Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Autumn Blues

It was kind of late when I finally dragged myself out of bed this morning. Ran another spooky TV show episode as I ate breakfast. Hard rock star Alice Cooper made a rather controversial appearance early in the third season of The Muppet Show. They had fun with Cooper's scary image as he tries to get the Muppets to sell their souls to his "boss"...but only Gonzo shows any real interest.

To my surprise, the laundromat was totally dead when I made it there around 11:30. There wasn't a soul around, and I only saw a few people pass through. I was able to do my small load and work on story ideas in peace.

By the time I put everything away and got back on the road, it was quarter after 1. I had a counseling appointment at 2! I tried to rush, but my tire wasn't moving well. It hadn't been moving well for a while, but now it was really sluggish. Yeah, it was flat. Just what I needed. I kicked at it and yelled at it and me. Thankfully, a jogger on her way home was nice enough to offer me a ride to King's Highway - her van was able to carry my bike.

Mrs. Stahl didn't make me feel much better. I'm flat broke. I have barely any money. I should be getting a slightly bigger paycheck than I have been getting this week, but at least part of the rent is going to be late. Again. After Miss Willa said for it to not be late this month. The budget we worked out allows for rent and food and saving money and not much else.

I don't know what I'm going to do. I feel so useless. Every time I think I can live like a nice, normal human being, I find out I can't. There isn't anyone I can talk to. Both sets of parents are dealing with medical bills. My sisters can't find jobs, either. No one at work understands. I don't know what I'm going to do about Christmas. Everyone keeps saying I'm so smart. If I'm so smart, why is this happening to me? If I'm so smart, why can't I get a real job? Why can't my sisters and friends get real jobs? I don't even know what I really want to do, besides write.

I couldn't help the tears when I got out of Mrs. Stahl's office. She wanted me to stick to that budget like glue. Which meant no eating out, no bike rides to the towns, no festivals or church bazaars or yard sales. I'll keep doing the Farm Market until it closes at the end of next month - we factored that in as part of the food budget - but I won't be going too many other places. I'd like to find other volunteering opportunities around here besides the libraries, too. Studio LuLoo just isn't reliable anymore.

Next stop was the bike shop on King's Highway. I didn't have a choice. As it turned out, the rim of the back wheel is bent. I'm starting to wonder just how long Richard's friend had this bike, too. It's not "relatively recent." The young man who repaired the inner tube said the bike is probably from the late 90's-early 2000's, about the same time as my old bike. I could afford the inner tube, but fixing the rim would cost 50 dollars. I'm afraid it'll have to wait. At least I know what's wrong with it now.

I did stop at the Acme on Cuthbert Road on the way home. I'm almost out of milk, and the Acme's skim milk quarts are cheaper than WaWa's. I easily saw the result of Thriftway's closure. They were crazy-busy when I was there, with very long lines. The fact that it was almost 4 at that point didn't help. (I wonder if they're going to be remodeled next? They don't look like they've been remodeled yet.)

Tried to cheer myself up with a ride through Newton Lake Park. It was chilly today, barely in the 50's, but it felt nice on the bike. The sun was in and out of fat clouds all day. There were quite a few people enjoying the lovely fall weather, dog-walkers and other bikers and fishermen and people out for a stroll. The trees are finally starting to turn brilliant shades of red, gold, and copper. The cold finally killed off the last of the algae that plagued the lakes and rivers here all summer. Newton Lake sparkled under the late afternoon sun.

When I got home, I did a little bit of writing. The Resistance Kids arrive at Skywalker Manor to discover it's locked. Hank shows the kids how to pick their way in. Finn is the one who finally jimmies the lock. Hank admires his skills. He says he learned how to pick a lock when he was part of the First Order Gang. He left them when they started hurting people, and he couldn't do it.

Finn has a bit of a crush on Rey, but she never seems to notice anything that isn't mechanical. Hank offers to help, relating stories about how he and Leia got together.

Broke for dinner around 6:30. Started Scooby Doo On Zombie Island as I made scrambled eggs with scallions, mushrooms, peppers, and cheese and Cranberry Flummery for dinner. The first of the Scooby Doo direct-to-home-media movies reunites the gang to help with Daphne's new show. She's determined to find a spook who is an actual supernatural phenomenon, and not just a criminal in a mask. The red-haired reporter gets her wish at a shadowy pepper plantation in the Louisiana bayou. The women in charge seem friendly enough (other than one has trouble with Scooby chasing her cats), but the kids have their suspicions. Something sinister is hiding in the bayous...and this time, the ghosts might just be for real.

I can understand why this was so popular, it re-booted the franchise. This is dark for a Scooby movie, one of the very few to cross over into true horror territory. It's well-written, not badly animated for something intended for home video, and genuinely scary, especially in the end. Not the best Scooby movie to start little guys off on, but if you have older kids who love horror and Scooby, try this one on them.

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