Well… looks like I’m going to be “pseudo granny” to…

This morning, as I was waking up after a very strange dream involving one of my old college friends, I opened my eyes to my emails. Most of my emails involve either the news or sales of some sort. But there was one email there from Bill’s younger daughter, to whom I have been exchanging emails for awhile. She let us know on Labor Day weekend that she was expecting her fourth baby. She let us know on our current October holiday weekend (not gonna debate about Columbus Day vs. Indigenous People’s Day) that she found out she is expecting a…


Bill and I had a hunch that this baby was a girl, but it was still a nice surprise to wake up to the news. Younger daughter is such a good mom. I don’t know how she does it! But anyway, now there’s a “tie”. Don’t know if she’ll try for a tiebreaker or not. When we trade videos with her, she always has a rowdy crew with lots of noise in the background. Her kids are all under 6, although one is about to have a birthday very soon.

Anyway, I’m happy for her, and for Bill. Just a few more months to go before she’s got four little ones to look after! That is amazing to me! But she does seem happy to be a mom, and she’s good at the job… probably a lot better than I would have been! I hope the rest of the pregnancy goes well for her. I’m sure she can’t wait for February! And on another note, I’m glad she isn’t one of those people who has to set things on fire to tell everyone what sex her baby is. 😉

condescending twatbags, Duggars, rants

Nurie’s new baby, why the WSJ sucks, and disrespectful jerks…

Wow… I have a lot to write about today. I could write several posts, or I could just stick with one. Since I’m feeling kind of lazy, I think I’ll just stick with one post. I see Jetpack’s SEO tester likes my title and gave me the “green light”.

First thing– I know a lot of people find my blog because I occasionally keep up with fundies. My posts about Nurie (Rodrigues) Keller get a lot of hits. I noticed a lot of hits last night, as Nurie’s nutty mom, Jill, announced that Nurie delivered her son, reportedly named Nehemiah, on October 11th. Mother and son appear to be healthy and happy, which is a good thing. Jill also shared many photos and reported that Nurie and her husband, Nathan, will be going live to discuss all of the details of the birth.

Nurie and Nathan and their new arrival in a shot publicly shared by Nurie’s mom, Jill.

Personally, I think if I were a brand new, first-time mom, I’d want to take a few days to rest up and recover before going on camera to talk about birthing. But evidently, Nurie is raring to share her precious bundle of joy with everyone. So if you’re interested in the details, you can tune in on Facebook at 4pm– I assume eastern time– and hear all about it. Or you can just follow the Duggar Family News page and/or group, like I do. If not for them, I probably wouldn’t know anything about the Rodrigues family.

I seem to remember that Nurie was due October 12. Looks like they were very accurate in predicting the lad’s arrival.

I’m glad for Nurie that she has a healthy son. She looks genuinely happy, radiant, and beautiful in the post pregnancy photos I’ve seen. I don’t really follow her family, but I know a lot of people think they’re interesting. I wish health and happiness to the Kellers… and I hope they keep their son away from his Uncle Josh Duggar. But I suspect that won’t be too much of an issue, as Josh’s trial looms next month.

Speaking of the Duggars… I also learned that Jill Duggar Dillard, wife of Derick and former fundie Kool-Aid drinker, just had a miscarriage. I am genuinely sorry to hear about that, especially since I know that she and Derick very responsibly waited before trying for another baby after their son, Sam, was born in 2017 in what was reportedly a medically dramatic fashion. I hope they will soon have a rainbow baby, if that’s what they want.

Very sad news for the Dillards.

As for Anna Duggar, she’s reportedly ready to give birth any day now. As far as I know, her due date hasn’t been publicly announced, but based on the pictures I recently saw of her accompanying Josh to a court proceeding, she looks ready to pop. Hopefully, this baby will be her last… particularly with Josh. But, as they say, God only really knows.

Now… on to the next topic.

A year ago, I decided to subscribe to the Wall Street Journal. It was late October 2020; we were locked down, and there were articles I wanted to read. They were offering a good deal, and I don’t mind supporting journalism, even though the WSJ is a bit more right wing than I am. Little did I know when I subscribed, the Wall Street Journal makes it fucking difficult to unsubscribe. Like– it’s SO easy to subscribe to the paper online. No issues whatsoever. But, unless you live in an area with local laws that require businesses to allow people to unsubscribe in the same way they subscribed, you have to fucking CALL the WSJ to get them to turn off your subscription.

Fuck this noise.

I became aware of this issue a couple of weeks ago, when the paper sent me a notice that as of the end of October 2021, the WSJ would start charging me by the month. I didn’t like that option. I prefer to pay for subscriptions by the year, if I can. Also, I noticed that the monthly charge was significantly higher than what I paid when I signed up. I don’t mind paying more for content if I use it, but I almost never read the WSJ. I pay monthly for the New York Times, and it’s pretty expensive. But I use it all the time, can share articles with my friends, and have even shared the subscription with Bill and my mother-in-law. I can’t do any of that with the WSJ.

I was originally going to pay by the year if I could, but even that required me to call the fucking customer service center. The WSJ does have an office in Germany, but that would mean having to deal with language barriers. I don’t even enjoy calling people in the United States. I really hate doing it in Germany, where my terrible German skills are of even less use on the phone.

Then I realized that it doesn’t sit well with me that the WSJ basically forces subscribers to waste time, running the gauntlet of long phone queues and high pressure sales tactics, by requiring them to speak to a person, in order to deal with their subscriptions. If their paper was really worth a damn, they wouldn’t have to resort to these kinds of shady maneuvers to get people to keep paying for their content. I mean, one of the best votes of confidence for a product is when it sells itself. If you have to make it super annoying and inconvenient for people to opt out, that kind of says something about the quality of the product you’re offering.

I’m sure the WSJ offers a good product to people who are right wing and want expert finance news. But I am neither of those things. I occasionally like some of their travel pieces and it’s sometimes fun to read the comments on some articles. Otherwise, I rarely use my subscription, and I don’t like being stuck paying for subscriptions because it’s inconvenient to call and cancel. Although we can easily afford the 10 euros a month, I decided that I don’t want a subscription to a paper that employs annoying and deceptive sales tactics to keep people paying.

I asked Bill if he wouldn’t mind helping me call the German call center, since his German is better than mine is. But then I did some research and found a way to turn off the auto-renew. It involved a little duplicity, but it was ultimately effective. By the way, as I was researching how to unhook myself from the WSJ, I discovered another subscription service that might be useful to some. It’s called DoNotPay, and it bills itself as a “robot lawyer”. If I’d wanted to, I could have subscribed to that service and they would have fixed this WSJ problem for me. The fact that there’s a dedicated page on the DoNotPay Web site for unsubscribing to the WSJ is really telling, isn’t it?

As it turned out, there actually is a really easy way to unsubscribe without having to call. All you have to do is change your billing address to a place where the ability to unsubscribe online is required by law. When you do that, you’ll get the option to unsubscribe online. So that’s what I did. The WSJ really should make this option available to everyone, especially since we’re in the 21st century, and calling people on phones is becoming an obsolete practice. It’s the decent thing to do. But– as this is a paper that caters to Trump supporters– I guess I can understand why wringing money out of people by inconveniencing them is the way they do business. What a pity.

And finally, disrespectful jerks on the Internet…

Apologies to those readers who hate it when I complain about commenters on Facebook. I’m gonna do it again today. I’ll try to be brief.

I genuinely like to read news articles and editorials. I genuinely enjoy reading what other people think of items that are shared on social media. What I don’t like, however, are the disgusting and disrespectful comments left by so many people. It really does irritate me, because I wonder if those people are that obnoxious and rude in person.

Here’s an example of what I mean. This morning, Rachel Maddow shared an opinion piece about why religious exemptions should not be allowed for the COVID-19 vaccine. I thought it was a good article. It made a lot of sense. I understand why some people want to be allowed to opt out of taking the vaccine. Personally, I think doing so for religious reasons is kind of absurd.

There are plenty of things a person can’t do in the name of religion. What if you belong to a religious group that requires human sacrifices as a condition of being a believer? Should society allow such a religious organization to carry out those human sacrifices in the name of their religion? How about if a religion promotes the idea that people shouldn’t wear clothes, since clothes aren’t from God? Should we just allow people to walk around naked in public everywhere, because that’s the way God made them?

Over the past 19 months or so, it’s become very clear that COVID-19 spreads through the air. Everyone has to breathe. A person can be infected with COVID-19 and not know they’re infected. They can spread the virus to people who will die if they get sick with it. It doesn’t matter what your religious beliefs are. If you’re a human being, you can spread COVID-19. Vaccines have been proven to help limit the spread and severity of COVID-19. And we’ve seen plenty of “religious” people swearing off the vaccine, only to die of COVID. Seriously, all you have to do is Google.

A lot of the people who are against the vaccine are politicians and religious people, and also conservative talk show hosts… How fitting is it that these people, who are using their lungs to spread misinformation and hate, are winding up dying, as their lungs fail, thanks to a rogue, novel virus that so few of them won’t admit is very real?

So… on to the disrespectful jerks… I noticed a woman wrote something along the lines of, “There shouldn’t be religious exemptions for anything in the 21st century.”

She got a few “angry” reactions to that comment. But one guy– a southern, Christian, God fearing MAGA zealot, complete with a pretty blonde wife and a love of hunting and fishing– posted “How much did your husband pay when he ordered you?”

I hadn’t yet had more than a couple of sips of my morning coffee at that point. I almost responded in kind to the guy, but instead, I wrote “What a disgusting and disrespectful comment. Shame on you.”

What prompts people to write such personal and insulting comments to total strangers, anyway? It just makes me wonder if this man was ever taught anything good by decent people. Is this how he speaks to people in person? Is that how he got his pretty wife to marry him– by insinuating that she’s a mail order bride?

If you disagree with someone’s opinions, why not just write that and explain why, instead of insulting them and insinuating that they’re a mail order bride? The original commenter, by the way, appears to be a well-educated young mother who lives up north. I didn’t see any reason why anyone should suspect her of being a mail order bride. I think if a person is going to be snarky and rude, they should at least be astute. That MAGA loving zealot didn’t even hit the mark of being insightful about the commenter. I wonder how he’d like it someone insulted his wife in such a way.

Yesterday, USAA posted a meme in support of “National Coming Out Day”. USAA is a bank and insurance company that is well-known for serving military and government employees. It’s also based in Texas and has come out publicly in support of Greg Abbott, the infamously medieval governor of Texas. So lots of commenters were pointing out that it’s tone deaf to be in support of the LGBTQ community, while also supporting a governor who wishes to deny fundamental medical rights to women. Others were annoyed because they think USAA is “virtue signaling”.

I noticed a few people were making anti-abortion statements. One guy made a comment about how some people “enjoy aborting babies”. Once again, I had to interject. I wrote, “No one ‘enjoys aborting babies’. What a crappy thing to write.” I think it would be a very rare individual who took any joy or pleasure in having or performing an abortion. It’s just something that needs to be done in some regrettable situations. Either way, it’s no one else’s fucking business. Especially when so few people who are supposedly pro-life care about supporting the lives of people who have already been born… for example, by getting vaccinated against COVID-19 or not toting their guns to places where people can be easily shot and killed. When the so-called pro-lifers start giving more of a damn about people who are already born and have a concept of life and death, then I might pay more attention to their lame protests about abortion.

Sigh… well, it’s time to end today’s post. I have some research to do. We’re going to attempt to take a trip at the end of the month. Also, I have to put in my guitar practice. So I leave you with my wishes for a happy Tuesday. May you not encounter any disrespectful jerks today.


Muscle knots and magic fingers…

Lately, Bill and I have started doing jigsaw puzzles together. We’ve completed two that were 300 pieces and we’re now working on one that is 1000 pieces. I used to love doing puzzles when I was a lot younger and more flexible. Unfortunately, now, we lack a good sized table for puzzles. I’ve taken to doing them on a coffee table I bought from a few years ago, but it’s just slightly too low. Also, the living room isn’t well lit enough to do the puzzles at night.

We did one of the smaller puzzles on the floor, but that was really hard on my body. We have nice rugs in this house, but we’re still sitting on the hard floor, craned over the puzzle. This puzzle was pretty difficult. It took about seven hours to complete it. The one we’re doing now, we decided to do on the coffee table again. It’s just easier on the body.

As I get older, my body hurts. It’s especially bad in the morning, probably because we really need a new mattress. I get up and my right hip and lower back throb. Sometimes, it’s hard to walk or make basic movements without pain until my muscles warm up. American king sized mattresses in Germany aren’t so easy to acquire. I guess we could order one from AAFES, but then we’d have to get it delivered. It may get to a point at which we’ll do that, if we stay here for much longer. Bill should know what is going to happen with his company’s contract soon.

Anyway, last night my lower back and right shoulder were crying for relief, so I asked Bill to step on my back. He hates to do this, since he’s afraid he’s going to hurt me. Truth be told, it does kind of hurt when he presses on my sore muscles and ligaments. But then when he takes his foot off my back, I get a rush of endorphins and whatever metabolic crap is stuck in my muscles dissipates. It’s like magic.

What’s even more magical, though, is Bill’s ability to find the sore spots on my shoulders. I don’t know how he does this. He says he just gets a feeling when he gets to the right spot, and describes the tissue under the skin as “depressed”. Nine times out of ten, I don’t even have to tell him where to go. Somehow, he just knows. And even though his hands are tired and sore, he willingly works the knots out so I’ll be more comfortable. I’m lucky that he’s so empathetic. I think if he hadn’t been a soldier, he would have been great in any of the nurturing/healing fields. Then I’d have to share him!

Moving on…

Joe and Kendra Duggar have started the bumper crop of baby girls that will be born to the Duggar family this fall/winter. Their daughter, Addison Renee, was born on November 2, 2019. She is just seventeen months younger than her older brother, Garrett David. Lots of people in the Life is Not All Pickles and Hairspray Facebook group have opined on the baby’s name. Personally, I like it. I mean, I wouldn’t name a baby Addison, because it reminds me of Mister Ed. There was a character on that show called “Addison”. Others have said they think of Addison’s Disease when they hear the name Addison, which is apparently a very popular name now. However… I still think it’s a good name, since it’s not something totally ridiculous like Jessa’s eldest son, Spurgeon. Spurgeon is damned lucky he’s so cute.

I used to watch this show on Nick at Nite in the 80s. I was horse crazy in those days.

Joy Anna Forsyth was supposed to be having a baby right about now, but she lost her daughter, Annabell Elise, to a very tragic miscarriage over the summer. Now, we’re waiting for Lauren and Josiah, Josh and Anna, and John David and Abbie to have their girls. Oh… and cousin Amy had her baby boy last month, too. That family is exploding like Josh’s dick when he’s viewing porn. I don’t watch their show anymore, though. It’s just too boring.

And finally…

Yesterday, I inadvertently learned two German words for “pussy”. I didn’t set out to learn them. My German friend taught me the more vulgar one, Möse (pronounced Moo-zeh), because it’s apparently the name of a village in northern Germany. She quipped that it was probably embarrassing for the natives to say they were from there. I commented on Facebook that I’d learned the German word for pussy, and another German friend posted “Muschi“? Muschi also means pussy, but it’s supposedly less vulgar and can also be used for cats– as in “pussycat”.

As I have pointed out in my travel blog, Austria and Germany are rife with town names that are now kind of embarrassing. Austria has both Fucking and Fuckersberg, both places Bill and I visited in 2015. Germany has Kissing and Petting… but they also have Pups (fart), Kothausen (shit house), and Pissdorf. There’s even a map of these bucket list worthy places. I also learned that the word “Kot” is another word for shit, besides Sheisse. It’s hard to believe that people would name their town after shit, but maybe that’s a reflection of the past. I know Germans can be remarkably blunt about some things.

Well, the sun is out, so maybe the dog and I will take a walk. That will make it easier for Arran to get rid of his Kot and me to get rid of my knots.