Saturday, November 25, 2006

Small World: My cowardly Thanksgiving road trip to Disneyland

There are many brave things one can do in life. One can bravely face the horrors of cancer and chemotherapy. One can fight for democracy, play extreme sports, climb Mt. Everest or rescue babies from burning buildings.

There are all kinds of really brave heroes out there who do all sorts of courageous things but to me the bravest heroes of all are the little guys, the ones who grind away at life's LITTLE challenges day after day after day, year after year after year. They graduate from high school or college and get on with it, knowing that the dull routine of work-home-work stretches endlessly in front of them for the next 50 years. They know this -- and they do it anyway.

In the course of their lives, these mini-heroes bravely trudge off to work approximately 59,000 times. They change 3,650 diapers per kid. They cook 54,750 meals. They wash 5,220 loads of laundry. They do what needs to be done. And they do it day after day after day after day. These are the true heroes.

My father was a true hero like that. He worked for the post office all of his life -- and he only faltered once. When World War II was declared, he was exempt because he was too old and had two children. But my pop realized that ANYTHING -- even being shot at in the Pacific -- was easier than trudging off to sort mail every day and coming home to walk the floor with a crying baby (me) at night. So he BEGGED recruiting offices to let him enlist and finally the Navy took him in as an ensign on an LST-25. But other than that one desperate attempt to escape, my father did his heroic duty and never missed a day of work in his life -- although he never changed a diaper either. But that's another story...

My youngest daughter (she just turned 20) also knows that she is being called upon to step up to the plate, suck in her gut and take the first step down the long road toward becoming that day-to-day-grind kind of brave. Right now my daughter stands on the brink -- facing the reality of a horizon with nothing on it but years of nose-to-the-grindstone effort, stretching as far before her as her young eyes can see.

But instead of just screwing up her courage, being brave, taking that first step and just getting on with it, she and her friend Jordan -- a young man whose parents sent him off to various brat camps and "behavior modification" schools when he was a kid so that he would learn to "take responsibility in life" -- now live off the mis-placed largess of his parents and do nothing but play video games until 5 am every night and sleep really really late during the day. The two of them appear to be waiting -- waiting for the courage, the ultimate courage that it takes to start grinding out the next 50 years of LIFE.

So far they don't have the guts.

But frankly, I don't blame them. It really takes nerve.

When I was their age, I didn't have the guts either. But somehow I finally got it together, girded my loins, held my breath, took the bull by the horns and finally plunged in -- into the 24/7 heroics of raising my children when my dreams were sometimes elsewhere and paying the rent every month and putting food on the table and trudging off to work and going to PTA meetings. Doing this was the bravest thing I ever did in my life.

But boy was I glad when Thanksgiving came around this year and I got time off from work. Four whole days without having to face the tiger! Four whole days of being Jane-the coward! Works for me. I hit the road to Disneyland. It was great! I went down and back in less than 48 hours. Total act of cowardice. I loved it.

Once I got to Disneyland, however, it was really freaking crowded. I didn't last too long at Disneyland. Pushing my way through all those crowds was too much like work. But the Small World ride was nice. I could ride around on those little Small World boats all day. "It's a world of joy and a world of peace...." I want a world like that!

But even the Disneyland Small World had a jarring note of reality. There were approximately 12 dancing Dutch dolls, eight dancing French dolls, 30 or 40 dancing Latin American dolls and lots and lots of Asian, European, African and American dancing dolls. But the entire Middle East was only represented by one (1) doll on a camel and one (1) veiled doll on a couch. It appears that the Middle East has been decimated -- even at Disneyland!

On the road home, my Thanksgiving dinner consisted of a cold turkey sandwich I bought from an Indian clerk -- sorry, Simpson fans. It wasn't Apu -- at a 7-11 just off an I-405 exit near Long Beach. It was wonderful. Then I topped my Thanksgiving dinner off with some pumpkin pie to go from Andersen's in Buelton. It was grand! And I spent Thanksgiving night in a Motel 6 outside of Lompoc. Hurray! And everywhere I went, I was fortunate enough to meet a lot of really nice people who were sacrificing their Thanksgiving dinner with their families in order to help me -- and being really smiley and friendly about it too. And brave.

So. This is my advice to my 20-year-old daughter. "It's time to gird your loins, suck it up, hold your nose, jump in and just start being brave." Sorry, young lady, but there's no way around it if you ever want to be able to look yourself in the face.

But then, every once in a while, you are allowed to commit small acts of cowardice -- like a 48-hour road trip to Disneyland!

PS: There ARE circumstances where the opposite is true -- where doing your job can be an act of cowardice rather than bravery -- such as when Donald Rumsfeld gleefully performs his job of torturing men and women who are trapped like animals in some dank foreign prison -- or sending American soldiers off to their deaths supposedly in the name of "Democracy" but actually in the name of Rumsfeld's Swiss bank account. Or when George W. Bush sits around the Oval Office, pretending to perform a job that he got only by stealing two elections and corrupting the U.S. Supreme Court. Or the Enron and Halliburton executives who earned their money by pickpocketing trusting taxpayers. Or like Dick Cheney, who neglected to perform the job he was being paid to do -- to give the order to our Air Force to protect America on 9-11. Or as Sam Smith said recently about Milton Friedman, "One of the best kept secrets of economics is that there are lots of systems that work --provided, that is, you don't care who they work for. Feudalism, for example, was great if you were a lord, not so efficient a marketplace is you were merely a serf."

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Madame Jane Predicts: How to survive the coming economic meltdown....

Just exactly what do you expect me to say here? That Madame Jane can channel John Maynard Keynes? That the ghost of Adam Smith hovers over my house waiting to come down the chimney like Santa Claus? That Henry George and his "Law of Rent" is gonna rise up from the grave and give me advice that will save our sorry bottoms from the inevitable at this late date just because we wised up and voted Democratic in November and stopped watching Fox News? Well, guess what? Sometimes even Madame Jane's all-knowing crystal ball can't put humpty-dumpty back together again. Sorry about that.

Every single economic expert in the world who can count to ten without the help of his or her fingers and toes is now going around chanting predictions that GWB's one-dimensional fiscal policy of draining America's economy into his private Swiss bank account is bound to create the Big Daddy of all Great Depressions. You don't have to be a stargazer to come up with that one. Just read the Wall Street Journal.

Of course you can't stop the inevitable. But you can surely attempt to perform damage control.

Recently, Madame Jane has employed literally HORDES of tarot readers, psychics, palm readers and astrologers (and the Wall Street Journal) to work night and day on just one simple question, but so far no one on my future-predicting damage-control team has come up with an answer. What is the question? "How do I protect myself and my family against the coming hard times?"

"Should I buy gold?" I asked my clairvoyant-in-chief. "Will my pension plan be safe?" I asked my palm reader. "Should I buy property?" I asked the Wall Street Journal, "or condos on the moon...." Or rob a bank or marry someone with Halliburton stock or what?????

No one knows. The wellsprings of fortune-telling on this subject have all dried up. Sorry about that.

Economic disaster is roaring down upon America like a freight train out of control and you and me and the American middle class are now tied to the freaking railroad tracks! So. What should we do? I have an idea. Madame Jane predicts that it's time to do some RESEARCH. If you know anyone who was born before 1905, chase them down, corner them in the old folks home and grill them! "When the Great Depression hit back in 1929, how did you protect yourself? What did you do?" Or, better yet, ask them, "What was the one thing that you wish to God you had done back in 1928?" See what they say. Send me the answers. Please! And please send them soon.

Madame Jane predicts that one of the things that most of them will say is, "I surely do wish that we had impeached Herbert Hoover BEFORE things got out of hand."

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Throw mama from the plane: My weird skydiving adventure

Why did it take me 25 minutes to brush all the tangles out of my hair last night? I'll tell you why! When a man who looks like a linebacker for the Oakland Raiders physically throws you out of an airplane while flying 14,000 feet above the planet, you get a LOT of tangles in your hair.

Here's the story:

I've always been kind of a wimp. My older sister Ann was a bully and nothing delighted her more than to torment her sweet gentle girlie-girl sibling, the one with the collection of wannabe Story Book dolls. That would be me. And every morning our Ann would start out her day by sitting on my chest, digging her knees into my armpits and telling me that I was nothing but a useless good-for-nothing cowardly loser-moron-creep and WIMP. Thanks to my big sis, I whimpered a lot as a kid and spent far too much of my childhood hiding out in a muddy grave-like crawlspace under our tract house in a Republican-dominated suburb called Millbrae.

But I digress.

Anyway, I was a kid back then and I'm an adult now and I'm all determined to prove to myself once and for all that I am NOT a wimp! How? Hummmm. My first plan was to try to talk CentCom Middle East into embedding me in Occupied Iraq. That oughta do it. But the Pentagon steadfastly refused to support my anti-wimpification plan. "You, Jane, are a blogger," the CentCom MediaEmbed guy in Baghdad e-mailed me. "We don't take bloggers."

"But I'm a stringer for
Op Ed News!" I argued. "And I've written articles for CLG News,, Counterpunch, Novakeo and TruthOut. Even the Tanker Brothers love me!" Nope. No go. Aside from Robert Fisk, Dahr Jamal and 100 dead guys, no one over in Occupied Iraq is interested in freedom of speech. When George W. Bush blathers on about bringing Democracy to Iraq, he definitely didn't have ME in mind.

Since it was now pretty clear that there was going to be no non-wimp training course in Iraq for me, I began to check out other possible alternatives. I got an idea! Skydiving! What could be more scarier than that? Nothing. Nothing at all. So this weekend me and my son Joe headed out to
Bay Area Skydiving. I had something to prove and I was going to prove it if it killed me.

Then my brother Sam e-mailed me. "Have a good time," he wrote, "but I gotta warn you. I took a friend skydiving for her birthday and afterward we watched in horror while...well, I don't want to describe the details. Suffice it to say that I'm sticking to go-carts where the farthest you can fall is two feet."

Two feet? I have two feet. I now have two COLD feet! But Joe still wanted to go so I sucked it up and went along too.

The skydiving place was out in the middle of a former cow pasture and when we arrived the skydiver people gave us these cute little flightsuits to wear. Mine was all pink and turquoise and made me look like "Malibu Barbie Goes Snorkeling" circa 1982. Joe, sporting a black flightsuit with green epaulets, looked like someone you would find on the flight deck of the Starship Enterprise. Very Officer Sulu.

After waiting around for several hours for the cloud layers to clear, we finally went up into the sky in this really little plane. And then we came down. You know that I survived because you are reading this. But did my son Joe?

First my linebacker shoved me into the plane and then he shoved me out of the plane -- at 14,000 feet. YOU HAVE NO IDEA. You have no idea. What's your worst fear? This was pretty much mine. In that single moment of total insanity when we went out the open door of the plane and stepped into NOTHING, my entire life flashed before me. Can you possibly imagine the trust and courage it took to leave that plane and step out into space? You can't. I couldn't. It was insane!

It was lovely.

I flew like a freaking bird.

If the earth hadn't been there to stop me -- and my hair wouldn't have become so irretrievably tangled that I would have had to cut it all off -- I would have happily stayed in free-fall forever.

Then the parachute opened at 5,000 feet and I floated down toward the earth below, light as a feather. Not as good as free-fall but okay. And with a fabulous view!

"Would you like me to do some spins with the parachute?" asked the linebacker.


What surprised me most about the sudden descent was the effect it had on my body. Coming down from the sky that fast had made me dizzy and nauseous -- like a deep-sea diver coming up too fast and getting the bends. I felt exactly the same way that I had as a kid in third grade when Terry Tanner had double-dog-dared me to turn around in a circle 100 times in a row. If the freaking parachute had started spinning too right about then, I woulda barfed all over the cows 4,000 feet below. Eeuuww.

I had expected fear and/or exhilaration from the jump -- but had not expected decompression.

And neither had my son Joe. He had loved the free-fall but, as I found out later, shortly after his parachute had opened he had lost consciousness and totally blacked out. Then, with me sitting impotently in my parachute halter 1,000 feet above him, I watched in horror as Joe's limp body hit the earth -- and he didn't get up!

Oh shite.

This was just like the time when Joe was eight years old and playing football with Philip and Lonnie in Nigel's front yard and one of the boys had sort of accidentally broken Joe's arm and Joe was lying on the ground with his arm all sickeningly bent at a right angle in a place where arms aren't supposed to bend. "It's alright, Ma," said Joe as he reached over and re-set the bone all by himself. And did a good job of it too.

With my heart in my throat, I landed butt-first in the drop zone, snapped off my parachute and ran over to Joe as he lay in the cow pasture, unconscious. "My son! My son! What has happened to my son!" I screamed. Yep. I was still a wimp.

Gradually Joe regained consciousness, no bones were broken and he was not even sore. What an experience!

Would I do it again? Not on your life! Was I glad I did it? Oh yeah. That first few seconds when you realize that you have nothing under you but 14,000 feet of air? And that you are going to survive? And that you are flying? Priceless.

After we stopped off at an In-N-Out Burger drive-through in Livermore, Joe left to do a photo shoot in San Francisco for a musical called "Killing My Lobster"and I went home to untangle my hair -- still the same wimpy Jane, but somehow different too.

I had flown like a bird.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Something wicked this way comes: Is Olmert is visiting GWB to plot an attack on Iran?

"Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert begins a U.S. visit on Sunday, seeking from President [sic] George W. Bush a post-election picture of U.S. policy toward the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and Iran," read the headlines in CLG News. Think back, folks. What did Olmert and GWB do last time Olmert visited the White House? They planned the "war" on Lebanon.

So. What are George and Ehud gonna dream up this time? What do you want to bet that -- knowing Bush's addiction to killing people en masse and Olmert's love of things that explode -- that we are gonna see Iran attacked within the next two months.

Let's see. Olmert arrived at the White House in May 2006 in order to plan the attack on Lebanon. The attack then happened in July. That means that it took approximately two months for them to put their plans into action. So. Olmert arrives here in November. Let's do the math. Two months later? An attack on Iran just as the new Congress is getting it together? Perfect timing!

I'm willing to bet you a free all-expense-paid trip to Gaza that this is gonna happen. And this will be an easy bet to win! But if I lose, that's okay. If thousands -- if not hundreds of thousands -- of lives are spared in Israel and Iran because GWB's and EO's plans have been forced to be changed, that's okay with me. Plus Gaza is a closed military zone and they wouldn't let you in there anyway. Who wants Americans to see that their tax dollars are being spent to massacre women and children instead of being spent on schools, highways, public safety and healthcare back here at home?

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Second Opinion: Having skin cancer on Medicaid sucks eggs

"Hummmm...." said my dermatologist. "It looks like you have a pre-cancerous skin condition...." Oh dear.

Here's the story:

I went for a routine physical check-up last spring and my primary care physician wanted me to go to a dermatologist for a second opinion on whether or not I had basal cell skin cancer on my face. Okay. I will have a dermatologist check it out then I'll get treated. No problem. We live in the age of modern medicine. A little bit of skin cancer should be no big deal.

Unfortunately, things didn't exactly go that way. Yes, modern medicine in America really IS wonderful -- but health care insurance in America is still back in the Dark Ages. Fortunately, however, I am lucky enough to be insured by Medicaid -- as compared to nothing.

My primary doctor then gave me a referral. This was eight months ago. Apparently there is only one dermatologist in our entire county that takes Medicaid and he was booked up solid for the next six months.

But finally my appointment time came. Well. That was an interesting experience. The dermatologist runs a Medicaid clinic on Tuesday afternoons only -- out of the goodness of his heart. I walked into his office building only to discover that the entire second-floor hallway, his entire reception area and his entire waiting room were filled to the brim with Medicaid patients.

I waited my turn.

Finally the dermatologist saw me. "We will do chemotherapy on your face," he told me, "which will cause you to break out in hideous lesions and terrible sores. And oh, by the way, you don't have anything going on in your life in the next few months, do you? Anything where you need to look nice?" Er, no.

I then got a prescription for some EXYREMELY toxic stuff called Efudex which basically eats away at your face. "Remember," instructed the dermatologist, "that this is a chemotherapy chemical that is highly poisonous if ingested by mouth or by membrane. Do NOT let it get near your eyes, nose or mouth!" I nodded, took the prescription and went home to poison myself and disfigure my face.

Why was I given a tube of terrible chemicals that would endanger my life and make me look like a leper? Because the alternative cure -- several sessions of quick-freezing the harmful cells with a dry-ice spray -- was too time-consuming to be practical when a dermatologist is being forced by economic considerations (and the kindness of his heart) to see over a hundred Medicaid patients in one afternoon.

So. What's my point? That I'm too vain to look like a swamp creature for two months? That I'm too much of a chicken-hearted wimp to endure unbearable pain? That I deserve what I get because my job doesn't come with health benefits?


My point is that now that the Democrats have control of Congress, can we PLEASE have decent health care in America? Please?

A decent single-payer health care plan would cost much MUCH less than the nightmare system we now have. Plus it would help doctors, patients and employers instead of insurance companies and bureaucrats. And, if the Democrats HURRY, it might even save my face!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

When I went to vote on November 7, even the freaking electronic ballot box didn't work!

You expect the voting macines to fail -- but the electronic ballot boxes too?

When I went to my precinct in Berkeley to vote today, I saw some poor poll worker down on his knees trying to figure out how to get the electronic ballot box to work again after a ballot had gotten stuck in it.

Thank goodness I had my absentee ballot with me and just gave it to the poll worker. And thank goodness the poll worker had functioning knees and could stay down there for the half an hour it took to "unstuff" the ballot box. Had it been me -- with my bad knees -- the whole electronic voting process in south Berkeley woulda been screwed!

Monday, November 06, 2006

Let's turn to Chapter 11 in America's neo-con history book: The one on bankruptcy....

I just watched the HBO special, "Hacking Democracy". Good grief! The Bush gang stole democracy right out from under our noses! And that's not all they stole. They stole our treasury too. No matter who wins, loses or steals the November elections, America is screwed. Our downward economic spiral is now pretty much unstoppable. It's time to start tightening our belts. A lot.

Whether the Bush uglies win, lose or steal this election, it really won't matter when it comes time to write this next sordid economic chapter in American history. Why? Because when you are a victim of identity theft and your wallet gets stolen, whether the perps are still at large or not isn't as important as the fact that your money is GONE.

However, I think it would make us feel better -- even if we never get our money back -- to know that the crooks who stole it from us are in jail.

But I digress. Back to this Chapter 11 bankruptcy problem. Currently our huge debt to foreign creditors is skyrocketing while at the same time, said foreign creditors are either noticeably cutting down on extending further credit to America or demanding that they get paid back.

The results of this serious drop in America's credit rating are highly predictable. The same thing will happen to America as a whole that would happen to us individually under the same circumstances -- if, for instance, we had totally over-extended our credit limits and MasterCard or Visa then tightened up hard on our personal credit accounts. We'd be forced to declare bankruptcy. And that is exactly what is going to happen to America in the next few years.

America? Bankrupt? How humiliating. Remember when we used to be the greatest nation in the world? And now we are in BANKRUPTCY COURT? Chapter 11 -- just another chapter in an American history text written by the neo-cons and George W. Bush.

PS: The one good thing that might come from America being forced to go into Chapter 11 is that we taxpayers will finally get our day in court. We may never be able to get America's Experian reports back up to "Good" again but we'll at least get some justice -- and revenge!

PPS: Speaking of court, maybe if I say something vile enough about George Bush et al., they will sue me for libel and take me to court. Then me and Perry Mason will then be able to prove "beyond a shadow of a doubt" that, yes, I did get my facts straight and, yes, Bush and his crooked ring of identity thieves really ARE perverts, sadists, murderers, liars, baby-killers, con artists and...and...and...jerks!

Sunday, November 05, 2006

One word that makes me feel better: "Justice"? Nah. "Revenge!"

Many years ago, several people at my low-income housing project co-op got together and formed a secret "Alliance" that took over the Board of Directors -- sort of a local PNAC. They asked me to join them and when I refused, I made enemies for life.

The Alliance then tried everything they could -- from election irregularities to spreading evil rumors to threats & lies to postponing annual elections to cooking the books -- in order to seize and maintain power over our housing project.

I singlehandedly fought The Alliance for YEARS, during which time they tried to evict me, called the police on my 12-year-old daughter, illegally raised my rent and threatened me with jail but finally they were all discredited and peace once again came to our sweet little housing project (BTW, there is one just like it in every city and town in America -- built in 1979, thanks to JIMMY CARTER).

I was so pleased with my triumph over local injustice that when Bush stole the election in 2000, I figured, "Hey, if I can take on The Alliance and win, I bet I can take on George Bush!" And that's how I became a blogger.

But guess what? The Alliance started up their spin machine again and the next thing I knew, they were not only back in power and doing all their illegal stuff again, but they had apparently taken lessons from Karl Rove and were trying to make ME into the villain! Again. Whenever I spoke up at Board meetings -- which The Alliance now controlled -- they ridiculed me and told me to shut up. So I did the same thing I had done regarding George Bush. I started a blog!

Every month I sent out a newsletter pointing out the latest way that The Alliance had violated our bylaws -- such as moving their relatives into vacant units, laterally splitting their households, having meetings without posting agendas, trying to stop an extremely necessary rehab from taking place because it would raise their rents and letting their dogs POOP on my lawn!

But last week The Alliance outdid itself. They sent out a notice to the entire co-op ordering me to report to their inquisition wherein I would be verbally waterboarded for my negative attitude toward them. The notice was sent out under the name of the acting Board president -- who I found out later neither authorized it nor wrote it but oh well.

So I went to their kangaroo court -- where eight of them sat around a table and one by one told me what a terrible person I was.

In their notice, The Alliance had said that my inquisition was to be a closed "executive" session. But when someone in the Alliance had their girlfriend show up, they then announced that it was now a open meeting -- too late for me to organize any moral support of my own.

In my own two-minute "Far, far better thing..." speech that The Alliance did allow me to make on my own defense, I told them that they would be much better off spending their time obeying the project's bylaws, following HUD regulations and not blocking the freaking rehab before the rains started than spending their time pilloring me.

But The Alliance had tasted blood and they were not gonna let me off that easy so they announced, "Now it's time for Round Two. We will now go around the table again." And they actually expected me to sit there and listen to them vilify me eight more times? Yeah right. I got up and left.

Do you KNOW what they said to me as I walked out the door? "Sit down. Where are you going? YOU CAN'T LEAVE!" What? Now they want to kidnap me?

I was very hurt and angry by these people's behavior. But do I want justice? Hell, no! I want REVENGE!

PS: Here's the newsletter that got me in trouble. Is this libel like The Alliance claims -- or is it only satire and freedom of speech. You be the judge:


Well, folks, it looks like we are now in the middle of a huge WWE Smackdown battle here at the Project! In one corner of the ring, we have the notorious heavyweight champion [The Alliance] Board-Member-C – who is practically undefeated, having won almost every power-match here since 1989 (if you don’t count her historic loss to HUD back in 2002). And in the other corner we have feisty lightweight Resident-1. Let’s take our seats and watch as they battle it out to see who will win!

What’s at stake? The winner of the Project's WWE Smackdown gets to take possession of a prime ground-floor unit -- Unit X. And now, folks, the battle is about to start. Here comes the contestants. Here comes the refs. We haven’t had so much excitement here at the Project since 1995-1997 when I myself stepped into the ring with the champ and battled for the right to hold annual Project elections again – or maybe that time back in 1998 when the Champ threatened to throw me in jail!

Anyway, Board-Member C had her eye on Unit X back in the spring and so her grown-up daughter (wrestling under the name of GU-D!) jumped into the ring and got herself elected chairman of the Occupancy Committee, a very strategic move! Then with the Project’s official stationery at her disposal, she was able to write a nasty letter to the family that was then living at Unit X, trying to force them to move earlier than they had planned. (Needless to say, GU-D hasn’t done anything for the Occupancy Committee since).

The Unit X family moved out, the unit became available and the battle began! R-1 had also eyed this unit and she had applied for it first on the basis that she was disabled with a degenerative disease and needed a ground-floor unit because her situation was getting worse. Nice opening move! Let’s see if BM-C can get out of that headlock! And she does! It’s the Battle of Accommodating the Disabled! Bring it on! BM-C effectively uses a walker to strengthen her claim. Brilliant footwork! However, BM-C is already well on the road to recovery so that is not in her favor. If she exercised and lost 50 pounds, she’d be good as new. That doesn’t look good for her chances.

But even though R-1 seems to be the potentially most disabled, BM-C has a secret move going for her that R-1 does not. BM-C is tight buddies with a majority of the Board of Directors [who are in The Alliance]! At last week’s meeting, they voted that R-1 wasn’t eligible for Unit X because she had already been offered a ground-floor unit about two years ago and had turned it down. This could be the end of the road for R-1.

So. Round One went to BM-C. All of BM-C’s friends on the Board were all jubilant about the victory they had just handed their friend – even though all BM-C seemed to win was the right to move from a three-bedroom unit with a washer, dryer and two bathrooms into a dank little two-bedroom unit wherein GU-D and she will now have to share a bathroom. They shoulda just stayed in the three-bedroom unit and put in one of those electric stair-climbing thingies instead. See ya at the laundry room, Champ!

But wait! R-1 is a scrapper. She’s getting up off the mat. Hold on, there, folks. She’s starting to fight back. Ladies and gentlemen, it’s time for Round Two! It seems that when the Board met to vote to give BM-C the unit, they met illegally – you gotta post a 72-hour notice before each Board meeting. The fight is still on! Plus R-1 can appeal the Board’s decision because the "refs" weren’t impartial. And did R-1 turn down that first unit before or after she started to become disabled enough to make it dangerous for her to go up and down outside stairs in the winter at night during a rainstorm – to say nothing of making the Project liable if she falls? And did the Board, before they voted, ask management to check R-1's file to see if she had been officially offered the old unit? Or was it just hearsay?

"That was an illegal manoeuver," protested R-1 as she began looking for revenge. Oh my God! This is turning into a grudge match, folks!

Despite BM-C’s obvious win at the recent Board meeting, the odds of R-1 getting Unit X are still good. But BM-C is going into Round Three also looking good! By taking possession of Unit X, she could possibly do a hammer-lock on the Project by having GU-D keep possession of the old unit too. But if BM-C does that, what initially looks like a smart move is gonna end up getting her in trouble with HUD because doing a lateral transfer is illegal. That move will get her thrown out of the ring with a TKO because lateral transfers are against the Project’s occupancy rules.

Sorry but I gotta stop here, folks. This sporting event is just getting too rough to watch!