The HOA Is Asking Us To Decide Something Morally Murky

Seeing clearly? Antique lenses used by eye doctor to determine the prescription for your spectacles.

• • •

When I saw the lawyer’s return address on the letter in our mailbox I knew something was up with the Home Owners Association [HOA].

I opened the envelope and began to read the letter + the attachments, written in legalese, describing what the HOA wants us, the homeowners, to decide about changing our by-laws.

I like our HOA.  The people on it do a good job of informing us in a timely manner about break-ins and coyotes and streets under repair and pool closures. Things like that, plus they do a great job of keeping the entrances looking spiffy.

They earn their keep;  however I find this proposed addition to the by-laws to be a dicey issue.

We are being asked as a group to decide if a registered sex offender [in any state] can buy or rent a house in this large subdivision.

I don’t know if there’s a right or wrong answer to this proposed addition to the by-laws because while it may be legal, this is a morally murky area.

I mean, if someone has done their time for their crime do we have the right to not let him or her live here? Or is this a high-handed way to snoop inside the lives of other people?

And further, what about domestic violence perpetrators with a police record? Or drunk drivers with multiple arrests?  Do we refuse to allow them to live here?  They worry me as much as, if not more than, registered sex offenders.

Like I said, no clear answer here– but a great topic of conversation. What say you to this? Comments are open below.

At The Grocery Store: You Say Potato, I Say Bosc Pear

A conversation in the checkout lane in which I once again educate the youth of today, a boy child, about the produce one finds in ye olde Kroger…

Cashier Kid: What are these?

Me: Pears.

Cashier Kid: They don’t look like pears.

Me: They’re pears. Bosc pears.

Cashier Kid: What’s that?

Me: Pears.

Cashier Kid: Really?

Me: Yes. Look them up on your list.

Cashier Kid: How do you spell it?

Me: Bosc with a B.

Cashier Kid: Huh, they’re here, BUT THEY DON’T LOOK LIKE THE PEARS MY MOM BUYS.

Me: Uh huh.

Cashier Kid: What do they taste like?

Me: Pears.

Cashier Kid: Why are they so brown like potatoes?

Me: Because, like apples, there are different types of pears. There are golden delicious apples and red gala apples and green granny smith apples, right? Well, there are different kinds of pears.

[Long pause while cashier kid glares at my bag of Bosc pears, presumably thinking about what I said. A learning experience?]

Cashier Kid: Hmmm…

[Second long pause while Cashier Kid stares at me as if he thinks I’m pulling some kind of con on him and the entire Kroger chain of grocery stores.]

Me: These are Bosc pears.

[Finally accepting my explanation of the pears in question, Cashier Kid weighs them so that I might be permitted to buy them.]

Cashier Kid: Bet my mom wouldn’t like these pears. She likes the green ones, THE REAL PEARS.

And so endeth the conversation about pears…

Plugging In: A Short Story Of Computer Angst & Good Intentions Gone Bad

AS YOU MAY RECALL when last we met I was distraught about what I believed to be the demise of my precious desktop computer, Cora.

However, I was wrong about Cora.  Allow me to explain.

You see, Zen-Den decided to help me by unplugging my phone charger from my computer and instead plugging it into the surge protector strip that is on the floor behind the desk on which Cora sits.

He did this so that the round phone charger could sit on the desktop farther away from the round stone coaster on which I put my beverage whilst typing on Cora. There was concern, well-founded, that I’d accidentally, absent-mindedly use the round phone charger as my coaster, thereby ruining the charger.

Nice thought, good intentions.

• • •

THEN Z-D AMSCRAYED OFF to Colorado where he did Important Work Things leaving me with what seemed to be a dead computer sitting on the top of my desk.  I, of course, did all the requisite things one does when one’s computer appears to have given up the ghost.

I double-checked that everything was plugged in.  I banged on the keyboard.  I checked the mouse battery.  I turned the surge protector strip on and off.

I swore. I begged. I prayed.

And I texted Zen-Den who told me to do that which I’d already done, and that he’d look at Cora when he got back home at the end of the week.

Which he did.

But here’s the thing, when Z-D had added the phone charger plug to the surge protector strip, he moved all the plugs around on the strip to make them fit, not knowing there was a defective outlet on the strip.

Thus he inadvertently plugged Cora into an outlet that sent no electricity to her, so she did not work for me.  However, when he repositioned her plug on the surge protector strip, she came to life.  Like a miracle.

And there was joy in the land.

Huzzah, huzzah.

All of which brings me to the fact that I’m back to blogging, properly plugged in, happily engaging with Cora, and ready to share my own brand of flapdoodle & twaddle here.

Again.

Please Stand By

We are experiencing technical difficulties here at Chez Bean.  My desktop computer, Cora, has stopped working & I’m writing this post on a laptop that I believe does not have my best interests at heart.

Thus, instead of fighting with a machine that makes me snarly, I’m going to bug out of the blogosphere [again], returning in a few weeks when I have a new desktop computer.

[Don’t judge.  Desktop is my preferred style of machine.  Yes, I know it’s old school, but so be it.]

In the meantime may I suggest that you take a gander at my blogroll and go visit some of those fine folks.  They have good things to say.  In fact while you’re there be sure to tell them that I say “hi!”

Honestly, if it’s not one thing around here it’s another… 

Goodbye Spring: Excuse Me While I Kiss The Sky, NOT

Purple petunias in terra cotta pot as seen in humid, hazy light. No filter involved. Photo taken mid-morning.

With a hat tip to Jimi Hendrix, I’d like to share with you, my gentle readers, that this has not been a wonderful spring.  This makes me sad because I love late spring.

It’s my second favorite time of year. Oh yes it is.

However this year, to continue quoting Jimi, “Lately things they don’t seem the same, Acting funny, but I don’t know why.”

Which is me alluding to the fact that all it does around here is rain.

Soggy parsley.

I’m talking inches of rain, daily. Flash flooding. Mudslides. Slippery sidewalks.

Overwatered pots of formerly beautiful geraniums and petunias, now looking like death warmed over.

Pots of herbs so wet they are existing in a weird soggy stasis, looking pathetic.

Sad basil.

In the parlance of ye olde weather forecasters who claim to know why we’ve had this excessive, soul-sucking rain: there’ve been “numerous ripples of energy” that have brought more rain showers and thunderstorms to the region than are normal.

Uh huh. That’s nice.

However, be that as it may, while the rain continues unabated I’ll just contemplate “am I happy or in misery” while I’m stuck inside the house today in my own version of a caffeinated, irritable, non-psychedelic purple gray haze.

Me happy. NOT.

Stone steps down to terrace as seen in humid, hazy light. Again, no filter involved. Photo taken mid-morning.

Bibbidi, Bobbidi, Boo: Home Maintenance Happens, For A Price

I’m back, waving hello. 

My late spring blogging hiatus is over.  Because of the almost constant rain I [we?] didn’t accomplish everything I [we?] wanted to do, but I’ve researched that which has not been done and made plans about how to do it.

For me, a solutions girl, that’s a big deal.

So here’s what did happen: we got a new roof put on the house. And kids, that’s a noisy and messy thing to have happen.  This is the third time in my life that I’ve had the pleasure of living in a house as a new roof is installed.

*bang, bang, bang*

Next time, should there be one, I’m going to a hotel for the duration.  The 30 hours of noise involved in tearing off an old roof and then putting on a new roof made me anxious.

[Consider that the understatement of all time.]

• • •

But wait, there’s more.

Try to contain your excitement has I tell you about a few other homeowner things we did whilst I was not here.

  • Z-D and I rebuilt a stone wall around the base of a huge tree that is terrace-adjacent;
  • he painted the inside of the screened-in porch and got the screens replaced;  and
  • we chatted with various sales wonks, then ordered new windows for the front of the house because the current wooden ones are rotting.

In other words, not to put too fine a point on it, we spent a boatload of money on necessary home maintenance projects that will improve our lives, but said projects do not immediately bring joy to my heart.  

Like a long vacay in Hawaii would. Or a first class excursion to London. Or a train trip across Canada.

[All expensive, potentially joyful, adventures that I long to do.]

But that’s what happens when you have a house you consider your home– and you are responsible adults who lack a fairy godmother to magically, in an instant, transform and repair your house with the flick of her wand.

• • •

Question of the Day

So what’s new in your life? Anything magical? Tell me about it in the comments below. I feel so out of touch with everyone.

• • •

Let’s Chat: Answering 24 Questions About My High School Experiences

I got these questions from John at The Sound of One Hand Typing. He got them from Barbara at teleportingweena. I see that Melanie at sparksfromacombustiblemind has done them, too. Clearly these are THE QUESTIONS to answer.   

Think about your SENIOR year in High School. The longer ago it was, the more fun the answers will be!

  1. Did you know your current significant other? No. We met in college a few years later.
  2. Make and year of car? I didn’t have a car until I was a senior in college.
  3. What kind of job? I worked at a DQ until it went out of business. I never could master making those DQ swirls on top of the cones, but I don’t think that’s why the place went out of business.
  4. Where did you live? I lived in a small house on a brick street a few blocks away from the high school. I walked to school.
  5. Were you popular? I had friends but wasn’t part of the A-list crowd.
  6. Were you in choir? No. I was in the orchestra and the band.
  7. Ever get suspended from school? Why yes I did. Didn’t you?
  8. If you could, would you go back? Are you crazy? I would not in a million years want to go back to high school.
  9. Still talk to the person that you went to prom with? I didn’t go to prom because no one asked me, therefore I have no one to talk, or not talk, with.
  10. Did you skip school? I liked school enough to not skip it.
  11. Go to all the football games? I was in marching band therefore I was forced to go to the home football games. Our team was not a winning team. *yawn*
  12. Favorite subject? I liked English and I also liked Printing which was part of a graphic arts department. Those two subjects made up for Chemistry and the most boring American Government class that has ever happened anywhere in this country ever.
  13. Do you still have your yearbooks? No, I threw them away years ago.
  14. Did you follow the career path you planned? I had no career path in high school. It was just something to get through on my way to college.
  15. Did you have a class ring? Yes, I had a class ring. It was yellow gold with a dark green stone in it. I still have it [somewhere].
  16. Still close with your best friend? Yes, she comments here sometimes.
  17. Who was your favorite teacher? My favorite teacher was the assistant music teacher who’d just graduated from college the year before. His youngest sister was younger than I was and attempting to think of him as a teacher was almost impossible. He was a hoot, especially when he tried to direct the orchestra, something he did not do well.
  18. What was your style? I was a girl wearing matchy-matchy outfits in bright colors with coordinating jewelry and pretty shoes. Let’s call that style: small-town Glamour magazine teenage chic.
  19. Favorite shoes? I don’t remember any one pair in particular.
  20. Favorite music? I liked rock and I liked jazz. I played classical.
  21. High school hair? I had a short hairstyle that made my mother happy. I stretched my curly hair straight and used about half a can of hairspray each morning to keep the frizz at bay. It was a labor-intensive hairdo.
  22. What kind of cologne/perfume? I don’t remember any one perfume that I used. I’m sure I did, but what it was, I dunno.
  23. How old when graduated? I was 18 years old.
  24. Did you play a sport? No, but I did take all sorts of lessons, like golf and tennis and swimming. But as for a team sport… you gotta be kidding me!

FYI: For the next few weeks I’m going to bug out of the blogosphere while we do homeowner things. Our house is 20 years old. There are problems to solve, issues to address. Therefore, I’ll be busy elsewhere being a responsible adult. Look for me back here mid-June.