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11:41 pm EDT 77°F (25°C) in Dearborn, MI
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The trip to that sucky state down south is finally complete, although not without a couple of scares along the way. It was 12:30 pm EDT yesterday before I was able to start heading down there, and with traffic along Interstate 75 and U.S. Route 23 being what it was, it was 4:00 pm before I could get to the company terminal on the southwest side of Columbus. I called them when I left, and the terminal personnel told me to come right in during that phone call; but when I called them again later, after traffic had set me back a bit (but I was already ¾ of the way to Columbus), they tried to tell me it was too late for Wednesday. Eventually, I worked it out so that I could get the exam done yesterday and avoid a night in a hotel or a second trip.
Once they got going at the clinic, the doctor and the nurse kept asking me if I'm diabetic. That would be news to me, but for some reason the urine test they did had them concerned about that, so they decided to prick my finger for a blood test. There I was sweating it out, "holy fuck, they're going to tell me I'm medically disqualified from driving a commercial vehicle," but the blood glucose level came back completely normal. While the trip down on the aforementioned Interstate 75 and U.S. Route 23 routing took 3½ hours, the return trip to Ann Arbor took less than three hours (following U.S. Route 33 to Marysville, OH; State Route 31 to Kenton; U.S. Route 68 to Findlay; Interstate 75 to Perrysburg; Interstate 475 around the west side of Toledo; and finally U.S. Route 23 to Ann Arbor).
Eventually, I got to do dinner with my friend Joe and then head over to my friend Marc's apartment, where we watched Bad Boys II (and then he flipped over to some extremely cheesy softcore straight porn on Skinemax) before I got some sleep. After that, it was off to my pair of appointments, and then back home.
One of the pair of regular appointments is always with a psychiatrist (somebody with an M.D. degree, who handles the medication end). This time, I had my first appointment with a new resident M.D. (who had taken over for another resident who left at the end of June), and I have to say that even in the first hour I had ever spent with him, he gave me some good insights. In some ways, it seemed to him that my response to all of the failures that dot my past has been to lower my expectations and assume an "any actions that will get me a degree and pay the bills" mentality, completely devoid of passion or interest in anything. Obviously, this is not a particularly happy or healthy way to go through life, and he suggested that even if doing so gets me nowhere, I should at least ask the right people what I'd have to do to get back into U-M (in terms of academic standing, financial aid, etc.).
I've said something similar here before, and I'll say it again. All of the stuff I need to do with my life is going to happen; it's just a matter of time at this point. It may very well be a couple years, considering that I have just about no furniture of my own at this time for a future move and I'll have to buy some, but I'm going to make that happen. Furthermore, unless and until they prove otherwise with tangible actions, I am forced to assume that I cannot depend on my parents for even one penny of help with all of this, and that I'll have to blow an extra couple of years to do it all on my own — and that even assumes they don't continue their apparent policy of taking my property away from me without asking.
They did that a couple years ago with a 13" (33 cm) TV set I got as a Christmas gift in 1997 for eventual dorm use. Once I had to move all of my stuff back to their house in early 2003, they just decided that they needed a second TV, and they knew the perfect place to find one — in my stuff. I had to threaten to find another place to store the TV, like a friend's apartment, to even get them to give me $75 for it — otherwise, they would have just stolen it and assumed it was free.
Just this past evening, it happened again. Not long after starting school at U-M, I bought a cheap 20" (51 cm) box fan to put in the window for fresh air. Apparently, over the time that I've been out on the road, they've just decided that they own it now, without my knowledge or consent, and as I was eating dinner, my mother went into the basement to grab that fan. On her way past me, she said, "I'm taking [your sister's] fan back upstairs to her room." Well, there's just one small problem with that: that fan isn't hers. It was MY money that purchased it in 1999, and I think that fact at the very least grants me the first right to use the device.
It's funny that my mother votes Democratic, because that kind of shit is typical Republican behavior. It was the conserva-loon wackos who were most pleased with the Supreme Court's recent eminent domain ruling, which basically said the government can do whatever the fuck it pleases with your private property. So the big business interests want to put up a strip mall on your block? With this ruling, your house is already as good as demolished. My mother seems to operate under a very similar type of (il)logic, with the only big difference being that I don't have any right to due process with her.
The response was predictable: once I complained to my father, my mother almost immediately reversed course, but took the whole "how can you be so selfish?" attitude and carried on a sort of verbal 'rolling of the eyes' when she called my sister to ask her to bring a fan from her house. The fact that it may be 10 degrees warmer in the upstairs bedroom than in the basement still isn't proper grounds to take my 100% bought-and-paid-for property away from me without consent and compensation, especially when the taking of my property leaves me with nothing.
My mother, in our huge argument a week and a half ago before I left for da U.P., claimed that her rights are being violated any time I mention anything even remotely related to the family on this site. I have a simple message: if and when you ever decide to stop violating my rights to my own personal property, and stop taking any and all actions that have a net effect of standing in the way of progress in my life (like taking things away from me, thereby forcing me to waste money to replace them), then we'll talk. Keep it up, on the other hand, and I will delight in shining a bright spotlight on it here.
At this point, just a couple quick errands stand between me and heading back out to the road on Sunday. I think I'll get to those tomorrow; thankfully, there are no more trips to sucky states like Ohio.