Flashback: “Rock-A-Bye Your Baby With A Dixie Melody” by Jerry Lewis

On this last Labor Day weekend of the 2010’s – I thought I’d answer the question of whether or not Jerry Lewis ever had a hit record.

Why, yes – yes he did. This particular song that was first published in 1918 by many performers gave Jerry his biggest hit in 1956.

Still weird not seeing him on during the Labor Day weekend – though he passed away in 2017 and his last telethon was in 2011.

Watching Dorian

As they say around Christmastime, ’tis the season. We’re watching another candidate for a hurricane in Dorian – and I’m in that little “finger” down and to the left of the “FL” in Florida.

My early hunch at this point is that this track they have Dorian on, hitting the Central Florida east coast and maybe crossing over to the Gulf of Mexico – that probably doesn’t wind up happening, because storms hitting northeast Florida are as rare as a hurricane hitting Tampa Bay. The odds would seem to suggest another path might emerge that’s more common – not that I wish that on Georgia or the Carolinas.

If it were to come across Florida – how fast does it weaken by the time it got just north of me, assuming that’s the path it takes?

Too early to know now. If events warrant, I’ll keep you posted. As for know, I’m a bit skeptical that this winds up being ours.

The Campaign

As I’ve been mentioning, the past few days in my life have been quite the eye opener. For the first time in a long time, I’m seeing things about myself that I’ve never seen before, and I’ve been sharing these “revelations” (for the lack of a better phrase) with you.

In light of this and more recent difficulties, I’ve started up a GoFundMe page that explains what I’ve been going through. We’re in dire need of help, sooner rather than later.

Regardless of whichever way that goes, I’ll be here, updating as I can, and as long as I can.

The Days That Changed Me, I Hope

I’m spilling my guts out tonight. You all are just going to have to deal with it.

Often on this blog, I talk about sports, politics, what have you. You know why? I’m too damn afraid to talk about myself most of the time. How far some people think I have fallen, that sort of thing.

My most recent job – where I worked for an “energy company” that switches energy suppliers with that all too familiar (to me) telephonic slight of hand. There were two calls I took the brief time I was there that may have permanently changed my world view.

The trainer there was very eager to make sure we took phone calls by the end of our first day. These companies always want to put you in that spot. I’ve been a big guy most of my life – but imagine me hanging out at Tyrone Mall (the big shopping center in St. Petersburg) and having a Rays coach approach me, asking me if I could play catcher for the Rays the next day against the Yankees. That would be absurd! What chance would I have? What hopes would I have in succeeding and not being a laughing stock of the local sports media?

I’d been training all day, starting at 8:30 that morning – and it was all I could do to keep from being a deer in the headlights by the time I took calls. Somewhere in Ohio, the automatic dialer put me in touch with a woman who could barely speak due to a stroke. They taught us in training to be matter of fact, and don’t go out of your way to be polite. I went out of my way to be nice to the woman – that’s probably somebody’s mother, probably somebody living on borrowed time. Pardon me all to hell, but a damn energy bill didn’t seem all that important in retrospect.

The next morning, I take another call from a middle aged man – perhaps a decade or so older than I am. He put me through the paces as I was trying to switch him over. He asked me about rates – and the rates we were trying to hoodwink him over to were more expensive, though what my company offered was a fixed rate while what he had was a variable rate. He won the battle after a few objections – and I let him.

I wasn’t too long after that when I decided I had had enough. I got up, got my stuff – walked out. I walked home the two-mile distance back to the house on a leg that has seen better days. I also get quite winded walking that long, having to pause every few hundred yards or so.

I stopped by an office building near Freedom Lake Park, hoping someone I knew would take mercy on me and give me a lift. I sat a good 15-20 minutes at one point.”Throwing It All Away” by Genesis from the 80’s played over the loudspeaker.

Yeah. I lost it, sitting there. I’ve been throwing it away a while now.

Finding That Plus Side

Photo by Paula Schmidt on Pexels.com

The last few days have been a total microcosm of my life’s struggle. Always wanting others to be happy, even at the expense of my own happiness. Always trying to do something good, only to see the people I interact with be less than fair – so I guess you can say that in turn, I wasn’t being fair with myself in the long run.

My whole life has been like that. Wanting to believe in something that does not exist, upon closer examination. Every time I go back and think it might suddenly be there – nope.

I’m pretty sure after this last job debacle that I’m not a salesman (probably because I value politeness and respect over pushiness) – but yet, with the abundance of phone jobs in this area, I keep going down that road. In two weeks I will be 48. Outside of my radio career, I’ve wasted a couple of decades of my life trying to be something I’m not – then trying to do the same thing again.

I’m thinking that there’s something wrong with me that I’m not smart enough to figure this all out.

I have failed myself. I have failed my friends and family. This is the shame I must live with on a daily basis.

A boyfriend of my mother’s killed himself in 1996 in Tampa with pills mixed with alcohol. I’ve never mentioned that here, because I don’t think the ending of your own life makes things better for those around you – and I also think you go to hell for it.

Whatever happens with the rest of my time on this world, I do want to do something good with it so I wind up in heaven – because whatever exists after I die, I want to be somewhere nice. That makes sense, right?

The Next Journey For The Next Buck

49th Street near the 8800 Office Park in Pinellas Park, FL on June 8, 2018.

I guess I should happy that I’m working again tomorrow – though I don’t know how long it will last, because it’s one of those kind of places where any day could be your last. Yes friends, I’m going to play one of those evil people on the other end of the phone yet again.

This has been the struggle of my adult existence since 1990 – living in a society where phone soliciting is the bane of existence, but yet I live in an area where four and half months shy of the 2020’s where there are such jobs in abundance in Pinellas County, Florida just west of Tampa. I’d have to think it’s like being a vegetarian living next to a fried chicken restaurant, or something.

I’ve rejected and walked out of more of these companies than I care to count over the years, to tell you the truth. They all seem to have one flaw or another. If a good company sold a good product, the working conditions would wind up being terrible. If the money was good, there was usually a “catch” that made you have to earn it, like wearing a suit and tie each day for people that can’t see you on the other end of the phone.

Every time I walked out of such a job – it was always because I felt I could, and that it wasn’t the end of the world. My financial situation is growing dire – so I don’t have such luxury this time, without going into further detail. I tried finding “legit” work recently, such as a place that makes spa covers not too far from me, but it looks like I was just another number or not the right number to them.

I got a call out of the blue from the last company I worked for last year, having applied there out of the necessity to explore every option I could conceive of. They asked me to interview with them on Friday, and asked me if I could work for them tomorrow (Monday) – never asking me about the last time I worked there. I consider myself lucky to get the gig, but also wondering how I could have been so fortunate.

You have my promise, readers, that I will take the job seriously – and I don’t intend to blab about it much until it’s over with. My blogging schedule might change to a weekend intensive one as opposed to a few times during the week. And yes, I get a hypocritical aspect of railing against those who call me – and now doing this for a profession. But I’ve done this before – and now, I’m at a point in my life where joining the “evil empire” appears to be my only salvation.

I don’t know whether to say I’m sorry, or to ask you all to wish me luck. I figure, what do I have to lose?

Flashback: “Woodstock” by Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young

Only fitting to play this today – 50 years ago, Woodstock was going on. Joni Mitchell recorded the song first, but Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young took the song to #11 on the Billboard charts in 1970.

Updating The Update From The Previous Update From A Few Updates Ago

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

It was yet again time for yet another Windows 10 update – this time, I received something called Version 1903 which was released back in May. There were no great shakes to the upgrade that I saw, though those of with higher-end computers might think otherwise.

My problem with these major upgrades is how Windows handles them.

When you download the thing, they never seem to tell you how long it takes or how big the download is.

When you install the update, they never seem to tell you how long it will be before it’s installed.

When the computer reboots and runs through its new paces, that takes a while too, and – you guessed it – they never seem to tell you how long THAT takes either.

I’ve been a Microsoft Windows guy all my life, and I get that they and Apple are the only computer games in town for the most part. But you know what? Some of us don’t have an infinite amount of time for your upgrades – so, how about communicating a bit better on that front, pretty please?