probably 90% of the time, the original person would never know what you said. (If it's me, I'll raise my odds to 95% because being ignorant is probably a good thing. But don't catch me on the 5%, because that awareness increases worse.) But word-of-mouth is one of the most powerful tools in marketing. And sooner or later, that word will probably reach the person you were talking about, and he/she will not be pleased to hear it.

On Twitter, and other social media, the freedom to express your words makes it a powerful double edge sword. More people are expressing their thoughts in words as a way of getting it out. But getting it out is one thing. As humans, the element of deception and detective are part of us. Getting it out is one thing, but it's human nature to not be so blunt to someone you are talking about. If you have someone following you on twitter (or friends on FB, or the like), it may be harder not to let them know directly you're talking about them. Hence, the concept of subtweeting. It's a perfect compromise... you say your opinion out loud. But you don't use the person's real name or twitter handle. It works even better if you are @mentioning directly to someone else, because it requires following that person to see that tweet. Sounds like a good thing, right?

I don't think so. There are two problems here. First of all, print alone is emotionless. So, someone saying "HEY!" can be taken in at least 3 different ways. Think of all the problems caused by subtweets. Sometimes, even emoticons and #hashtags cannot even do it justice. Also, the second problem is that if you are honest with yourself, why shouldn't others expect to hear the honest truth from you? Matthew 7:12 is a great verse, as it is a reference to the Golden Rule Christians believe in. Yeah, it's the "do unto others the way you want to be done to you." I think I'd rather have someone be honest and tell me if something is wrong, than to hear it second hand. At least I can learn from my mistakes and fix them better if I was told directly. Just having it come back to bite me really undermines the trust and respect that I have in a person, and again, respect is a key factor.

I managed to not be hypocritical about this whole post, something I was afraid of doing the whole time. But why did I lose a friend due to subtweeting? It was more than that. I saw a change in personality from who I knew for the past few years. But the subtweet was just enough to say someone forgot respect. And I let that person know it was over. Is it reparable? Naturally. I believe as humans, we make mistakes, and we can learn from them. It's not as bad as my exs who have backstabbed me and tried to ruin me forever. But is she willing? That's her call.

Remind me next week to write about the maturity of girls. (not little girls, and not women. Just girls.)

What I think of people
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
For those who were wondering, Wednesday was a blast. Me as a vampire (druid), was out all day. Explored Arvada/Westminster a bit more. Met up with Larkburger, and saw the demolition of the Westminster Mall nearly complete. (It's a shame, since my first visit in there, the mall was big, but was already dead. JCP was still there, as was Sears, but too many closed shops, and even a food court barricaded off showing its signs of the end. Now all that's left is JCP. Sears was being demolished when I was there.) I also had fun at Lakeside, going on what seemed like each ride once that was running.

However, people are a different story. And by people, I separate friends and family out of the category of people. If I have you as a friend on any level, you have someone who you can trust and rely on. I don't like to break up friendships, but understand there are reasons why they happen. Neither one of my ex's are friends because of the hurt they've caused. And family is inseparable, no matter where they are and what they do. Even if I admit that I don't really like my brother much, I cannot deny he is part of the family. (He still shows signs that he has not learned from past mistakes.) I guess it would have to take a lot to "disown" or "disenfranchse" myself from him... such as doing something unhumanlike. But when it comes to people, they are not someone I can easily categorize as friends or family. I'm not tied as close as I am otherwise.

Let me take work as an example. There's a reason why I keep work and personal life separate: I don't want to jeopardise my work when there is a crucial moment. Sorry, I don't feel like being fired and unemployed, especially in this economy. This is why I get along with my boss really well... so well that the only way I see my boss is if I come in on my time off to say hi. Granted, I'm not perfect... but what I strive to do is as close to perfect as possible. Really, I know what is expected of me, and either perform it, or let others know when something was not done. I don't want to put words in my boss's mouth, but I think he likes the job I do--so much that he likes me where I am now. I don't blame him, since the other guy that wants to trade shifts with me has a crappy schedule (he works all 3 shifts throughout the week.) and he cannot even do the simplest things expected of him. Personally, I like the shift I have now, since I'm set in a routine, both in work, and with sleep. (I told the guy who wants to switch that our boss didn't approve it, and he looked peeved.)

Related to work, there's another cow-orker who I relieve 4 of the 5 nights who can be really annoying. 40% the time, he can act all nice to me. And the other half he treats me as if I'm in a position I'm not (usually treats me like I'm either a little kid or a boss, or at least somewhat on management-- to which I immediately defer it to the proper person and bring himi back to real Earth.) What about that 10%? That's where he gets angry with me. Some of it I deserved, especially in the beginning. But I've learned about him enough to adapt. Yet, he claims to be highly Christian, but he he lets his temper get the best of him too many times. I got yelled at again last night for something stupid again... and when i mean "yelled at", he literally raised his voice and yelled at me in the store. Sorry, he just violated Matthew 7:12 (KJV): "Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets." I have let his damage resolve with my boss.

Now, on the flip side, I try to be courteous to customers (which again, falls with Matthew 7:12). Most of the customers do praise me for it... which I am at a loss of words sometimes. A few get the wrong impression, and sadly, apart from when the rules do need to be enforced, that's a real shame. There's this one gay guy comes in, and I know he's trying to hit it with me. (to be open, over my dead body--I don't roll that way.) I've had a couple customers offer me breakfast/lunch/whatever (some of them offered it for bday, others just out of goodwill/good gesture), and I have to weigh it out with my morals. But, please, if you give me your number, expect plans and then don't have it turned on, I'm sorry--but I have my own life to run.

I think that's enough of my people issues.

Faith
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
Faith. It's an interesting word. It means that you have unbinding belief in someone or something to the point you're practically living on that same focus. You're relying on whatever it is to help you through the day, or even a goal. And if someone has "lost faith", that is a heartbreak, right? Well, maybe there is a lesson to learn from it

I can safely say that putting faith on anyone or anything on Earth is going to be a problem. Sure, you can put your faith in your president, or a ballclub, or even your spouse. But we are men, creatures of sin. We make mistakes, whether it'd be on purpose, or on accident. But we will disappoint you sooner or later. Yeah, as humans, we can often forgive each other, since part of the Golden Rule is to do unto others the way we want to be treated. But, there does come a time when even the most forgiving person has had enough. Usually, it's the same mistake done over and over. Or it could be the mistakes seem to be getting worse to the point when one eclipses a limit. Or maybe someone didn't want to own up to their mistake. Well, whatever it is, it is like a hurt that stings the worst. In some ways, that hurt is comparable to losing a loved one. Except, that you have to always face that problem for the rest of your life.

I have in fact put faith in things that did disappoint me: women, friends, baseball clubs, etc. In all these cases, I've been disappointed. And most of those I've had to sever one or more ties. But they will always impact me in some way, like avoidance, or even emotionally as I deal with it.

One thing that will not harm you is if you put faith in something not of this world. God has given people light into a darkened world. And unlike us humans, he will always be willing to accept us when we make mistakes.

I'll blog more on this during the week.

My new blog schedule as I announced on my Rox Blox blog, pending changes, or unforseen difficulties like last week's internet failure. Sunday is still my planned weekly blog here. Thursdays are still Rox Blox columns. Mondays, I may blog here on sports until the end of the baseball season, or until further notice. I may have a wildcard day here. And of course, always on @druidlove.
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Fact check please?
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
As an intro, I am going to use this journal again, after months of inactivity. new schedule of updatesCollapse )


"Why are little kids going to a R movie that late at night?"

Hours after the deadliest non-military shooting in American history, this was one of several questions asked on Twitter and talk radio like KOA, which went non-stop, commercial free. Since September 11, 2001, the internet and social media network outlets have been crucial in reporting news as it happens. Traditional news sources have battled, and eventually embraced these sources as part of their arsenal. Of course, like a game of telephone, sometimes sources and words get distorted as time goes along, and fact checking becomes second priority to getting the news out. This is a consequence of the information age we live in. More on fact-checkCollapse )

Dreams telling me something...
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slxception
I had a dream involving my ex. Unfortunately, it told me nothing new. All it told me is that she wanted to visit, but is not willing to compromise, and show off against me, essentially becoming a hypocrite. I think it's telling me to move on

coming soon
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
Yeah, I should write here more often. I'm blogging on Monday/Thursday at my Rox Blox blog for a reason. And I had a post for my personal blog, but as usual, things change and I can't post it now. :( I'll blog more later.

The little corner of me
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
I should write here more often. Anyways, this is one topic I wrote at work last night, preserved with date/time/music/mood/etc.
Written 3-10-2012 23:27

At work, there is a corner where I often hang out when no one else is around. This corner doesn't have a camera, but I have nothing to hide. It is a comfortable zone to me. Don't ask me why: it could be the chips nearby, or it could be I'm within a few steps from the exit. When someone does come, I slowly walk to my designated area, as if to illustrate that I am really like one of you except in a certain situation.

In much of the same manner, my life is a symbol of this scenario. The corner represents my secrets, my comfort zone that people may see, but not enter with me, nor understand. People do walk in or out of my life, often as friends or "friends" (acquantances, etc.) depending on the situation or time(s). The designated area, where I walk to represents where I have to abide by rules, laws or morales. While I try to be respectful even in this area, people do not always understand why or what it is that separates me from them.

I had a core group of "friends" leave me on my twitter accounts @druidlove and @druidlove_alt (the latter is currently used for twitter jail). I have to admit, this developed in stages from October with the World Series until recently. But the group that left recently was in a mass exodus stunned me a bit. I could not understand why a couple people that I even met and trusted as friends would suddenly disappear. For the most part, this group was all women... which doesn't help me. In fact, it's warped my whole view as I fade in to the next paragraph...

Last week, I got an e-mail from the ex padawan_helena . The subject was "are you ok?", and in it, she says about me dead without sorting things out with her. Nice to know that I'm supposed to answer to her even if we're legally separated (rolls eyes). Okay, with that said, I admit both of us are at fault--I could have written earlier, but I explained that work/sleep schedule got screwed up with someone quitting. She could have written sooner, especially with more status of our little girl, bue she didn't explain why nor did she care to. Since I've moved on, I didn't care to ask her. But I still think that she has her priorities mixed up, since she still tries to associate with me, but she cut me off at the same time, citing trust. I don't get women sometimes.

It's times like this where I really don't understand women. The saying: "Women, can't live with them, can't live without them." seems accurate when I cross out the rest of the sentence. I've already given up hope on ever finding another love. Actually, I've been finding out that I'm losing trust with women, and getting turned off. No, I'm not going gay either. But I've just given up with women for the most part. Too many bad experiences, and poison pills have just hurt me, and I need to focus on the good things. There's no point in always being grumpy.

So, I need to change up some things on my networks. I guess the first thing, I'm going to put a freeze on my networks for new people. I do need to trim a few people from my twitter list. particularly some women. And I've got one more post about certain friends I don't give enough credit to. :) I'm doing my cuts on Monday
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My special follow of the year
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slxception
Heya, This is my Christmas edition of the follow. I'm going to dedicate this post to those who I believe are really good friends, and really helped me get through this year. Whenever I can, I've included the twitter feed name next to the first name. (fb) stands for friends on Facebook

First, I'd like to thank my mom and dad. They've helped me out more than I've ever have. Even if they're 2 time zones away, I don't know what I'd do without them

I'd like to thank Audra (@audinco, fb) and Dan (@originalideaman) as they are excellent friends. Audra especially has helped me through some of the worst times possible.

I'm giving a shoutout to Wes (@303wes, fb) who has been a great guy and great support year round.

A shoutout to Kirsten (@sillychurro2, fb) who has been good moral support, despite being a friend living outside of Colorado.

I'm going to shout out to Christina (@cjensen23, fb) and her son Andy (@roxfan97) who are really nice people, and really don't deserve what happened this year. I hope next year is better for them.

Ashlee (@Ms_apayne) is a great baseball fan, and I think she's also a sweet person.

I'd like to dedicate this paragraph to Mark (@Townie813) who has been wonderful talking baseball, and Rockies. Love to continue the trend next year.

Now a friend I haven't seen online, Davor. We've had our moments, but he's still there in support. I hope to see you next year, bud.

I'd like to thank Cari (@carisports, fb) who I got to know a lot better, and is a great friend. Hope to talk to you more next year.

April (@Rockkstarr11, fb) is also a good Rockies fan and a great friend to talk to. Don't get on her bad side, trust me. :)

I have to thank Brian (@gorox1983) again for a nice year. I hope that next year finds you in CO. :)

I like to thank Kate (@Kate2Low) who has been again a nice person to talk Rockies and Tulowitzki. Good luck out of state.

A big thank you to Sherry (@Rusty1026), and her daughter Tiffany. It's been a great year to get to know you two better.

And finally, I like to thank Dave (@RockiesReview), who I have got to know as a nice person, though he can seem like a Rockies Critic. I know he means well, however.

These people are probably the ones that stand out the most as I've talked to them for a majority of the year. I'll list the others that are worthy of following on Twitter as well. To everyone, I hope you have a great Christmas, and a good 2012

Rockies fans @Chris_Hitchcock, @Capitulate (fb), @aschultz2, @astoria922, @avsangel14 @bertjanb, @brosanta, @cesarcarvajalb, @cheryltweedy, @cutlergal, @deak007, @deelov3, @edwscott, @fiyahpowah, @jefe_13, @jjblue5, JMurph72, @judyfrie, @knitster, @milehiphill, @msroxrock (fb), @colosportspaz, @rinnylue, @rockiebeliever (fb), @rockiesroad, @rockieswoman1, @supahfly328, @tcn33, @truefancolorado, @twinsdad_co

Other sports fans: @bbates14, @dookchene, @dutchyfan9, @fishstl, @heidimid22, @hitman6498, @JohnPMclaughlin, @kriztweetsalot, @lecroy24fan, @tebowed15 (fb), @thedodgerhater, @tlawren3, @travisg2, @yankee32879, @yanks428

General friends: @aleighbar, @anniesage, @bflomum (fb),@mastermind8902 (fb), Michelle (fb only), Bobbie (fb only), Tracy (fb only), Wendy (fb only).

Also, while I have limited contact, I'd like to give a special shoutout to my little girl, Melody.

Yeah, I'm sorry I wanted to dedicate more to each person, but I still think of my friends daily. Being listed here means I'm thinking of you in a special way.

So my plans for 2012? I'm going to unlock my @druidlove account again early: January 2nd... and get ready for baseball. My facebook remains on invite only, but if you want to be part of it, feel free to ask and I'll invite you. :) I'm also changing my sports blog at sports.druidlove.com, I'm posting the news next week. And as for this journal, I'm still using it, though not as active as I was hoping.

Have a merry Christmas, and a great 2012

The tale of two women
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slxception
There is a tale of two women I know, on twitter. Both of them are so alike, and yet, both are so different. But one I have more respect than the other. For the sake of argument, I'll keep the names secret.

One woman I've talked to both online, and called once. We met up in the matter that she lives in the same town as one of the Rockies' farm teams, though on the MLB level, she roots for my rival SF Giants. Yeah, we had a falling out for a few weeks in 2009, though we've talked well before and after that, and remain friends. Sorry, make that good friends. But, in our chats, I've grown to know that she has a huge heart. In fact, I really wished I had a chance to meet her this summer, though I didn't get the time. We've learned where to respect each other when it comes to baseball, but otherwise, we seem to get along very well. In fact, I've defended her in front of my friends, and you have to be a great friend for that to happen. We talked last night, and I told her that she was a classy woman, and deserves the best--not 2nd prize. Being nice? maybe. Truth? Yes. But I truly believe she is a special person once you get to know her.

Then there is another woman I met this year. Yeah, we went to a Rockies game or two or three. I've gotten to know her a bit, and she has a similar backround as mine and also the other person I just talked about (that's part of the alike feature.) However, she chooses to get over her breakup by partying. Nothing wrong with that. But her tweets on twitter are 90% about sex and drinking, and partying... and she's taking up my entire timeline at times. I had to talk to my best friend about it, which is usually either a very good thing or a very bad thing. And being I was getting uncomfortable, what can I say. I tried honestly, and told this person why I unfollowed on Twitter. She then says that I "Take it all too seriously... " (um, didn't say either way.), "... and I could give a shit less." Well, that's how she feels about me, or anyone? Ooooookay! Don't need to worry about her anymore.

I will do my best to show respect towards others, and I'm here to have fun. But not at the expense of ruining my moral beliefs. (I've gotten into too much trouble this year when I didn't follow what I believed was right.) But it's amazing how awesome the freinds I still have are. :)

Screw the spam
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception

I've decided to turn off commenting to non-livejournal users. This is in result of all the spam I've gotten in other means. Sorry about this but it becomes a burden to me. If you do not have a LJ you can always find me on twitter or Facebook to post a reply. Thanks

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I've moved on
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
I think I've come to two statements...

My ex, padawan_helena Helena Fridlund, ruined my life.

That I knew already. So?

Letting her continue to ruin my life is my problem.

So, why did this continue to happen for so long? The problem is that we have a daughter together. But a bunch of events in 2008 set the stage forward to a nasty divorce. But what made me stick together was my daughter. Even when the marriage was doomed, I knew that Melody was more important. I wanted to maintain that connection if I couldn't raise her. And Helena did everything she could to deny me the chance to even talk to Melody. I had to take it to a court situation even if I hated that since no one would get the ideal solution. And so I fought through this year to get some resolution. I thought I had it in February. The agreement to at least talk once a week. But the court still failed on my behalf to contact me since then.

The main problem was that Helena always insisted that she was perfect, or better than me. That has been an issue even before the divorce, but it got worse during and after. She had always made the one promise: "No matter what, I will make sure Melody will never forget you." She has made a few promises before, such as maintaining contact, but had broken them. In fact, the one promise about maintaining contact she broke, she justified it by saying "You deserve it for putting me through hell." ... I don't get her. Justifying a broken promise like that isn't great. But I digress. What brought it to a head was the promise I mentioned about Melody not forgetting me. That was broken on Tuesday, when she was asked to talk to me, and Melody said "No, I want to talk to Mark... he's more fun." ...................... um???? what? Some research brought up that Mark is Helena's new boyfriend. SMH. I never hit a low like that before.

I had to talk to a few friends about it, and how to get over it. The end result was really not how to resolve the problem with Helena and Melody, but how to resolve the problem with myself. How do I get happy? I've been trying to find some closure to the whole situation. I had closed it up with Helena, since there is nothing we can do to resolve things between us. But she has a tie to my daughter that I could not break. Still cannot really. But how do I close the situation made it clear this week. I was stunned at first. Talking it out helped me determine the direction I should go. The letter I sent earlier this week helps the closure, as well as today's entry. So, now I'm done. Finished.

Moving on now...

People are sick...
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
Saturday was one of the craziest days possible. There was a BBQ at one of my best friend's house. I had fun, though I had one moment of emptiness, and I guess that set up the entire evening. But I have two of the best friends there to help me out. And I learned a bit more about people.

This was a BBQ, a party, and I had fun. This was also, in a way, a tweetup, in that we got to meet people we have never seen before in real life (or were used to seeing only online). Wes and I carpooled together. :) Both of us know Audra, and her husband Dan. And then there was @AvsAngel14, and @KrissiBex (though I didn't recognize her at first.) But that is all as far as the familiarities. I saw @EllisFan14 and her family, though this was the first time for Wes. Then there was @VousCroux, and later @fiyahpowah. And then @ashleetripp showed up, though I had an issue that I moved on from. (Yeah, I did apologize midway through because I don't want to hold grudges). Overall the party was a success.

Midway through it, I had a feeling of emptiness. This was left over from the past week or two. One of which relates to ex, aka @padawan_helena, who I believe acted in the worst way possible. She literally came to eastern US, to have a fuckfest with someone else she met on her fucking game, and I heard that she had my daughter with her. (Sorry, this was upsetting, and remains upsetting, since she treats her game as if it's a porn game.) So I was upset here. I was also upset in that I feel a friendship with another person was ruined last week, due to some missed calls. So, I felt guilty for that too. And I did need some lone time. Fortunately, Wes saw this, and we spent a bit of time taking a walk to help me out. Thanks bud!

I have to say that Wes and I were the 2nd group to leave (probably Jessica and her sister were the last), and I have to admit that of all the people I mentioned in today's post, I don't want to get too close to anyone mentioned with 2 sole exceptions. Between the last people leaving, and us leaving, there was a space of about a few minutes. And in those few minutes, Audra spoke her mind. (I guess she trusted us.) Wes and Audra are the two people that I consider as the exception as they are my best friends. Not going to echo what she said here--but I think the opinions are rather similar. Like I said, I trust Audra and Wes. They are my best friends. Then there's the one family that I like as friends. Anyone else, I don't want to get really close because they have personal issues, or I don't know them well. (Yeah, I did apologize to one because I don't want to hold grudges. But again, I'm better just laying back when it comes to talking.) As for the two people not there, the one I do want to lay back. I don't know if there is much to salvage as friends, because of the opinions. And for my ex, Helena, well... I'll just say that no one should be around her. She doesn't give a damn for you, only for her own personal beliefs.

I have a process for building up friends--and that involves respect first, then trust. Yeah, this also applies in a similar method for my girlfriend--if and when I get one. And I don't think I'll have one now for at least 2 years...

Stop the nickeling and diming us
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
Ok, I'm sick of this. You want to go to a concert. You buy tickets to your favorite band. Let's just say the tickets cost you $30, and you want to buy 4 tickets to take your friends to the same concert. Ok, so you think it'll cost you $120 altogether. But this isn't the case. I'm going to take an extreme case, but rather typical for the cost of one ticket, and for a group of 4 as listed above.
Individual
$30 ticket
4 tickets
at $30 each
Ticket cost:$30.00$120.00
Sales tax (at 8%):$2.40$9.60
Online order fee:
per ticket
$3.00$12.00
Ticketmaster processing
fee per ticket:
$2.00$8.00
Order processing fee:
one time charge
$7.00$7.00
Shipping for "Print-at-home" *
per ticket
$2.00$8.00
Total fees:$16.40$44.60
You pay:**$46.40$164.60
Fee markup::54.7%37.2%

* Using price per ticket to print at home as an example. This may be per order, or nothing. Usually Will Call and/or standard postal mail is free. Other shipping may raise this cost.
** This does not cover insurance that some ticket brokers offer.

This may seem like a lot, and maybe you don't pay the taxes. But if you consider paying half the cost on fees, or around $50, that is totally a ripoff. Yes, it is a transparent way of revealing the costs, but it is also misleading in the marketing. You don't go to a gas station, to see the price is $3.999 a gallon, and then find on your receipt that you had to pay 4.00/gallon + 60 cents for each gallon pumped. Why do event managers think they can get away with this? And sometimes, the only way to buy tickets is online or by phone due to timing of certain "popular" events. Rockies games are another deal, in that if you don't go to the box office, you could be paying a surcharge of $2-$10 per ticket based on where you go. That's discrimination in itself. You can always set one price, and have a portion taken out for the distributors (aka Ticketmaster receives a 2% cut out of each ticket). The Colorado Lottery does it this way: each ticket costs a fixed price (like $1). The retailers get about 6¢ for each ticket sold. The rest goes to the Lottery for prizes or their reason.

Along the same lines: according to Visa and MasterCard, it is unlawful for any retailer to put a fee or require a minimum purchase on any credit card purchase. So, quit doing it, or else I'm reporting you! If you don't like it, you should increase the price on all or your most popular items by a few cents. You'll recover the costs in no time!

Along the lines of thought, I believe all 'necessary' fees and taxes should all be included in the price, so what price you see is what you pay. It can be an issue in Colorado, because some cities charge a (albeit lower) food tax on grocery items, and others don't. And the tax rate can vary from city to city and location to location. I think they should do like Sweden does if tax needs to be itemized: put the tax below the list or nearby, figuring it out of the total. but the price of each item and total should be prominent with tax.

And finally, the airlines. I have some beef with you. Landing fees and taxes must be included in your price like I discussed earlier. They are like taxes or fees that we cannot control. That should be included in the price. Same with the booking fee, eticket cost, etc. Your a la carte list, I'd like to amend this. If you charge for the baggage fees, people are only going to congest the carryon locations. If you start to charge for carryon, you have just killed the economy at the airport by hindering shopping at the airport--the last free economy at the airport. You have also killed your own industry by making it nearly impossible for all but the rich to fly (and they usually don't pay baggage fees anyways due to their elite status). If you want to go back to the dark ages of travel, fine. Long live Route 66. If not, maybe you can do what Southwest does, and allow 2 bags free. (or if you can't do that, 1 bag free). Thank you
Tags: , ,

2 different parties, 2 different outcomes
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
Comparing the bbq on Friday vs. the bbq on Sunday, I think that it was as different as night and day. I can still picture it now.
Friday, the sky was cloudy, threatening (and did) rain. I came alone. There were a handful of people. I was able to socialize with the strangers. The host made me cook. Sports were not an interest (and I had an interest in 2 games). I was intimidated by a drunk host. I saw the host wasted, and that really broke the last straw. I left, though not with a great feeling.

Sunday was different. It started off awkward as a friend texted me that she could not go down. I was confused (and still remain) about the situation. Fortunately, I had another friend agree to meet and we'd go together. (This I'll explain later). We went down to the Sox game, had lots of fun (until the Sox blew out the baby Giants.) Then we went to the BBQ together. We got there, and it as a full house -- literally. Naturally, we associated with the only people we knew, that being the hostess and her husband. The kids were playing, the adults were talking, and I saw that Wes was a bit uncomfortable. I was too with all the strangers. So, we went to the front to talk a bit, and Audra came out. We could talk a bit, and were reassured that the party will be fine, though most of her family (which was most of it) will probably leave within an hour or two. It did help. I had another issue to discuss--about friends, and that we had another conversation amongst ourselves. Another twitter friend did show up, just in time. I was absent from the party twice, but this was because I was helping out Wes get something he needed, and again with Audra get some marshmallows and chocolate for the fire. I will say these times did help clear my head and re-engergize myself for the party. It sounds strange, but it's true. Yeah, I was the only one sober enough to drive, but it was also that I wanted to do this to help out friends. So it was a win-win situation. I had fun at the party--and not just because of the recent events or that I had faith, but that it really was a better party, with people I felt comfortable with.

Spoiler on friends follows, do not read the rest if you're not interested.Notes on friendsCollapse )

The rise and fall of friendship
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
So I went to Ft. Collins last night for a party. I have to be honest in that this good friend I went to see, I swore I would not go to see him unless he made a trip to Denver to see me. But I amended it because he was having his was having his birthday party. And boy, did I not have high expectations for a great birthday party. Well, he said there would be beer. But as I got to the Longmont/Lyons exit, I called him, and he retracted it, saying to bring a case of beer. This irked me. When I got to Ft. Collins, I stopped at 7-11... but not for beer. I got a Livewire and A&W root beer for myself. I went to his party. About 15 min into it, he asks me to grill the hamburgers... and later in the night, he asks me to do the same for the hot dogs. I was not really pleased here to be 'forced' into doing work for him. It just felt rude to be put in the position. And why me? It irked me more than it should. Now, I did socialize with the guests there, and had fun. I did have some interest in the Rockies and Eagles games, as both were important, though I tried not to let them dominate the night. (The Eagles had a game 7 that they lost). He got drunk and I could tell in the way he confronted me in the middle he was not himself. What really made me leave was when he came back in from outside, and the way he walked to his bathroom, I could tell he was totally wasted. I was tempted to leave right away, but I waited until he got back, and when another friend/former cow-orker wanted to go. And off I went.

I can say that if this didn't make me change my view of friends on him, I have reconsidered it. I think of people in 5 groups:
* Not a friend. Acquaintences and strangers alike. Many people I follow on Twitter are on here as well. Enemies usually go here, if I don't ignore them.
* Friend: I like and respect you enough. I like to be around you.
* Good friend: I totally respect you to tell you some secrets I have. Trust builds in here
* Best friend: I respect and trust you well to be open completely. I do feel comfortable with loaning money only to best friends.
* Relationship: I am currently dating or married to you. Soulmate.

Obviously, I have no one in a relationship (and there can only be one woman if I ever found one.) I think I'm easy to get along with. A bit quiet, though I do like to get to know people so I can show the respect they desire. Then I can build a friendship. I can also learn what I like or don't like about someone, and can respect the limits between the two of us. Often, as the respect builds, I can easily determine how I view a person on the friendship ladder and move them up. To move down the ladder, it usually takes one person to show disrespect towards me. A friendship should also be a give-and-take thing. So, I hate when people don't show respect by sharing the burden. So this friend has already moved down from best friend when he disrespected me last year. And I'm almost certain to lower it, not because he got drunk, but that I was kind of coerced into slavery last night as his party. It's really a shame.

Such a sad day
Solitude, Flag, Royal Gorge, Frank, Colorado
slxception
Today is April 24, 2011, at 8:42pm when I started this entry. Easter Sunday. 2 days after my daughter's birthday. And it is also the 3 year anniversary of my grandmother's death. I remember the day clearly. I'll share the letter I wrote to padawan_helena and my daughter.
letterCollapse )
Yeah, it was a rainy day, and I get most affected in the evenings. About 15 min prior to this letter, I had to call my mom, as I just bursted out in tears. Yeah, catch me in tears is a very rare thing. It has to be something really personal for me to do so. But why did I cry, and why in the evening? I'm usually most affected in the evenings, as that is my most active time. Yeah, I had church, and was out for the day. But I am at my best in the evenings. I won't say the weather affected me, (it was raining), but having other things fail on me, and then remembering this event brought me to collapse.

The significance of my grandma is a rather interesting one. The history lessonCollapse )
I still do not hold grudges with my cousins and family members, as they are family after all. I'm actually glad to maintain the contact with them, as it's better late than never. Why it didn't happen earlier, I cannot say. I probably would have welcomed it, if I had the opportunity. (though I understand natural reasons in life may delay communication.) All things in life are meant to happen. I will live, accept it, and move on.

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