I became insane with long intervals of horrible sanity.
Edgar Allen Poe
The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one's time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.
- H. L. Mencken
Many people would sooner die than think; In fact, they do so
What I have been telling you, from alpha to omega, what is the one great thing the sigil taught me — that everything in life is miraculous. For the sigil taught me that it rests within the power of each of us to awaken at will from a dragging nightmare of life made up of unimportant tasks and tedious useless little habits, to see life as it really is, and to rejoice in its exquisite wonderfulness. If the sigil were proved to be the top of a tomato-can, it would not alter that big fact, nor my fixed faith. No Harrowby, the common names we call things by do not matter — except to show how very dull we are ...
-James Branch Cabell
September 14, 2017 - 12:10 p.m.
Let's start with my health, I'll over my Crohn's attack. I'm still in the aftermath but that should pass soon. It's not painful, just inconvenient. I ate normally yesterday. I even had dessert after dinner, bread pudding, with peanut butter and chocolate ice cream, topped with chocolate syrup. I have tips for cooking plantains. Make sure they have some black on them. Fry them like eggs, in butter, don't deep fry them. Cook at least one side till it is black, that's not burned, it's perfect. You'll taste the difference.
I did not spend all day sleeping but I still didn't go out. After eating lunch, I emptied then refilled the dishwasher. That tired me out. I was still weak. A neighbor had given us a ton of food and there was no room in the fridge. Before dinner I cleaned out the fridge and loaded it with the new food. That did not tire me out. I was pretty much better by then.
Now for my adventures with 311. I don't know how common it is but that's New York City's information line. It was a great innovation of the Bloomberg administration. You have a problem with anything under City control and they take care of it. They will also connect you with state or federal agencies if that's what you need. I had two issues. my problems at the polling place the day before and a street light out on my block. I didn't have to look anything up, one number does the trick. So, I called it. It answered, "Town of North Hempstead information line." Huh? It continued, if you want New York City information call 212 ... ." Obviously, I'm not the only one this happened to. They said the NYC number too fast for me, or anyone, to catch. I called 311 again. This time NYC answered. I went through the menus but accidentally hung up with my cheek. I called again, got North Hempstead again. Same thing next 10 times calling. I went to the internet, there is an online version of 311. It said to report a problem with a polling place call 311. Arrgghh! But I found the number I needed to call. It's 212-NEW-YORK, damn easy to remember. Why didn't North Hempstead say that? I called, they sent me to the board of elections, the person there listened closely, took notes, checked that she got it right, and told me it would be investigated. This was exactly what I wanted.
I called again, got the street light people. That went a little less smooth but I got my message across and they will fix the light.
Then I called again to let them know of the problem I had dialing 311. The person that answered said, When in NYC call 311, when out of NYC call 212-NEW-YORK. I had already told her I was in the Bronx. I told her again. I was reporting that it wasn't working. She just repeated what she said before. I said, I know how it is supposed to work but it isn't. I'm reporting the problem. She said, "What do you expect me to do?" I said report it and have it investigated." She asked, "To who?" Like I'm supposed to know. That's her job. I asked to speak to her supervisor. She said she was putting me on hold but I was disconnected.
I was now upset at that last 311 operator. Who should I call? Do you know? You should, everyone should know who to report these kinds of problems to. I called my City Councilman. Your local, state, and federal reps are great with constituency services. It's the easy part of their job. Every time they help somebody they create good will. The person I talked to was great. He understood why I was so frustrated and said he'd have it investigated. He'd call the City's IT and Communications department; they are in charge of 311. He knew who was in charge of 311 while he person who worked for them didn't.
Oh great, I had something serious to write about but I had to reboot my computer and it took forever. I don't want to start now. I'll save it for the next rainy day. I put it in my ideas bin. I could say maybe I'll write it later today but I know that's a lie. I'm going out tonight and there's no time for that. I think my next free day is Sunday so it will have to wait till Monday when I won't have anything else to write about. Now I have to eat because I'm not sick and have to make up for lost time. Hey, I think even the aftereffects are over; my digestive system is quiescent.
Brother Brothers in Arms - October 01, 2017
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