You get what you deserve

Friday night I had two of my closest friends hang up on me. Did I deserve that?!?

Well… yeah, I probably did. After publishing my last post I continued drinking and needed social interaction so I started a mad rampage of drunk dialing. I called everyone I could think of. Some didn’t answer. That’s fine. That is well within their rights. Many did and I am grateful to all of them. Do I deserve to have so many people that I can call upon whenever the mood strikes me. I think so. I’m usually not asking for much and I offer everything I have.

With the friends who hung up on me I asked for more than they had to give and gave more than they wanted.  That’s a common situation with the people closest to me. Thankfully, the people closest to me know how to deal with that situation. There really is no negotiating with a drunk person so the appropriate recourse is to just hang up. It’s not an easy thing to do but it’s far better than feeding into the reality of a person in an unencumbered emotional state with a highly encumbered cognitive system.

I woke the next morning feeling better than I had felt waking up in a long time. I knew I had a couple apologies to make but physically, I felt great. Did I deserve to feel so fantastic after such a full on night of poisoning my body? Probably not!

We don’t always get what we deserve. Life offers no guaranties. All we get with life is life and even that is only offered on a temporary basis. Every day that we are alive is a day to be grateful. Every day that we are alive we have the only thing that life has to offer. Everything else is gravy.

But we are human beings. We are a superior life form. Certainly we deserve more that just life. Certainly we deserve more than a single celled amoeba or a freaking banana. And of course, some human being are superior to other human beings. Some people obviously deserve more than others, right? I mean, take you and me for example. Since I’m the writer and you are just the reader, I deserve more than you.

Oh, I’m sorry. Did I lose you with that last statement?

Whenever we start comparing ourselves to others we are going to run into problems. My daughter informed me this evening that she has a more stressful life than other people. And you know what, she is not wrong. I tried to assure her that I would do everything in my power to reduce stress in her life but the fact is we all take on as much stress as we can handle. The real problem is when unexpected things happen that add stress we didn’t choose to take on. That’s when it’s probably a good idea to hang up the phone. 🙂

The other fact is that we live in a society that is based on comparison. It’s really the only way that we can evaluate anything. This is bigger and that is smaller. This is stronger and than weaker. This is better and that is worse. Yeah, the only thing we are guaranteed is life but it is still up to us to survive. To survive, we need to be able to make these judgement calls. As a result we live in  a very judgmental society.

I spent the day car shopping with a good friend of mine. Her very sensible mom car, the minivan, is on it’s last legs. It’s time for a new vehicle.  Now this person is more than just a mom, she is a smart, classy, outgoing sophisticated woman who belongs in a more suitable vehicle than a minivan. This was a relief to me. I’ve bought three minivans in my life and it’s not the most exciting shopping experience. We were on our way to get a sweet ass ride!

Of course, in this society you can’t just go out and pick the car that suits you. You have to be able to afford it. Well… no you don’t. There is always credit. But you have to be able to qualify for credit and the poorer you are the more it’s going to cost you. In this society, poor people pay more for the same thing than rich people. But that’s okay. Poor people are inferior to rich people and so they deserve less.

Apparently, there is some doubt about that. There are some things that are only available to you if you are poor. I went out tonight with a friend who works for the county and we spend a lot of time talking about programs that are only available to the poor. I’m sure that these programs came into existence because of some idea that people deserve certain things out out of life but no one has to prove their worth as a person to receive them, only their financial worth. This is the system under which we live.

You can fight it, and take down the entire capitalist system, or embrace it and go get the benefits which this system has to offer. I don’t understand why people complain about those receiving government benefits but I also don’t understand why people keep giving all of their money to the rich. Both of these things seem stupid to me.

But then I think that we are all in a symbiotic relationship.

There would be no rich without poor.

There would be no writers without readers.

There can be no cops without criminals.

There can be no human beings without the amoeba and the banana.

There would be no living without those who have died.

We are all in this together and we can keep fighting for supremacy but in doing so we are fighting that which creates us.

Perhaps one day we will stop fighting ourselves. Perhaps one day we will get what we deserve.

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Making time

I certainly don’t have any super powers when it comes to time management but I do my best. Every moment of every day I’m doing whatever I can do. Sometimes that is more than other times. Sometimes it’s simply different things than I can do at other times. Sometimes is more than one thing at a time; although I usually find that multi-talking causes more problems than it solves. I just can’t stand sitting around or waiting. I’ve tried being more structured and scheduled in my activities but that doesn’t really work for me; I never know what I’ll be up for from moment to moment. All I can do is make the most of each one and call that, “as good as it’s gonna get”.

Through this process some things do fall by the wayside. Sometimes this means that opportunities get lost and sometimes it means that consequences get compounded but no one said life was perfect. Most of the time I find that life carries on just fine, even if it is a bit flawed.

Of course there are some things that really do have to get done no matter what. Yes, we all need to eat, sleep and shit, three things that seem to be a constant distraction from what I really want to be doing, but that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about bullshit administrative tasks that if they are not taken care of will cause everything else to fall apart.

In this case, I’m referring to my issue with the IRS. I know I’ve mentioned it before but here is a little recap and update. I electronically filed my tax return in February. In March I received a letter from the IRS stating that they needed more information from me and to call their toll-free number. After two hours on hold and an hour long discussion I finally got this matter resolved, or so I thought. They said my refund would be delayed another 6 weeks but I still haven’t received it. Adding to this problem is that my son’s financial aid application also got flagged and so needed additional verification. Specifically, they needed my 2012 IRS transcript which doesn’t exist because the IRS has not processed my return yet. I’ve tried several times to get someone from the IRS on the phone with no luck.

I was telling my parents about this last week, expressing my frustration with government agency incompetence and unnecessary policies which do nothing but compound the problems of an already troubled system. Their response was that I needed to take care of this. Right?!? Like I don’t have enough problems of my own without trying to fix the government’s fuck up.

“I don’t have time for that!”

To which they said, “Make time.”

Make time, huh? That is a fascinating concept. What if we could just make time? We have all these devices that are suppose to “save” us time,  not that I’m sure any of them really do, but what if we could actually “make” time. Now that would be awesome. It could be something like a bread maker; throw in a packet of magical time dust, add some water, a couple golden eggs and an hour later you get an hour of time that didn’t exist before. Wouldn’t that be nifty!

Failing in my attempts to make time I resorted to waiting for a moment to arrive in which I could actually do something about this little IRS kerfuffle. That day was yesterday. I had some time to kill while my daughter was at her summer camp so I spent the day downtown harassing government agencies for not doing their job. Oh, I was nice about it but I was insistent and persuasive. It’s funny how tactics that don’t work at all when hitting on a bartender or waitress will work wonders when dealing with government bureaucrats. Even so, the IRS is still going to take 6 to 8 weeks… fuckers!

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