bunt sign

Friday, February 9, 2001

I was "hoping" to do some gardening (i.e., weed pulling) this weekend, but it looks as if the weather will prevent that. I was also hoping to do some sleeping, and the weather is perfect for that activity.

However. I was not hoping to get a bad cold, and even if what I have, which feels like a bad cold, is in fact something else, I wasn't hoping to get it, either, whatever it is.

It rained hard in the night, and off and on during the day. This was nothing like the big winter storm we'd been threatened with, but it was enough to keep me from my usual noontime walk. All the walking I did was this afternoon, from the house to the mailbox, and that made me cold and wet enough, thanks.

While I was at Mom's this morning, I lost my voice reading the comics to her. Right there between Hägar the Horrible and The Wizard of Id, I was croaking like a frog. I must have sounded bad, because Mom insisted that I not come back this afternoon. I hate to think of her spending that much uninterrupted time alone, when she can't look at the TV or the computer, but my company might do more harm than good. This would be a bad time for her to catch whatever I might have, if it's anything. I'm hoping, really, that by tomorrow it'll have turned out to be nothing.

By the way, I haven't mentioned that the happiest result of the merger of the Chronicle and the former Examiner is the combined comics page. Or rather, pages, because the new Chronicle now has three full columns of strips spread over two pages. It also has all the best columnists from both papers, which is most evident in the sports section. I mean, with Ray Ratto and Scott Ostler and Bruce Jenkins and C.W. Nevius, you've got a lot of talent there.

Once you've subscribed to the Chronicle, they never want to let you get away. I angrily canceled my subscription a few weeks before I moved, because I was tired of walking out to the road and finding the paper in the drainage ditch. On those rare occasions when it wasn't in the ditch, it was usually shredded from skidding across the gravel.

And anyway, they were selling it for 25 cents on the newsstand, but still charging 50 cents for home delivery. After thinking it over for awhile, it dawned on me that I was an idiot. So I canceled.

Since then I've moved next door, where the trip from the house to the road is now along a muddy driveway. Someone from the paper calls once a week or so to try to get me back, and I patiently explain that I don't want it delivered to the end of the drive. When their salesperson called again this week (Sunday night during The Simpsons), I told her that I would subscribe only if the carrier would bring the paper to my door, and not leave it at the end of the driveway.

I've tried this before, and every time, the salesperson has backed off. This one was more aggressive, though, and she promised me the paper would be delivered to the door. I explained that it was a couple of hundred feet off the road, but she didn't seem to think that would be a problem. (Not for her, anyway.)

Did I want to be billed or pay by credit card? I wanted a bill, so that I could not pay if by some mistake I didn't get what I was signing up for. She told me that delivery would start within three days.

It's been almost a week, and still no paper. I'm sure the carrier took one look at the rutted dirt driveway and decided he didn't need me as a customer.

wet fence

On my fax this morning was a letter from the insurance company, forwarded by the agent, that said our application had been accepted. This was one day after I was kind of snide with this agent about how long this was taking, and about the insinuating questions the company was asking (as if I'd lied on the application). And it was also one day after I wrote on this very page that I expected more runaround.

So I was wrong about that, I guess. I didn't have any really good experiences with the insurance company, nothing that would make me optimistic about something happening quickly. But still, I shouldn't have made negative assumptions. I usually try to accept other people at their word, and have faith in their best intentions, and I'm guilty of not living up to my own ideal.

On the other hand, I'm also trying not to be so hard on myself all the time, and here I go again with the guilt thing. I must be coming down with something. Or maybe it's the weather.

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So many things I would have done,
But clouds got in my way.