Posted by: lylescott89 | July 7, 2018

Please Stop Asking if I’m Okay

33831994_10156315528268764_4125028565517336576_n

“I am not impressed by money, social status or job title.  I am impressed by the way someone treats other human beings.”

Hey kids,

I understand that people are concerned.  I understand that people care.  I understand that people are naturally curious.  That said, I hate being constantly asked if I am okay.  I’m fine, but I am not okay.  I will not be okay again until we get rid of the lunatics that have taken over the asylum.

To be brutally honest, I really hate being asked if I am okay.  I mean, what am I supposed to say to that?  Am I supposed to give an honest answer and tell someone what I am really thinking or just say yes and move on?  How can I tell if someone genuinely cares if I am okay?  I suppose I really should just be appreciative of the sentiment that someone took the time to ask me if I am okay, but depending on who does the asking, generally that’s not my reaction.

introvert6

People seem to think because I am quiet that I am not okay.  No.  I am quiet because I am extremely introverted and uncomfortable in most, if not all, social situations.

My last post had someone asking me if I was okay as they thought I was suicidal.  Oh dear god no.   I am not now, nor have I ever been suicidal.  You know how people get a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) order?  Well, I have something that is known as an RRR; (Resuscitate! Resuscitate! Resuscitate!)  So I am obviously not suicidal.

But again, I am not okay.  People are not nice and it’s making me tired and cranky.  People who are not the least bit civil are asking for civility.  It makes me shake my head.  I saw a woman last week putting ketchup on hot dogs.  It made me cringe.

20180701_132523

Allow me to share one more quote:

“If you still consider yourself a tRump supporter, my problem with you isn’t that we have differing political opinions; it’s that you’re a horrible fucking person.” – John Zal US Army MP Veteran

Namaste

 

 

Advertisements
Posted by: lylescott89 | July 5, 2018

Families Belong Together & I Was There

36088397_10156374323673764_217695137566818304_n

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment” –  Ralph Waldo Emerson

Hey kids,

Over the years I have spent a lot of time trying to be something I am not.  I am unique, I am different and I always hated that.  I tried so hard to fit in with other groups and no matter how much I tried I was never happy.  I tried with school, church groups, work and all manner of things.  If someone said something I would often agree with it just to avoid making waves.  I desperately wanted people to like me.  Then something happened.  I don’t exactly know when it happened and in reality I think it was more of a gradual thing than an “a-ha” moment.  I realized that it did not matter at all what anyone thought of me.  It did not matter if anyone liked me or not.  I absolutely did not care if my opinions made me lose friends or family members.  I don’t care if people hate me.  I decided that I needed to be me.  I needed to fight for what I believed in and damn the consequences.  If I lost business, so be it.  If I was shunned for my beliefs, so what?  I could not live my life any longer being something I was not.

Keep Families Together March (17)So this past weekend I took another step in my road to being who I want to be.  As most everyone knows by now, hundreds of thousands of people took to the streets across the country to protest the atrocities that our government has committed.  Donna and I were just two of those people telling the world that we believed in keeping families together.

We were in North Carolina at the time as we had a wedding to attend that evening.  Thanks to Google I was able to find a local march.  Since we were in a small, conservative town I did not expect much of a crowd, however there were well over 100 people in attendance.  I took a few photos, two of which can be seen on this blog and the rest on my flickr page.  I talked with several people as well.  The ones I spoke with felt out of place in their own town.  Many of them experienced hatred and some said they felt ostracized.  Several said they were ridiculed for thinking that children did not belong in cages.  No one should be made to feel that way, but I knew exactly where they were coming from.

I listened to those making speeches.  One woman said that she could possibly lose her job as a teacher for speaking out, but she didn’t care.  She knew in her heart that speaking out was more important.  It was more important to her for families that she has never met and will likely never meet to be reunited than to continue getting a paycheck.

Another woman, an African-American woman, spoke out about how she has been treated, how her family has been treated and how she is no less of an American citizen than anyone else, yet gets none of the same privilege that her white co-workers are allowed.  And though I do not know her personally, I have seen exactly what she was speaking about.  If we are all honest, we all have.

Keep Families Together March (20)

When it was all said and done I felt pretty darn good.  I was hot, sweaty and desperately in need of more water than I had brought with me, but I was so glad I went.  It was an experience I will never forget.  Am I an activist now?  Perhaps.  But whatever I am I will not be lying to people any longer.  If someone asks my opinion, I will speak up.  I have never held back my opinions here in writing, but with a readership of about 50 people it hardly matters what I say on here.  It matters what I say in public.  Sitting idly by is no longer an option.  Will there be those louder than me?  Sure, it’s a semi-free country and I am naturally a quiet person so yes, there will be screamers out there shouting racist crap all while claiming they are the civil ones.  But I won’t play pretend just so I can fit in with a group.  Not happening.

A month or so ago Donna asked me to fill in at the last minute as worship leader at church.  I did and I spoke about something very important to me.  My friend Jeff filmed it and put it online for all to see.  So far it has 14 views.  If you want to hear how I have spoken out publicly, click this link and watch.  If not, whatever.

Someone once said to me “Personal growth is so important.  You should never feel like the same person you were a year ago.”  I truly believe she knew what she was talking about because I don’t even feel like the same person I was a week ago.

Namaste

Posted by: lylescott89 | June 23, 2018

Sometimes I Can’t Even Breathe

34963229_10156343570508764_3454603931756265472_n

Hey kids,

The majority of this post was not written by me. I have no idea who wrote it, but it was shared with me by an old friend of mine, Denise. I will say this about Denise; despite the fact that it has been years since we have seen each other, I still consider her a close friend. She is a compassionate woman and, from everything I know, a very caring parent. I choose my friends carefully and I do not allow myself to get close to people that I don’t trust. True, I have made some poor choices, but Denise was clearly a wise choice.

Choose-Wisely

I was not going to post anything about all the horror that has been going on, but I was feeling so awful I felt it would be therapeutic. I saw Rachel Maddow break down the other night and I couldn’t breathe. The thought of what this administration has been doing is just unbelievable. I thought about the scene in Schindler’s List when the Nazi’s were taking the children away from their mothers. I thought about the scene in X-Men: First Class when a young Magneto was being separated (noted the proper spelling) from his mother. I even thought about the time when Adam was a baby and he was in the hospital. Even though I knew he was in good hands with the doctors and nurses I was a complete mess knowing that I could not be with him. But what really set me off was a completely ignorant and uncaring post I saw when I signed into Twitter earlier today. It had to be posted by a man because no woman could be that heartless, or at least I would hope not. (That’s the feminist inside me speaking I suppose) Anyway it was a picture defending the practice of separating (again, spelled correctly) children from parents by comparing it to people in the military being separated (Okay, you get the idea by now) from their children. You son of a bitch! For one thing, the men and women in the military are joining VOLUNTARILY! They know they will be going away from their children and they make that choice. Now how the hell they can make such a choice I have no clue, but they do. They are not escaping a country in order to give their children a better life, they are joining the military to do whatever it is they are assigned to do. They are taking a job and will, most likely, see their kids again. They are not fleeing war, famine or drug lords. How stupid are you?

This administration is going to kill me. I wake up some mornings thinking it’s a normal day and then I remember…and then I am brought to tears. Some days are better than others, but seeing so much ignorance, lies and racism in the name of Christianity is incredibly painful to watch. Seeing so many people lie on a daily basis to feed their fuhrer disgusts me to no end.

Honestly I could not care less who comes into this country and I totally don’t give a shit why they come here. They are humans. Biologically they are just the same as every single person born in America, a nation built by immigrants and lest we forget, a nation torn away from Native Americans. If people are coming here and risking their lives to do so they deserve to be fed, clothed and be given the opportunity for asylum. It may not be much longer when the human rights violations of this country will force many of us to seek asylum in other countries. They sure as hell don’t deserve to be locked up in cages. Do you really think terrorists are entering the country this way? Sorry, they’re coming in on airplanes, boats and obviously by spaceship since we are in so desperate need of a space force.

36036798_2150503091709400_5811753864373731328_n

In any case, this is what Denise posted and I added one thing at the end. It sums up everything for me perfectly. Oh and if you do not agree, I don’t give a shit. Go away.

Warning: Politics Ahead!

“Let’s break it down, shall we? Because quite frankly, I’m getting more than a little tired of being told what I believe and what I stand for. SPOILER ALERT: Not every Liberal is the same, though the majority of Liberals I know think along roughly these same lines:

1. I believe a country should take care of its weakest members. A country cannot call itself civilized when its children, disabled, sick, and elderly are neglected. Period.

2. I believe healthcare is a right, not a privilege. Somehow that’s interpreted as “I believe Obamacare is the end-all, be-all.” This is not the case. I’m fully aware that the ACA has problems, that a national healthcare system would require everyone to chip in, and that it’s impossible to create one that is devoid of flaws, but I have yet to hear an argument against it that makes ‘let people die because they can’t afford healthcare’ a better alternative. I believe healthcare should be far cheaper than it is, and that everyone should have access to it. And no, I’m not opposed to paying higher taxes in the name of making that happen.

3. I believe education should be affordable and accessible to everyone. It doesn’t necessarily have to be free (though it works in other countries so I’m mystified as to why it can’t work in the US), but at the end of the day, there is no excuse for students graduating college saddled with five- or six-figure debt.

35850733_2124844764278431_5989423329830764544_o

4. I don’t believe your money should be taken from you and given to people who don’t want to work. I have literally never encountered anyone who believes this. Ever. I just have a massive moral problem with a society where a handful of people can possess the majority of the wealth while there are people literally starving to death, freezing to death, or dying because they can’t afford to go to the doctor. Fair wages, lower housing costs, universal healthcare, affordable education, and the wealthy actually paying their share would go a long way toward alleviating this. Somehow believing that makes me a communist.

5. I don’t throw around ‘I’m willing to pay higher taxes’ lightly. I’m retired and on a fixed income, but I still pay taxes. If I’m suggesting something that involves paying more, well, it’s because I’m fine with paying my share as long as it’s actually going to something besides lining corporate pockets or bombing other countries while Americans die without healthcare.

6. I believe companies should be required to pay their employees a decent, livable wage. Somehow this is always interpreted as me wanting burger flippers to be able to afford a penthouse apartment and a Mercedes. What it actually means is that no one should have to work three full-time jobs just to keep their head above water. Restaurant servers should not have to rely on tips, multibillion dollar companies should not have employees on food stamps, workers shouldn’t have to work themselves into the ground just to barely make ends meet, and minimum wage should be enough for someone to work 40 hours and live.

7. I am not anti-Christian. I have no desire to stop Christians from being Christians, to close churches, to ban the Bible, to forbid prayer in school, etc. (BTW, prayer in school is NOT illegal; *compulsory* prayer in school is – and should be – illegal). All I ask is that Christians recognize *my* right to live according to *my* beliefs. When I get pissed off that a politician is trying to legislate Scripture into law, I’m not ‘offended by Christianity’ — I’m offended that you’re trying to force me to live by your religion’s rules. You know how you get really upset at the thought of Muslims imposing Sharia law on you? That’s how I feel about Christians trying to impose biblical law on me. Be a Christian. Do your thing. Just don’t force it on me or mine.

8. I don’t believe LGBT people should have more rights than you. I just believe they should have the *same* rights as you.

35686734_2147815611978148_4433237952709001216_n

9. I don’t believe illegal immigrants should come to America and have the world at their feet, especially since THIS ISN’T WHAT THEY DO (spoiler: undocumented immigrants are ineligible for all those programs they’re supposed to be abusing, and if they’re ‘stealing’ your job it’s because your employer is hiring illegally). I’m not opposed to deporting people who are here illegally, but I believe there are far more humane ways to handle undocumented immigration than our current practices (i.e., detaining children, splitting up families, ending DACA, etc).

10. I don’t believe the government should regulate everything, but since greed is such a driving force in our country, we NEED regulations to prevent cut corners, environmental destruction, tainted food/water, unsafe materials in consumable goods or medical equipment, etc. It’s not that I want the government’s hands in everything — I just don’t trust people trying to make money to ensure that their products/practices/etc. are actually SAFE. Is the government devoid of shadiness? Of course not. But with those regulations in place, consumers have recourse if they’re harmed and companies are liable for medical bills, environmental cleanup, etc. Just kind of seems like common sense when the alternative to government regulation is letting companies bring their bottom line into the equation.

11. I believe our current administration is fascist. Not because I dislike them or because I can’t get over an election, but because I’ve spent too many years reading and learning about the Third Reich to miss the similarities. Not because any administration I dislike must be Nazis, but because things are actually mirroring authoritarian and fascist regimes of the past.

12. I believe the systemic racism and misogyny in our society is much worse than many people think, and desperately needs to be addressed. Which means those with privilege — white, straight, male, economic, etc. — need to start listening, even if you don’t like what you’re hearing, so we can start dismantling everything that’s causing people to be marginalized.

No More (1)

13. I am not interested in coming after your blessed guns, nor is anyone serving in government. What I am interested in is sensible policies, including background checks, that just MIGHT save one person’s, perhaps a toddler’s, life by the hand of someone who should not have a gun. (Got another opinion? Put it on your page, not mine).

14. I believe in so-called political correctness. I prefer to think it’s social politeness. If I call you Chuck and you say you prefer to be called Charles I’ll call you Charles. It’s the polite thing to do. Not because everyone is a delicate snowflake, but because as Maya Angelou put it, when we know better, we do better. When someone tells you that a term or phrase is more accurate/less hurtful than the one you’re using, you now know better. So why not do better? How does it hurt you to NOT hurt another person?

15. I believe in funding sustainable energy, including offering education to people currently working in coal or oil so they can change jobs. There are too many sustainable options available for us to continue with coal and oil. Sorry, billionaires. Maybe try investing in something else.

16. I believe that women should not be treated as a separate class of human. They should be paid the same as men who do the same work, should have the same rights as men and should be free from abuse. Why on earth shouldn’t they be?

17. I believe women should always have the right to choose. We love to tell the government they cannot infringe on our individual rights, unless it comes to a uterus. Then the pro-life nut bags want the government to step right in and take control.

35645294_2145415455551497_2511272106730192896_n

I think that about covers it. Bottom line is that I’m a liberal because I think we should take care of each other. That doesn’t mean you should work 80 hours a week so your lazy neighbor can get all your money. It just means I don’t believe there is any scenario in which preventable suffering is an acceptable outcome as long as money is saved.”

That’s all she wrote. One day every single one of us will be dead and absolutely nothing will matter except how we treated our fellow humans.

Namaste

Posted by: lylescott89 | May 31, 2018

Don’t Know Much About…Cars

31890920_10156256370508764_1214713293583679488_n

Hey kids,

Many of you think I am an expert on everything.  Not so.  I am starting a new series today entitled “Don’t Know Much About” in which I will thrill you with my vast amounts of ignorance when it comes to certain subjects.  Since I have spoken before on my complete and utter lack of knowledge when it comes to cars or any motorized vehicle for that matter, I figured that was as good a place to start as any.

As a guy I am expected to know certain things.  I should know how to tie a tie, I should know how to properly tip that weird guy that hands you the towel in fancy bathrooms and I should know everything there is to know about cars.  Well, I can barely tie a tie, I try and pretend that the bathroom attendant is not there because I can see no reason why I should tip a guy for doing something I clearly could have done myself and then there are the cars.  Not the Ric Ocasek led Cars, but the motorized ones.

Ric-Ocasek-billboard-1548

OMG Ric Ocasek!

Back when I was a freshman in high school I was alone at lunch quite often.  Yes, I know this is shocking.  I was also bullied throughout my tenure in grade school, junior high and high school.  Again, shocking.  (Please note that while I was bullied and turned down by many, many, many girls that I asked out on dates, I never once brought a gun to school and shot anyone.  It is worth noting that all of my schools had ample entrances and exits as well)

Anyway one day in high school as I was sitting in the cafeteria reading a book after finishing my delicious country fried steak, I could hear the conversation at the table next to me getting louder.  It was a group of cool kids or so I thought.  I kind of made the assumption that the guys with the varsity jackets that had girlfriends and picked on me were all considered the cool kids.  I was wrong, but whatever.  In any case they were discussing cars so I tuned them out.  Suddenly I heard one of them speak up and say “let’s ask Lyle, he’ll know”.  Oh shit.  I had no idea what was about to happen.  One of the bigger and burlier guys came over to me.  He was the type that was already shaving twice a day at the age of 16, yet going bald at the same time.  He looked at me and said they needed me to break the tie.  I said okay and  he proceeded to ask me this question:

Mags or Kreggers?

Now to this day I have no idea what the fuck mags or kreggers are and I don’t care, but I do know that they were discussing cars so I figured it had something to do with that.  (I also realize I could Google this, but again, I totally don’t give a shit)  Heck, and I even spelling it right?  Spell check said nothing so…I guess I am.

coolkids

I didn’t wear glasses back then.

I felt myself getting weak thinking that if I gave the wrong answer I’d be physically crushed to death or shoved into a locker.  (Frankly I was way too  tall for that, but they would still try) On the other hand if I gave the right answer I could use that as a stepping stone to becoming one of the cool kids  (Spoiler alert:  I never became a cool kid nor am I a cool adult) So I looked him in the eyes and calmly stated “Kreggers, of course”.

He then turned to the rest of them and said “See, I told you so.  If Lyle says it’s Kreggers then it’s Kreggers because he knows”.  Phew!  Dodged a big one there!

Cars just never interested me.  Many times I would end up in a conversation someplace and the talk would turn to cars and I would just be lost and confused.  Could I have tried to learn something?  Sure, but I had no interest then and I have no interest now so why bother?  But to this day people expect me, as a guy, to know about these things.  Case in point:

Back in April I was at one of my IBMS shoots and it was getting late and I wanted to get back to my place so I could get some sleep.  And by getting late I mean that it was getting close to 9 PM.  I finished up with the model I was working with, packed up my stuff, said goodbye and headed to my car.  I was blocked in.  Now a normal person would have looked at the license plate or something so they’d be able to go inside and ask that person to please move.  However, I am not now nor have I ever been a normal person.

Amber Nova (1)

Yes, the real live Amber!

I went back in the house and upstairs and said that someone was blocking my way out.  A model asked me if it was a Chevy Nova.  I looked at her and I was confused.  I told her I had no idea because I didn’t know what a Chevy Nova looked like.

I swear to god that if you put three cars in front of me and asked me to label each one I would not be able to do it.  Donna once asked me if I knew what a carburetor looked like and of course I said no.  She asked me if I knew what spark plugs did and I said yes, they made sparks.  Now why they made sparks I don’t know.  That seemed a bit dangerous, but again, whatever.

In any case I went back downstairs, back outside looked at the car and saw that, according to the labels on the back, it was indeed a Chevy Nova.  So back in the house, back upstairs and back to Amber to inform her that it was indeed a Chevy Nova.  She moved, I left and got to read and get some sleep.  I love to sleep.

One last story, though there are probably a hundred more.  When I purchased my current vehicle it came with lifetime oil changes as long as I brought it in every three months.  So once every three months I make an appointment with Dani, I go in, she has me sign something and then I go sit down, watch TV on my tablet and eat a complimentary donut.  I keep my headphones in at all times lest anyone else in the waiting area suddenly get the urge to speak to me.  Once, a sales guy there ignored the headphones rule and made a comment about my Li’l Sebastian t-shirt.  I said that my son and I had matching shirts.  He said that he and his son had matching shirts of someone named Maverick and someone else whose name I cannot recall.  I said I had no idea who they were and asked if they were cartoon characters.  He gave me a funny look, said no and walked away.  I figured they were car logos or something.  Again, I don’t care enough to Google it.

lilsebastian

You’re 5000 Candles in the Wind

Earlier this month I took my car in for its oil change.  I had made my appointment online with Dani as I always do, but when I arrived she was not there.  Some guy named Bill was there.  Bill had a soul patch which immediately told me that Bill had issues.  I said I had an appointment with Dani.  Bill said she was in the bathroom (gee thanks for the privacy Bill) and said he’d check me in.  I reluctantly agreed.

Let me say this.  I have no idea what is covered under the lifetime oil changes rule.  All II know is that Dani knows and that she takes care of me.  She never offers me any add ons and she knows of my car limitations.  So when I see her she never asks questions, she just does everything for me.

Back to Bill.  Bill is a dumbfuck and I hate him.  Bill says to me “looks like we are doing synthetic oil”.

Um, okay.  I did not know there was such a thing, but okay.

And then Bill then says “looks like it’s been well over 10000 miles since you have had your tires rotated, we’ll do that today as well”.

Um, okay.  Again, no clue that tires were rotated, but I suppose they enjoy a change of scenery now and again.

I signed the thing, went and got settled in with my tablet and donut.  A full hour of peace and quiet.  And TV of course.

After a while Dani comes in to get me and she gives me a funny look.  Having been used to getting funny looks from women for the past 50+ years I thought nothing of it.  Dani asked my why I got synthetic oil.  I told her that Bill implied that I always get synthetic oil.  Do I not?  Dani replied “no hun, you don’t”

Dani-Behr

Literally the first photo that came up when I Googled Dani

“Oh my gosh does that cost extra?” I asked.

“Yes, hun” Dani replied.  Then Dani said “and why exactly did you get your tires rotated?”

I explained “well Bill said it was time and I am now guessing that tire rotation costs extra as well”.

“Yes, Hun” she said (I love it that she always calls me Hun. I feel like I am in a diner) “I told you to always speak to me, didn’t I?”

“Yes, yes you did”

“Well, don’t worry about it Hun, I’ll take care of it.  Just give me a few minutes”

I finished my show and walked back to the counter.  Dani had taken everything off the bill and all I had to pay was the $2.31 throw the oil away fee.  Dani said she was really sorry that Bill did that to me and she was going to have a talk with him.  Then she gave me an extra donut to take home to Adam.

I love Dani and my incredible lack of automobile knowledge.

Namaste

 

Posted by: lylescott89 | May 29, 2018

Things I’ve Done in Starbucks

31958944_10156266221568764_3874567019370119168_n

Hey kids,

Today is the day that Starbucks will be closing for racial bias training.  One would think that in 21st century America we would be well past this, but alas we are not.  This all stems from the incident back in April when two black men were arrested at a Starbucks in Philadelphia for doing nothing more than sitting there.  So today I thought I’d give you a comprehensive list of all the things I have done in Starbucks without being thrown out once.

A little background first.  A lot of people already hate Starbucks.  I am not one of them.  I love the place.  It is generally a quiet place in which I can relax and read without falling asleep.  If I sit in my nice comfy chair at home and attempt to read, I will often drift off to sleep or suddenly get the urge to do laundry.  Yes, that is weird and I accept that.

dante-gauld

In addition, Starbucks was my refuge when I was working at the place that shall not be named.  Actually I had many names for it; the Hellmouth, the Shithole, the Endless Nightmare and the Place Where Dreams go to Die among others.  Heck, I even hung a sign outside the office that read “Abandon hope all ye who enter”.  That did not go over well with the shitheads in charge.  Anyway, my personal favorite was Shawshank.  I had to crawl through a tunnel of shit to get out of there so it was appropriate.

For five days a week I would be done with my work no  later than 10 AM, though it was almost always earlier than that.  At least three days a week I would get bored in the afternoon, hop in the car and take my 15 minute break at the Starbucks right down the street.  Now common sense would tell you that it was not really possible for me to walk out of the building, get to my car, drive to Starbucks, enjoy my beverage and drive back in 15 minutes.  It clearly was not.  I was normally gone at least 30 minutes, usually 45, but my record was two hours.  No one ever paid attention to me at work so no one ever noticed.

starbucks-philadelphia-protest

So yes, for a long time I was a regular and I usually ordered something though not always.  Over the years I have been to many different locations for many different reasons and sometimes I did not order anything.  Apparently since I am a white guy that was perfectly okay.  And now, allow me to list the many things I have done in Starbucks (not ordering anything) without being arrested or thrown out.

  • Sat there and read a book
  • Watched TV on my phone
  • Used the bathroom
  • Grabbed a bunch of straws
  • Asked for a cup of ice and poured my own iced coffee into it
  • Waited for someone to meet me (I’ve done this several times)
  • Got out of the oppressive Florida heat, also known as a kiln
  • Drank ice water
  • Met a couple about photos and none of us ordered anything
  • Met a young woman about photos and neither of us ordered anything while we talked, however she did get a frappuccino to go.
  • Took refuge during the rain

Starbucks advertises themselves as a gathering place.  Let people gather and enjoy your sensitivity training.

Namaste

Posted by: lylescott89 | May 2, 2018

Any Questions for the Pharmacist?

30530882_10156200379878764_2419818719556403200_n

Hey kids,

I will readily admit that the joke at the end of this blog will go over a lot of heads.  If you do not get it please do not be offended.  I am guessing that at least 2/3rds of my sisters will not get the reference nor will most other family members.  Still, that will not stop me from sharing this because it made me laugh.  Don’t worry if you don’t get it, just rest assured that it is funny.  (Note to Aunt Lynda: Ask your husband.  Note to Aunt Lesley: Ask Uncle Brian.  Note to everyone else: Google)

Of course, I have mentioned before that I also think it is funny when the barista at Starbucks asks me if I want her to leave room in my coffee cup for cream and I reply with “Now how in the world are you going to fit Jack Bruce, Ginger Baker and Eric Clapton into that little cup?”  Yes, I stole that joke and no, not one barista has ever laughed, but I persist.  Again, 90% of my readers will not get the joke, however Donna and Adam understand it and both groan when I say it so it obviously works on some level.  On a side note you would think that would get me tossed out of Starbucks, but no.

Cream

In any case, like most older people I take a number of prescription medications.  I go so often that all the ladies that work at the pharmacy know me and don’t have to ask me for my name or anything else.  They just say hello and go get my medicine.  However, they must be required by law to ask me that one, most important question:

“Do you have any questions for the pharmacist?”

I have never met the pharmacist and since I have the ability to read I never have questions for the pharmacist.  I have seen him on occasion and judging by the picture on the wall his name is Ray and he is close to my age.  I have no idea whether or not he hires his own staff, but if he has he has done a remarkable job of imitating a Seinfeld episode.  He has surrounded himself with a bevy of women that all look remarkably similar.  Though instead of having buxom women as Monk’s Cafe did, he has a bunch of brunette millennials.  Thankfully they all seem to have a sense of humor, but as you will soon learn my favorite, by far, is Serena.

Serena is one of my favorite names and it dates back to my adoration with the TV show Bewitched.  As most fans know, Serena was Samantha’s mischievous identical cousin on her father’s side.  By the way what was the deal with the whole identical cousin theme in the 60’s?  Did people actually think that was a real thing?  And now, if you are old like me, you have the theme from The Patty Duke Show running through your head.  You’re welcome. Serena was also played by Elizabeth Montgomery and was listed in the credits as Pandora Spocks.  I like that name too.

SerenaSamantha

Anyway as I got tired of being asked the same question each and every time I went to the pharmacy I decided I would finally say that yes, I indeed had a question.  It started out very simply…

“Do you have any questions for the pharmacist?”

Yes, what is his favorite color?

She looked at me, giggled and then asked Ray.  I heard Ray shout “purple”.

“Purple” she said.

I thanked her and moved on.

So the next time I asked about his favorite breed of dog.

Golden Retriever.

Star Wars or Star Trek?

Star Wars.

pharmacist-jobs

And this continued.  It didn’t matter which 20 something brunette helped me out.  They all played along and they all laughed.  But the other day I decided to get a little more adventurous.  This is where the laughs come in if you know what I am talking about.

I went to pick up my medication and was met by Serena.  She greeted me warmly and chuckled because she knew what I was going to do.  But did she?  I paid for my prescription and then came the question.  Serena sighed, smiled and said “Do you have any questions for the pharmacist?”

“Yes” I replied.  “What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?”

Serena looked at me and replied “What do you mean?  African or European?”

I love Serena.

Namaste

 

 

Posted by: lylescott89 | April 6, 2018

Time After Timeshare

29432357_10156151433803764_4359917943228727296_n

Hey kids,

I am thoroughly convinced that had timeshares existed in the 14th century, Dante would have included timeshare presentations as an additional circle of hell.  Probably between the fifth and sixth circles, but had he placed it closer to the center I would not have been surprised.

If you have ever attended a timeshare presentation you know exactly what I am talking about.  They sucker you in with the allure of some great prize or vacation that will be “absolutely free”.  Of course there is always a fee or something that keeps the free from being free.  And the whole idea is not to give you that great prize.  Nope.  They figure they will make the timeshare so alluring and so wonderful that there is no way you can turn it down.  It’s a nightmare.

timeshare1

I wonder sometimes where they get the salespeople to work these things.  They are not a happy people and they are certainly not a people who need people, people and they are by far not the luckiest people in the world.  I gather that they get these sales geniuses from two places:

  1. Used car lots.  And by this I am pretty sure that they get the salespeople that are way too shady to sell used cars.
  2. People that are in desperate need of a job and simply too lazy to work and too nervous to steal and/or sell drugs.  This is their last resort before they end up selling used cars.

Over the years Donna and I have attended two such presentations.  I really cannot remember all of the specifics, but I do know that they both sucked and that after each one we vowed never to attend one again.  The first one we attended was shortly after we were married and living in Texas and the other one was about 20 years later when we got suckered in again for reasons I still cannot comprehend.  I realize that makes us look kind of dumber, but then again neither of us voted for Drumpf and what can anyone have done that’s dumber than that?  You literally could cut your big toe off with a table saw and that would still be a more intelligent thing to do than cast a vote for a racist pile of orange shit.  Anyway, us going to two of these things helps make the story so you’ll thank me later.

After the first one we really were not sure what we had just experienced, but we knew we did not want any part of it.  Why we ever attended one more (albeit 20+ years later) I have no idea, but if I recall correctly it was in order to help out a friend that was working for the company.  A friend that I have not seen or heard from since that time and I am pretty sure they had quit before we even took our tour.

As far as the initial nightmare goes I can still remember a few things.  We received a card in the mail offering us a free weekend trip and all we had to do was call the number.  So I called and they said we had to drive to this place in west Texas and enjoy a 90 minute presentation about the joys of vacation ownership.  We knew we could not afford such a thing, but figured what could it possibly hurt to spend a Saturday afternoon at a resort for a weekend getaway.

i-told-them-5ac7a1

We were sitting in this room at some resort that likely doesn’t even exist any longer with dozens of other families.  Salesperson after salesperson came over to speak with us despite our constant reply of no.  They will not easily take no for an answer.  No matter how many times we said we didn’t have the money, that Donna was in school and I was the only one working or that we were just not interested they just kept pushing.  And once you are in you are stuck if you want that coveted “thing” that brought you there in the first place.  Our 90 minutes on a Saturday afternoon turned into well over three hours.

One thing I clearly recall is that they had this big bell (let’s remember that this was Texas) that they would ring whenever they got a sale.  There was a family at the table next to us.  Mom, dad and two or three kids.  I heard the bell ring and the sales guy was almost wetting his pants he was so damned happy.  Meanwhile the family sat there at the table; they looked beaten and were without any strength whatsoever to say no.  They did not smile, they did not cheer and they looked miserable.  They had just signed up for whatever deal this yokel had offered them for the past two or three hours and they gave up.  I have to wonder whatever happened to them.  I am assuming bankruptcy and divorce.

timeshareHowever, through the generosity of friends we have been able to utilize some very nice timeshare properties over the past few years.  Basically they have accumulated about a zillion points over the past 30 years and since they cannot use them all they offer them to us, which is extremely nice and overly generous.

When we arrive at the property we check in and then are sent to the hospitality desk for our gift bag.  It is at that time that they tell us about the great opportunity for another free vacation if we are willing to sit through their presentation.  We say no and then within 24 hours they call our room and offer it to us once again.  We say no and then they generally leave us alone.  But not for long.

About a month after we get home we start getting calls from the resorts thanking us for our recent stay and telling us about a fantastic deal on the horizon.  At first I am polite and I ask if we need to sit through a presentation.  Of course the answer is yes and then I naturally decline.  They beg, up the ante and try again.  I say no thank you and usually hang up.

Then in another month they call again.  This time I cut them off and immediately tell them I am not interested.  They start explaining what a great deal I am passing up and I ask that they please stop calling.

They do not stop calling.

A month passes.  I get another call and I ask the woman on the line what part of “please do not call me anymore” did your resort not understand.  Then I say something like “I’d rather pay double for my vacation than sit through one of those horrendous timeshare presentations” right before I hang up.

So last week I get yet another call from the resorts, but this time I can readily tell that the guy on the other end of the line is clearly reading a script and is obviously new.  Baseball season had just started and I was watching a game and clearly in a good mood.  So I let him talk.  I think his name was Aaron.  I said nothing, but I figured I could be polite and let Aaron practice.  We all need practice to get better and this guy was awful.

Yeah, I've got lots of time to hear about your unbelievable timeshare condo offer. I'm unemployed.

At the end of his spiel Aaron said “you will get all of this for free and during your stay at Shangri La-De-Da Resort all you need to is come to a 120 minute presentation about our resorts.  How does that sound?”

I replied by politely saying “no thank you Aaron, there is no way I am sitting through a two hour presentation on a vacation”.

Aaron replied “but sir, it’s not a two hour presentation.  It’s only 120 minutes”.

I hung up.

Namaste

 

 

Posted by: lylescott89 | April 4, 2018

No Bread for Old Men

29542125_10156165023543764_6548444968725283667_n

Hey kids,

The other day as Donna and I were headed to Publix we were discussing how we rarely go shopping anywhere any longer.  We never go to the mall, visiting Kohl’s or Penny’s is a thing of the past and it seems that the only two places we visit, other than restaurants, are Publix and Target.  And for the record we do not go to Target that often either.  I made a comment about how Toys R Us is going out of business and then we both wondered how it was possible that Barnes & Noble was still open.  Last summer we had a gift card to Bed, Bath and Beyond and it felt like we were the only ones in the store.  How do they stay in business?

In any case after that discussion I thought you might like to hear about my most recent visit to Target.  This was a few weeks ago, but I remember it well.

TargetLady

When I visit Target I usually use the self check out, but since I had a shitload of things I chose the regular check out.  It was not the least bit busy and there was only one person in front of me so no big deal.  The cashier, Rena, rung up my stuff and engaged in a pleasant conversation with me.  I am not very outgoing, but Rena was nice and we I was polite and engaged in small talk, which I normally hate.  When I go to Target I use my red card and cartwheel on the target app, but I also had a gift card balance on the app. Rena thought she knew how to ring all that up properly, but it became clear that she did not.

As she began her first attempt, an older man got in line behind me.  All he had was a loaf of bread so I thought it was odd that he did not go to the self checkout, but his problem not mine.   As Rena’s first attempt to get the payment from me failed the man got upset and he slammed his fist down on the conveyor belt while muttering something under his breath.  It made a really loud noise and I thought this was obnoxious, so I just ignored him.  Rena did too.

Rena said she was going to cancel the transaction and try again.  I said that was fine.

SLAM!

So Rena tried to accept the payment in a different order.  She knew she had to get the gift card balance on there before the red card payment, but just like the first attempt, the second attempt failed.

SLAM!

I suggested to Rena that we try it again.  Cancel the transaction, then take the balance from the gift card, scan the cartwheel and then I will use the physical redcard to pay rather than the app.  She thought that would definitely work.

SLAM!

It did not work.

SLAM!

In order to make him more miserable I started to laugh and joke about the situation with Rena.  I made a comment, rather loudly, that I almost always used the self checkout line because it’s so easy, but today I decided it would be more fun to go through her line.

SLAM, SLAM, SLAM!

JessieAt this point a very attractive redhead named Jessie walked by.  She appeared to be a manager so I called her by name and said that we had a problem.  Jessie said that she did not like problems and came right over.  We explained to her what was going on.  Jessie knew exactly what to do and told Rena to cancel out the transaction once again.

SLAM!

Jessie showed Rena how to process everything correctly and showed her exactly what keys to strike and when.  We scanned the gift card without and issue and then we scanned the cartwheel and redcard and it all finally went through.  Rena and Jessie apologized to me (and only me) profusely and I laughed, said it was no big deal and that I enjoyed the time I spent with them.  I said it was kind of fun to have an adventure.

SLAM!

Then the best thing of all happened.  Jessie told Rena it was time for her to go on break and she was closing her register.  Jessie (who had clearly heard the old man’s muttering and fist slams) looked at the angry man and explained that this aisle was closing (there was no one behind him) and suggested that since he had just one loaf of bread that he could go to the other open register (in which there was only one woman just finishing up) or better yet, self checkout.   Jessie walked away, smiling as if she knew she had done something completely devious.  I half expected a cackle.

breadAngry man got very angry this time and began slamming both fists repeatedly down onto the poor, unsuspecting loaf of five grain bread while yelling “goddammit, goddammit, goddammit”.  Then he left the store in a huff, presumably to go and attempt to send soup back at a deli.   I smiled, thanked Rena and told her to have a lovely day.

Namaste

Posted by: lylescott89 | March 26, 2018

Every Single Time

29512944_10156156475173764_2391372636660834367_n

“Times and conditions change so rapidly that we must keep our aim constantly focused on the future.” – Walt Disney

Hey kids,

As we all know I love all things Disney.  I love Disney movies and I love going to Walt Disney World and to Disneyland.  I made my first trip way back in 1972 when Richard Nixon was the president, the Easter Offensive in Vietnam was just beginning and radio was dominated by artists like Carole King, Al Green and The Osmonds.  There was just one theme park at the time, two hotels and no water parks.  Anyone like myself and my sisters who have been there countless times since then have seen massive changes.  Times change.  People change.  Society changes.  Life happens.  Walt Disney never saw the completion of Walt Disney World, however his quote about Disneyland is just as relevant to WDW now as it was when he first uttered the words.

“Disneyland will never be completed. It will continue to grow as long as there is imagination left in the world.” – Walt Disney

So when changes happen at the theme parks I generally shrug and move on.  I don’t bother getting worked up about something that is, one, trivial, and two, virtually impossible for me to change.  That is why yesterday was the last straw for me.

I had received a notification from YouTube for a video I might enjoy.  It was for the new auction scene in Pirates of the Caribbean, formerly the “Buy a Bride” scene.  I had read some time ago about the change and like most every change I read about I kind of went “Hmmm, that’s interesting” and moved on with my life.  Frankly I had forgotten all about it until yesterday.  For those interested here is the video I watched.

 

I saw it and thought to myself that I really liked the new redhead.  I thought her movements were fluid and she was a top of line animatronic.  I also appreciated that she finally had something to say.  The voice actress (A name I will not reveal here, but a little Google research will tell you her name if you so desire) does an outstanding job and it looks really nice.  Well done Disney.

Then I made a grievous error.  I scrolled down to see the comments and this is exactly what I hate about the internet.  Well this and the fact that on April 1st you cannot go anywhere online safely without fear of a stupid joke.  As is always the case whenever Disney makes a change of any sort, people go completely batshit crazy and act like it’s the end of the world as they knew it.  And for the record I do not feel fine.  Leonard Bernstein!  My favorite quote:

“Walt would never have allowed this if he were alive today.  This is destroying his legacy and he is rolling over in his grave”

39948468524_d9f8963786_zThere are several things wrong with this comment.  First, Walt would be 116 years old if he were alive today so that is really kind of a dumb thing to say.  Second, Walt was all about progress and change and making the world a better place.  Would he have approved the change?  I have no idea, but I don’t think he would hate it.  What Walt would not approve of and would hate is that it now costs $137.39 (including tax) for a one day ticket to the Magic Kingdom during peak season, $126.74 in regular season and $116.09 in Value Season.  I also think he’d be pissed that a standard room at a so-called value resort costs between $97 & $183 per night plus the brand new overnight parking fee so your car can sit in the parking lot.  And third, Walt is not in a grave, but rather cryogenically frozen in a secret room underneath the Town Square Theater on Main Street USA.  There is also a fully functioning animatronic Walt down there as well that you can have a conversation with if you know how to get down there.

But back to our story.  Remember when they added Captain Jack Sparrow and Captain Barbosa to Pirates?  People bitched about that as nauseum, but guess what?  They got over it and moved on to something else.  It happens over and over again.

WDW May 2007 015Last year The Great Movie Ride closed up at Hollywood Studios.  Now I first rode that in 1989, the same year the park opened.  Over the years I probably went on that attraction upwards of 300 times and I am not kidding.  I could recite the pre-show line for line.  I would often do it out loud to make Adam laugh.  Once, Adam was selected to help get all the guests into the vehicles.  He thought that was pretty cool.  There was rarely any lines for it when we would go.  True, we would go in the off seasons, but still, we could generally walk right on in a matter of just a few minutes.  When I read that it was closing for good I shrugged.  Been there, done that I said and I was kind of thrilled with the idea of something new.  (Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway is scheduled to open in 2019)

Naturally the closing of this attraction that pretty much all of the Disney’s passholders had been on dozens of times caused outrage in the passholder community among others.

“Oh no they are ruining my childhood”

No, they are not ruining your childhood.  Your childhood is over and it is all stashed away in your memory.  They cannot take that away from you.

“I’m so sad that I will never get to ride it again”

Oh really?  That’s what makes you sad?  I have a relative that is sick with cancer that I think of and worry about every goddamned day of the week.  That makes me sad.

“How could they do this to us?  It’s so iconic”

Allow me to make a prediction: There will be huge lines for the new attraction and then you are going to bitch about not being able to get a fastpass for it.  Are you going to be missing your icon then?  I think not.

DSC_0727And do not even get me started about how Epcot has lost its way.  Epcot was EPCOT Center and that was not Walt’s vision in the least!  When it opened in 1982 they insisted on no characters in the park.  That did not last long.  Thus no bitching about adding Arendale as a part of Norway and replacing the overrated Maelstrom with the substantially better Frozen Ever After.  And do not want to hear you wax poetically about the Universe of Energy when I know you will be clamoring for a fastpass for Guardians of the Galaxy when it opens.  Energy was so outdated that I wrote a blog about it several years ago complaining about how outdated it was.  The last time I rode it I counted how many people were in there with me; 27.  Good riddance!

I could go on and on.  Horizons, Body Wars, World of Motion, Snow White’s Scary Adventures, Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride, . etc.  All of these things are gone now and while some people never got to experience them, those same young people will one day experience attractions that I will never live to see.  It’s just the Circle of Life (Legend of the Lion King also gone)

DSC_0732And for the record I would love to see that ancient and incredibly boring Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular go the way of the Great Movie Ride.  Talk about a show that I have seen more times than I can handle!  Let’s close that damn thing down and build the outstanding Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye attraction that is hugely popular at Disneyland.

Please people, have some perspective.  If an attraction changes a scene, get over it.  If they shut down an attraction you love, find something else to love.  Get upset and worked up about things that really matter.  Get mad about cancer.  Get mad about children  getting murdered in schools.  Get angry about homeless veterans.  Get angry about all of those things and then get off your ass, out of the damn theme park and do something about it.  Millions of people marched on Saturday because they cared about something.  You can put your energy to better use.

Namaste

 

Posted by: lylescott89 | March 23, 2018

What Real Heroes Look Like

Hey kids.

No words today, just a reminder of who the real heroes are in this country.

Namaste

Older Posts »

Categories