Saturday, January 9, 2021

Sometimes, one has to ask an awkward question


A little over 7 weeks ago, I got what was likely a "butt dialed" call from my former cruise partner. I never expected a response from her when I sent her a birthday card, and I didn't receive one. So, this morning, I sent her a New Year's greeting, and noted that her lack of reply would give me the answer I needed.  But this is only an appetizer....

As loyal readers of this blog (and my prior one) will note, that I had a dispute with my ex girlfriend regarding meetup groups.  Today, I had the opportunity to pose her a question about a group that I'd attend as Mario.  Does she want me to stay away from that one as well?  This is awkward for me, as I'm not trying to dredge up our past.  But I am trying to figure out some things based on what she said in our email exchanges.  I am no longer in the mood to fight her - I'm tired of battles that do not need to be fought.

- - - - - -

Although this could have been a Marian Mode day, I decided to go out as Mario.  It was not because the weather was dreary when I went out.  Instead, I might as well get into Mario Mode a day early, so that I don't forget anything when I see FH.  

Last night, I explored the local Walmart, looking for a coffee maker that uses K-Cups.  Although there were knock-offs that could use the K-Cups, I decided to hold off buying something until I had the chance to talk with Vicki.  She had a "Mini" K-Cup brewer, and didn't like it.  It had no controls for strength of brew, and it only had an 8 oz. reservoir.  Her machine is almost worthless.  Instead of getting her machine as a hand-me-down gift, I decided to buy my own. And for $60, I got a machine with a 36 oz. reservoir capacity.  Once I've finished cooking a brisket in my slow cooker, I'll put the coffee maker in its new designated place. 

I've decided to gradually get my place into some semblance of order.  It will never be the type of place that would look presentable for a sale until I've moved out.  However, that will be the problem to whomever I bequeath my apartment.  

- - - - - -

As I write this, we have only 19 days left in Trump's mismanagement of his office.  I can't wait until he's gone.  Hopefully, we will finally start to heal as a nation.  If not, our children will have one heck of a bumpy ride as the American empire falls....


Friday, January 8, 2021

Should auld acquaintance be forgot, and never brought to mind?



Around this time last year, I was walking through New York City, not knowing how much my life was going to change within less than a few month's time.  If I had known what was about to happen in my life and in the world, I'd have blown a wad and taken a trip to Hawaii while it was still possible.  Sadly, too much has happened since then, and the world as we knew it is long gone....

- - - - - -

There are still some things I'd like to repair with my ex girlfriend.  Right now, I'm working on rebuilding some form of friendship and nothing more.  I won't say more, as there are limits to how close we could become based on what happened in 2020.

I wonder what my dad would be thinking had he known he was going to pass away in 2020.  Would he have blamed the lack of an adequate virus response on Trump?  Or, would he have accepted the man's bullshitting and believed the malarkey being put out by this man and his underlings?  I don't think he'd have thought about it too deeply, as my dad was a relatively simple, down to earth person.

Sometimes, I think about a former travel partner.  She was way too open with her feelings, and she often made bad decisions about people.  In many ways, I feel she was lonely and found that her pets became her way of dealing with many of those feelings.  (She spoiled her pets rotten.)  I see similar behaviors in TCL, but not to such pronounced extremes.  And I think that TCL's recent adoption of two cats a positive influence in her life.

Knowing that things would be over with my ex, I think I'd have become a regular at the church I irregularly attended.  No, I am never going to be a religious person.  Instead, it would have been more of a place to socialize now and then.  We all need social outlets, and I would have made sure to develop more of my own - even while dating the ex.

Should I totally forget about the ex?  What about the former cruise partner?

- - - - - -

As I write this entry, it's New Year's Eve.  There are things I want to accomplish this coming year, one of which is finding a new job.  That is a realistic resolution.  Getting out to exercise more (and losing weight) is another resolution, one that I plan to do more on this coming year. Improving both my wardrobes is important, as I want to look nice in either presentation. Finally, I'd like to find someone I can love (and be loved by in return).  FH will likely not be that person, and none of the other women I've been with so far meet my criteria for someone to be with in the long term. 


PS:  For those of you who care about The King - Today is Elvis's Birthday.

Thursday, January 7, 2021

If I only could have gotten to sleep



If I had been lucky, I'd have been able to fall asleep last night.  Vicki was scheduled to come over here in mid afternoon, and we were supposed to enjoy some take-out food instead of going to one of our usual restaurants.  It's been forever since I had anyone in this place, save for FL coming into my apartment, so that she could make use of the bathroom.  Other than the cleaning lady (who hasn't been here since February), the last person other than me inside this place was my ex girlfriend.

Around 3 am, I turned off the lights and turned off the TV, but couldn't get to sleep.  So I wasn't surprised to find me still awake around 7 am.  Even more surprising, I received a Facebook chat request from her.  (I sent her a skit from the comedienne Sarah Millican and sent it to her, hoping she'd get a laugh out of it.).  Given the time of the day, I don't think she was trying to reach me.  Instead, she accidentally tried to reach me (from what I could tell), and I decided to let her get on with her day without a conversation which could stir up feelings in both of us that would not be of use this early in the morning. At this point, I decided to make breakfast, and consider going back to bed for a couple of hours.  Of course, I went back to bed - and woke up around 11 am.  This meant that I wasn't going to get the place straightened up as much as I'd like to have done before Vicki arrived.  So, as I was taking garbage out to the dumpster, Vicki arrived with lunch.  

Before I go on too far, Vicki and I used to enjoy a local sushi/hibachi place in Croton.  This place has been closed for indoor dining since the pandemic started.  And this was our first opportunity to enjoy their food (especially their seafood soup) for a long time - and it was as good as I remembered.  Eventually, we got around to one of the purposes of her visit - giving me some "hand me downs", now that she has lost a bit of weight.  Sadly, my screwed up sleep got in the way, and I was struggling to stay awake (failing miserably) while we were chatting. So I was glad when Vicki left, allowing me to take a quick nap which lasted longer than expected.  And then, after a couple of hours of being awake, I fall asleep again. 

Why do I mention sleep so much?  My body clock is out of whack these days, and I found this happening during the early days of the pandemic.  Could there be a connection here?  Is this related to the lack of social stimuli due to the pandemic?  Who knows?  But it's something I'll have to deal with until I can find external stimuli to keep me awake during "normal" hours.

Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Somewhere nearby, someone is using a power saw.



I've talked about my apartment looking like a disaster area.  But the apartment downstairs from me was much worse the last time I saw it.  The above picture is one of several I took which shows how its last resident left the place - and it is not good.  So I was surprised today when I heard the sound of a power saw coming from a nearby apartment.  Could the bank that owns the place finally be preparing the place for a sale?  Who knows?  But it may be nice to have someone living there again after several years of being empty.

- - - - - -

After lounging around all day, I decided to do some more clean up of my apartment, then go outdoors as Marian - for the first time in a while.  Even though I ended up shopping for groceries at Trader Joe's, it was nice to get back into Marian mode again.  

I really don't have that much to say for the day.  I still have to get the place cleaned up for Vicki's upcoming visit.  And morning comes way too quickly these days.

Tuesday, January 5, 2021

A grab bag of things to talk about.


I haven't been doing much as Marian these days.  It's not because I don't want to take the time to prepare myself to use my feminine presentation these days.  Instead, it's because the both the weather and the pandemic has reduced the number of opportunities I have to go outdoors. As a result, my "normal" tendency to shift to a nocturnal sleep pattern hasn't been arrested, and I found myself going to sleep "last night" around 8 am this morning.

- - - - - -

The ex girlfriend and I have had some limited email exchanges as of late.  After we aired out things, our recent communications have been friendly, but guarded.  I'm not sure of how much either of us can open up to each other given our past. But I will admit that I miss our old and frequent communication - does she miss it as well?  Neither of us should live in the past. But is there enough there for a good friendship?

- - - - - -

As I write this, my nephew and his girlfriend will be soon returning home to the "left coast".  They are both in their mid 20's, so I think that if they catch the virus, that they will survive it with only mild symptoms.  Even though the airline industry claims that their planes' HEPA filtered air is "safe", I have to be a little skeptical of their claims.  Now that I have my nephew's email address, I can touch base with him after he's back home.

- - - - - -

My friend Vicki has been very busy lately.  Today we had a short exchange of texts regarding a dress that interested me.  Given its price point and material quality, it fascinated me.  But we both agreed that it would drape poorly on me, and that it would be a waste of my money.  Other dresses looked like a better option for me.  But I think I still need to fill in the gaps in my wardrobe (tops, bottoms) more than just buying things for the sake of buying them.

Since Vicki has dropped a size, she'll be bring me some hand me downs to try on this week.  This gives me a strong incentive to clean up much of the clutter in my place, so that it won't be an embarrassment to me to have people over here again.

- - - - - -

2020 has been a very bad year for me, and I'm glad it's over for me.  I let my apartment go wild, and I need to clean up a lot of the clutter that has accumulated.  Every attempt to declutter things has only ended in disaster.  I guess it is the low grade depression being multiplied by being lonely that has affected me this way, and manifested itself in an excessively cluttered space.  So 2021 will be a year for me to work on this.

- - - - - -

I decided to make my kitchen look a little more comfortable than it has looked for the past 35 years.  I have a storage cabinet that stands on the floor and can provide extra counter space for work, or to place appliances.  Since my wife moved into the apartment, it has always been placed in a way to effectively narrow the entrance to the kitchen.  Simply moving the cabinet to stand against an adjacent wall had some benefits: (1) It forced me to clean up some of the garbage that has been hidden for years, (2) It opened up the kitchen and made it more inviting, and (3) It gave me more effective use of the space in the kitchen - it allowed me to move my vacuum sealer into a corner, while making it easier for me to access my toaster oven.   

Once I got this task started, I noticed years of gunk that had accumulated on the ceiling fan.  So, I took some paper towels and removed most of the gunk.  (I'll save a thorough cleaning for another day, as I'll want sunlight to get a better idea of how much work I need to do for that cleaning.)  And then, I realized that I had mixing bowls which had been stored on top of my cabinets which likely had 25 years of gunk on them.  Since it was a "you might as well" task, I decided to find a step stool and give each of these bowls a thorough cleaning before putting them back on the cabinets.  Once they dried, I put these bowls in large, clear plastic bags, so that the gunk will go on the bags, and not on the bowls.  (Note to myself: If I ever do a complete kitchen remodel, go with cabinets that reach the ceiling, so that kitchen gunk stays on the outside.)

- - - - - -

Parting with things is very hard for me, but I think I'm going to finally clean out my downstairs storage compartment.  While doing this, I plan to get rid of my vinyl collection.  There are over 600 albums in the collection, and I haven't played any of them in years.  There are boxes of books downstairs that I could also give away.  Until places are accepting books for charitable donations, I will have to wait to dispose of them.  I wonder what else is in my storage compartment that I can get rid of. 

Once I clean out the storage compartment, I will move most of my unused, seasonal wardrobe into the basement.  While I do this, I will ask Vicki what she thinks of each piece, and determine whether I should donate the clothing to charity, keep it for future use, or pitch it into the dumpster.  Most cisgender women do not have as large a wardrobe as I have, and I want to pare it down to pieces that I will use often, and on a regular basis.

- - - - - -

Every time I go in my freezer and do a deep dive, I always seem to find food which has been frozen for too long, and that has to be tossed into the dumpster.  As a result, I will develop a plan to minimize the opportunities for this to happen again, and then gradually use up the good food left in the freezer.  Once there is enough room in my freezer, I plan to start buying some pre-made meals again. I plan to finally cancel my Freshly subscription instead of resuming it.  In its place, I plan to go back to Top Chef Meals, and buy 10 meals at a time.  To do this, I need freezer space.  And it's a good time to start cooking the food I put in the freezer over the past year. I guess I'll learn how to cook a little, so that I don't have to cook that much.

- - - - - -

Since politics has been a major part of most people's lives as of late (and will be until Biden takes office), I'll be glad when each day's news focuses more on the usual murders, fires, car crashes, and other disasters that befall us, instead of what our current president has/has not done to create chaos in our lives. Should we need to worry because a president leaves town without signing a needed Covid relief bill?  No.  But this is typical of a sociopathic 7 year old in a 74 year old body. And I'm very tired of his tantrums, and want him gone from the news.

- - - - - -

I figure that's enough for now.  Yes, many of these items are things I've covered before.  But as long as they have some importance to me, I will keep mentioning them....




Monday, January 4, 2021

My chewing gum lost its flavor on the bedpost overnight....


Believe it or not, there is a wall in Seattle which is covered with chewing gum.  Yecch!  But this wall has become one of the scenic attractions of the city.  Although the original gum is being steam cleaned from the wall, visitors will be able to apply new gum to the wall after it is cleaned.

I am envious of people who have a lot of friends who will call them up to do things.  I was never that lucky.  Even now, the consequences of being a loner all of these years has caught up with me in the age of the pandemic.  I made up for being alone by trying to attend social events open to the public, and hen traveling to places where I'd be forced to socialize a little.  Now that the pandemic has cut off those social venues, the loneliness of my life has returned.

Strangely enough, being Marian opened me up to new people and experiences.  The dispute with my ex had repercussions which may have resulted in me no longer having access to certain social venues I depended on before the pandemic hit.  Although we will always look at our dispute differently, there is much more to what happened than either of us need to discuss anymore. And belaboring the points will only hurt the two of us if we continue down that road.

There is a big part of me that misses my daily calls to two people no longer in my life.  Since I doubt that they will ever be back in my life as regular confidants, I have to make do in my own way.  But it is not as good as it was a couple of years ago.  Hopefully, things will change for the better as the pandemic recedes into history. Until then, I will try to make do and take one day at a time.

Sunday, January 3, 2021

A little aside from the dating world....


A while back, I mentioned a conversation I had with someone interrogating me regarding my dating success and other things.  The entire conversion is posted at the bottom of this entry for your entertainment.  

Most of my female friends complain about the number of scammers trying to take advantage of them.  I have found that men seem to be attacked less frequently, but are attacked by two kinds of people: (1) The "hit and run" scammer, who messages you and tries to get in contact with you by other mediums (email, etc.) before the dating site shuts their ID down, and (2) The "interrogator" scammer, who wants a complete profile before targeting you for their next sugar daddy.  Most of the time, OK Cupid shuts the former type down after a few hours of swiping right on everyone they see.  However, they are less able to keep the latter type from bothering people.  The first time I was in contact with this type, she gave up on scamming me and cut off contact.  The conversation below is from the second type.

First, some background: This exchange took place shortly after Thanksgiving. This woman is supposedly in the catering business.  You'll note that she's hinting that I am a fake early on. And, she made a comment out of the blue regarding Black people lovable people.  What does that have to do with the conversation we're having?  Most of all, her language skills clued me on to the fact that this person is a scam artist of some type.


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


Hi _ hope you had a nice holiday. Hopefully, the pandemic hasn't destroyed your business. All too many people have been destroyed by the pandemic, one of my friend was $800 away from being evicted from her home in Texas.
Im still ok
Being okay in this time of the pandemic is a good thing period. One person I know is so busy because she lost an employee and is now working seven days per week. These are strange times.
Only bored
I hope you haven’t lost much of your income stream. So many people I know have been devastated
A bit
Do u travel alone
Both alone and with a partner
Lost that friend a year ago due to a nasty argument
Ohhh a lot of ladies
Can we have vedio call
Maybe tomorrow or Tuesday. Too tired tonight.
Ok why tired
How many gf since u lost ur wife
Have been on phone for 3.5 hours. 7. Over 24 years.
Ur chatting a lot
I dont chat much wasting time on fake people
But im in phone whole day
Fb u tube
Do you do zoom? We could chat in evening
And yes I do chat a lot.
Have u encountered fake people
Some fakes. One crazy person was criticizing me for not optimally managing my money. It was as if she wanted to scam me out of my money
Do u rent or own a place
I have found that women are more victims of scammers than men. One of my female friends get hit on by scammers every day, and shares her experiences with me. It’s amazing how bad the scammers are.
I live in a co-op. It’s a nice garden apartment.
How about you?
In nyork!!!
Yup. In NY
I live with my daughter now but i have 4 houses in philippines
2 rented out
N i free for my workers
What is ur weight
U are retired
Yes, retired
Whats ur job before
Are u committed now
I think black man are lovable person
Why do you think that?
They keep on sending messages
Sending flowers
Not true of all
But i dont chat them
I dont talk to fake people
I dont like wasting time
Can’t blame you. I’m careful too
How long u been here in site
A few months
I always ask vedio call
I’m not in a hurry
Actually im tired
I usually Try to meet in person for coffee first. Video calls are good, but they do not show that the person is local.
Ok bye for now
What u mean local
For example, if a person says they are from Fort Lee New Jersey, I want to meet them at a Starbucks in Fort Lee New Jersey. This way I am not getting a scammer from overseas.
Hurry is bad word for me
I am not in any rush. All too many people are.
Cos im not insisting myself to anyone
Insisting yourself to anyone?
Im not insisting myself to u
You've blocked them.


RQS went home, and I got keys made - a quick post

  One of the problems with going about as a female is that almost everything one carries around during a typical day is carried in a handbag...