Tuesday, December 16, 2014

I Guess We Need a Telethon For Fail

I’ve started, stopped, and started this post over again about a dozen times so far, and if this were a movie we could establish that fact with a single shot of a wastebasket overflowing with crumpled paper, and the sound of another sheet being ripped from a typewriter platen and wadded up to join its fellow failures. Or, depending on the period, you could go with the less static visual of a hurled inkwell exploding against the wall in a black starburst, then dripping slowly down the yellow wallpaper while the frustrated author weeps, and clutches at his Byronic locks.

But you can’t get away with that anymore, because nobody’s going to sit still for a ten minute scene of some guy pursing his lips and holding down the Backspace key. I guess the point I’m trying to make is that this is proving to be a painfully difficult post to write, in no small part because it may be my last for awhile – not that I’m planning to leave in a huff, but because I suspect the huff is planning to leave without me.

Okay, this may be the absolute worst set-up for a clip ever. Let me start over again. Again.

As most of you guys know, things have been on an inclined plane around here for the past few months, with both Mary’s and Riley’s health deteriorating simultaneously (which I referred to as the “Elliott and E.T. Effect,” to the amusement of neither one). Not surprisingly, the rate of southward descent seems to have increased since Riley passed away in September, which makes me think that she was our own little household goddess, warding off evil spirits and keeping the wolf from the door with the searing power of her sidelong glance.
Mary's surgery solved the one major health problem we knew about (and the one lurking issue we were afraid of; yay for Early Detection). But she's in constant pain from the neuralgia in her jaw, making it an ordeal for her to eat, and often impossible for her to talk (we basically communicate through pheromones, Clan of the Cave Bear-style gestures, and text messages); which is a bit of a handicap for a teacher, or would be if the school district hadn't informed her that she was out of a job.

She's planning to appeal, but it will probably be 60 days -- at earliest -- before she gets a hearing, and in the meantime, she's on unpaid suspension (with loss of benefits -- we're so lucky they didn't pull this before the surgery).  
Moondoggie tried to help with the mound of paperwork the District sent by laying on it, but the legalese sent him into a fugue state.

I wasn't overly panicked, since I had an assignment lined up that was supposed to start on November 28 and would have picked up some of the slack, but it kept getting postponed, and tonight I was told it's been pushed to the end of January. Which means we facing eviction at the end of the month -- and where we'll go, I honestly don't know. Also, AT&T is turning off the internet service tomorrow, but with all my kvetching and wheedling, that may come as a relief to some people.

So things are, frankly, desperate, and we're forced to come hat in hand and beg for help. Even worse, the only hat I could find is a mesh trucker cap with felt moose antlers from Bullwinkle's Family Fun Center in Tukwila, WA, but I guess beggars can't be choosers. 

I'm very sorry about this; I know we couldn't have picked a worse time of year, and if you're not in any position to help, I completely understand, please don't worry about it. If you can help -- with anything at all -- it would be a life saver. You can click the button on the top left, or, if you're not Pals with Mr. Pay, drop me an email at scott.clevenger - at - gmail.com and I'll send you our snail mail address.

Thanks for listening.


Marcellina said...

Done. Somehow there's a little cash left over this month, I hope you get what you need.

s.z. said...

Scott and Mary, I'm so sorry that things are so bad for you right now. Of course, if this were a Hallmark Channel Christmas movie, then Santa would come tonight and bring you an orphan, then you'd learn the true meaning of Christmas, and Uncle Clarence would be found with the missing bank money in Vegas. And also, the whole town would help you if they could, and would bring you Pepperidge Farm cookies (I may be mixing up "It's a Wonderful Life" with some commercials. Anyway, let's hope that cheesy Christmas movies have some truth behind them, and things work out okay.

gappy said...

Good fucking grief, I have no words for the downward spiral you've been sent hurtling into but I do have some money I'm sending and I hope it helps keep you in your home.

Li'l Innocent said...

Darling people, I have sent you some mazuma originally intended for Home Depot, who can jolly well wait til next month. Home Depot is/are not my pals, you are.

I hope this is not an obviously dumb suggestion, but is there any possibility that Mary might benefit from therapeutic massage?

Working free-lance sucks when it comes to financial planning and scheduling, but we who do it sort of know that from the gitgo... but there is no excuse for the School District's behavior. I trust Mary has union representation with some backbone to it.

Can you use the computers at your local library?

Anonymous said...


I knew it --- everybody who loves me inevitably gets knocked-FLAT from the CURSE OF ANNTI'S RECYCLABLE HORRORS (through multiple lives/life forms/deployments to Vietnam, etc.)!!!!!!


Yer Ranty Aunty Annti wants NAMES, HOME ADDRESSES, GAS MONEY & DIESEL FUEL TO RUN THE WOODCHIPPER!!!!!! A couple dozen rose bushes would be severely appreciated, as well, after the process time for that 100+-lb. sack of QUICKLIME to destroy ALL OF TEH D.N.A.!!!!!!

Seriously, Scott, get on it, when you're not being Mary's best-ever nurse/physical therapist/comforter/hugger/conveying-WO'C-LOVE-for-us-to-her facilitator in the history of California. I say that we get our best compy geniuses (Mentis??? Realist??? Getcher asses to work!!!) on finding a way to make former-gubner AAAHHHNOLD fucking OFFSHORE ACCOUNTS ***FUND*** THESE LIFE-OR-DEATH OPERATIONS!!!!!! We'll also get Snowden to protect y'all and your beloveds from teh offshore "banks" and U.S. prosecution. He'd do it, if he read this post or any of the others.

If my severely-painfully-missed Nannie (maternal grandmother who deserved WAY the fuck better than what the Methodist Children's Home gave her & the perfect man, my Papa!!!) even HEARD of ANY teacher's union fucking-over Mary even ONE TENTH of this amount, she'd turn LIVID FUCKING *PURPLE* and START WHUPPING SOME ASS!!!

Granted, she only had THREE words in HER cussing arsenal, but she would've appropriated MY lexicon as needed, for the righteous cause of taking care of Mary. No joke. Baptist minister's widow or not, sparky. And even though Cathlicks & Jewish-type-people THINK that THEY allegedly "INVENTED" the concept & delivery process of "GUILT," but NONE of y'all have SQUAT up against BAPTIST GRANDMOTHER!!!!!! Truuuuust me, she can still invoke weapons-grade guilt FOURTEEN YEARS BEYOND THE GRAVE!!! So just IMAGINE what she could do to teh republicunt beasties if aimed @ the right bastids! Heh heh heh... (CONT'D)

Anonymous said...


Love you, ADORE Mary, huge hugs for Sheri & all of teh Crappers, and I'll pass by the Santeria botanica tomorrow to send wicked black-candle vibes towards the idiots @ the school board who are sukers-enough to BELIEVE in "magical" statues & candles & incense! I know, I can never send ENOUGH cash, but I'll definitely send what I can, dear hearts. You & Mary are way too fucking NEEDED IN THIS WORLD to keep it possible for all of the wunnerful Crappers, who otherwise might turn their wicked-smaahht, delightfully-evil talents towards Teh Dark Side of Darth Cheney's cabal, if they didn't have this safe place to use their powers for good.

Love y'all, Moondoggie, the ghost of Riley, and Sheri & her neverending menagerie of home-bound kittehs, puppehs, birds, sheep, horses, camels, iguanas, spider-monkeys, etc.!!! Even snotty little James & his wunnerful still-needing-good-homes outside compadres send their furry/noisy best!


And if I'd heard from our long-lost/California-Redwood-gauge-log-up-his-ass-this-past-year, translated-into-Austrian RenB, I'd be able to predict that he'd deployed The REAL Krampus to the homes/offices/rocks-under-which-they-hide of said school/school-board/state-paid-flunkies who are fucking-up Mary's life!!!
I miss him so, but he never answers his e-mail anymore, the grouchy old fart. I hope that it doesn't mean that the Alzheimer's & diabetes have taken his life's great love, Peter, from this planet, but why else would he disappear from reach??? Try to think good thoughts for him, k y'all? Please & thank y'all!!!

grouchomarxist said...

There's nothing I can add to the foregoing, other than I hope my little bit helps, too.

Kathy said...

I've contributed what I can, and I really wish it were much more. I'm racking my brain trying to think of something helpful for the long-term.

I was threatened with firing once when I got sick for an extended period with a virus in my ears. It was such a cruel thing, since I was on CA Disability & not getting paid. Boss said I "didn't look sick". So I went back to work, nauseous & dizzy. Meh. On the bright side the State still paid me Disability, because, the Rep said "you shouldn't have been at work". On my paltry salary a few extra hundred was wonderful.

Kathy said...

Don't think of your problem as "fail"! Its just rotten luck combined with rotten people.

And check into State Disability- Mary has been paying into that fund with every paycheck.

Anonymous said...

Will be happy to send some moolah to the "keep a roof over head and maybe eat" fund. Just let me know where to send it.

With tons of crapper love,

~The Minx~

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

zombies are in....

Kathy said...

Moondoggie tried to help ... the legalese sent him into a fugue state.

He looks like he's thinking "What was IN that catnip?"

maryclev said...


I actually think he's thinking what I was thinking: what exactly do all these legal terms mean?

To All:
Thank you for help, words, curses aimed toward LAUSD, prayers and vibes. I had a wonderful dream last night that I was Matlock (or was I Perry Mason), and I had my principal on the stand and I had reduced him to a sobbing, slobbering, blob of a man, and the district reversed it's decision and I got to go back to a school that is not run by people who think "I pay taxes! I pay your salary!". I'm a Professional. I pay taxes. I pay for my salary.

Thank You for all the support you are giving us. I think we'll create a plate worthy of the Franklin Mint, featuring the most popular bad movies we have ever done, in your honor.

(Oh, and anyone good with legalize? I will not say no to any help)

maryclev said...

S.Z., if Santa would bring us a young orphaned cat to keep Moondoggie from going crazy, I would GLADLY take part in a Lifetime/Hallmark/Crappy Holiday Movie. You've been a constant friend and role model. Let's hope 2015 has better things in store for all of us!

Green Eagle said...

America: Get sick, unpaid leave followed by firing. Murder a black kid, paid furlough followed by early "exoneration."

We really are an exceptional country.

Smut Clyde said...

Apparently PayPal takes NZ currency, so I am now cleaned out of clamshells and shiny milk-bottle tops.

Thorlac said...

Annus horribilis is fancy language for "nasty ass year" which sums up much of 2014. I sent what I could and wish it could be more. TW

Weird Dave said...

Hey, as Atrios points out if you want to help and still fulfill your materialistic urges click on the Amazon button on the right.

acrannymint said...

I, Huckleberry, Ceridwyn and Boris just threw you some love.

Dr.BDH said...

Sorry I'm late seeing this post. Sending help via PayPal. Honestly, the whole town should, "Wonderful Life" style, barge into your living room with baskets of cash, your alcoholic uncle, your alcoholic former druggist boss, your drunken cabbie -- well, you get the idea - -but life doesn't imitate that art.

It imitates the one where the guy is screaming on the bridge.

Rugosa said...

Hope the new year brings better fortune, and thanks for the laughs, the bad movies, and the cats.