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Big Big Move

So, the biggest thing is that I took a job out in Washington, D.C. last week and I'm moving out there next month.

Sooo...

If you not on my Facebook (which I am on, all the time), you wouldn't know that I got hit by a car about three weeks. I'm ok, just lots of bruises and my foot is broken due to the driver running over it and pinning it. It wasn't my fault; I was at a lit crosswalk, I had the signal and she came up from behind me.

But my life has gotten a lot more boring and simultaneously more complicated. I drink a lot and think to update this thing.

Relieving something that is ill

I'm still trying to get my head around this "health care reform."

Because of work, I've been reading up a lot on it - pretty much an all day love affair with articles, updates, and comments. I haven't decided where I stand on it yet, but here are my concerns:


  • Essentially, there will be no "savings" with health insurance reform. What was once paid for my individuals will now be paid for by taxpayers. There's no way tax rates won't go up, and continue to go up as people enter the system.

  • How does the government intend to handle a sudden influx of patients, and not enough doctors to treat them? There aren't enough to primary care physicians to treat everyone, so long lines and wait times will be a given. They could incentivize schooling, but that could take years to see results from.

  • Right now, the problem with government health care is as there are more patients, the payouts get less and less. Take Medicare, for instance. Medicare pays very, very little to doctors and hospitals, so that doctors are starting to refuse to take patients. The patients then go to hospitals, who don't make enough to recoup the costs of treating the patients, and must pass on the cost to patients with insurance, driving up costs and insurance premiums. How does Congress plan to keep this from happening?

  • Tort reform hasn't even been on the table, and it's one aspect of the rising costs. Medical malpractice fears cause physicians to practice defensively, ordering needless tests and procedures to cover themselves from any liability. How does the government intend to stop them from doing this?

  • Will patients with private insurance be treated with better care, since they can pay more than those with a government-subsidized program? For instance, in Great Britain, a wait time for tests can be up to 4 months, but with private insurance, it can be done the next day.

  • Preventative medicine (testing, counseling, etc.) doesn't cost less than actual primary care. In fact, in the long run it costs more.

  • How does the government intend to tell people living unhealthy lifestyles (such as the 30%+ people who are morbidly obese), that they can't receive the same health care a healthier person might, without being discriminatory?

  • Along those same lines, since health insurance is a right paid for by tax payers, how does the government intend to treat people living here illegally, without being discriminatory? How can physicians, who took an oath to do no harm, tell someone they won't treat them because they are not legal citizens? And lastly...

  • Why haven't any of the congresspeople read the proposals?



I feel like bloated health insurance costs are only a symptom of the multifaceted problem the US faces. I'm not sure reforming it will solve the problems this country has.
If you're done with the tattoo convention, Rockerbox is over, or you're just looking for something to do tonight, head over to Zad's Roadhouse (434 S 2nd st & Virginia) tonight to see Milquetoast & Co play their first Milwaukee set.

With the independent release of their debut album Drinking and Smoking Too Much With Women I Hate, Boston’s Milquetoast & Co. bring together years of do-it-yourself hard work and creativity with the wry, witty, no-nonsense re-telling of hard nights and harder days that has come to epitomize the band’s sound. Milquetoast & Co. has respectfully declined to join a particular genre by freely crossing the lines between Rock, Southern Blues and Rockabilly while sprinkling in a touch of classical and soul to keep things interesting. Milquetoast & Co. began as dynamic singer/songwriter “Restless” James McAndrew’s solo project in the summer of 2004. Originally called simply “Milquetoast,” the music has grown over time to include cello (Robin Ryczek), bass (Joe Mageary), Drums (Panama Quinn) and a litany of other instruments to fill out their sound (Bill Whitney). Together, their music has drawn comparisons to Tom Waits, Morphine and Jeff Buckley, among others. In late 2008, Milquetoast added “& Co.” to their name as a tribute to the revolving door of band members and on-stage performers that has swirled around the band since its inception.

For more, go to http://www.myspace.com/milquetoastco

$6 / Doors at 9 pm / 21+

I'm still alive!

I read my FL page everyday. Maybe I'll have something work talking about myself.

Alive!

I'm alive and well.

Don't worry, I read everyone's entries dutifully everyday. I think I'm more addicted to Facebook now, though.

I could go into this life of mine, but I won't. Not now.

Why is it that you can't find a funny belated birthday card? It's like not getting a card on a person's birthday is on par with a funeral. I don't roll like that.

Valentine's Day

This day has never been very good for me.

At best, I was single. At worst, I was with someone, and they opted to spend the day with the girlfriend I didn't know about (then).

And today, I steeled myself and made my way about the Valentine's Day wishes and cards, candy and general Hallmark holiday rubbish.

I had to get my oil changed and some general maintenance on my car, which would take several hours. My friends volunteered to come pick me up and have me stay in their home for those few hours while I played with their kids and general loafed around. I was reminded that my friends love me, and what a horrible world I would live in without them.

Then tonight I went to a show to see my friend's band play, and was reminded that not only can I still attract men, I can attract highly attractive men. Meg's still got it.

I conquered the day. And no, there were no sweet nothings and sentiments on paper. But, like the true meaning of Christmas, I was reminded how wonderful my life is because of the gifts I've been given. Love, in every sense of the word.

Punch from history

Ok, so I've started and stopped many-a-entry on this thing. There's a few things I want to say, but NOW I feel I could have something worthwhile to say.

Today. I took a trip to Chicago.

A business trip.

Which is nothing new, as I've posted about this before, but since I was alone I had a lot of of reflection time. This is how it went.

I started in my car around 9 in my trusty conservative business suit. I had to pull over not once, but twice because my car was so filthy with road salt that I literally could not see out the windows. But still, my trusty little Garmin GPS took me on the road. Never once failing to tell me where to go, and if I didn't tell me what it specifically told me to do, the lady voice almost sounded exasperated when she said "Recalculating..." I stopped at the Lake Forest Oasis (of course), bought a coffee and stared out at traffic through my goggle-like sunglasses. Then I drove the rest of the way to my first-ever hotel site visit.

I walked into the lobby of the hotel, and as they were expecting me, they also put up a welcome sign that said "Welcome Margaret Guy" and the name of my company. I'm always curious to see how people react when they see me. In my profession I go by my full name, Margaret, a name that lost popularity in the 1920s. I know I've sat in doctors offices and the nurse calling in patients calls out my name and beelines for the oldest lady in the room. But the woman I met was about my age, and the two managers of the hotel came out to greet me too as well as perform their business card ritual. I knew what questions to ask, knew what things to look for in the rooms they showed me. I knew there was a free lunch in this deal for me, which made me petrified in that I'd never had a vendor buy me lunch and I wasn't sure what should be discussed. Ben advised that I make "small talk" at which I don't always excel. It was fine, however. We mixed business with small talk, and we ended up talking about cars for about an hour. Yes, cars. The lunch talk began to dwindle, and since I had covered all my questions, I had about two hours before my next appointment. I called the next site and requested an earlier audience.

My GPS did not fail me to my next visit, which was considerably shorter (as expected). I was basically forced to take a free soda, which I loaded into my car of soda and coffee I had already bought, and probably contributed to the gut rot I had later. I headed back home, stopping at the Oasis again. I bought a tea, and sat down with the information given to my hotel and crunched numbers for cost (yes I have to control the grant money my program has been given).

Right before I left, I was jolted by an epiphany.

If my 16-year-old self would have known how deep my 28-year-old self dove into the corporate pool, she would have probably found a way to build a time machine just to punch her future self in the face.

Exciting Saturday Night

Ugh, what a terrible week.

I mentioned the details in a friends-only post, so I don't need to rehash. However, let's just say Monday night was intense when someone decided to drive by my home and comment in a text on how I'm home alone...well that's just weird, not cool. But whatever, since then nothing has happened, everything is dead and gone. Now it's just a matter of pulling things back together where they fell apart.

My car got "broken" into Tuesday night. I don't know who did it, I don't remember if I locked the door (usually I'm pretty good at locking the doors and hearing that satisfying "beep!"). When I came out on Wednesday morning, I got in the car and knew something wasn't right. The console was open, and its contents strewn about the front seat. Nothing was taken, save for maybe 50 cents; I don't keep valuable stuff in my car. The windows weren't broken, so I was lucky. Still, as my cousin put it, enough to mess with my sense of security and safety.

I got a Wii Fit, and I'm finding it's really good for when I don't want to go to the gym. However, I think for me, I get a better cardio work out at the gym. I get my heart rate up, but I don't feel like I'm dying like I do at the gym. It'll be good for days I don't feel like going to the gym. I'm happy to report I've lost about 20 pounds in the last year, and my BMI is normal.

I was going to go watch the inauguration on tv on Tuesday, but I wasn't feeling great, and I threw up that morning because I had taken my multivitamin on an empty stomach, so I chose not to leave work and just plow through the day. I will say, he is our president, and I stand behind him. But...I didn't really get the "beauty" and "inspiration" people were finding in his speech. It was no JFK "ask not what your country can do for you," etc. All I heard was "hope and change" and no really substantial methods of solving this country's numerous problems. If he had experience in this, at least more than one term in the Senate, I would probably feel a bit more encouraged. Anyone can tell you they promise change, but why is everyone so convinced he can deliver? Does being a good orator make for a good leader?

Either way, a great day in American history.

I made cupcakes today. Gingerbread made from scratch, brushed with a ginger infused glaze. Carmelized mango buttercream frosting (real buttercream - just eggs, 5 sticks of butter, and candied syrup). That shit took 4 hours to make, and it only makes 12! Then I got sick and couldn't eat one.

This rounds out a shit week. May next week be better.

Lunch and music.

Enjoying lunch with my "work husband," Ben, the topic turned to music, and Ben confessed he didn't "get" modern music. As in, anything not considered "classical" didn't excite him, didn't move him. Now, I'm no proponent of pop radio (I confess I don't listen to much radio unless my iPod has run out of juice), but I was flabbergasted that he couldn't be moved by anything written past the 1930s. I tried to explain to him the nuances of music, how any form of art can express emotions that common man cannot directly address himself.

Music, for me, whether I'm making it or listening to it, is my first and only love. I remember bouncing in my mom's car right after kindergarten, demanding she turn on the radio so I can listen to music when she didn't listen to it much at all. Anything that was on. It is a special language that I feel makes me bilingual. Our "everyday" language transcends into something much more powerful when we can use both. I am a supporter of the "classical" music (the passion in the middle of Beethoven's 5th to the graceful yet powerful resolution almost always strikes me as if I'm hearing it for the first time) but I also feel the world shouldn't give up on music being released today as inferior. The human emotions are boundless, and therefore not confined to a period of time, or a place, or a social class. There's still places to explore, and there's still emotions left unearthed. Beyond that, it's hard to explain how certain words, certain tonal combinations, can move me to tears. Can make me smile and feel that if someone else is feeling this or has felt this, then life can move in a beautiful harmony. My lifelong friends, and they all understand me like no other.

So, I'm making him a mix CD. Maybe I'll change his mind.