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Thursday, August 10, 2017

Kicking a crummy week to the curb


Laura and I had a lunch date with good friends, including Laura’s “boss”. I call call Deb “boss” so I can tease Laura. Deb is her friend and mentor and helping her learn the art of porcelain clay. I love typing that word: p-o-r--c-e--l-a-i-n. But, a bad day got in the way of one of them, and we will reschedule.

I am a gasoline coward. Occasionally I let it slide under a quarter tank, but not often. Except this week; I put the car in the drive last night, needle hovering between 1/16 and Empty. I got Laura from the library yesterday, which I’ve used as my unacknowledged babysitter for the last six years. They get some of my tax dollars, nowhere near their value as mentors and teachers. And, I kept driving and the needle kept going down.

“We love Laura,” Randy, the library’s director, says, as I thank him again. “She’s never bounced a ball off the glass window wall in the reading room. And if she had, and I sent her outside to bounce the ball in the courtyard, you wouldn’t yell at me. She does trade shoes with Annie, but mostly sits and reads.”

Today’s very first job was gas. I have a pumper again. First there was Hamilton, then Emily. They are only two years apart. I pumped gas again this year, because Laura was not legally able. Now she has a temporary driver’s license, she’s still legally too young, but legally allowed. Go figure, Ohio.

Laura had her last paycheck to deposit. We worked our way into Hudson by a route that is a miracle; it feels like driving into The Twilight Zone.  



“We’ll pass the bread store,” Laura volunteered. I pulled into Great Lakes Bakery. Laura got a loaf of bread and a bag of cookies. I got two or three kinds of scones. “I put in an extra oatmeal/cranberry,” said the clerk, “for a midnight snack.” It won’t last that long.

Back on the trail of the bank, we saw a great license plate. Does it refer to the fish, or the fisherman? 



Back to business, I mentioned The Great American Eclipse is nearing. We need glasses, which I have not located. On-line is too late and the couple of opticians I’ve called had no idea. “Clip on sunglasses? No, we don’t have any.”

However, we did reach the bank. “I have over four thousand dollars!” announced my discreet granddaughter, as she came back to the car. 



“There’s another optician on the way home, by Denny’s,”  I said. “Let’s ask.” “You mean Perkins.” I pulled into the opticians and we asked the receptionist. “I was asked already this morning,” she said, “and I had no idea except I stopped at Acme on the way and there is a display, just to the left when you go in the door.”

We drove to the other end of the parking lot, to Acme, and bought four pair. You never know.



A neighbor’s hibiscus, on the way home. I came in and checked the little MP3 player I left charging. I must leave in a few minutes and I’ll tell Kathleen about “Portrait of a Lady,” and she’ll tell me what I already told myself. I found out this week, the big red bus driver has my library. This week I did not know Henry James. When told he’s a great American author my brain fumbled and fumbled for a book, and came up with nothing. 

The next morning I woke up and knew six years of college literature, an undergraduate and a graduate degree were gone. I couldn't think of any authors. All day I could not look, through tears, on the computer for references. So, Randy looked for me, and hugged me before I left.

Today I told Kathleen, counselor nonpareil, about “Portrait.” I sobbed through half a box of Kleenex and we laughed about using disinfectant on the sofa when I left.  Her best solution was mine: sue the effing big red bus for millions and millions. And go home and download “Portrait” and begin listening. So, that’s the week this week. One week and one band practice until school starts.

29 comments:

  1. Yes sue and then sue again. If it's any comfort I 've lost most of what I learned in college. I spend my life going through the alphabet trying to remember the name of things. My husband and I figure we mind have half a memory between us and it's stored on a Roladex.

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  2. I still don't pump gas. I really got to learn how to do it. I would sue, at least for them perhaps changing policies and procedures so no one in the future has to go through what you had to go through. Summer is winding down quickly for Laura, but what a saver she is!

    betty

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  3. Yes, sue! And I think the Naturealm on Smith Road(now called something else I do not remember) has free solar eclipse glasses. I had forgotten that one must be a certain age to pump gas.....I learn things from you all the time! Thanks!

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  4. Sue the big red bus for millions and billions. And then some more.
    I don't think the 'pumping gas' age limits apply here - but am clueless.

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  5. Just catching up, but on one of your crappier weeks

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  6. Hari OM
    Thank heavens for MP3... and Kathleen. Eclipses are fun; as are savings safe in the bank!!! YAM xx

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  7. That hibiscus is amazing. Hope you get back those 6 years of knowledge.

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  8. I read Portrait in college. I don't remember that much about it. But I know it's painful for you. Sue the fuck out of them (pardon my French that's not French). Congratulations to Laura for saving. Please tell her that I said to use it for herself, whether it's for her college education, travel, or whatever the two of you agree on. I used most of my college money to pay for my ex-husband's Ph.D. It took me twenty years to get my BA.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. Today a total stranger told her, apropos of nothing, to always have her own money, and he recommended at least 10K fluid and a whole lot more invested.

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  9. If you look on Amazon you may be able to expedite shipping to get the gasses for the eclipse. They are not expensive.

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  10. It had to be heartbreaking to lose your memory of your education like you did. Sue, sue, sue!

    Well done, Laura!

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  11. I hate forgetting things and it happens all the time now. Scary stuff.

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  12. Agggh ... well, maybe the upside is that you can enjoy all that great literature as if it's the first time you've read or heard it. Grasping at straws, I know ...

    But you never know what might come back as your brain continues to heal, too.

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    Replies
    1. Dear Jenny, O, you are pushing me down the path. I guess you'll get there, too. Can you stand to read "Little Dorritt" one more time. :-)

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  13. Brains are tricky, unpredictable. Yours might just be taking time off. Sorry about this segment of your life.

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  14. I hope you enjoy rediscovering great literature x

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  15. I agree with Kathleen. Sue the pants of that big red bus driver. Socks and shoes and shirt too. He should have known not to take off until you were seated.
    Learning again all you have lost will take time, try not to cram it all in too fast.

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  16. That must be shocking and annoying to find out that one has lost memory of so many things one knew before - I hope the good ones will come back, Joanne! Till then: sue, weep a bit (but not too much), and use your very distinctive discipline to get it back - I am convinced you will!

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  17. Our next total eclipse is 2090. I am really looking forward to it.

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    1. So am I. I think we can pick any place in the world to settle back and watch that one.

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  18. Stay mad, get yourself a good lawyer, and find joy in rereading the classics.

    Lowes also had the glasses.

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  19. I think that hibiscus might be a dish plate mallow. are the flowers the size of a dinner plate? memory loss sucks but at least it's book you have read. I'm forgetting how to spell and no brain injury to blame. I'm surprised you haven't sued them already since their insurance company has blown you off.

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    Replies
    1. All the medical bills must come in first, as the insurance companies are reimbursed from my share.

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    2. After a horrendous accident 15 years ago where my husband did not wake up for a month and his life was in jeopardy every day, we were convinced to seek legal help. We were told to wait a year so an assessment could be made of all his health and needs. He recovered but we are still dealing with what happened to him and all of his long term effects. He is visiting his doctor today because of something new that has come up due to the accident.

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  20. There's an age requirement for pumping gas?? I've never heard that before! Honestly, I've forgotten most of the stuff I read in university! I much prefer reading for pleasure than reading because you have to. -Jenn

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  21. How devastatingly shitty! What a loss.
    Every person should have their own money, enough to leave a situation, a job, a relationship, a living situation. Having the option can make all the difference in a life.

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  22. Tons of eclipse glasses at Wal Mart. Big hug Joanne. And, words escape me, numbers too and memory goes in one ear and out the other. It is depressing and no TBI here. Anxiety disorders, but no TBI. Nevertheless, it is a struggle. I'd say sue. They'll settle out of court, so you won't have to go through a trial. Legal reps will take care of it all. You deserve some compensation for all the suffering. It is business as they always say.

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