Archive for the ‘madness’ Tag

02-24-2016 Journal – Obamascare 2016!   Leave a comment

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There are times in people’s lives when life insists are mucking things up. For me the month of February 2016 is fast becoming a month to remember. Let me explain.

I’m back from my two days without blogging and if I remember correctly it’s the first time I’ve missed posting from my every-other-day schedule. I look forward to blogging each and every time and get more than a little miffed when life starts messing with me.  Healthcare issues are currently harshing my buzz.

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For instance, my two day journey this week was totally consumed by things I absolutely hate . . . doctors, hospitals, examinations, Obamacare, and those always sucky insurance companies. Believe me when I say I hate them all equally.  Someday most of you will be where I am now. Retired from decades of working your ass off and wanting to spend your remaining years enjoying life.  I think I’ll  be the bucket of ice water dumped on your head to wake you up.  Good luck with trying to enjoy yourself.

Over the last few years since my private healthcare plan was scrapped and I was forced onto Medicare the government keeps trying to intrude on my calm.  As we all know once the government gets involved in anything it’s a freaking nightmare.  Getting older is tough enough on the good days but having a bunch of bureaucrats and politicians intruding into your life on a regular basis is madness. The real truth is that the older you get the worse it becomes so start getting your mind right now for what’s to come.

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Look forward to a continuous stream of emails from damn near every government agency you can think of and endless changes made to every part of the Obamacare program and it’s requirements. You’re also required to have expensive tests and scanning’s done even when they aren’t necessary. My doctor told me this week I looked perfectly fine, my BP was good, my cholesterol was perfect, and that I was in excellent physical condition for my age. Hooray for me, right?  No way. The next thing he did was schedule me for sonogram of my torso. Guess who will be footing the bill for that I wonder.  The taxpayers I’ll bet.  This test is mandatory for me to meet the Medicare requirements of my Wellness visit.  What a large crock of crap. How many thousands of other Seniors are also being forced into these tests at what I’m sure is hundreds of dollars per test.

Lets review my last six months of health related activities. My doctor of 14 years sold his practice and moved back to Pakistan because of Obamacare. My hospital was sold to a large healthcare corporation and I’ve had three difference doctors assigned to me since that occurred.  Blood tests, scans of body parts I could care less about, and surveys required by the government to get my opinion of the job they’re doing. It’s nice of them to also keep me aware of just how old I’m getting and all of the healthcare tragedies that might eventually kill me.  Like I don’t know what they are already.

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Today I spent and hour and a half trying to straighten out my prescriptions that I’ve been receiving by mail for eleven years.  I attempted to login to the insurance companies website to confirm my next three months of pills which just happen to be keeping me alive.  I couldn’t log on because all of a sudden they didn’t recognize my name, my email address, or my password.  I was officially a non-person. I then called them for help and became lost in the maze of their computerized menu system that totally befuddled me which I assume is done purposely.  After talking with a young lady from El Paso, Texas for far too long I finally confirmed my prescriptions as required to keep the Medicare idiots happy.  Life was finally good, right? No effing way!

My IPad began screaming that new charges had just hit my credit card from the insurance company and guess what . . . they double billed me. It would have been so much easier for me and the government if I would’ve just died when I turned 65.

Let me look into my crystal ball and try to see what’s coming in all of your futures. Maybe free euthanasia clinics? Possibly cut-backs of critical treatments to save money? We can always rely on the politicians to find the “final solution” to the Obamacare, Medicare, and Social Security cost increases. Thinning the herd may be just the answer they finally come up with.

Hopefully I’ll be long gone before those things become your topics of conversation. 

GOOD LUCK, YOU’LL NEED IT!!

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12-06-2015 Journal– Red & Green Insanity!   Leave a comment

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‘Christmas Eve in Maine.’

How is your holiday season progressing?  Are your preparations ahead of schedule or behind? Is your Christmas tree real or artificial? Are your kids driving you crazy yet? Has your alcohol consumption increased progressively with the holiday pressures?  All really good questions but as we all know they’re rhetorical. 

The drumbeat of Christmas is getting louder each day. I go to sleep thinking about what I’ve accomplished that day and wake up thinking about all of the stuff that I still need to accomplish today.  I am so full of Christmas cheer I could scream out loud.  After rereading this paragraph I think I discovered something else I must be full of.  You get my drift, right? I’M LOSING IT MAN!

Here is my kitchen table as I found it this morning:

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Trust me when I tell you the entire living room and family room look exactly like it as well.   I’m knee deep in Christmas and there’s still 18 shopping days left. It could take us until sometime in February to repack all this stuff and I can’t wait.  At least the damn cat seems to be enjoying himself:

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I haven’t had my breakfast yet but since I can’t eat in the kitchen I may retire to the deck and eat there. That’s right, the sun is shining and it’s still warm enough to sit outside and have breakfast. It’s madness I tell you.

Even Mother Nature appears confused by the weather. I took a stroll around the property yesterday  for no other reason than to get a little sun on my pasty white body.  I found this lonely little flower in the side yard. One stupid dandelion that’s decided it’s really not December but April. I can officially say this is the latest I’ve ever seen any flower growing and blooming.

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‘The all-time dumbest flower on the planet.’

I’d like to continue on with this post but I’m getting the evil eye from my better-half. It’s time to get back to my Santa duties. Everything has to be just perfect for the grandsons when they arrive (in two and a half effing weeks). Sorry about the language but all these red and green colors are finally getting to me or maybe it’s just my requested Christmas aneurism finally showing up.

I hope someone tells Santa just what a good boy I’ve been this year. He owes me big time.

11-16-2015 Journal– X-mas Insanity Begins!   Leave a comment

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This post will probably be confusing for some of you because there isn’t any rhyme or reason behind what I’ll be writing.  I’ve been very busy of late with a lot of little stuff that needs to be handled before the holidays officially arrive. Just keep your hands and feet inside the car, this ride may get a little bumpy.

My life has changed dramatically in the last month due to my elimination of  live cable television.  I’m happy to announce that I haven’t watched more than ten minutes of commercials, ads, or television shopping channels for over a month.  It took me a few weeks to get the hang of streaming and I’ve been able to locate and avoid those few channels that still insist on running commercials. It’s truly a game changer.  I have more freedom to watch what I please when I please and no scheduling of my time in order to watch a specific program.  No more waiting for commercial breaks to make  bathroom runs, I just hit the pause and Ta Da.  I also like watching what once was an hour long show in 43 minutes, minus all those damn commercials.  Life has gotten seriously better.

The better-half’s birthday has come and gone and was a great success. She loved her gifts, the wine, and that big, fat, medium rare T-bone steak. I tried to be as romantic as possible and I think I pulled it off rather well.  Here’s my lame attempt at a table setting on our crazy retro dining room set.

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I’d like to officially thank the cow that made the ultimate sacrifice for our meal. Tender and soft as marshmallows washed down with a semi-sweet Merlot.  Yummmmm!

I’ve been diligently working towards having all things Christmas, purchased, wrapped, and hidden away by Thanksgiving.  That will free up my time between Thanksgiving and Christmas to be the better-half’s decorating slave. First the tree, then the lights, then tinsel, then motorized talking and singing toys scattered throughout the house.  I can only pray that my first gift will be a noise-cancelling headset. 

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Here’s some bad news. Last night I was strong-armed into watching the first Christmas movie of the season.  That’s right, a Christmas movie on November 15.  Please just shoot me now.

Three days ago I was dragged kicking and screaming to the Mall. It was a typical mall trip which bored the hell out of me. I ended up sitting in the middle of the mall surrounded by herds of screaming kids being chased by their parents. Thank God for my Kindle.  The best part of my visit consisted of my standing near a small kiosk and allowing a really hot young lady to place heat packs on my neck. I let her go on and on with her sales pitch and finally walked away without making a purchase. My neck felt a lot better and so did my morale. thBVIZQLLU

I have a few more gifts to wrap today and I think I’m  be totally finished with Christmas preparations.  With that goal being met I think I’ll then deserve a tall, cold, and refreshing Gin and Tonic later this afternoon. 

I hope your holiday craziness isn’t too overwhelming.  Before you know it 2016 will be here and we can start preparing for next Christmas. Are we all insane or is it just me?

10-03-2015 Journal–A Really Early Holiday Message!   Leave a comment

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‘This is written with my tongue lodged firmly in my cheek.’

Where did our Summer go?  It seems like just a short time ago we were complaining about the heat and humidity and WHAM, all of a sudden we’re rolling into October and looking down the tunnel at that proverbial bright light approaching at seventy miles an hour. That light is the damn holiday season quietly sneaking up on us. It’s October for God’s sake. Doesn’t anyone care that it just too damn early to be worrying about the holidays.  Stop the madness people. 

I was in Lowe’s yesterday visiting my better-half who was tied up with a number of other employees doing their Christmas reset. Just shoot me now, please. What the hell are they thinking.

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These retailers claim they start their seasonal BS  early because of the huge demand for their holiday products.  Honestly, when was the last time you ever heard anyone . . . that’s ANYONE say they were happy about seeing the Christmas season starting in early October.  Never!!  The truth of the matter is that the demand is created by the retailers themselves who lower their prices just enough to entice customers to the store.  They can be so disingenuous at times it makes me crazy. It just goes to show you how stupid they think we the shopping public are.  And sadly they’re right!

I refuse to be manipulated anymore.  No early holiday nonsense for me, no Black Friday idiocy, and no paying attention to the thousands of emails that will be clogging my mailbox over the next ten weeks.  I’m done with it. 

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I plan on spending exactly fifteen minutes on Christmas shopping this year  and thank God for Amazon. A five minute walk-in at Toys R Us for two gift cards, a five minute walk-in at Home Depot for one gift card, and finally five minutes to order seven additional gift cards from Amazon. That leaves just a few gifts I need to purchase for my better-half which will be ordered on-line as well and shipped directly to our house.

Stick those gift cards in an envelope with a Christmas card and a short note and you’re DONE.  No more stress, no more purchases of gifts that no one really wants or appreciates. Get your gift cards in the mail, buy what you want, and leave  me alone.  I never intend to spend more than an hour on Christmas preparations ever again. 

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I’m only asking Santa Clause for Amazon or Kindle gift cards this year since I’ve been very, very good. I’ve spent too many years getting clothing I hate and would never dare to wear, smiling and lying about how much I liked that fruit cake I received, and all of the required traveling around the countryside in terrible weather to visit people. I’m sorry folks, it’s nothing personal, but in my opinion if you’ve seen one Christmas tree you’ve seen them.  So here is my collective seasons greetings for most of you in case I forget later.

HAPPY HALLOWEEN

HAPPY THANKSGIVING

HAPPY HANUKKAH

HAPPY STUPID KWANSA

HAPPY SEINFELD FESTIVAS

MERRY CHRISTMAS

HAPPY NEW YEAR

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I’m exhausted already from just listing all of this foolishness.  I wish I could just go find a cave and hibernate until February 15.  It would make for one of the best holiday seasons ever if I could.

BAH HUMBUG

12-15-2014 Journal – My Christmas Story!   Leave a comment

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It’s early and I’m still snuggled up in this warm bed and I never ever want to leave it.  My better-half is a person who isn’t entirely sure how to relax and just a few minutes ago she left this cozy bed to begin her endless list of chores.  She’s driven by her imaginary To-Do list that instantly becomes her number one priority as soon as her feet hit the floor.  I’m a goal oriented person myself but luckily I know when to just lay back, block out the world, and relax. Any minute now she’ll be delivering me a steaming hot cup of hazelnut coffee and then she’ll disappear into own little world of Christmas stuff and loud annoying music.

I don’t dislike Christmas as many people think but I also have no great love for it. As a kid It was much more of a religious holiday thanks mostly to my mother. As I grew older and lost my interest in organized religion I also lost most of my interest in Christmas.  I really enjoy sharing gifts with friends and family and I actually enjoy the giving more than the receiving.  My better-half is Christmas crazy and it’s gotten progressively worse since the birth of her grandson.  With another child expected in March I can only assume next Christmas will be totally out of control.

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There’s nine shopping days left until the big day and I’m actually looking forward to having the grandson under the tree and up to his neck in wrapping paper and gifts.  He doesn’t realize yet because of his young age that this will be this last Christmas as the lone grand child. Next year he’ll have a new sibling to share the limelight with and so it will be forever.  I plan on spoiling him a bit this year because I’m really sympathetic to his plight.

I’m even considering sneaking down to his house after dark disguised as Santa to look in the window and scare the crap out of him like my parents and family did to me.  It was an odd way to show their love but after a few years of being deathly afraid of Santa I was able to man up and get on with my life. It was really scary.

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I was about his age when my sister was born and things were never quite the same after that.  I wasn’t too happy with sharing the limelight and neither will he I’m sure. That rivalry will last forever.  So our little man is going to have one terrific Christmas which I hope he’ll remember and appreciate someday.  I see I’m getting the evil eye from my better-half which means she’ll start bugging me to get the hell out of bed and get busy.

I fully intend to convince her that today I have my own To-Do list to worry about. Then I’ll post the blog, grab my camera, and disappear from the premises.  I figure any time I can steal and spend driving around and taking pictures is a win/win. I could also hint that I need to buy her another gift or two and that should do the trick.

That’s my Christmas Story and I’m sticking to it.

12-11-2014 Journal–Another Computer Day!   Leave a comment

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You would  think I’d know better by now after all of the computer and networking fiasco’s I’ve had in recent months, but oh no, I just keep kicking the hornets nest over and over again.

I’ve written in the past about the robbery that took place here almost two years ago.  If you’ve never been victimized by a home break-in it’s hard to explain just how paranoid you instantly become. Every time you leave your home you wonder if the criminals will return to take the rest of your belongings. 

I took all of the normal precautions at the time with lock changes, deadbolts, metal doors, and padlocks on just about everything you can think of.  It hasn’t made me feel the least bit protected. Today was the day when we purchased a rather sophisticated alarm system that can easily be expanded to include everything.  It’s the first step in the creation of a “Smart House” which unfortunately requires a hookup directly into my home network and my internet feed. 

Nothing is easy to install no matter what they tell you.  It may be easy for the manufacturers but the guys that write their user manuals are idiots.  Their one hour installation is  now in it’s seventh hour due to faulty video cameras and the lack of a competent translator to read their instructions.

At last I have it in, operating and tested.  All except for the two video cameras which were faulty and will soon be replaced.  I now have door contacts, motion detectors, thermostats, sirens, and range extenders.  All I need now is a wide and deep moat filled with hungry alligators and possibly a machine gun nest on the roof.  If any intruders can get over the moat, past the alligators, through my dead bolts, and alarm sirens I guess I’ll just have to shoot them.

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I feel safer already.

01-21-2014 Journal Entry-Boredom!   Leave a comment

It’s a terrible thing to be bored.  It’s doubly terrible when you’re in Maine and it’s Winter.  It feels like being up in the air on the “Vomit Comet” flying very high, then diving straight down, and then pulling back up again to what is supposed to be normal.  That weightlessness between dives in my mind is the ultimate boredom.  You’re just floating around in a pointless manner, accomplishing nothing, and feeling even worse.

Maybe if you were like me and had a fifty year love affair with adrenaline, the ultimate aphrodisiac, it would help you to understand a little.  Hang gliding, sky diving, bungee jumping, and smashing down doors to apprehend criminals or mental patients can in no way be considered boring. Defying death or serious injury was never the point for me.  The point was experiencing the dangers and not giving a shit what happened.  Putting your entire existence into the hands of fate and doing so with no regrets. Most people never get to that point and don’t really want to, unless they can feel the adrenaline rush without committing to the danger.

So you have your regular run-of-the-mill boredom and then there’s the adrenaline-free boredom which is even worse.  I’m drifting through life living vicariously through my own past experiences to help keep my head above water.  Unfortunately once you reach a certain age with all of the physical limitations that come with it, your choices become strictly limited.  Writing a blog, painting a picture, sculpting, sketching, remodeling a home or even walking in the woods are a just a stupid laundry list of poor substitutes.

I actually attempted for a while to live vicariously through others but OMG what a mistake.  Many of the people in my sphere of influence, not all of course, put me into a deathlike comma.  They’re lives have taken boredom to new heights and they don’t know the difference since they have nothing to compare it to. I may sound a little harsh in my criticisms but so what.

So I’ll start another day writing this blog, walking a couple of miles on my treadmill, reading a book, watching some TV, petting my cat, and then walking outside and screaming at the top of my effing lungs.  Now don’t you feel a hundred percent better about your life?  You should.

Here are a few boring things from my list of thousands.

  • Celebrity Worship
  • Baseball (Except for Little League)
  • Soccer (I don’t consider it a real sport.)
  • Politics and Politicians (Pundits and  Talk Shows too)
  • Sermons (Religious or Otherwise)
  • Musicals
  • Shopping War Stories
  • Vampires
  • Werewolves
  • “Wives of”  (From any City. State, Country, or Planet)
  • Sports
  • Country Music
  • Waiting Rooms
  • Commercials of Any Kind
  • Soap Operas

08-11-2013   2 comments

Well we returned home at 9pm last night from our day and a half road trip to Rhode Island.  I was never so glad to be home.  Road trips in and of themselves can be fun but only if you have enough time to stop and smell the roses.  Anyone who tries to squeeze four or five days of activities into one day is out of their effing mind.

I can tell you from my experience yesterday that the last place you want to be on a hot summer Sunday in August is Newport, Rhode Island. Thousands of people jamming the streets and every business and building. You’d better not be the least bit claustrophobic because if you are you’re royally and supremely screwed.

There were so many pedestrians on the streets it was difficult to even drive a city block without issues. If you do somehow find yourself kidnaped by your spouse and her family members and taken there against your will, you have my sincerest sympathies.  If you go there voluntarily then you have some issues of your own to deal with.

Make sure you have plenty of cash with you as well.  Things are a little pricy and you’ll pay top price for everything.  Parking fees are utterly outrageous and insulting.  Restaurants will serve you huge portions of food that you’ll never be able to finish just so they have justification to jack the prices up as high as possible.

Do I sound angry? If I don’t then I’m not getting my point across.  My last visit to Newport was twenty years ago and I guarantee there will never be another.  The entire place offends my sensibilities and going back again is just out of the question.

There, I feel a little better after getting that off my chest.   Now I can allow my life to return to what I think is normal.  No more unorganized, hit or more miss, expensive, and un-fun outings.  I promise!

One other thing, any members of my better-half’s family who may read this, don’t take anything I’ve written too personally.  If you do, so be it.

05-14-2013   Leave a comment

Spring has finally sprung here in Maine.  That cold nip that’s been in the air for the last few weeks seems to be disappearing and sitting on my deck actually feels warm instead of just in the sunny spots.

Something else is an excellent predictor of warm weather and that’s road construction.  We’re just a week away from the beginning of the tourist season which under normal conditions is a huge pain in the butt.  Add the influx of tourist to the unbelievable amount of road construction and what do you get? You get madness.

I spent a portion of my day yesterday riding around the area,  running errands, and just enjoying the sunshine.  I saw a few things I found more than a little disturbing.  I once lived in the Boston area and there we were required to suffer through traffic jams which are a way of life.  I spent more than seventeen years sitting on Rte. 128 in gigantic traffic jams and logged more time sitting on that highway than I did in my office. It was one of the many reasons I felt a move to Maine was a good idea.

Maine is a very large state with a reasonably small population and under normal circumstances we have a difficult time even finding a traffic jam.  Unfortunately that appears to be changing this year.  I spent more time than I’d like sitting in construction traffic yesterday and I swear I must have seen at least sixty percent of the state’s population.  They were all jammed into one of the main intersections in Scarborough, Maine which has been under construction for at least two months.

It takes a real genius to begin a large road construction project just prior to tourist season at one of the busiest intersections in the area without being absolutely certain it will be completed before the tourists arrive.  It’s not the town officials that are to blame but the idiots from the state government in Augusta.  They bitch and complain about the poor economy and then do their level best to screw things up.

The perfect example to make my point was this scene.  You have two large intersections within a couple of hundred yards of each other.  There are no less than fourteen lanes of traffic merging into and out of this area which unfortunately is the direct driving route to the beaches and the marsh areas where tourist love to visit.  Every lane except for two was closed.

I sat and watched some poor schmuck standing in a shallow hole spreading asphalt with a wooden paddle.  He was sweating his butt off as he pushed and pulled the material around to get it level.  Standing right next to him were four supervisors in their pretty white hard hats, reading their clip boards, and watching the poor guy working. Making a rough estimate I would calculate that more than $100.00 an hour was being spent to supervise one guy making $20.00 an hour.  I really appreciated that the entire group of supervisors were proud enough to wear their official State of Maine, Department of Transportation  jackets.  It’s the perfect way to advertise to "We the People" where our hard earned tax money is being spent.

Shortly after Memorial Day that intersection will be an even bigger nightmare.  I’m certain that all of our Canadian visitors will really appreciate spending a good portion of their vacation time sitting in the heat at that intersection.  You haven’t lived until you’ve experienced a road rage incident where someone is screaming obscenities at you in French.  At least I won’t understand what the hell their saying.

03-04-2013   Leave a comment

The start of another work week for everyone and unfortunately for me as well.  It’s becoming painfully obvious that I’m working much harder being retired than when I was actually working.  For some reason I expected that taking early retirement was going to be the end of my labors and believing that  makes me a gigantic moron.  I should have know better.

I started with a huge and complicated goal when I took retirement.  I sold my home and together with my better-half we decided to update and repair her home.  I must have been brain damaged as a child to even think to take on a project like that especially dealing with a thirty year old home with five bedrooms.  I now only have one wish.  I want to meet the effing a-hole who built this place and I want to beat him with a huge stick for about an hour. There isn’t a square room in the entire building, the wiring was a complete and utter disaster, and who in their right effing mind puts drop ceilings in the kitchen and bedrooms.

I thought I was some kind of handy-man when I started this project but I’m a whole lot smarter now.  In the last five years I’ve touched damn near every wire, board, window, door, and floor in the freaking building.  Guess what?  I’m still not finished.  If I’m lucky I’ll have the entire house completed except for the kitchen within the next eighteen months. I won’t even begin to tell you what a nightmare the kitchen will be.  It has to be gutted completely and redone from scratch.

With my luck I’ll finally get this place finished and then I’ll get hit by a truck getting the mail from the mailbox.  I’ve done a few things in my life that deserve a karmic slap but I for the life of me I can’t remember doing anything bad enough to deserve this house. KMN

Enough of the whining.  I just left Lowes with a load of material so I can get started on the drywall installation in my bedroom remodel.  Lowes should make me their official mascot for this particular store since I spent enough money here to drive their sales for the last four years.

I’m going to finish this bedroom and then I’m taking the summer off.  No hammers, nails, paint, or anything else.  I going to relax, take lots of photographs, visit distant lands (within Maine), and enjoy the warm weather and the beach.  That should clear my head enough to prepare me for next winters project. 

Someone help me, I’m trapped in Maine and I can’t get out.