23 March 2024

Yesterday I went to Lafayette to do some Uber Eats driving. My experience in Columbus, especially Dublin, was that Fridays could be a little weird but that oftentimes I could make eighty bucks in a day if I wasn’t working especially hard. I knew it wouldn’t be like that in Lafayette, but I thought surely fifty dollars.

I think I pulled down about thirty-seven from noonish until fiveish. Maybe? And if I were going to go back today, twenty of that ought to go to gas.

Considering the wear on my car, I am not sure it was worth going out there for $17ish. Actually $7ish considering I stopped for snack and drinks on the way home. So, no. Not worth it.

I know. I chose to make that stop. I also hadn’t had anything but one of those lavender oatmilk matchas and a couple egg bites from the Starbucks in Jennings (you know: the one that wouldn’t hire me? Hope they’re enjoying their slow-ass drive-thru staff) since around 11am and it was then after 6pm. I knew I was going to cook when I got home but I also needed to take my metformin, which I have been told I should take with food. Which metformin I then forgot for a couple more hours, so it wasn’t even worth it.

I don’t know if I wrote it here or if I wrote it somewhere on Facebook but a thing you have to understand about being poor is that poor people are not poor because we overspend. To say that we overspend is to say that some spending is reasonable and some spending is overspending. What it means to be poor, however, is that ALL SPENDING IS OVERSPENDING. I suppose at some point I was in denial about this, too, but I have never not understood it since I grew up and left home. If you don’t have enough money, it is all overspending. The necessities are also overspending. What you actually wind up doing is holding on to money so long that it squeals, and then suddenly you break and you spend on a necessity and it turns out to be on the wrong thing because another few days go by and suddenly you needed that money more for something else.

Skipping lattes is not going to solve this. I wish it would. I skip lattes most of the time now. I should be a fucking millionaire. Or at least middle-class, anyway. Which I have never fucking been.

Despite my statement that it wasn’t worth going and driving, I should have gone back today, but here’s what I’m wrestling with now. I am now wrestling with “what if I go do this and only make ten bucks in a day?” That is not outside the realm of possibility. And if yesterday was any indication, Lafayette people are worse about tipping than Indian people in Ohio are. And they were pretty fucking bad.

But I have to think in terms of keeping things “on” for now. So I will probably make a few trips east this coming week. It depends on what I find out about my new Uber debit card. Apparently it does a “backup balance” thing that is a lot like Chime’s Spot Me. If I have access to any of that, I will probably take advantage of it to keep things on for a little while longer. I always have wiggle room with the car insurance, but I need to keep my web hosting going. But even if I have significant wiggle room on the Uber card I’ll have to pay it back, so.

Well, I have an option to make my phone cheaper. I just waited too long to try for this month since my bill comes due on the 27th. The hosting isn’t absolutely due until the 2nd; they just ding me about five days early. No penalty if it doesn’t go through, just… they like to be early. Don’t ask me. I just put up with it. I haven’t wanted to move to another host, but I’m seriously considering it. If I can get it done before the 2nd and happen to have the cash then I will have to deep-six them. Thirty-five a month. I’m fucking sure. If I had a job it wouldn’t be a big deal, but I’m getting nothing out of this except enjoyment and being able to maintain some really old email addresses. I would have better use for that money elsewhere. Or at least would be better off not having to panic to come up with it every single fucking month. So if I can get that monthly expense cut down too, it will make up for having to spend more on car insurance for less coverage. And don’t even get me started about that one or we’ll be here all day.

Dad… I don’t know what is going on with Dad. He said the other day he is feeling more like he did when he went into kidney failure in the first place, but we’ve already seen that when he’s out and out injured he doesn’t want to go to the doctor. If his kidneys really do shut down, I can’t count on him to tell me in time. He has a Life Alert or similar device, but doesn’t wear it. And he knows drinking affects his health — like, duh, but it really does at this point — but he won’t quit. I understand not being able to quit an unhealthy thing. But this is the same guy who lectures me about my weight one day and then buys a bunch of crap on a Walmart grocery shop the next day and then cooks me huge portions. He wants to barbecue tomorrow and bought pork and beans that we didn’t even need and wants me to make potato salad. Hello, diabetic. I am also a diabetic. Why are we going to do this? Ten to one he adds brown sugar to the beans too. But I’m fat and I should eat more vegetables and fruits. Right. Eating fibrous bags of water will sure solve everything. We have gone past the point of eat more healthy stuff and we are now at the point of need to stop eating unhealthy stuff. So while I sympathize with his struggle with alcoholism, I also don’t really care. I am not going around telling him to drink and being offended if he doesn’t. I know you don’t push a bad habit on someone. Closest I’ve gotten is going and buying booze for him, but he asked me to. It was his idea, not mine, and I stand to be kicked out of here on a whim if he doesn’t like the way things are going. I am not applying equivalent pressure on him. I’m just not.

Anyway he’s also sleeping a lot more, and he’s doing that quiet grumpy thing he does when he’s not feeling good. I expected him to ask me where I was all day. He’s already told me I’m all grown up and I can do go what I want, but me being gone isn’t something I usually do. I welcome the lack of conflict but I can never tell whether he genuinely doesn’t mind or whether he’s saving up for later. Any of you out there thinking only women do that can just shut the fuck up forever. Especially with what you do to us when we are outspoken. We’re damned if we do and damned if we don’t. And he’s the one on the fucking lease. If Jodi thought I was in any way mistreating him I’d be out on my ear. But for now it’s grumps and naps. Who knows what it’ll be next week. I could have two more weeks in this place or I could have two years. Or five. Who fucking knows.

I guess I am doing the quiet and grumpy thing, too.

Doug called today and I told him about the biopsy on Monday. He’s the only family member I’ve told. Carrie kind of counts as family, but technically she’s not, and she’s the only other one in meatspace who knows (unless you count Dawn, and I’m not sure I do — we’ve lived apart too long). I have no issue at all announcing it on the internet, but unless Aunt Matilda is still lurking around, no one’s really keeping track of me. My kids have written me off, my other brother has written me off, the few exes who used to look me up aren’t anymore (one of them’s dead, too, if you can call him an ex — two if you count Wayne, but he and I hadn’t talked since 2000, anyway), and I’ve tried to friend Reba on Facebook a few times over the years but for some reason she’s not having it. Like, why are you going to pretend you want to keep up with me and then reject your one solid method for doing that. I suspect she’s busy, though, because I haven’t even gotten the occasional short chat that I was getting there for a while. I had a point talking about all this, right? Right. It’s difficult for my oversharing about my life on Facebook really being any sort of “leak” with people I know in person when none of them look at me. And knowing most of them, they wouldn’t say anything even if they did know. I’d have to count as a human being first. I don’t think I ever really have.

But Doug knows, which is fine because I know about his issues too, even if I’m sort of vague about them. I THINK they are suspecting kidney cancer. He seems to at least have a kidney tumor. There is some kind of song and dance going on there, possibly with his insurance, or I think he’d know what’s going on by now. We are just a couple broken old fogies. What the actual hell. I remember when his worst problem was getting walking pneumonia pretty much every winter.

I haven’t told Dad about my ish and I don’t think Doug has told him about his. I’ll have to ask Doug again to be sure, but I think he’s holding off. I don’t know what the plan is if his thing turns out to be malignant. I’m not sure what I will do in my case if I end up like that either. There’s nothing Dad can do anyway except start judging me if I don’t immediately jump up and conquer the fucking universe like he probably thinks Carrie did when she got colon cancer. Let him keep thinking that I’m just sort of vaguely broken and that I choose to be that way. Works for everyfuckingbody else. Doesn’t work for me, but who cares anyway.

I seem to be dancing around the obvious question. How am I doing with it? I’ve been mostly avoiding it. Once in a while I think about it. The main problems for me if I have to get a mastectomy are (1) aesthetics, OBVIOUSLY, and I already need all the help I can get on looks, and I fucking doubt that Medicaid would cover a good reconstruction; and (2) neurological map. This is oversharing, but… there are women who say nipple stimulation does nothing for them during sexytimes. I am not one of those women. Losing half the map on the front of my torso would not be good. I am opposed to getting a hysterectomy except in the case of cancer for similar reasons. Orgasms felt different after my c-section and never went back to what they had been previously; if I out and out lose the fucker, I may lose my sex life entirely, or at least the bits that actually matter to me. Same goes for if I had to get a cone biopsy. Someone found out there are nerves in the cervix that connect somehow to the clitoris, so messing up those nerves actually messes up a woman’s sexual response. I may not have a dating life anymore, but once in a while you get to thinking happy thoughts. It would just be one more thing taken away from me before I’m ready to lose it. I fucking hate this timeline. I’d like a do-over, please. And then you can just pause it at 1994 and Groundhog-Day that one year over and over. Fuck it.

Speaking of time. I just looked at the calendar and the 27th is one day further off than I’d assumed. I have enough in the Chime account to pay for the cheaper phone service. If I do it on Monday, the SIM could get here in time. I will look to see what’s involved in the changeover. Another possibility is just biting the bullet and getting a cheap plan at Walmart if it turns out they’ve got something comparable. I need to look. One way or another we are going to get that expense down. I know for a fact I can get the same features for just over half the price, and I’ll be using the same phone, so that’s not even an issue. Somebody impress me, ’cause I want a local number. If having an Ohio area code has been getting in the way of me getting employment, I can at least remove that obstacle.

(I doubt it’s the only reason. But I would almost be willing to bet money it’s one reason.)

My errant children have not tried contacting me in literal years. I last heard from Thea over a year ago and I initiated that contact. I last heard from Sean… damn. A decade ago? A little less than? Not counting when Thea was video-chatting with him, which he finally ghosted her for reasons only he knows. I don’t have a whole lot of room to complain, because Mom never hears from me. But this is one reason I want to keep a hosting service going. That will mean I always have a website with my name on it, and I can bang up a Google Voice number there that they can use if they really want to talk to me. (I’d put my real number there, but that opens me to harassment, so.)

I was going to text Thea with the new number when I got it but it occurred to me she may not even have that number anymore. I will keep it in my contact list in case I’m wrong but if they wanted me to keep her contact info current, they know where to find me and they have not fucking bothered. Message motherfucking received. That worked out really great for Matt. I never once, and you can fucking quote me, EVER told him I didn’t want to be her mother anymore. I NEVER said I didn’t want to hear about what was going on with her. He has ZERO excuse for ghosting me like that, and 2/3rds of my angry emails and texts to him were BECAUSE he was ghosting me. He had it in his grubby little mitts this whole fucking time to have things go better than they did and he chose the low road and pretended it was the high one. Oh yeah, it was high all right. On fucking paint thinner. I wash my hands of the entire affair. Already did, ages ago. She’s an adult. When she wants to behave like one, she can find me. I sincerely hope he is run over by a truck. Slowly.

Someone shared a meme on Facebook a while back that said something to the effect that people start avoiding you when they know they’ve wronged you. I know that isn’t always true; sometimes we avoid people because we’re afraid of them. Although those two elements can be merged together for nefarious purposes. It’s possible for an asshole to tell everyone he’s avoiding the victim of his assholery because he’s afraid of her, just as a way of scoring more points off her misery. I’m about 99% certain that’s what’s happened here. Oh yeah, I’m so scary. I could have fucking gelded him with a fucking dull butter knife. I could have murdered him with food. He’s got about a bazillion food allergies and I probably know about 90% of them. It wouldn’t have been hard. I did not do any of that. I left. Ooh. Scary. I hate him so fucking much for setting me up like that, you cannot possibly imagine. I actually understand now how some men get murderous after a breakup. Men are also more impulsive; one of the few good things about the gender identity experiment is that women pretending to be men have proven that testosterone makes you more impulsive. So men are going to follow through on murderous feelings a lot more often than women do, and the crime stats back me up. But any woman telling you women never feel like that has never been fucked over hard enough by an asshole. Oh, just you wait. If it never happens to you, you got lucky.

I will say this. My anger at him used to make me physically ill. After I moved out, those feelings still caused me a lot of physical distress — but that has diminished over time. I’m sitting here right now wishing I could kick him off the roof of a skyscraper, but I doubt my heart rate’s over 100bpm and when no one is torturing me with a too-tight cuff, my blood pressure’s fairly normal. (I can tell by feel when that goes high. Right now? Nada.) I sleep a lot better too. I’m much less likely to wake up in a rage at him. And I did that a lot for a while there.

I just needed to get away from the fucker. Who knew.

Okay. Enough ranty for today. On to sorta-good news:

I got an idea to start buying a one-dollar scratch-off lottery ticket every time Dad sends me to get his cigarettes, because he gets them at a certain gas station and they are a lottery retailer. (I’m pretty much sure every gas station in every legal-lottery jurisdiction is a lottery retailer.) I thought, shit, if I happened to win the big prize that would really help me for several months or a year or whatever, worst-case scenario, if I couldn’t find a job.

So I went in the last time I went on a cancer-stick run (how ironic that Dad has problems with everything except his fucking lungs), paid the dollar, got the scratch-off, took it home… and forgot about it for a bit. Eventually remembered, scratched everything, and I’d won a ticket. Go figure. So next time I was there I turned it in and got the free ticket. Got it home, same song and dance, finally remembered and scratched it and I’d won four bucks.

I told everybody that no, I wasn’t going to go buy four more tickets but I’m debating with myself. Like as not I’d do it and win nothing. At least I’d have only spent the one dollar for real. On the other paw, that particular ticket’s max prize is four thousand dollars. It sure would not hurt my feelings to win that. Hell, I’d be happy winning fifty. The odds for a win in general are less than one IN fifty. I don’t know what the odds are for four grand. Probably not nearly as good.

It’s like when you just plain have money and need to spend it on things and then you spent it wrong. I have the potential for money here and am afraid to spend it wrong. I probably should just get over myself, huh? Easier said than done.