October 06, 2008

Where's the Pork?

I do believe that I have cooked more in the last week than I have in the past year. From scratch, that is, or nearly from scratch. My trusty crock pots were working overtime. One had cabbage going and the other had a boneless pork loin strip, with rosemary, onions, and garlic. Tasted as good as it smelled. I've used rosemary sparingly, most often with chicken, but might try my hand at growing fresh rosemary. I don't know why; it just sounds like something I should be doing in Ripley.

Then I ran up on this recipe for chicken breasts with rosemary, onions, and apples. In the crock pot, naturally. To be served over rice. And a coworker gave me a bag of fresh okra from his garden. Good golly. Fresh okra? Straight out of the ground? A pot of okra, tomatoes, and corn was in order. Froze the rest for use in a gumbo this winter. Assembling that dish brought back childhood memories of my mother preparing it, her canning, baking rolls, and fixing some dishes that are no longer fashionable. Like potted meat and grits. Haven't had that in years, though I ring up large quantities of potted meat down here.

The most aromatic smell of pork, however, came from the bailout bill passed by our legislators. But does anybody know if the protections for homeowners and the other things that had to be included were a part of it? Two legislators outlined a seemingly reasonable alternative bill on the talk shows but it was not considered. Why? Other smells were emanating this past week as well--the charges lobbed by Sarah Palin, the O.J. verdict (which even a blind person could see coming).

I'm hitting those topics very quickly, starting with O.J. I'm sorry that he will likely spend the rest of his life in jail. I'm not trying to deal with right or wrong, the all white jury, etc. I'm dealing with his stupidity and arrogance. That is the best description I can come up with about this saga. One of the most, if not the most, reviled Black men in America and he didn't have sense enough to keep his nose clean? How do you spell S-T-O-O-P-I-D?

On to the campaign and Sarah Palin. The debate. More arrogance. "I'm not answering your questions...I'm speaking to the American people." WINK, wink. She was well-rehearsed and while pundits marvel at her poise, ease with the camera, let's not forget that one of her early career stints was spent on television. So she does know how to use that medium well. Follow-up questions on her statements would have shown more clearly her dearth of knowledge but it wasn't necessary. She's a wind-up doll. The danger is that the American people will put up with her vacuity rather than vote for someone with sense. I don't want a cheerleader in or near the White House.

Today is the last day to register to vote. Round up your cronies, elderly folks, make sure they cast their vote. Obviously, the gloves are off in this campaign and I'm glad to see that McCain's involvement in the Keating 5 scandal is finally being brought to light. That charge, at least, has merit. Not an encounter with a person who committed "terrorist crimes" (cause the charges were dropped) when you were EIGHT years old. And, it must be noted, that Ayers is now a respected member of the establishment. Good grief, McCain/Palin, several of the people I've met, worked for, socialized with on professional and social levels, have gone to jail for various things (lying, influence-peddling, taking money and who knows what else). Does that mean that I'm guilty by association? But on the other hand, you are being investigated for wrong doing. INVESTIGATED. Unclean.

So back to normal life at the Serendipity Bed and Breakfast. Miz Floozey spends a lot of time inside but when she wants to roam, she is gone. Then, like most carousers, spends her time sleeping it off. She's getting bathed as regularly as her human counterparts. My mortal enemy, the ground hog, is feasting off of the pecans. Threw down poisoned peanuts in the areas they frequent. Something died but I'm not trying to find it. Big Boy is still a no-show. Hope he's alright.

And the job? Had to finally call out my personnel manager who sandbagged me good. I had received all these warnings from coworkers (watch her; she's a snake; and so on) but decided to ignore them. Going in with an open mind but soon started seeing that she had nasty ways. Undercuts everybody. It's not personal; that's just the way she is. Doesn't want anyone in the back office with her. My tasks are done when I come in. Why? As she told one coworker, "The managers don't make the store; the employees do. They come and go." Now it's true but speaks volumes about her undercutting those managers that she doesn't care for. Very careful to present herself in the best light to the manager.

The killer came on Friday when I was to bring on board two new employees. Now that smoking in the workplace is against the law in Tennessee, the smoking room has been converted to a training center. The initial paperwork has to be done in the personnel office because a lot of it entails computer entry. Girlfriend is missing. People are coming in for help with insurance enrollment (I don't have a clue because she hasn't discussed it), their time, their paycheck. The new employees are sitting. Okay...we're moving to the training room; no phones, no interruptions. An employee in the office said "You know you've been blocked out." What does that mean? "Denise told the staff to set up the lunch in the training room because she didn't want the food out in the open." EXCUSE ME? Now boys and girls, we had discussed orientation, its date, etc., so you were aware. It wasn't a random act. She didn't forget.

Asked her about it. In front of the manager. "Oh, that's okay. We do training in the office all the time. It's okay." No, it is not okay and listed my reasons why. The side of my personality which strongly reflects my father told me to go in the room and move everything out. But my mother's side prevailed. For that decision, at least. When she finally returned to the office, I sent the women on break and let her know that I was fully aware of what she did and why. The previous trainers were much younger than she and not as experienced, so they caught hell. I was working my first job when she was a bump in her mama's belly. I don't know Tennessee; I don't know Ripley; and I don't know Walmart. But I do know dirty tricks when I see them. I also know that I have no intention of busting more boxes if I can help it. It's going to be very rough around there from now on, I'm sure.

Pray for me.

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