Money Sucks So - I'm not a happy zombie right now. My Jeep had been making a weird grinding noise and whine that was steering related. So, I took it into the shop and now - some $400 later - I have a new steering gear box. This sucks. Mrs. Zombie's mad because we had to dip into Christmas money to pay for it, which we had other plans for. And, when Mrs. Zombie ain't happy, nobody's happy.
To make matters worse, I've been wanting to get an expedition rack for the Jeep for ladders when I do painting side jobs and also to throw gear and/or dead deer on top of when I go hunting or camping. (There is a distinct dearth of room in the back of the Jeep Wrangler TJ. I've seen coffins with more storage space.) And, as I plan on having the TJ for the next 10-15 years, I'm stuck with the small space. That's where an overhead expedition rack comes into play. The only problem with that idea is that they're expense. Really expensive. Prohibitively-fucking-expensive. I did the math on ordering one and it came to something like $625, before shipping. When you're living in a small suburban, three bedroom crypt with two little zombies, a hot Mrs. Zombie, and two stupid undead dogs, there's little room for such extravagence. Sooo, I've been watching the various Jeep boards I frequent and, doesn't it figure, I found a guy who has the exact rack I want for $200. And I just spent $400 on the Jeep so I would have power steering.
And did I mention the black rage Mrs. Zombie's in about this.? Sigh.
So, I call the little Missus. I start the call telling her how much I love her, and how she is like a bright light in the darkness that is my dark and brooding soul. She smelled a rat immediately. When I explained why I needed to spend an additional $200, she threatened me with various demonic means of torture. I tried explaining the importance of the rack, and how it wasn't necessarily a frivolous purchase. She would have none of it. I dare say it was a hard sell. She eventually said, "Fine. Do whatever you feel you need to do." In that tone - that curt, snappy tone that I'm certain mothers teach all of their daughters in preparation for eventual marriage and husbands. I hate that tone. What's worse is that, being a guy, I find myself immediately defaulting to the "Well, she said I could do it. Yeah, she was mad, but she said I could." So now I'm half thinking about pulling the trigger on the deal. It's always better to beg forgiveness than ask permission, right?
Oh - to further complicate the matter - it's not a local deal. The guy lives outside of Chicago. That means that, once I get her less mad at me about the purchase, I've got to break the news that I need to drive 7+ hours(one way!) to go get it. And it'll probably be on a weekend. Calculate gas, and a 12 pack of beer for the seller to help me install the rack for the trip back, and it's suddenly more than just $200 bucks. And she'll be mad because it will b the better part of a weekend. But it's still a deal, right?
I'm so screwed....
Other Thoughts I listened to part of the opening remarks for the Alito SCOTUS nomination today on NPR. I've got to say, the Republicans really piss me off. I understand we Liberals have our shortcomings. Nobody's perfect. We, however, don't have the bald faced affrontery to lie, and lie so blatantly. The Conservatives throw the word 'Liberal' around like it is a dirty word. They've reached such a level of hubris that they've pitched civil, diplomatic, political language out the window. They rail against the Liberals, who they say are as bad as the terrorists. They say the Liberals hate God, hate America, and hate freedom. Liberals hate everything that is good or decent. And they don't even bother to hide behind rhetoric. They said all of those things, in as plain a language as I used, today. On the Congressional record. It borders on hate speech... but wait a minute, I guess that's never bothered them before, so why should it bother them now?
You know what the problem is? King George II. He's so invigorated the right with his talk of mandates and protecting the American Way that he's conviced them all that they are bulletproof. And this belief that you must support the war AND the President, or else you're a treasonous son of a bitch, is bullshit. Well, guess what? I ain't drinking that Kool-Aid. The country needs to wake up - GWB is not a God. He is not above the law. Under him we've had our civil liberties eroded and trampled upon to the point of absurdity. He's said, with the same unapologetic candor, that he will do whatever he wants or feels is necessary to protect America. Even spying on AMERICAN CITIZENS. Joe McCarthy did that in the fifties. The FBI did it under Hoover. The CIA and NSA and Homeland Security do it now. It was wrong then, it's wrong now. Wake up, Liberals, one day you'll wake up and you'll find yourself in the Kingdom of America; presided over by King George II - Supreme Ruler and Emperor. He's like Darth Sidious - only with better complexion and atrociously worse diction. And you know what the funny part is, the Liberals will be screwed because the Conservatives have all the friggin' guns.
In this same vein - Take some time to do a Google search on the Federal No Fly List. Talk about Government gone mad! Most disturbing, especially considering the NSA wiretaps, is the argument that Left Wing political activists - with absolutely NO terrorist connections - are finding themselves on the list. So let me make sure I've got this right... if you disagree with the Bush Administration politically, as is your right as an American citizen, you're a terrorist. Since that's the case, you may no longer freely travel, within the United States, without being subject to harassment or an outright refusal to board an airplane. Maybe I'm wrong, maybe I did wake up in some totalitarian dictatorship. May the undead gods save us from the machinations of the right wing theocracy that has suddenly been given a blank check to infringe upon our civil liberties. It's never been more important that you go here. Do it today. Give what you can!
One final link (and off of my soapbox!) I found this link over on MSNBC. It is one of the most clearly written, understandable explanations of science and physics I've ever read. This is what we need to be spending our money on! I may be a Star Wars/Star Trek geek, but damn it if this isn't what we should be working towards as a society. FTL drives on ships for space exploration - - it makes me firm up just thinking about it.
Until later, dear friend.