I Count, Too.

I want my very own placard.

On my commute to work today I saw one of those “Baby on board” placards that people put up in their SUVs so that first responders will understand the urgency of their rescue. Granted, infants need extra care, and are just starting out in life, and heaven knows they should not be punished for their parents’ stupid driving habits. But still…

I know this isn’t exactly politically correct, but…

I am sick and tired of being undervalued because I didn’t procreate.

I want that ambulance driver to feel every bit as much urgency when rescuing me. I want a tax cut by virtue of the fact that I haven’t added to the crowding of an already overcrowded planet. I don’t want to be made to feel guilty for asking for a holiday off simply because I’m the only employee without kids. I want to be able to take family sick leave when my dog needs to be rushed to the vet. I want a gift for putting up with you when you’re pregnant, instead of having to give you one for being pregnant. I want you to keep your screaming child away from my public space. I don’t want to have to constantly justify my choice not to have children.

Most of all, I want my very own placard.


Like the way my weird mind works? Then you’ll enjoy my book! http://amzn.to/2mlPVh5



You Just Got A Lot Less Free

Recently, the Supreme Court ruled against you, me, and everyone else in the Janus vs AFSCME case. Now, everyone in the public sector, regardless of the state in which he or she resides, is in a “right to work” state.

Basically, it means that people in union jobs in the public sector no longer are required to pay union dues, and yet they will get the benefit of union services. That sounds great unless you scratch the surface. If fewer of us pay union dues, the unions will spend more time financially struggling, and less time protecting workers.

Why should you care? Trust me, I lived in Florida, a “right to work” state, for decades. For the past 4 years, I’ve been in Washington, a collective bargaining state, and the differences were blatantly obvious.

For starters, I am now earning 3 times as much for doing the exact same job. In Florida I was barely making more than minimum wage, and had no benefits to speak of. Here in Washington, I get holiday pay and sick leave and have medical and dental and vision insurance. I have retirement. In other words, I can survive.

In Florida, when we were exposed to lead paint, our supervisor told us to drink more milk. That was supposed to take care of lead poisoning. Here, our health and safety is so focused on, it’s the opposite extreme, meaning I have to wear a hard hat every time I step out on the sidewalk. But at least I won’t be hit by a low flying plane!

In Florida, I could be fired for no reason at all, and it happened to people all the time. In Washington, even the people who should get fired almost never do. But at least you can sleep at night, knowing you’ll have a job tomorrow.

Don’t get me wrong: They still try to screw you over in Washington State. They just don’t succeed as often. Thanks to unions. And that’s something to hold on to. But now, that’s gone. Greedy people will stop paying their union dues. (I’ll keep paying. They’ve saved my bacon too many times to stop supporting them now.) Without our support, the unions will get stretched thinner and thinner until they break.

And that’s what the conservatives are counting on. You elected them. Now look at what is going to happen to you. The statistics in the image below are all too true. And the crazy thing is, even if you aren’t in a union job, these statistics trickle down to you as well.

Okay, I’m not explaining this well. (I tend to be less coherent when I’m upset.) Check out this video and you’ll understand. It’s 3:35, so only a few minutes of your time to realize just how screwed this conservative-packed supreme court just made you.

Welcome to our new reality. Think about that next time you enter the voting booth. And happy 4th of July.

#UnionStrong #FreedomToJoin


Read any good books lately? Try mine! http://amzn.to/2mlPVh5

I am Officially Doomed

After 12 years of working crazy shifts here on the drawbridge, often two or three different shifts in the space of a week, I’m now discovering that there is an official name for my constant state of mental fog, my messed up immune system, and my apparent inability to lose weight despite all efforts. It’s called Shift Work Sleep Disorder. Classified as Circadian Rhythm Sleep Disorder in the DSM-IV, I can now say that what’s going on with me can be taken seriously, for all the good that does me.

Symptoms of this disorder include:

  • Lack of sleep. (Well, duh…)
  • Increased stress.
  • Increased risk of infections, including colds and flu.
  • Increased risk of breast and prostate cancer.
  • Higher cholesterol.
  • Increased risk of heart attack.
  • Increased risk of obesity.
  • Insomnia.
  • Headaches.
  • Difficulty concentrating.
  • Reduced attention span.
  • Gastrointestinal and digestive problems.
  • Decreased production of Melatonin, causing decreased immunity, and increased production of tumors.

Some other fun facts about shift work are:

  • We are twice as likely to have a work related accident.
  • Sick leave is reported in 63 percent of shift workers as opposed to 34 percent of day workers.
  • 30 percent of us are single, compared to 20 percent of day workers.

All this due to a disruption in our circadian rhythms. I’d love to say “Now I don’t feel so bad,” but actually I feel just as bad. Now I just have a name for it.

There are some things you can do about it, but I’m just too tired to write more. So just check out the sources for this blog entry: