RfD – Reality For Dummies

There is an epidemic in America these days. It’s a damaging combination of ignorance, anger, stubbornness, apathy, gullibility, reluctance, spite, denial, and straight up stupidity. (Among at least a dozen other harmful ways of thinking.) Since this post will revolve mostly around political opinions or beliefs, let me say that I don’t even care what “side” you’re on when it comes to any particular issue… I just want you to be able to recognize and accept things that are false, just as I want you to be able to recognize and accept things that are truthful. Operating within the bounds of reality, to put it simply. Apparently, though, that’s something that can prove to be incredibly difficult for an obscene amount of humans on this planet.

  • Robert Mueller and his team announce 13 new indictments resulting from their investigation. Most of the people are Russian, not linked to Donald Trump in any specific way, and it says the people that the Russians did work with were unwitting participants… unaware that their strings were being pulled by Russians.

Donald Trump and his supporters immediately seized on this news, and either through ignorance or deception – spun it as some sort of huge vindication for Trump. Going on about how the actions of those Russians had no impact on the election, and that it proves that Donald Trump and his campaign “did nothing wrong” and that there was no collusion. All of that, and more, based on these specific indictments on thatΒ specific day.

RfD Explanation: 1) Nobody can say with certainty that the actions of the Russians had zero impact on the election results. You can only say that if you know for certain what would have happened without Russian interference, which is impossible. 2) As for the “did nothing wrong” and “no collusion” claims… those claims can both be true for this incident, with these indictments, while still allowing for those claims to be false when it comes to anything else in the investigation. If the FBI is investigating the mob and they arrest some low level shmuck – just because it was “the shmuck” that was picked up, it obviously doesn’t guarantee that the mob leaders are innocent and will never be caught and charged in the future. That shouldn’t even need explanation.

  • President Obama created DACA protections through an executive order, which Donald Trump has since nullified once he came into office.

In the time since then, Donald Trump has been endlessly tweeting about how Democrats don’t want to help DACA, they don’t really want DACA, they only want it as a campaign issue, and how badly DACA recipients have been treated by the Democrats. He also claims that Republicans are the ones who are working hard to save it, that they want to make a deal to save DACA, and that he’s offering DACA as a great deal to Democrats.

RfD Explanation: Donald Trump single-handedly ended DACA. There shouldn’t be a need for elaboration after that, but… not only is Trump responsible for DACA being in the dire position that it’s in, but he and the Republicans will not vote on a clean DACA bill. He wants to use it as a bargaining chip – the exact thing that he has accused the Democrats of wanting to do. Democrats were even willing to deal, to offer requested funding for “The Wall” in a bipartisan deal that would save DACA – but Trump went back on his word and rejected the deal, feeling he wasn’t getting enough from the Democrats to save DACA. Simply put, the GOP controls the senate and the house, so if Trump wanted to save DACA as he claims, the Republicans could do it themselves – with just a few (happily given) votes from Democrats. Every argument he makes on this is nonsense.

  • Rob Goldman, Vice President of Advertising at Facebook, made several tweets about their part in the Mueller investigation – since they’re being looked at due to Russians buying blocks of advertising on the site before and after the election. He wrote today that “I have seen all of the Russian ads and I can say very definitively that swaying the election was *NOT* the main goal.”

RfD Explanation: The problem with this statement is that Donald Trump and loads of his followers started retweeting this information as fact. That the Russians were “definitively” not trying to sway the election. However, unless the ad buyers directly told Goldman the goal of their plan – his use of the word “definitively” is a huge issue. He can look at all the ads, he can look at other information, but his conclusion is simply an opinion or impressionΒ – not something that should be presented as a fact, and then retweeted by Trump as a fact. It would be like me saying “I read this help wanted ad, and can say definitively that they wouldn’t hire my friend Jim.” It’s not something that can be claimed as fact.


Those are just the three most recent incidents in my mind, where people are being sold a load of horse shit – and they either don’t care or they don’t know any better, so they run with it and repeat it to others as gospel as well. As long as something fits the preferred narrative that someone already has in their head, they’re not going to apply critical thought. Some others… they might actually suspect (or even know) that a piece of information may be partially or completely false, but for some reason they’d rather feel right (with others that think like them) than actually be right.

I’m sure there are some Trump supporters who started out legitimately putting their hope into the guy. Wanting to give him a chance, and believing his words when he’d say how much he was gonna fight for “the little guy” or whatever it was that sold himself to them. Over time though, I’m sure that many of those folks started questioning, and then realizing… that in so many instances, Trump is ridiculously full of shit. But by that point they’re already fully invested – and even just acknowledging the lies and deceptions to themselves is something they aren’t willing to do. Realizing and admitting that you’ve been suckered, even just to yourself, is a difficult thing to do. Nobody likes feeling duped… and many Trump supporters, to me at least, seem like they’d rather angrily defend everything about him and their support for him, rather than allowing anyone else to see that they’ve realized how much they’ve been conned. Their feet are dug in at that point, and nothing will change their mind about how they’re gonna play the rest of the game.

I’m not sure which people are more scary/frustrating to me. The ones who know that Trump (or whoever) is full of shit most of the time, or the folks who really do believe everything that Trump (or whoever) says. I can understand people in the first group, but the second group… how can anyone be so oblivious when they’re being lied to over and over? But hell, in both instances – I can’t help but feel a little bit sorry for them. It would suck to put your faith into someone that turned out to be a snake oil salesman, just as it would suck to be so blinded by hope that you can no longer recognize fact from fiction.

The divide between folks like me and folks like them… it’s getting bigger and bigger with each day that passes. On top of that, while I thought that when it comes to politics, that people would start to consider themselves more as independents, as issue based thinkers and voters – but the opposite seems to be true. Democrats/liberals are moving farther to the left just as quickly as Republicans/conservatives are moving farther to the right. Things feel broken and somewhat irreparable, and I don’t see how it’s going to get any better any time soon. That’s what brings me back to the topic of this post. If people could just make more of an effort to find/recognize/admit truths and resist lies and bullshit, and act on those truths and lies accordingly, things would have to get a little better, right?

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At Ease

I’m doing my best to make the remainder of my evening peaceful. ☺ I’ve straightened up the living room a bit, I’ve got my new spiral bound journal/notepads and extra-fine tipped Pilot Precise V5 rolling ball pens sitting nearby (Mmm… office supplies… 🀀) just in case I feel like writing, and I just ordered the latest Pirates of The Caribbean movie on PPV so I have something to distract me from the “real” and transport me somewhere else.

See, when all I have to worry about is myself, I’m quite capable of not being a mess. 😏 But things like earlier today, where I was simply asked to a family gathering… something that I do appreciate still even being invited to… that messed me up for the better part of the day, feeling bad because I couldn’t make myself go – and knowing that I was letting people down again.

That’s definitely the “mom” in me – how it really does a number on me when something (even unintentionally) makes me feel like a disappointment. 😞 I just gotta remind myself, especially when I’m already struggling, that I can’t live my life to please others – and as long as it isn’t being done maliciously, there’s nothing wrong with that.

So once again I’ll finish this evening by hoping that the feeling continues into the next day, and that maybe my Sunday will truly feel like a day off – where nobody is counting on me for anything, so I can start the day with a clean slate when it comes to what I want to accomplish, if anything. I just really wanna start turning things around, and it doesn’t even matter where it starts. πŸ™‡β€β™‚οΈ I’m not giving up just yet.

Another Week In The Books

Took care of quite a few things this week, but of course as usual – what happens now isn’t really anything that I can control. πŸ˜’ But as far as I know, and until I hear back from all the concerned attorneys, I believe I’ve done everything required for my aunt’s estate to be officially closed out and with the workers comp stuff… well, it’s just gonna do whatever it does. I’m basically a passenger again at this point.

Getting more done on those two fronts has given me a small boost in spirit. I’ve gotta be careful not to screw it up, but I’ve got some motivation now to start tackling the trimming of all the bushes around my house. Reminder, it’s not that it just requires motivation to wanna get out there and clip an obscene amount of bushes, it’s that it will probably hurt and the trimming of the top portion is actually physically impossible for me.

But my change in thinking about the process – I’m gonna trim all the vertical surfaces that I can, as I can, since there’s no rush or deadline… and then I’ve got Cassi coming to take care of the tops for me. (Or at least that’s the current plan.) So I’m feeling a little more upbeat just thanks to that. And yeah, I could vet and hire some d00ds to do it for me, but just having the feeling return to me, that I may actually be able to handle it myself (with help), makes it something that I’d rather try before shelling out even more money for landscaping tasks. It’s frustrating though, sitting in this house, looking out the picture window, and always being reminded of the things that the property needs that I can’t do. 😟 I gotta figure out what to do with that emotion.

 

Typical Tedium

I don’t know why I sometimes can’t let myself just sit and not feel the need to be doing something. Like, I am still not completely back to “tolerable” from the trip, yet I spent a good part of yesterday doing what ended up being four baskets full of laundry. (Nevermind the fact that they’re now sitting in my living room, taunting me to fold/hang them and put them away.) And to make things a bit more annoying, I think something is going on with the heating element in the dryer, because a full dry cycle is no longer leaving the load dry. Not gonna bother with looking into that quite yet though, since all my clothes are clean at the moment – and I’m obviously good at hoarding away dirty clothes in the spare bedroom for as long as needed.

Pain didn’t let me fall asleep until 4am this morning, which I suppose was actually a good thing since I had a neck doc appointment today. (Sometimes it’s good to go in there feeling more banged up than usual, just to reinforce that this crap is real and affects me on a daily basis.) I can’t say enough though, how lucky I am to have had this same doctor for the ten -plus years that I’ve been dealing with this. I even showed up an hour early for my appointment, since I already had to be in town for something else, and they scooted me back to a room just a couple of minutes later anyway.

I told him all about Lake Hope, and my foolish-yet-fun decisions that ended up kicking my ass… heh… but we kind of agreed that sometimes the fun that can be had is worth enduring the pain afterwards. Doing things that make you feel at least a little bit like the person you used to be, knowing you’re gonna hurt, but letting yourself have the whole experience anyway. πŸ™‚ I actually left there in pretty good spirits about everything. (Which isn’t unusual I guess… so yeah, my doc is pretty awesome.)

And somehow I lucked out and didn’t get a single “work/business” call today. I thought for sure that all of the threads that I started pulling on at the end of last week would start unraveling into my phone as soon as folks got into the office… but nope. No attorney, no other attorney, and no IRS. A normal person would probably be a bit mad, or feel ignored… heh… not me. I needed a day.

Reassimilation

The trip ended up being a lot of fun, mostly because we all picked up on each other’s vibes and really only did the stuff we actually wanted to do. Translated: For a while now, I haven’t really had much enthusiasm for going out and taking “good” pics… not sure why, but I figured for the trip I could feed off of their enthusiasm. Luckily, they had no enthusiasm either. πŸ˜… And since we were all “meh, whatever” about making an effort, we ended up with a nice combination of swimming, boating, exploring, and being lazy. πŸ™‚

The photo-nerd in me didn’t goΒ completely dormant though. Between regular and slow-motion video from my phone, pics from my phone, and video from this cheap-o “action camera” that I got from Wish… I still ended up documenting the trip, probably even better than I would have, and mashed it up into four different videos.

Coming back home from this trip was even worse than usual though. Not only the mental “meh” that I get after getting back home from something brain-clearing, but physically… omg… this trip kicked my ass more than any other. πŸ˜– Three days and two nights, where if we weren’t just chilling in the cabin (which we didn’t do much) it meant that we were out doing something, moving around… sometimes moving around a lot. (ie: anything around the lake) So the first 24hrs after getting home were comprised only of hot showers, pain meds, my TENS unit, staying off my phone, and sleep. It was pretty miserable… but I’m slowly getting back to normal.

The second 24hrs after getting back home… heh… it’ll get its own entry here shortly. 😏

Making The Most Of It

I’m feeling a bit antsy this morning. I’ve got a trip coming up with some friends that I scheduled over a month ago, so of course my sleep schedule is all screwed up now as I start to get anxious about it. You know how it is, I just tend to overthink things in general, so my brain has been working overtime to make sure everything goes down as planned, so that everyone has a good time.

We’ve already planned for it to be a mix of business and pleasure. The main guests are Athena and Desiree, since I figured they both deserved a little getaway. Athena, because of all the shit that I’ve done with Cassi that she didn’t get to be a part of, and then Dez, basically because all the girl does is bust her ass. (Work, school, life… heh) Sean gets to come along as well so that Athena doesn’t feel like a third wheel. 😏

But as we were planning it, we knew that we wanted to have some chill time… swimming, cooking weenies and roasting marshmallows over the fire, checking out the abandoned tunnel, etc. (Oh yeah, we’re going for a couple of nights in a cabin at Lake Hope State Park.)Β But then we also wanted to get in as many photo sessions as possible. (The “business” part) There’s gonna be a ton of interesting spots to serve as backgrounds, and there are many planned outfit changes in order to get a lot of different looks in the photos sets. (So if they end up sharing their photos, they can space them out days apart or longer, since they’ll look significantly different from each other.)

I’ve been a depressed blob all week, and I’m still not quite sure how my mood is going to be for all of this, but this is honestly how I have to do things sometimes… schedule them so that they are unavoidable, then *poof* I’m out doing something. πŸ˜’ I’m sure it’ll be fine, I’m sure we’ll all have fun, but that’s why I’m being so twitchy while I pack. Hoping that I got food that everyone will like, and enough of it to last two nights, etc. Meh… I need to stop worrying.

Heh… I just realized, this is another one of those things where people will probably hear about it and think that I’m just off having a grand time without a care in the world, but here I am a day before departure, only 50% sure that I even wanna go. πŸ˜› Another thing that’ll probably bite me in the ass is that everyone else who wants me to take their pictures… they’re gonna see these new ones and either feel snubbed or they’ll be even more intent on me scheduling something with them. Heh… it’s so weird… how little interest I have in the hobby right now. πŸ˜•

Okay, basically I just wanted to bust out an entry to get some of this nervous energy out, but since I don’t really want people to know that I’m not gonna be home for a couple of days – even though I wrote this in the early AM of July 30th, I’m gonna schedule it to post after the trip is already done and I’m back home. πŸ€“ So if you’re reading this, you can figure the trip didn’t turn out to be shit… ‘cuz otherwise I would have deleted it before it even showed up. Alright, back to work…

EDIT: And to make things a little more interesting, since Dezzy is only able to stay the first night, when it’s time for her to go home Cassi is going to come down and take her place. πŸ˜… I’m going to be taking so many pictures on these next couple of days that it’s likely I won’t want to touch a camera again for a long, long while… heh Β but Chelsea and Ariel have both been waiting, oy.