Fri. May 29, 2020: Die For Your Employer Day 11: Local Media Distorts

Friday, May 29, 2020
Waxing Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Venus Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Foggy and humid and raining

Yesterday went better than expected, but was still exhausting.

Loaded the car with two months’ worth of recycling, masked up, and headed for the dump. Got there just as they were opening. Long line to get rid of trash, but I was one of the first to make it to the recycling area.

Everyone was masked, as required. We parked leaving three spaces between us, and gave each other plenty of room. People were cheerful and talked back and forth – I think we were all glad to talk to someone.

Much less stressful than I expected.

Although, as I was leaving, I saw cars pulling up close to each other and people not being so careful.

I have a feeling they’ll have to shut it all down again in a few weeks, so I’m glad I got our stuff out. I got everything into one car load – a BIG car load, but it was still everything. I will try to go back in two weeks with whatever’s been accumulated, so I can keep as much out before they shut down again as possible.

Because I’m NOT going to be like the spoiled brats who were tossing recycling in with the trash. If we were in NYC, all piled up with no room, it’s understandable. But here? Most people have plenty of room and can hang on to their recycling for a few weeks.

Headed over to Trader Joe’s. Line wasn’t too long. It moved pretty fast, but I realized that I’m going to need sunscreen to go grocery shopping in the future. Standing in line in the sun is going to require sunscreen. Everyone was masked, as required, distanced, and the mood was pretty upbeat. The staff was friendly and wonderful as usual, it was well-stocked. They rearrange things when they can’t restock, so you don’t see expanses of empty shelves. You just realize you can’t find what you were looking for!

I bought more than I intended, but that’s okay. I won’t have to go out for anything except milk and bread for two weeks, and I might risk the local convenience store for that. Unless I see people in there unmasked.

Got everything home, went through full disinfectant protocol (disinfecting every item, putting bags into quarantine, stripping down and tossing clothes into the washer, showering).

Even though it all took less time than I expected, it was still most of the morning gone, and I was exhausted.

Talk about mask preparedness—when I go out, I’m wearing a mask, I carry a spare, and I wear a scarf that I can pull up if everything else fails.

I also realized I need more masks. Four isn’t enough. So that’s on the agenda this weekend. More mask-making.

Our neighbors (the ones who do the Driveway Dinner Parties) dropped off a note saying they were worried about us. While that’s sweet, I wonder why. Because we don’t have people coming in and out all the time like they do? We’re not socializing. We’re fine. But I appreciated the kindness and dropped off a note thanking them.

Got some client work done, but not enough, so I have to put in a few hours today.

Edward Robb Ellis’s diary is delightful. His writing about the Depression is an eerie echo of what’s happening now, although people now are acting much more like spoiled brats.

The local media’s coverage of what’s going on is distorted. What’s in the papers and what I witness daily as a resident are far apart. For one thing, it’s completely one-sided. Only business owners and companies are being interviewed. Not the people who are actually in harm’s way working and dealing with the public. Business owners are whining that Memorial Day weekend, business was 66% down. Well, maybe that’s because businesses aren’t supposed to be open yet, except for essentials and some curbside pickups. They’re acting like the long-term rentals, which are the only ones that are supposed to be happening (31 days or more) are a bad thing, and that the dozens of short-term weekend rentals aren’t happening under the table (which they completely are, putting everyone who lives and works here at risk, because those coming in for the weekend aren’t quarantining and aren’t following protocols).

Gee, local media, owned by corporate “media companies” are lying to us. What a surprise. Yes, sarcasm.

Even if workers spoke off the record, local “journalists” wouldn’t protect their sources. Because that doesn’t happen here. Because they know the employers, and would either put in enough personal detail to out the source, or tell a friend or neighbor they “trust” who the source is, knowing it will get back to the employer and there will be retaliation.

Because that’s the way it works here.

Oh, and the best thing about calling the bridge traffic “light”? Yeah, I suppose being backed up for three hours is lighter than seven hours. But there shouldn’t be enough traffic to back it up AT ALL. We are still in Phase One.

The irony is that these are the same people, whining about not enough tourists, who wanted to shut down the bridges and the entire Cape to all but residents in March and have checkpoints at both bridges. Now, when it’s no safer, they want to let in too many people too quickly to put everyone at risk.

You can’t have It both ways, boo.

How about this, as we rebuild the future of work? If you won’t pay a living wage and provide safe conditions, you don’t get to have employees. Do the work your damn self. Or you have to work for someone else, who hopefully provides a better wage and safer working conditions than you were willing to provide.

An organization promoting local businesses is talking about having a “fair” this summer. Seriously? How irresponsible is that?  There’s no way to make sure people follow protocols. Not only would I not attend such an event, I would then avoid vendors who participated, because I’d worry both they and their merchandise were contaminated.

This marketing that we “owe” it to go out and shop? Nope. My first priority is the health and safety of my family. If you allow other customers to act irresponsibly in order to get a few bucks from them, you’re not getting my money. If I feel confident that you are following protocols, and your customers are, too (and those who aren’t must leave), then I will shop there. If I see irresponsible behavior without consequence, I won’t. And, if I witness the latter, I probably won’t come back, even when it’s safe.

I’m focused on the necessities. I’m focused on working as much as I can SAFELY, because who knows when the work will dry up with 25% of the population currently unemployed.

The entire concept of “work” and “labor” has to be rebuilt in order to rebuild the economy, and part of that is dismantling current corporate structure.

I also think, during reopening, that any company that requires employees onsite dealing with the public has to have its executives and management pulling shifts with the same risks.

In the Governor’s daily noon briefing, he talked about how the numbers are going down and we are past the surge. Yet when the daily numbers came out late in the afternoon, there were 100 more cases in the past 24 hours than in the previous day (from low 500s to high 600s) and about 30 more deaths than there had been the previous day (from low 60s to mid-90s). Is this a one day uptick, or are the numbers going to steadily climb again? I suspect the latter, although I hope I’m wrong. I’m not sure I trust the numbers being released, either.

Switching to happier things, the cat playpen arrived. It’s an excellent design. It’s like a strong tent, with a solid floorcovering (although flexible), pops up, and has netted sides. Its arrival meant that we had to put the flea and tick medicine on all three cats. Charlotte, who I thought would have a nervous breakdown, didn’t care. Tessa didn’t like it. Willa rolled around, trying to rub it off on the carpet.

Charlotte was the most interested in the playpen, so she went out in it first. She didn’t freak out, but the world is too big out there, and she’d rather observe through a window.

Brought her in and took Willa out next. Willa was interested, and likes all the smells. She’s the one who’s been slithering out when we open the door, so I wanted to give her a way to be outside but safe. She kind of liked it, although she doesn’t like to be confined.

So far, Tessa wants nothing to do with it. Tessa’s good on the deck, but there’s so much chaos getting her back into the house that I am only willing to carry her in and out when she’s in the playpen at this point.

But it has to be HER idea to go into it the first time.

It’s bigger than I expected, but that seems to be a theme with recent orders.

The riots are not surprising. There has to be a reaction to the increased open racism. Also, it’s completely inappropriate the way the protesters in Minneapolis were treated, but the WHITE domestic terrorists in Michigan, occupying the state capitol, were allowed a free pass.

Meanwhile, we have over 100,000 dead and 25% of the population unemployed. While the Sociopath laughs and dances and claps his hands with glee (unmasked), golfs, and threatens Twitter.

In World War II, we were part of an alliance to keep fascism from taking over the world. If we don’t take back our country, we will be the enemy the way Nazi Germany was. Because there’s only so long the world can let this continue.

I have some client work today that I was too exhausted to do yesterday. Must get it done this morning.

Then some more writing, and I want to work on cleaning out another stack of boxes from the basement.

One eye on the world, in despair. The other focusing on chopping wood and carrying water.

Have a good weekend all. I wish you peace.

Published in: on May 29, 2020 at 5:45 am  Comments Off on Fri. May 29, 2020: Die For Your Employer Day 11: Local Media Distorts  
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Thurs. May 28, 2020: Die For Your Employer Day 10 — Why We Need UBI & Relevant Dreams

Thursday, May 28, 2020
Waxing Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Venus Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Foggy and humid; will be sunny and hot later

The garden is starting to bloom. There’s a post about it here.

Over 100,000 dead in this country and no end in sight. It is horrifying.

Yesterday wasn’t as bad as I expected onsite. There was some passive aggressive mask removal, but my co-worker and I kept ours on, and the third party put hers back on after a bit, when she saw that we weren’t going to budge. I was fully prepared to gather my things and leave, saying I’d come back some other time when no one else was there LIKE WE’RE SUPPOSED TO DO PER STATE DIRECTIVES. But it didn’t come to that.

Got some stuff done. I work better from home. There’s less stress and more productivity.

Came home, stripped down, showered/disinfected. Was too wiped out to move on to other projects in the afternoon. I’d gotten an LOI out early in the morning, before I went in to the client site, for a company I think would be a good match. We’ll see.

Maine is pausing the re-opening Phase 1 and re-thinking Phase 2. No surprise there. My family up there told us how people are coming in for day trips, packing the beaches and parks, refusing to wear masks. Of course the re-open was going to fail.

The numbers Massachusetts releases doesn’t coincide with the reckless behavior I witness every day. Maybe our numbers just haven’t ticked up yet. But I expect that they will.

The traffic is just as bad as it ever is at this time of year. I see people congregating in groups, without masks. I mentioned yesterday the Sliding Mask Skanks that now populate the stores, and how visitors aren’t following the self-quarantine rule when they arrive. Most of them are coming in for the weekend, so they’re not quarantining for 14 days.

And, of course, the incessant whining, “I came all this wa-aay! Why isn’t anything o-PEN?”

Maybe because you’re a fucking dumbass who can’t follow the basic protocols and have no respect for other human beings, and there are those of us who actually live here who don’t want to die.

The lack of leadership here on local levels is appalling. Our Town Council is completely useless.

Come on, Congress. You want the economy to recover? Then give us UBI for the next few months. MANDATE that we work from home when possible. Don’t “suggest.” MANDATE. If an employer refuses, said employer should be fined. If an employee doesn’t want to return to unsafe conditions, then the employee shouldn’t lose unemployment benefits. If we have UBI, we won’t need Unemployment benefits to kick in until after it’s actually SAFE to reopen and we see where businesses stand.

UBI allows people to pay bills, keep a roof over their heads, food on the table, They can work from home whenever possible. They can also buy goods beyond the basic necessities, thereby keeping money in the economy – which paying bills also does. It keeps the money flowing.

The way they’re bailing out corporations? Top executives and stockholders get paid. Employees are laid off or lose benefits for refusing to work in unsafe conditions. How difficult is it to realize that people won’t buy your stuff if they’re dead or if they have no money and can’t even feed themselves?

So set it up so people have money flowing in and can keep it flowing out. Stop letting it get stuck in corporate accounts where it doesn’t help the general economy, but only a small percentage who don’t need the money anywhere.

It is not hard to figure this out.

The reason it’s not happening is that the GOP can’t stand the thought of the general population living in basic human dignity. Since Reagan, their platform has been to move us into a feudal economy with nobles (them) and serfs (the rest of us).

What they refuse to accept is that if we’re all dead, there’s no one to sustain their lifestyle or their egos.

The self-centered stupidity is almost as appalling as the inhumanity.

Switching gears to something more positive, it was nice to sit on the deck and read in the afternoon, in the sunshine, with a breeze and a martini at my elbow. We’d be mostly home during tourist season anyway. It’s not like it’s worth going anywhere when they swarm like locusts. When they’re swarming like infected, germy locusts, I’m REALLY not going out amongst them any more than necessary.

I’m reading Edward Ellis’s DIARY OF A CENTURY, which is absolutely delightful. He’s a newspaperman who kept a diary from 1927 on (this book came out in 1995). What I love about him is that he’s interested in everything. He likes to live life, think a lot, and he writes beautifully about it. A joyful book, even during difficult times.

Forced myself out of a nightmare that is relevant. I was in a car (not necessarily my car, but A car) at a busy intersection. Ahead of me was a split road, one was the way I could go, the other was one way against me, with a guardrail in the middle, and high rocks on either side. As I waited for the light to change so I could cross the intersection, it got so dark, I couldn’t see. The headlights didn’t work. I somehow had to get across the intersection and navigate the road ahead completely blind. I could hear and feel traffic around me, but I couldn’t SEE anything. It was terrifying.

I forced myself awake before I hit anything.

It was around 3 AM and I fretted until I got up around 5.

I guess sleeping through the night was only a few nights’ worth of bliss, and we’re back to being up in the middle of the night worrying.

Up early, got some writing done, and blogging.

About to gear up and  load the car with the recycling and take in the first load when they open this morning. Hopefully it won’t be too crowded, but I wouldn’t count on it. Then I have to brave Trader Joe’s for the regular grocery shop. Hopefully, there won’t be any Sliding Mask Skanks there, and it won’t be too crowded and awful.

I have to put in a few hours this afternoon for a client, but I’m doing it from home. And maybe get out a few more LOIs.

I’m hoping to get another stack of boxes purged/unpacked/cleared out this weekend.

The cat playpen should arrive today, so I can take Tessa safely out on the deck, and maybe Willa, too (not at the same time, though. Not yet). It means putting the flea and tick medicine on all of them today. Won’t that be fun? Yes, that was sarcasm.

Have a great day, and I hope you don’t die for your employer.