Friday, January 31, 2014
Rant #1,135: A January Not To Remember
I am quite glad that this month is just about over.
One more day and I can breathe right again.
It seems from the get go, this month has been a horrible one for myself and my family.
It started out innocently enough.
The ball dropped in Times Square, but if you remember, ABC had some mistake with its cameras, so you did not get the full feel of the ball dropping because of misplaced advertising signs and bad angles.
That is OK. Nobody ever remembers anything about the ball dropping, anyway, after it happens.
But was this an omen for the rest of the month? I just don't know.
Then we got really into the month, and well, everything that could happen did happen to myself and my family.
Let me count the ways ...
I had an altercation with a metal garbage can, probably the last metal garbage can used in Nassau County on Long Island.
I guess you can say that the metal garbage can won that altercation, because it ripped off a good portion of the right side of my car.
That altercation cost me my car for about four days and several hundred dollars out of my pocket, making my wallet lighter than it is to begin with.
And one of the cars I used to get to work--my mom's car--suffered a flat tire while I drove it, and also, the "check engine" light went on during driving. I paid for the new tire, but the $400-plus bill for the check engine light went to my parents. I simply did not have the money to pay for it.
A few days after getting the car back, I reached for the door handle to get into my car, and it broke off in my hands.
Never in my 40 years of driving has this ever happened to me.
That still hasn't been fixed, not because I don't want it to be fixed, but because of the ineptitude of the people I was dealing with at Kia.
I found out yesterday that he replacement door handle was never ordered, as was promised to me, and when it is ordered, it won't come in until next week. The repair shop is only open during business hours, so somehow, I am going to have to get over there and get this done without upsetting my workplace.
During the month, my wife got rewarded for being a good citizen by getting jury duty. But no, she can't have this locally, she has to have this at the Eastern District Court of New York, which means she had to travel 50 miles there and back to serve. She gets the money back for gas and parking, and she was excused since her first appearance on Monday, but the drive is a horror, and it led to a completely wasted day and anxiety about having to go back there that continues today and for the next week.
Then, my son broke his computer. He had absolutely the dirtiest computer I have ever seen, and then earlier this week, he decided to clean it.
He took Windex to it, it must have shorted out some of the keys, and VOILA!, his computer doesn't work properly, a perfectly good computer in the trash can. He hooked up a spare keyboard to it, he can use it, but it is very awkward.
My daughter, although she does not live with us, is not immune to this nonsense we have experienced this month.
She received a parking ticket for parking her car near work in the spot she always uses, and has for quite a long time. It seems that the village she works in is now enforcing the parking rules there, and she and her fellow workers all got hit with tickets.
She has to go to court in February, and since the car is under my name, I was the one who received the summons, so I have to be there too.
And hopefully the final indignation happened earlier this week, when a bill that my wife and I sent out--our car insurance bill--was sent directly back to us with no notation as to why. The stamp was there, the address shone through the envelope's window, and everything seemed hunky dory. I took it to the post office for an explanation, and the clerk took one look at the envelope and said the reader read the forwarding address as our address, and that is why it was returned to us.
In my 56-plus years of life, I have never had a letter returned to me because of this circumstance--have you? The post office sent it out again, and hopefully it will reach its destination and won't be late.
So many other idiotic things happened to my family this month--my parents both falling on the ice (no damage, thank goodness), my wife and I needing replacement Social Security cards, constant snow shoveling, and many other little, trivial, yet annoying things, that I can't wait for the month to end, so we can move on from this nonsense into some semblance of normalcy.
The one good thing that is guaranteed is that even if February is equally as bad, it is the shortest month of the year, so at least we won't have to suffer for 30 days, just 28.
All I ask is for some normalcy, and I will gladly take it.
If not, I think I am gonna scream!
(And to continue my agony, there will be no new column on Monday. I might put in another "best of," but I won't be around to write a new Rant, and that is another story for another time. Have a wonderful weekend, have a great Super Bowl if that is your thing, and I will be back full steam ahead on Tuesday. See you then.)
Posted by Larry at 2:19 AM