Monday, November 30, 2009

2012 - NOT the movie

Some things are just too good not to share...

It is simply remarkable all the "arguments" the believers have come up with to forward their doomsday.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Dishes on any given day

To most readers I'm sure this looks like a sink. Well, okay, it is. To me this looks like a dish cloth where it is supposed to be, and a red scrubby thingy where it is supposed to be. I have successfully washed dishes twice now. And run the disposal once. All without incident. This appears to be all I need to have a successful day.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Seattle Tourist - Ferry Rides

The sun was shining, actually shining this morning. I understand this is a strange and rare occassion this time of year here in the great north wet. I took my coffee and croissant down to Edmonds Beach. I love Edmonds Beach, and Richmond Beach and Gateway Beach...okay I love the beaches. While I watched the single gull on the beach lurking for a piece of my croissant the ferry came in. Oh, this ferry is one I've wanted to ride from the first time I watched them going in and out this last summer.
I am feeling this morning a bit defeated (read disposal issues) and just unsettled which I won't share here. I drove the three minutes back home, bundled up, grabbed a notebook for writing (okay, so that part didn't work) and headed back to Edmonds. Three hour parking is all I needed.
The view from inside the walkway. All I'm thinking is that it is about time I took this trip.
From the deck the view of the Puget Sound is spectacular, but the pilings are in focus.
206 cars fit on the ferry. At Edmonds/Kingston ferry there are two boats that crisscross the sound - the Spokane and the Puyallup
Coming into Kingston. Is this a sunny, wonderful, perfect day or what?!
Both Edmonds and Kingston have a lovely marina. I love dark hulled sailboats.
In the shadows - long tall sally.

The Puyallup is a nicer boat. Maybe it's newer. The breeze had picked up by the time I was on the return trip. The wind was whipping by so strong around the bow I could feel my glasses move on my face. I walked the decks on the sunny side both coming and going. Soaking it in.

Kingston is a lovely, small, sedate town. Just what I needed today. The view of the houses on the slopes nearby was provincial and inviting. There is a quilt shop on the Kingston side that garnered most of my time, though none of my money. Maybe next time. But, next time I want to bring my bike over to the island and bike through the neighborhoods and wooded areas I could see from the ferry. Best thing, pay one way, the way home is free. A bike is only a $1 premium. An excellent three hours for all of $7. Tourism on a shoestring.

Ta DA!!!

The disposal uses a 1/4 inch allen wrench. Just so you know. After fussing with the thing for half an hour (for today), and actually making headway (miniscule, but headway) I finally called in the reserves, the apt. manager. He was none too happy with assisting. But, he did come down and strong arm enough of the thing out that while he left for a moment to get gasoline, I mean a pair of pliers, I was able to coax the rest out.

I finally called in help. What is it with me getting around to asking for help? Took me long enough. But, ta da!!! Success! A special thank you for all who offered assistance both on this site and at KCL. Thanks to my friend in the warm and wonderful south for suggesting I tape the switch in the off position when I realized I couldn't unplug the unit. Thanks to my friends in the cold and north wet mountains for reminding me I may want to know where the water cut-off valves are (a funny story they tell very well - especially around the dinner table). And to a friend I've never met in Florida for suggesting an allen wrench that will actually fit. You guys are the greatest!

Okay, now I can think about setting up the christmas tree. That should keep me out of trouble for a little bit. Or not?

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

In true holiday fashion my disposal has a dish cloth stuck in it and is useless at this time. I realized today that this is a typical Thanksgiving tradition for me. The first year I did this it was celery that mucked up the works.
Thank goodness I was not hosting dinner at my house.

I have pulled out the trusty allen wrenches to see if I could do any further damage from outside the disposal unit. Nope. None of the wrenches fit into a solid footing from under the unit. I'll be back to broomsticks and tugging on the cloth tomorrow. Tonight I'm turning off the lights in the kitchen and turning on a movie. Yep, run favorite method for tackling problems beyond my scope.

Update tomorrow :D
Happy Thanksgiving!!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Today's Fight

And the disposal is winning.
This morning I finally reached into the kitchen drain to see what the problem is. The drain has been slow. The garbage disposal has been making terrible noises and shaking the counter tops all week. I finally found why the disposal is mad at me. I shoved a brand new dish cloth down it. Surgery may be in order. After turning the blades "manually" with a broom stick (see fig. 1) I've been able to pull up quite a bit of the cloth. The project has, unfortunately, gotten quite tedious (read: I'm tired of goofing around with it). I'm beginning to believe it's time to unseat the disposal, cut away the wash cloth from both sides of the blade and reseat it.

This is gonna be a big deal, isn't it?

News "worth" reading

Yes, the story is sensationalized. But I like it anyway...

Judge blasts bad bank, erases 525G debt

Comments: 52

Judge KOs 525G mortgage to slap bank

Last Updated: 4:18 PM, November 25, 2009

Posted: 3:46 AM, November 25, 2009

A Long Island couple is home free after an outraged judge gave them an amazing Thanksgiving present -- canceling their debt to ruthless bankers trying to toss them out on the street.

Suffolk Judge Jeffrey Spinner wiped out $525,000 in mortgage payments demanded by a California bank, blasting its "harsh, repugnant, shocking and repulsive" acts.

The bombshell decision leaves Diane Yano-Horoski and her husband, Greg Horoski, owing absolutely no money on their ranch house in East Patchogue.

Spinner pulled no punches as he smacked down the bankers at OneWest -- who took an $814.2 million federal bailout but have a record of coldbloodedly foreclosing on any homeowner owing money.

YOU OWN IT: Greg Horoski won his battle to keep his Patchogue one-level ranch home, as a judge called OneWest bank's foreclosure efforts against Horoski and his wife "repulsive."

"The bank was so intransigent that he [the judge] decided to punish them," Greg Horoski, 55, said about Spinner's scathing ruling last Thursday against OneWest and its IndyMac mortgage division.

It erased up to $291,000 in principal and $235,000 in interest and penalties.

The Horoskis -- who had been paying only interest on their mortgage -- had no equity in the home.

Horoski, who had begged the bankers to let him restructure the loan, said, "I think the judge felt it was almost a personal vendetta." Dealing with the bank, he said, was "like dealing with organized crime."

OneWest said, "We respectfully disagree with the lower court's unprecedented ruling and we expect that it will be overturned on appeal."

It claimed it "has been extremely active in working with consumers on home loan modifications through the Obama administration's Home Affordable Modification Program and other loan modification initiatives."

The bank is owned by a private equity group that purchased the failed IndyMac bank.

Yano-Horoski, a college professor of English and cognitive reason, and Horoski, who sells collectible dolls online, bought their 3,400-square-foot, one-level house 15 years ago for less than $200,000.

In 2004, court records show, they refinanced, paying off their original mortgage with part of a $292,500 sub-prime loan from Deutsche Bank. They used what was left for health care and for his business.

The loan carried an initial adjustable interest rate of 10.375 percent, which soared to 12.375 percent.

It eventually ended up being either owned or serviced by IndyMac, and the bank sued the couple in July 2005 when they began having trouble making payments because of Horoski's health problems.

After a foreclosure was approved last January, Yano-Haroski successfully asked for a court settlement conference.

Spinner excoriated OneWest for repeatedly refusing to work out a deal, for misleading him about the dollar amounts at stake in the case, and for its treatment of the couple over months of hearings.

OneWest's conduct was "inequitable, unconscionable, vexatious and opprobrious," Spinner wrote.

He canceled the debt because the bank "must be appropriately sanctioned so as to deter it from imposing further mortifying abuse against [the couple]."

The bank is involved in a similar case in California, where it's trying to foreclose on an 89-year-old woman, despite two court orders telling it to stop.

Read more:

Monday, November 23, 2009

Is it Holiday time yet?

Something must have come loose in my brain. I'm thinking I may actually pull out the old boxed Christmas tree and set it up this year. I don't know what's gotten into me. I'm going to run with it anyway. I have no children around, mine or otherwise. I have no guests scheduled to pop in, even for an afternoon of coffeee and chitchat. I am currently without a paying job. I have no expectations to go gift shopping. In good old-fashioned grown children manner I'll be sending my brood money if I have any. Green gifts are good for the environment, you know. Oh yeah, I follow Buddhism as a matter of choice. AND YET, I am looking forward to Friday when it seems to be the first appropriate opportunity to set up the Christmas tree.

I'm looking forward to this Festival of Lights season. In only a month the days will be getting longer again anyway. Yes, time for the holidays~

Friday, November 20, 2009

The big belch

Advertising gone awry...
The sign reads, "So nice you'll taste it twice."
Possibly truth in advertising. I choose not to find out.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

I'm Legal!

They can't kick me out any longer for being a slacker. I actually spent the time today getting a proper Washington State Driver's License. Most of the time I sat and waited for my number to be called. Amazingly, I did not fill out a single form. I took no test. I handed over my Wisconsin state license, my passport and a utility bill with my current address and the woman behind the desk did all the typing. She asked me if I've ever held a Washington state driver's license (no), do I want to be registered to vote (yes), do I want to be an organ donor (yes). I really only had to do three things...I did have to prove that I can see. I did have to sign two things, the card with the little yellow box and my check made out to DOL (which I take means Department of Licensing). Ta da. I got my picture taken and a paper copy of my license (mock-up proof style) until the real deal comes in the mail. As the woman handed me the paper license she even smiled and said, "Welcome to Washington."

I heard it on the radio this morning...I live in the North Wet!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Seattle Immigration Issues

I've gone underground today. Shhh, if the Seattle immigration officials come knocking on my door I'm going to be in deep. They'll find my three day old coffee grounds still in the coffee maker. They will see I have almost two cups of coffee left in my Thermos carafe. And they will know that this morning I had to have zapped my cup of coffee in the mircrowave.

Let me tell you, this is some good coffee...I'm ready to zap a fresh cup. shhhhh.....!!!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Sons & Mothers

My son moved away today. It's been a hard day for me. He, on the other hand, is wonderfully happy to be starting life again. More power to him.
Vaya con dios.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


For mom:

St. Wenceslaus Square looks so very far away from the Astronomical Clock on our tourist map. Yet, as I count it out it’s maybe all of seven blocks. On the map, the Square is pictured all the way in the bottom corner. It appears we will have a long cab ride to the hotel. I say this mostly because our hotel is not on the map. Supposedly, here at St. Wenceslaus Square is the subway we are to take. I worry our hotel is out in the god-forsaken suburbs. Not that I’ve seen a Czech suburb yet, but I’m sure they have one.

Yes, I take pictures of manhole covers.

Monday, November 2, 2009


Either way the game goes I win.
He's just so much fun to watch.