I don't want to speak too loudly, but it looks like the program that I work for just maybe might somehow be funded for another year. Which is good. Despite my initial psuedo hope for a layoff in July.
Not that a layoff would be ideal. But it would have given me more time with Nicholas and Jacob. Because godknows I couldn't afford summer camp or daycare if I wasn't working. Daycare and afterschool programming is eating an entire one of my paychecks each month. And if it were to happen, unemployment checks would probably go 100% to Cobra benefits because even Cobra is cheaper than what it would be if we were on Dave's benefits. His work doesn't cover any percentage of family insurance.
Could you just talk about insurance forever? Because I sure could.
Yesterday morning I saw an older man trying to catch a bus on Broad and Walnut, and he was really frustrated because the buses weren't stopping for him. They weren't stopping because that bus stop is actually in the middle of the block rather than on the corner like 98% of all bus stops in this town. I walked him to the stop and listened to him grumble and said goodbye.
A few hours later I saw him on the subway and joked about giving up on the bus and he was telling me that he didn't even know he was sick and all of a sudden he has to take a pill that costs $40 per day AFTER insurance and AFTER seeing four different doctors to confirm the diagnosis. He wants to retire but doesn't want to lose the "good" benefits he has. He had a CVS bag and said that there were only four pills in the bag. $160.
He spoke of saving money by moving in with his sister and brother over in Toms River, NJ but said that he would literally go crazy if he moved out of the city because there is nothing to do once you get out of Philadelphia and he is a high-energy person who needs a lot of stuff going on around him. (Truth. I hear that, brother.)
I'm sure that story happens a million times over, all across the country. It's hard for me not to attach my grandfathers' faces to him.
Now I'm picturing what my grandfathers' faces look like, years after they are buried. Is it true we don't rot after embalming? Weird, dude. I want to return to the earth from whence I came when I'm dead. No traces of my physical self left over.
Did you watch Six Feet Under? Remember when that one brother buried his girlfriend in a hole? That's what I want, but I don't think that's legal because tiny molecules of my body would disintegrate and reintegrate themselves into the dirt and be washed down into the water table and flow into the drinking reserves and then the alive people would drink tiny pieces of me in their tap water and that's totally taboo. So I guess cremation and a good scattering of the ashes is what I'm hoping for.
The South Philadelphia welfare office that used to be in a neighborhood has been relocated to Broad Street, right in plain sight of everyone. The line seems to get longer and longer and whiter and whiter every week.
What has one thousand legs and four teeth?
The welfare line in Kensington.
Kensington is a poor, mostly white neighborhood in the north half of the city.
That joke isn't too far off from the truth.
Returning to work has been pretty easy on the old heart strings so far. I'm easing into things on the administrative end. No contact with clients or case records.
I have to do it this way, for my own good.
Nicholas usually crashes pretty hard an hour or so after we get home in the evenings and then is awake on and off all night after 11 or 12. He eats while I sleep. We co-sleep. We all co-sleep. We're a co-sleeping family. I need a king size bed.
Everyone wants a piece of me while they are sleeping. It can be quite exhausting to be so loved. I'm a loner by nature and would like nothing better than a twin bed in a sparse room. If being a nun didn't involve all that bride of Christ stuff, I'd have become a nun.
The first time I met a nun I was shocked at what an asshole she was. I was working at Baskin Robbins and she came in with her asshole nun sister friend and they obnoxiously asked for samples of EVERYTHING. Including toppings and milkshakes. And tried to pay with a $50 bill. In the early nineties. Ice cream was only $1.45 a scoop.
She was a total bitch. I guess I had "nun" confused with "Disney Princess" because I totally thought they would be sweet and kind and loving and birds would perch on their outstretched fingers if they stuck them out for more than thirty seconds.
You can probably guess that I didn't go to Catholic School.
My brother is sending his daughter to Catholic School, despite us not being the least bit Catholic. Good luck with that, I say.
There is a big Catholic High School near my house, and in the weekly free South Philadelphia paper where they post neighborhood happenings and local goings ons they often do write ups about school sports. The aforementioned high school is apparently very good at basketball, probably much in thanks to all the guys named Mustafa and Hakim and such that play on the team.
I guess being Catholic isn't a pre-requisite to go to Catholic School.
Jacob has to say "God Bless America" after saying the pledge of allegiance at school. He asked me if it would be okay if he said "God Bless the Universe" instead because he thinks that asking God to Bless America is pretty selfish.
I think saying God Bless America in a public school is pretty ridiculous. But whatever. I don't even say the pledge.
What else? Nothing. Work. Daycare. School. Home. Theater. Sleep. Repeat.