Sunday, March 25, 2012

Close to the end

Things have been pretty rough for my mom lately. As my (few) blog readers know, mom has COPD -- a terminal lung disease that is brought primarily by smoking. Mom got diagnosed with the disease a little over five years ago and was told at that time she would have a year to live. Of course, she has outlived that prediction by a considerable margin. I am very happy about this. However, about six months ago, her condition started deteriorating rapidly. She told me this weekend that she arranged for her hospice care nurse to prepare a cocktail of drugs that would end things if her pain got unbearable. I suspect that it has been unbearable for quite some time.

I can't call what mom is considering "suicide". I don't want to lose my mom. But I think she is rapidly reaching the point where she doesn't have any quality of life at all. She's starting to have trouble with her circulation now also. Her feet are starting to turn black. I hope that she can have an end before she starts losing body parts. This illness has been exceedingly cruel.

It really bothers me that mom is so sick while at the same time my father is living the high life in Portugal. Both individuals smoked and drank to ridiculous excess. And yet the vices ruined my mom's health and left my dad apparently unscathed.Of course, I've noticed that the Christian God always rewards greedy, evil sociopaths while at the same time brutally punishing the meek, mild, and the broken. It's one of the many reasons I'm not a Wiccan.

My worthless sister is still nowhere to be seen. I suppose it won't bother her that mom will die soon. She has no moral compass and her emotional depth is about as thick as tissue paper.

So I have not been getting much sleep. When I try to go to bed, my mind races and whirls. I have two competing thoughts in my mind: 1.) I don't want mom to die because she's the only REAL parent I have (dad is a sociopath and we haven't spoken since 1995). 2.) It is hard to see mom suffering and in pain, so if she needs to end her life I cannot oppose this.

This is a terrible situation.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Web Transitions

I've had the (dis) pleasure of moving two websites recently. One was out of necessity and one was out of economics. I had to move the site because Microsoft decided to discontinue the server that hosted the site. That was a real drag because not only did the server get discontinued, Microsoft outsourced the domain services to an Australian company called MelbourneIT (after all, we gotta make sure that no Americans ever get jobs anywhere!) Microsoft didn't do anything on their end to migrate the site. All I got was a list of the new DNS pointers and told "good luck".

Well... It took two days, but I got Turning Circle running again. The new web services support content editing from an Android tablet, and I can update the TC calendar from a tablet or cell phone. So I can totally dig that.

My next move was economic. Since my money situation is pretty dire, I called up Aplus Net (the company hosting my RPG hobby site) and learned that I could get web hosting for half the price I'm paying now. So that was a no-brainer. Unlike Microsoft, Aplus Net reset the DNS pointers to the new server for me. I'm in the process of uploading the website content from an archival backup now. The site will probably be down for two days, but I doubt anyone will notice. Nobody really plays the game anymore since its heyday was 1998-2006. Nobody plays paper-and-dice roleplaying games anymore.

Since the AT&T network is so shoddy, I ended up cancelling my ZUNE account for my Windows Phone. There's absolutely no point in paying for a music streaming service when the associated 3G/4G network is so crippled that it can play only 3-4 minutes of music before devolving into stutters and gibberish. The funny thing is that it was not that long ago that AT&T had a data network that actually worked. I used to be able to stream music all day at work. On the unlimited plan, rounding out 7-10 Gb was a monthly norm. My last month's data utilization was under 2 Gb. And that reduction wasn't because I wanted to use my phone less. It's because the phone *worked* less, thanks to AT&T's utterly broken network. I think they should have been upgrading their infrastructure instead of handing over huge sums of the subscribers' money to straight, white, rich, ignorant, hate-based Dominionist Christians like Rick Perry (who received $486,000 from AT&T. Awesome investment, eh?)

So, it looks like my weekend adjustments have me at +$25/month more money going forward. That's not a lot, but every bit helps!

So, I was thinking about Saint Patrick's Day. Lemme tell ya: as a witch, I DO NOT celebrate this holiday. why would anyone of a Pagan/Wiccan faith celebrate the fact that a religious zealot brought the Roman Catholic Church to Ireland? the result was the extermination of the Druids, the imposition of a new religion based solely on fear and hate, the denigration of women, and the molestation of children at the hands of hate-based clergy whose allegiance is to Rome (not God). There is nothing to celebrate about the Roman Catholic Church having expanded. It is the world's most powerful, most wealthy, most ancient, and most tenacious organized crime syndicate in human history. Celebrating the Saint Patrick is, in a very real way, making a holiday out of Pol Pot's birthday. After all, both men were leaders of organizations that would go on to commit genocide. The difference is that I never heard about Pol Pot molesting children.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Upcoming year and other stuff

I am really hoping that this is the last year for a while in which I will be as poor as I currently am. As you all know, this is year FIVE with no raise. My disposable income has, for all intents and purposes, been inflated out of existence. Gasoline is ramping up to $4/gallon again and could reach $6/gallon by summer. Groceries get more expensive every week. The property tax just keeps going up and up and up. My car insurance went up and I haven't had a claim in four years. The union sues increased. Tolls have increased. My pay, however, has not increased I really am worried about getting through 2012. As of 1/19/2013, I get promoted to Senior Agent, thanks to my prior service credit. Doug's car is also paid off in 2013. I just hope we can hang on to the house through 2012. We also keep getting persecuted by the Baltimore Housing Authority for trivial things that the straight, white Christians on the block don't have to deal with. On Monday, I get to find out what brand new demand the City wants. I really want to move out, but I don't know if we can sell the house in this wretched economy.