It’s Cold Out…

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, “I’m a weather wimp.” My comfort range is between 60 to 70 degrees. Any hotter than 70, I sweat and any colder than 60 I freeze.” I got up to let Mr.Toonce out just now and my foot almost broke into little pieces; kind of like when the bad Terminatot came in contact with the liquid nitrogen in the movie Terminator II. Alright, it wasn’t anywhere near that but it was cold enough for Toonce to do his morning business and run back to the RV door and hop in.

I really don’t know how people and cats deal with cold weather in snowy areas…? There wasn’t a cloud in the sky last night when I got back to The Firewood Temple, only the yellow moon but there waiting for me was my loyal roommate meowing his greetings. I asked, “How was you day? Let’s get some cat yums going. There’s nothing like delicious and nutritious cat yums to warm up the soul!” 

Tired from having worked the past four days, I shed my work clothes and crashed out on the bed. Toonce joined me and did his own bedtime routine of nudging my hand as to say, “Okay, you can stop scratching behind my ear when I tell you.” I comply or I get one of his warning bites. Who am I fooling? He’s got me totally trained. This too will pass.

I Love Bankers…

Two Augusts ago I was flush with cash and my newest best friend couldn’t wait to escort me to his desk and offer a cup of coffee… Today I walked into to my branch and found out he had long since moved on. I asked his replacement about getting a loan. I pulled out my special special black card and he sat me down and said, “Well Mr. Guerra, it looks like your balance has dropped below “our” standard for you being a Private Client Customer.”

Seems he didn’t care to hear who I had helped with the money I once had in his bank… I then told him that I was interested in a car loan, not for a new car but a mildly used dealer’s car. He then asked the usual questions as to my credit worthiness. I explained how prior to selling that house I was paying 1400 a month to one of those credit consolidation companies and they tell you it looked better to the credit agencies… Well that’s what they tell you when they sign you up for one of those programs.

He couldn’t care less about who got what from the sale of the house and I knew it wasn’t his decision as to my loan being approved anyway. Here’s how I see this, a day before I received that money from the sale of the house, I was begging the same banker to overturn an overdraft fee, now I’m almost back to where I started from. Here’s the funny thing, if I happened to win the lottery, what do you want to bet I’ll have new banker friends offering me coffee. This too will pass

It All Works Out…

  The septic project had us placing at least a quarter mile of conduit and pipe in the trenches but other than a few final clean up details, it’s finally done… Rob will borrow his buddy’s Bobcat to begin to fill in the trenches and soon if you were to walk on the hillside, you’d never know there’s a maze of pipes below the surface…  

 This morning I awoke once again with Toonce laying on me for warmth. He wanted to go outside but sniffed the air and decided a warm bed would continue to be just fine. I, on the other hand, got dressed and went to the stubborn splitter and again begged it to start. It refused. I then moved the small pile of split wood so as to clear a path for the sick splitter to go to the small engine doctor. Tomorrow we’ll muscle the sick splitter into the pick up truck and take it to our engine specialist, Trang in El Cerrito. 

Here’s my advice to someone who wants to buy a piece of undeveloped land, rethink it. Unless you do the work yourself, it will cost a fortune. If you decide to do it yourself, be prepared to work… This too will pass.  

  A final post script for Sunday… I had taken Rob’s Sunday duty at the last minute yesterday. Today the computer sent me to 11th and Linden in West Oakland. I usually will work in this area but not today. Between the drug dealers, working slaves and pimps, I had a bad feeling about this. I called the duty supervisor and told her, I didn’t feel safe… I’m not going to be in the middle of any street trouble… 

 

Paths to Enlightenment 

Rob called me at 4:45 and said, “I need your help. I’ll make a helper ticket for you.” It seems the prem tech had made a ticket for us to come out but left the customer high and dry by doing none of the inside work. As I was walked towards the rear of the building, I happened to notice a hand written sign saying, “ATT Please knock! We have been waiting all day!” I knocked…

I was met by two of the most spiritually awake souls I’ve met in quite sometime and what made it better was that the ground floor apartment had an air of peace and tranquility. The customer told me her story about how the technician had come in and literally had done nothing and then split. I asked, “Did he leave a modem at least?” She replied, “No. He said he needed you guys to show up.” I went back out to Rob and said, “She got screwed over. I’m gonna run a Cat5 and put the jack in. You have any inside wire and a staple gun?” He actually volunteered to go to a prem tech garage a find a modem… The wire run took less than 30 minutes and within 45 minutes, the customer was up and running. 

Here’s why I’m writing about this insignificant event, I asked both of them how they got to this point in their spiritual paths. Each had a story of how they got there… I believe it was Sri Ramakrishna who said, “All roads lead to one!” No matter how you get there, the important thing is you’re there. Rob and I rode that job out till the end of our shift. We both knew we had done our best for the customer and if management wanted to complain about how long it took, we’d tell them to just go ask the customer about their experience… This too will pass.

Sitting on The Dock…

   
What a beautiful afternoon! If I was a photographer, I would be in heaven. I’m directly across from The Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz Island… I’ve lived here for almost 59 years and I’ve never made it to that island… Maybe I’ll put it in my bucket list but I doubt it. Just sixty years ago, men could think only of getting off that rock in the San Francisco Bay. Why would I want to go there?

  Looking to the northwest The Richmond-San Rafael Bridge stands far away. That’s the bridge I travel on almost everyday and it looks so flowing from far away but it’s very plain. Cal-Trans wants to make three lanes from the two lanes due to the constant traffic jams during the rush hour periods. 

I’m sitting here waiting for the customer to show up but I won’t complain… What a wonderful place to wait for someone! This too will pass

Peace…

It dipped down into the low 40’s last night so Toonce and I snuggled to stay warm throughout the night. Every once in a while he’d meow to be let out but quickly would scratch incessantly to be let back in. The morning was perfect for splitting wood if only the splitter had decided to start. After many pulls, I gave up and turned my attention to the pile of already split wood. The weather people say the rain will arrive on Tuesday so I covered the pile with black tarp. 

As I’m sitting on the brick patio hearing my music and enjoying the crispy morning, I’m lowering my blood pressure and getting back to my center point. The Firewood Temple is the perfect to be at peace. Looking beyond the oak canopy and into the blue sky is simply Zen like… The trees are swaying with a gentle cool breeze and in the distance a murder of crows are cawing their hearts out…

The Firewood Temple is exactly the place I should be right at this moment and yet in a while, driving to work will be the perfect place and later in some trash filled street of Oakland will be just fine. It’s all about living in the moment where ever you are. This too will pass…

It Doesn’t Make Sense…

Our borders are now more controlled than ever before. Every branch of our government is watching for the suspicious usual suspects. You know the ones, the men and women who scream out “God is great” in a foreign language before they attack.  We’ve been warned that they are so willing to bring their terrible brand of terrorism onto our shores. Well somehow one of them got by our vigilant border patrols. 

A lone wolf just shot up a Planned Parenthood office in Colorado Springs, killing and wounding many. What do you want to bet, he got in the country by not being vetted properly and then was hidden by a 5th Column Group bent on causing havoc in our Christian based country. The gunman then picked out a Right To Life office to teach our Christians a lesson…

What? Are you saying he was from here and he wasn’t one of those treacherous immigrants? What? He had no foriegn accent and he wasn’t from The Middle East… Wait now, I thought the only home grown terrorist was The Oklahoma City bomber, Timothy Mc Veigh or that guy who set that bomb off at The Olympic venue in Atlanta…

I’m totally confused, I thought we should only fear those foreigners who want to kill Americans, not the guy who walks into a Planned Parenthood office and starts blasting? I’m totally confused… This too will pass.

Mao Tse Tung 2016

Last night, I scrolled thru an online article about Donald Trump’s verbal attack on a disabled reporter at a campaign speech in Myrtle Beach and then I commented on it. A few minutes later my e-mail alert on my phone rang with threats by his followers. Okay, so they weren’t threats but if Mr. Trump can exaggerate things then why can’t I? Recently Mr. Trump said, “I saw cheering Muslims in this country after the Paris Attack!” When he was questioned about it, he became defensive and fought back with, “You support them huh?!”

Doesn’t anyone find it interesting how The Donald can say obviously made up things and few if any news reporters will question his statements? The other night I was hearing The John Bachelor Show and he was interviewing a conservative journalist talking about Trump’s making up stories. the journalist came out and said, “He says things that might not be the true but people want a leader who they can look up to. They want a leader who will make America great again!” What? We want to elect someone who will make this country great again but what will be the final price?

Chairman Mao Tse Tung also promised his devout followers that he would make his country strong. The final cost turned out to be millions rounded up, imprisoned and executed. Ask yourself, “What do you think Mr. Trump would be willing to spend to make our country strong again and would you be willing to be part of his final cost? This too will pass.

 

A Black Friday Poem…

The credit card season is officially here, soon your mailbox will be filled with post seasonal cheer. 

With reminders to pay the minimum due, somewhere in the fine print you gave up the right to sue. 

Between the penalties and over limit fees, soon you’ll let out an “Oh No!” or at least a sigh or wheeze. 

They’ll tell you to send your payment in soon, or you’ll get a dinner time reminder from a guy named Steve Sri Loon.

Yes you paid much less for the shiny thing in the bag, but now you can’t find it or the crinkled store tag…

Your credit card balances never quite make it to zero, yet they want to send you another one because you’re a credit hero.

The ego wants you to go platinum or black, though your checking account is always in the lack.

Just as you’re paying off this year’s overlimit fees, someone in your life is saying “I want that. Pretty Please.”

In six months you’ll hear a radio commercial about credit advice, and you’ll say to yourself, “He sounds honest and nice!”

Today the malls will be filled with Christmas hope, but in 60 days you’ll be saying, “I’m near the end of my rope!”

Don’t think for a moment I haven’t been there too, I called it my miserable life or my own personal credit loo.

This too will pass….