Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Work . . . Job . . . Occupation . . . Vocation . . .

For heaven's sake . . . .  What is it that pulls one out of bed at such an ungodly hour . . . to write?  Which of the nine muses (this time) or, perhaps, one of the candidates for the "tenth muse," or Mnemosyne, herself?  It certainly wouldn't be Zeus!

So, the tradition is to call upon one (or more?) of the muses . . . .

But how to pick THE thought for expression out of the "blooming buzzing confusion of the outer world"?

This one, it seems to me, stems from a "conversation" with a homeless woman while waiting for the bus yesterday here in Palm Springs, CA - "I have rights . . ." she kept saying while listing a litany of abuses from landlord and county . . . .

So, it must have been that in my sleep I was reflecting upon my experience back in Minnesota - just coming into actual retirement and being a live-in, caretaker for a 76 year old man (formerly a technical VP at 3M) with mild Altzheimer's.  Experiencing first hand his (and his wife's) battle with a series of "guardian / conservators" (the Dakota County  investigator had taken their client's fearful expression that he did not want his wife [current or ex-?] to be his guardian-conservator as the gospel truth - $200,000 in lawyer's fees later, his wife was finally named to be his guardian / conservator).  With one guardian-conservator they had run into a situation which involved Federal tax returns from individual submissions and the question arose as to whose assets they were, so that the guardian-conservator cut off all funds to the household (this was not the first time they had faced this situation, as an "emergency guardian-conservator" appointed by Dakota County for a ninety-day period, did absolutely nothing except once a month write his client a check for food and himself a check for $50.00 for writing the check for food; that is to say, none of the household bills were paid during that period and they faced having their electricity shut off just previous to Christmas [you can imagine what this would be like, living in Minnesota], not to mention their health insurance cancelled).  They had "rights" after all . . . .

And, grasping at straws for survival, one day upon reading the paper I saw an ad for newspaper route work and suggested that we try that avenue for temporary income.  This was 3:00 - 6:00 AM (12:00 [Midnight] - 7:00 AM for the Sunday paper), seven days a week work (at less than minimum wage [not counting the "tips"], it turned out), with a commitment on my part for one year (of service).

Was I an idiot?  Probably only in the sense of Dostoevsky's "The Idiot" . . . .

Thus the title for this post!

Have a great day!

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