Telling the same old story, Why do I write, speak, show up for work?

December 20, 2014 Leave a comment

When I write, I write about me, but in somebody else’s shoes. It’s a story of my life, that relates to someone’s life I’ve met inimages the past week, or month, that reminded me of someone I met years ago.

As I tell the same story, editing it to include the troubled soul of the day, (some just a happy phantom) I get taken for granted. I wonder why do I waste my time writing. I think my last sob story was about a shitty December commission and taking not only my daughter, but my niece to Disney on a short paycheck.

I mention how sick I was, Massachusetts already has a law that will be enacted and goes in effect July 1st. I wrote that story about a 100-times. I”m going be honest, when you have a voice – an honest voice – it’s pretty fucking cool to see it on as a ballot question.

Then it gets passed. Holy Shitballs!

On Vacation with my Daughter and my Niece, I wondered why I bother with that routine of writing about how I see the world, after all Steven T isn’t Taylor Swift…Maybe they are. (Disney All-Star: Music) I return home and wonder, why I waste my time writing. I should focus more on these girls.

The next day I return from my vacation, a Thursday, I trudge through my workday and show up for our branch meeting. Here’s the thing, before I left for vacation, I wrote about my stress. My niece’s first and most likely only trip to Disney. Any Board Member, CEO who has ever met me, knows I budgeted for the next 6-months, but live off my monthly pay. That’s where the stress comes out and tells the story of those who can’t budget 6-months ahead.

Sitting in this office meeting, I keep my mouth shout. As my branch manager announces the win-win of having paid overtime. He re-iterates, “just don’t abuse it.” I constantly write about that 4-hour commute in my youth and how I get paid the same as just working just 25-minutes form home. A route technician on that route of my youth wants to complain about the 1-hour commute that he doesn’t get paid for before he gets to boat. (the sales bravado of being in the locker room)

He’s getting 2-hours a day of paid overtime, for some stupid fucking story I wrote for free – not including my tax free charities – something he’s never gotten before.6a00e54f10a0988834015434656629970c-450wi (1)

This corporate change doesn’t impact my pay a whole lot, I may drive and help out on a Termite scan or two. I’m not the important one in this story.

As I leave this office meeting, I see this route technician in his truck. He left to go home 45-minutes ago. He’s still sitting in his truck. Amazed. The back-lot light shining into he cab.

I think my writing made a difference today… It gave this man 2-hours of overtime pay (paid) each-day, you did this for 7000-employees.

It’s just under a week before Christmas as we announce this decision(Gas is $2.39, not $3.39 [the numbers balanced! Wall St.)…

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Count your blessings, not your Mother-in-law’s faults.

December 18, 2014 Leave a comment

I got to relive my daughter’s first Christmas at Disney World from four years ago, actually it’s only been 3-years. The tight disney2014 107budget makes it seem like was four-years ago.

Over a 3-year period, for a family of three or four, it can be done for around $3600. I did a 5-day trip on $2586. Me (adult) niece (adult-11) and my daughter (child-7). That includes spending money out of my pocket. My daughter had birthday money, and my niece had birthday and spending money, I would make up the difference, here and there.

With all the makes and breaks of this Disney World Vacation, my niece’s number-1 was the Seven-Dwarfs Mine Train, It’s one of Disney’s Main Attractions, my daughter is dead-set against it. The wait is always long. There’s no fastpass option. I table this with the promise that we will do this, even if I have to send my niece alone after the 90-minute wait.

Making sure they eat, see the sights, decide what they want to do, making sure they see at least one parade at Disney, Frozen is actually at the bottom of their list, (we saw theme at Hollywood Studios). After having an afternoon lunch at Cinderella’s Royal table. We check on the Dwarfs, still a 90-minute wait, so we proceed to Dumbo’s ride and Goofy’s Barnstormer roller coaster. They want to go shopping(hat and t-shirts) then the girls decide, they want to go home, back to the hotel with the option of returning later. We take the train back to the main Magic Kingdom Entrance. Tired, Maddy complains that we aren’t taking the train all the way around the Magic Kingdom Park. (and I didn’t get to watch the hat and T-shirts Pats game, suck it up kid)

It’s too cold to swim, after supper, the girls decide they would rather another day at Magic Kingdom instead of Animal disney2014 124Kingdom. I switch our character table-dining so my niece can see Ey-ore? Her favorite. Then my Fastpasses are on point! After breakfast we do everything they want, including the Dwarf’s Train, which I had to convince my daughter was just like Goofy’s Barnstormer…I offer to her buy her a prize so Donna can experience this. She agrees!

As an adult, the one paying the bill. This is where you have a chance to count you’re blessings. I planned for this vacation 3-years ago and paid for it 6,7, maybe 9-months ago. The question was will I have enough spending money to make this vacation to make it enjoyable for the kids? Then make Christmas happen, once I get home.

Both kids had their own birthday money to spend on memorabilia and are at the age where they are more concerned with rides, shopping for a few stylist items, and having a chance to go swimming in December.

Our last day, it was 65 until 7pm. Perfect for a pool evening. I still owe my daughter prize for going on the Dwarf Mine train. She went on Space Mountain willingly. I owe her nothing!

Here’s were I count my blessings. It cost me $80-bucks for my niece to see Eeyore for breakfast, and now I have to buy mydisney2014 114 daughter a prize, so my niece can ride the dwarfs train, after a 60-minute wait – if you get in line at the exact right time.

As my niece shopped spending her $75 and then some, my daughter is methodically evaluating each and every item and their price tag. (jealous that i own my time, want to trade places right now?)

After the pool, I get the girls into PJ’s, we eat supper. 8pm. Maddy says she still hasn’t gotten her prize, we proceed into the gift shop. I’m fucking tired, she goes through each and every item. Then decides on some $9.95 purple bear (it’s a disney bear) $50 was my possible “no” point. Credit Card Point.

She gets that from my Mother-in-Law. I’m $40-dollars under for my vacation week ??????????????????????????????????????????budget. Being Middle Class, that’s fucking aaawwwesommmme.

My daughter could have anything in this park and decides on some $10-obscure purple bear as she discussed each and ever item over with my niece. That’s a blessing bestowed from spending time with my wretched evil mother-in-law.

Maybe the evil you see in the mirror is you…

Categories: Uncategorized

Community Involvement: 101 #toysfortots

December 7, 2014 Leave a comment

Running with the theme that I pay (25% of my gross income) child support and pawn my child to the ex-wife, once you figure out the cost of a quality nanny, a good babysitter, education, clothes, toys…. It’s a financial wash, actually I like her beau’s parents, so I’m ahead.

I get thrown the duty of bringing Maddy to a BFF’s birthday party. Mom, or Beau, or… Someone has the birthday gifts in a gift bag, I just have to dress her and show up.

????????????????????????????????????????????????????In my Twitter feed, I see that the Dartmouth and Mass State Police with be at Toys R Us (i grew up around here) for Toys for Tots. The birthday party is at the North Dartmouth Mall.

We take the 30-minute hike to Dartmouth, not including traffic (it’s 15-minutes for Maddy’s Mom). I haven’t been here in over 20-years. My mom shopped here when I was in high school, the arcade is still in the same spot. I took drivers-eds here: learning the back-roads, how to drive on the highway, how to get off the highway, and how to get back on the highway again.

We talk about my childhood and “This is where, me and my mom spent a lot of time together” (Maddy’s grandmother, who passed 13-years ago Today.)

As we enter 3-minutes late, I hold the door open for a mom – child in the stroller, daughter struggling to open the mall glass door – who is holding a gift bag. Maddy says, “I’ve never been here, I don’t where this place is,” I reply, “I grew up here, but this place is new, look they have a birthday bag too, we must be at the right place” (smile at the mom)o-TALKING-WITH-KIDS-facebook

Me and Maddy Trek through, no to far in front to lose Mom, Madison, and baby Jeremy. We find the place and Birthday Party!

I meet the parents of my child’s friends, her principal, and help stuff a bear, actually it was a pink pony named snowflake!

It’s very hugable, snugglable, and the presentation of the Creative hands staff made it the perfect Good Night Moon gift.

A perfectly planned birthday party. After a $10 outfit for the stuffed animal, witch you could play dumb and sneak out, if you needed to.

So before the girls destroy the Ice Castle, we corral them, they hug and say goodbye.

I take Maddy around the corner – with her new stuffed pink pony, snowflake – to Toys R Us for the Toys for Tots fundraiser. She enthusiastically shops for gifts that would make kids happy. Then confronts the cops (who she is very comfortable with being around) and puts her prizes into the box for these cops to deliver.

Tasercop1We walk back to the car and there’s a Black Range Rover parked too close to my White H3, the wife reading a book in the passenger’s seat.

turn up the bass and trebble, the windows and now the volume. That’s what it’s like to drive a range rover.

these local and state cops have a chance to relax, collect toys,and meet the community, even my daughter who lives 20-minutes away, and a private friend who’s 5-minutes out….

You guys don’t use a taser, or a crowd control canister of mace? why not?

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That moment you realize you’re a single parent with options! OMFG!!! #urnotalone

December 3, 2014 Leave a comment

It’s been a struggle for me to navigate through life, figuring out what makes me happy, what makes my daughter happy,baby boomer balloon how to pay the bills.

I pay child support, so that’s a huge chunk out of the budget, somehow I own my own home. I actually pawn my child off to my ex-wife to maintain my sanity and figure out ways to maintain this home.

I have just enough alone time to think clearly and envision my next step. I start to date again.

OMFG! The first one couldn’t support herself, lives on her child’s support payments, and didn’t understand that to make a mortgage payment you work late, now and then. This date didn’t end well.

I’m actually attracted to women, with child, that have a career. It seems to be working for me.

That “first one”, didn’t even have a career. My head would explode with all her possible scenarios of how I was cheating on her, did mention she didn’t work and just stayed at home, while her daughter received an opportunity to attend a private school while I worked. Again this doesn’t end well.

download (16)It seems that women who have their own lives, make their own money, have a child, understand the concept of “me time”

Every Sunday during football season is “me time”, I sit on the couch, watch football, decompress, and then compress the happenings of my life. An insecure bitch will take this away from me. God forbid, I’m write.

My current girlfriend doesn’t take that away from me, she has options too. I think she spent it with her son and parents.

She might have dropped the kid off at the parents then went shopping (to clear the mind)..Single-Woman-Surfing-Web-800x6001

Are you a single parent with options? Are you in control of your daughter’s life and financially secured enough to decide who enters her life? Or are you buying the next BMW  model  instead of teaching your daughter the value of a Prius? The value of having options…

This is a pretty cool place to be….the moment you finally understand, I’m a single parent with options, not an unhappily depressed wife!

NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH THE HAPPY HOUSE WIFE IN THE RANGE ROVER. Different strokes for Different Folks.

thank your mom – don’t forget dad – for the support…and for the good… perfect jeans!

The question: do you put out on the first date? If there’s a connection and it’s been more than 2-months, then YES!

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Sunday Funday: Relax, you found “The One.”

December 1, 2014 Leave a comment

There is nothing nice about the going through the gauntlet of dating me. Some call me, “The wizard of Oz”, it’s a bunch of non-science. After years and years of research, I’m pretty sure I found “The One” after just 4-dates, 3-dates?

Four dates! 3 dates-started online.

Long story short: she picked-up of her son and visited her parents with their grandson, all the while I “physically” paid the bills, watched football, created a 60-day budget (including Christmas)

She pays her own bills, I just paid my bills factoring the Christmas budget. We spent Sunday Morning talking over coffee….TV…lunch with a beer. We’re still on the same page.

Categories: Uncategorized

The Day after Thanksgiving: The Christmas Blues. #mancavetalk

November 29, 2014 Leave a comment

I never really think about how much money I pay in child support, after last month’s commission, I’m guessing neither do my managers. Then again, they have time to sit around in the office all day and play with the numbers. My vacation was set forimages (25) December, I handed in the vacation request for those 3-days, 3-months early.

Right around the time I made the final payments on the airline tickets and hotel reservation. This is my first vacation in 4-years.

Uncharacteristically, the one thing that my managers and supervisors can manipulate when it comes to my commission rate is processing client cancels. I had virus that lasted two-weeks, it was all I could do to show up to work. After the round of Presidone, I was functional and my throat lymph nodes returned to normal size. My take home pay dropped $700, just because I had the gall to get sick. My best guess: they hoped I dropped dead.

You want to talk about office politics and kicking a guy when he is down. These unhappily married administrators, who said I made too much money when I was the only person who was willing to commute 4-hrs a day to work on Martha’s Vineyard, are now fucking with my commission (again). The one month I actually go away on vacation in four-years. They decide to process each and every cancel and them some, just to fuck with my commission.

They forget, I only needed one helper, Jeffrey Deitke, for all that: client, revenue, and profit growth on the Vineyard during that heyday. . How many helper’s are there today? What’s the net revenue?

I could care less. My niece doesn’t need to attend Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party – it would have been nice though – since it’s probable going to be her only visit to Disney World, Ever! I get it, these administrative people are jealous, granted they get to stay in a nice warm climate controlled office year round, get paid sick days, paid holidays, paid vacation. I get half pay for a vacation day. That’s it. No paid sick days, No paid holidays. 50% paid vacation for the first two-weeks.

I was sick for 3-days, that cost me $700 and my niece’s experience of a lifetime, because a group of administration people had too much time to gossip and figure-out that I’m once again going to make more money or less hours in a territory that no one else wanted. (I’m actually going to make the same amount of money as last year, working less hours.) Pay Attention! That’s effectively a Pay Raise!

Why do we have these administration people? Most techs – me – are willing to do the work for free at home, if giving access to Mission, the corporate computer system. The… The economy has recovered, you’re allowed to cut jobs without any political-backlash.

download (15)For me, voluntarily, off the top: 25% of my gross income goes towards child support. The administration team doesn’t bring this up during these gossip sessions as they continue their gossip session and put a client on hold. That causes my client to become frustrated wanting to cancel. That causes my net pay to drop $700 for the month, that’s a $1000 back into corporate pockets so Wall St. is content.

I have no money to enjoy my vacation. None. Then there’s Christmas. I barely have enough money to heat the home, never mind Christmas presents.

Forty-grand that’s the difference between my take home pay and my net pay. Why do I work for corporate america again?

The one month in four years I need the numbers to work, they fuck me.

My nieces first and only trip to Disney, and my administrative team fucks me over, because I’m about to make more money than last year on less hours.

You paid how much for your administrative staff? Sure, I’m made $1000 less this month that was added to you bottom-line. If I had the same access that the administration “save team” had, I’d not only make that $1000 back, maybe a few hundred bucks more ($1850- 30%).

Here’s the thing. If you get rid of your gossip administration center, your clients are willing to pay a 30% premium price for your product, the client counts don’t continue to plummet (like a rock) your techs are getting a 30% boost in pay (not including the boost in commission from lack of client cancels!) Since they have now have “recorded” access to do administration duties when they get home and really care that Mr. Jones can only afford $80, while Mrs. Smith is willing to pay $159 if you can swing by on Saturday. ($350 on a Sunday)

Seriously, you paid how much to take $700 out of my pocket, to put $1000 back into big corporate pockets? For something 7500-employees are willing to do for free. You made the numbers work, but are you happy? Would life be easier with 2000-less employees?

Back in the mancave to quiet my mind, Perfect Weekend!

Categories: Uncategorized

A family trip to Boston’s Aquarium on less than $50 (including pizzas) #middleclass

November 24, 2014 Leave a comment

I – unbeknownst to me – planned the perfect trip to the the New England Aquarium. Being a single dad, I usually travel with two OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAgirls – my niece and my daughter. I invite my new love interest and her son.

We’ve had a bunch of one-on-one dates, and now want to try out our relationship with the kids. HOLY FUCK!

No, it’s really not that bad. I enjoy parenting, I’m just trying not to overstep my bounds. Just ask my girls and when I use the word “brat.” It’s usually when the other kid agrees, “you’re being a brat”

The new word for Kit-Kat is Kitty-Kat, my niece likes that name, as she processed it on the subway. MBTA. (I do my best to make her a leader, not self-conscience)

My subway story..

I know the Boston Subway better than the back of my hand. I have a membership to the New England Aquarium, it’s a 25-minute drive to the Quincy Adams parking lot, one of the first stops on the red-line (we all have seats to choose from). I have everything planned, red-line to the orange-line, one stop up, blue-line, one stop up, follow the New England Aquarium signs.

I get flustered from time to time, (you’ll end up near Faneuil Hall Market Place.)images (22)

I paid attention this time. My niece forget her jacket and it’s a little cold, no time for meandering!

It’s the first interaction with all the kids and us (the dating single parents) – your god/your universe smiles down right here.

The reason I got flustered was because there was an hour detour for the MTBA redline, my date’s first experience with her son on the red-line, it was awful. It’s usually a quit (quick, she didn’t quit) quick trip: step on, step off, step on, quick step off, quick step on, step off and then we are there!

This didn’t happen this visit, I even thought about why I bad-mouthed Uber. Sitting on this stupid bus as it drove the streets of Boston. (yes we got the back seat for all 5-of us, thank you) [universe speak]

We haven’t even got to the New England Aquarium, and I’m thinking, this is going horribly wrong. I can’t even create small talk with my date. It’s all she can to do control her son’s excitement, I’m just making sure my girls are safe. (think secret service duty)

We finally make it to the New England Aquarium, a short walk from the MBTA blue line. (from south station: one stop up to the downtown crossing, then one stop up to aquarium)

I’m a member, I get one of those, “we do it for everybody, are you doing just because it’s me moments,”  long story short it’s free for all of us, even the extra child. (no, it’s not my skin color, I’m a familiar face)

Ugh the return home. As the girl’s eat chip’s, the boy is staring at the building and the crane, let’s not forget his lollipop… As we sit in this NEAQ cafeteria the girls decide to head back home.

We head home. Walk down to the subway (MBTA) one on, one off, one on, one off, then the red line….the bus trip.

Let me remind you it’s not just the familiar faces of me, my daughter, and my niece, but I brought along a date with her son.

images (23)A Boston Cop hails down the bus for us…all 5-of-us, my niece without a jacket. (she usually doesn’t need it, that’s the first thing he notices, not to mention the college kids who always grab a bite to eat at Subway before they catch the bus.)

Here’s the thing: I’m thinking how horrible wrong this day went. My date is amazed that her son is asleep so early in the day – EVENING – on this inconvenient bus ride.

He wakes ups – like a trooper – wanting to see the trains leave or arrive! As we wait at JFK-UMASS (with no minute marker), my date offers up her jacket to my niece. My niece is like me, but younger. I’m warm, but she’s cold. The JFK red-line finally arrives, we get to the car at Quincy Adams parking lot, my date and I secure the kids in the back seat and FINALLY! have time to talk.

We talk, discuss about dinner options, decide on a couple of pizza pies, she calls from my phone, we pick them up on the way home. Feed the kids, spent time talking, feed the kids some more, spent more time talking at the kitchen table..539w

Now it’s time to convince the kids it time for bed, time to go.

Wiped out they agree..

I spent $21 (MBTA train, (neaq membership already paid for , free pass for a small child, a couple bags of chips, a gummy worm lollipop), then $7 in parking. She was so impressed that she paid for the(1)cheese and (1) buffalo pie. ($25)

I lost my train of thought…

Oh yeah $46, I’m middle class and I know my way around Boston. I don’t need a taxi or order a uber.

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