Keeping Warm in Winter

timothy goodman uniqlo

This is a Timothy Goodman tote bag I snatched up from Uniqlo.

I recommend Uniqlo for winter clothes as well as their collaborations with designers like Goodman.

In New York City the weather veers from minus 2 degrees with the wind chill on a Friday to 52 degrees the following Thursday.

We cannot continue to deny that this fluctuation IS because of climate change.

What can each of us do to keep warm in the Northeast and wherever else it’s cold in the winter?

I recommend buying from Uniqlo their HeatTech thin long-sleeve tee shirts to wear under your shirts and sweaters in the arctic chill.

I own two HeatTech under-layers: one in off white and one in black.

For any of you who are Petite like me in clothing sizes I have good news:

The Uniqlo items might fit you in their regular sizes.

Uniqlo is a Japanese brand that has stores and delivery options in the USA too.

It’s true the Uniqlo clothes fit me in their regular sizes. I haven’t had to alter anything from Uniqlo yet. And I’m a person who has to get Petite clothes hemmed and shortened to boot. So I can vouch for the universality of their sizing if you’re petite.

Their lounge sets are also comfy and warm. They sell cashmere sweaters and have designer clothes collaborations too.

I’ll be wearing my HeatTech under-tee shirts throughout the winter this season.

The Timothy Goodman tote bag actually reads:

“You have to make a lot of stuff before you can make stuff like yourself.”

I endorse that statement. I’ll be 53 in the spring and the view from here is delightful.

I will return in coming blog entries to talking about life during “the change” for women.

Yes, menopause is a fact of older life for those of us who are women.

Wearing layers is the way to peel off outer clothes respectfully when you’re having hot flashes.

Thus: HeatTech to the rescue.

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United States Postal Service

I want to give readers a heads up this holiday season about shipping gifts in the mail.

This is my experience. I find it so amusing really only because it’s a well-off person’s dilemma

The two women from the Post Office who talked to me on the telephone were cheerful and helpful. It really helps to use the words please and thank you when you ask for help from another person.

The windup: FedEx lists as “delivered” by the United States Postal Service a package I was supposed to have received three weeks ago.

This package is missing in action.

As I waited on hold for the local person to come on the line a recorded message told me that using the United States Postal Service to ship holiday gifts is the best shipping method.

What? I was waiting to speak with a person about why my package the Postal Service delivered has gone missing.

I find this all so amusing. It’s an American dilemma so I really don’t care about this. It’s not like I’m a Syrian refugee or my life is in danger.

You have to put these kinds of things in perspective. I find it so amusing that a recorded message told me to use the Postal Service to ship holiday gifts. When in fact the Postal Service couldn’t be counted on to actually deliver my package.

I wanted to give my readers this heads up. I think using UPS even if it’s more expensive is the way to go. I’ve used UPS to ship copies of my memoir to people.

Mercury turns Retrograde on December 3 through three weeks of the month.

It won’t be a good time to buy expensive products or electronics or ship things through the mail. I advise shipping any packages out early this week.

It’s said that since Mercury will be Retrograde stores will often be out of stock of items and the selections will be poor.

Consider this blog entry to be a public service announcement.

I would like everyone’s holiday season–regardless of whether you celebrate a holiday–to be hassle-free as best it can be.

Green Party Blues

The Republicon House of Representatives has sped through approving a tax bill which squeezes every last cent out of ordinary Americans.

As a result of the new tax bill being approved the following tax deductions have become forbidden:

You can no longer deduct student loan interest on your tax return. You can no longer deduct mortgage interest on your tax return. You can no longer deduct medical expenses on your tax return. You can no longer deduct adoption costs on your tax return.

This is just the tip of the iceberg. While everyone sleeps and wakes up and goes to school or a job and comes home and cooks dinner:

Our government is passing other laws that nobody knows about that have the potential to harm us.

The famous Karl Marx quote “Religion is the opiate of the people”  is better suited to read: “Government is the opiate of the people.”

I’ve long championed in this blog that our government won’t ever be able to rectify societal ills.

Neither the liberals nor democrats nor republicans nor conservatives are political parties I can endorse. Not at all. Not any one of them can I align with.

Mr. Toupee has stated that “trans” individuals aren’t protected from discrimination via the EEOC–Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The law applies to a number of designations of individuals. Yet Mr. Toupee has failed to extend this law to cover “trans” individuals.

We have gone over an abyss and fallen in. Never mind saying we’re at the brink–the brink has long been surpassed. America has fallen and I doubt it can get up. Unless.

Unless each and every one of us heeds the call to do what our government cannot: have each other’s backs, treat each other with compassion and dignity and forgiveness, and give a hand to others who need it.

Realistically, the Green Party has no chance of becoming a mainstream force in the U.S. government. Yet the Green Party is the only one I can align with at this point.

I’ve met a Green Party candidate. He paid for the midnight dinner at a diner that a bunch of us sat at a booth enjoying. This guy is a great man.

When I first met him he was wearing a Shonen Knife T shirt. I told him that I had played that band on my radio show in the 1980s.

I have been told that I need to tame my “over-the-top language” I use in the blog. I’m been told I can’t end each blog entry with a “zinger.” I will try my best to adhere to these new rules.

One bill that might just get passed into law is H.R. 620 which some disability rights activists claim will make it easier for businesses to not have to comply with having wheelchair-accessible entrances and exits to their stores.

If you use a wheelchair you will have to go through hoops if not around in circles to get the businesses to comply with the ADA Act requirement.

I have more I want to write about the state of affairs in society. I hesitate to write about certain things because I don’t want to be complicit in diverting attention from the real issues plaguing U.S. citizens.

At the end of the day I’d rather vote for the guy wearing the Shonen Knife T shirt.

I will talk more in coming blog entries about what I think about things.

I will turn 53 in five months. I still get a kick about writing about a new pedicure.

Yet as I get older I refuse to remain silent on the things that matter to me.

In coming blog entries I will write about life and love and living left of the dial with more zest and zeal.

Thank you for reading this blog.

Change Starts Today

At some point you really have to say:

“This is who I am. Take me as I am–or leave.”

We cannot control what other people think of us.

I’m learning this lesson now.

In the end, it doesn’t matter what people think of us. Seeking their approval is a no-win game.

Thinking you know what another person thinks about you is circular failed logic.

In effect, you’re judging that person without knowing the truth.

As a mental health peer I realize that holding so-called normal people up as valid arbiters of our worth is a form of internalizing the stigma.

Holding anyone else up as a judge in terms of how they view us is also not healthy.

We need to like ourselves first of all and in turn have compassion for other people.

Each of us living on earth is doing the best we can with what we were given.

Change starts today. Often if we want to change our lives we first have to change our minds.

I’ll be 53 in April–in just over 5 months. This is what I’ve learned so far:

Judging people isn’t the way to go. Stereotyping people isn’t the way to go.

The way to go is to understand that those of us living with mental health challenges are worthy friends, lovers, and support folk.

I for one have gotten over thinking that having a so-called normal guy as a boyfriend is the way to go. I’ve given up for good trawling OKCupid for a mate.

I don’t expect anyone who doesn’t have a mental health challenge to truly understand.

We need to seek love companionship and empathy from people who are able to give it.

We can’t expect to change the hearts and minds of people who are stones in how they treat others.

It would be great if people would come to their senses and treat everyone they meet with love.

While we wait for this to happen we can help make it happen by acting on our own to model compassionate behavior.

The older I get I’m trying to make a difference in the world.

I call this ethic placing “service above self.”

Acting with love will show others the benefit of acting with love.

One thing I know: people can change as their circumstances change.

People can become more loving and generous towards other people.

I’ve seen that this is true. It’s entirely possible for another person to wake up.

Change starts today. It starts today for all of us.

We have only today in which to make a difference.

God has given us this day. Let’s use it wisely and for the benefit of everyone.

Judgment-Free Zone

Everyone living on earth has some kind of hardship.

You might not see it from looking at them yet it’s there.

The Peer Support guideline tells us:

“We judge no other person’s pain as any less than our own.”

I submit that remaining divided isn’t the way to live.

I submit that picking and choosing who you give your compassion to isn’t the way to live either.

“Always be looking to see how you can spread cheer in other people’s lives.”

That’s the ethic I live by.

Yet I also believing in finding joy in your own life for yourself.

One: just understand that it won’t be easy living with a mental health challenge.

So, act kind to yourself and other peers.

There’s hope and healing for whatever it is you are in recovery from.

This blog will always be a judgment-free zone as will be my other blog.

Insanity

Wise up:

The current Republican alternative healthcare bill that was voted into law denies benefits to people living with mental health conditions. It’s stricter and more severe and drastically reduces spending on mental health. It increases premiums for the very people–those of us with mental health conditions–that have historically been unable to pay on our own for healthcare.

This is insanity.

Now more than ever none of us can afford to remain to remain silent on the things that matter to us.

It matters to me that the U.S. gets wise and institutes universal public healthcare.

Some of the very people who voted for Republicans are the ones paying $515/every 3 months with their own money for asthma inhalers–thousands of dollars a year on healthcare.

Now Mr. Toupee’s tax reform is supposed to delete from the tax code the ability to deduct medical expenses if you itemize your deductions on your tax return.

That leaves the asthma inhaler folks paying through the nose–pun intended–for healthcare without being able to get a tax break for doing this.

Sane? I think not.

I don’t endorse this insanity.