Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Drama at ShopRite

My mom and I took our monthly food shopping trip the other day. It actually was about 2 months since we had been shopping, so I had the world's largest list. I had almost no food in my house and I also needed mundane things like mayonnaise, ketchup, soap, etc.
By the time we got to aisle 5 the cart was almost full. (We start at aisle 1 and go up & down every one.)
By the time we got to aisle 10 I told my mom to get another cart.

Bear in mind, it was Saturday, so the store was quite full. As we maneuvered our carts up and down the aisles, checking items off our happened.
My mom accidentally "ran over" someone's ankles with her cart. She never learned to drive a car, so it's safe to say that she doesn't have a lot of experience driving much of anything. We've all been "run over" at the supermarket--someone behind us bangs our poor ankles with the little bumper thingy on the bottom of the cart. Usually the one hit turns around and gives a death glare to the one who hit you, and that is that.
This time was different. The man that my mom ran over turned around and yelled "For Christ's sakes, lady! That's the second time I got hit in this store today, watch where the hell you're going!"
I was all ready to tell the man to stop yelling at my poor old mom.....when I realized...and my mom did too......that the man she ran over was none other than Chuck "The Bayonne Bleeder" Wepner.
Needless to say, we kept our mouths shut. It truly was an accident, and she was all ready to apologize, but when he started yelling it took us by surprise, and he walked away before she could get the apology out.
The rest of our shopping trip passed without incident. 20 grocery bags were loaded into my car and we were off.
It's always a fun day with mom!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Writing Pluses and Minuses

This month will be over before we know it! I'm pretty disappointed in the fact that there are only 2 posts for January. I suppose it's a combination of not thinking I have interesting things to blog about, combined with the fact that my free time is spent studying.
A few weeks ago I had considered the idea of writing a book...and I see that if I ever did go through with it I would have to be done with school. How anyone writes and works full time is beyond me. Of course, there is a lot more research I would have to do before I even attempted to pull this off. I'm not sure if I'm supposed to actually write the book before getting an agent or publisher, or get them first and then be under the gun to produce.
Knowing me, I'd rather have the thing written to avoid stress.
That being said, I will have to work on blogging more. I'm sure interesting things happen at work all the time but I see it all day long so I don't consider it blog-worthy.
I'm studying 2 subjects right now, one class should be done in a few months and then I will have a whole new area to blog about. I don't want to say anything about it now, but I'm very excited to be learning new things. I feel much more complete inside.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Big Brother Is Watching

One of my favorite novels is "1984" by George Orwell. I remember reading it many times and being thankful that I did not live in such a dystopia. I felt sorry for the main characters and wondered what life would be like having someone watching my every move.

This world is rapidly approaching that concept.
I found out from my husband that there are red light cameras stationed on many of the traffic signals along my route to work. I never noticed them, but this morning I made sure to check as I commuted.
There they were! I was dismayed to see them, for that means I have to be extra careful as I travel along to work. I cannot scoot through a yellow light like I have done in the past. I know it's all done for safety, but I can't help thinking that this is only the beginning. There are cameras in elevators, cameras in the stairwells at my job, cameras at ATM's and fast food restaurants, and major cities like New York and Philadelphia have them on a lot of street corners to observe and record activities 24 hours a day.
We are told they are there to "keep us safe". When will the authorities take the next step and start making these cameras more intrusive? We are already told we cannot talk on the phones in our car, we must wear our seat belts as we drive, bike helmets are required...I could go on and on. Are we so fragile and incompetent that we need laws for everything? How did the general public function before all these laws were in place?
When did privacy become a premium?
I realize that these camera were put up originally at high accident intersections to either keep everyone honest, or, failing that, be able to determine the perpetrator of an accident that was caused by careless driving. But what is the reason for cameras on every corner? I can only think it's becoming an easy way for a town to make easy money by snaring the unsuspecting occasional yellow light scofflaw. It is too easy to make the jump from 1 camera in town to multiple sites, then to more intrusive ways to spy on the public.

I prefer to live my life in relative anonymity. I certainly do not want to end up like Winston Smith, the hero of 1984.
What are your thoughts on this?