Sunday, August 02, 2009

Off Topic: That Was the Week It Was 8/02

It's time for reflection and some photographs I've taken of the week gone by. If you're looking for Big Brother show stuff, wait for the next post or check back on the previous one. Or, just use this Big Brother blog tag!

It's been humid and stormy most of the past week here in New Jersey. The state even had a tornado which did quite a bit of damage on Wednesday. I'm nowhere near where that was (or I would have taken some cool photos!).

I've had a rather subdued week -- some issues at the workplace nagging at me, an empty apartment without my cat, Verizon FIOS irking me to no end coming in while I wasn't home making a mess installing their junk I don't want in my apartment (I refuse to get FIOS and wish I could have barred them from coming into my home), fighting a $50 late rent fee when the check posted on June 2 (I have until the 5th each month, usually mail it before the 1st). Argh. Maybe I'd be better off in the BB11 house! Oh! And Verizon FIOS idiots also left my apartment not secure by not re-locking my deadbolt! The regular door lock is flimsy -- anyone could have forced the door open. Grr.

Let's see ... there had to be some plus points for the week. Um. Um. Well, the elevator in my building is finally working. It's only been out of order since January. I felt like I was living in The Big Bang Theory. The slumlord landlord also installed a new intercom system, but it's not functional yet. Gee, maybe he'll get those fire extinguishers tagged 2005 attended to next, as well as get the fire alarm for the building operating again. That would be nice.

I also received word that I'll be getting nearly a year's worth of retroactive pay on a raise which never came at my workplace. That I can use. But it will be in a lump sum, so taxes are going to whack it. Yeah, I know in these economic times I should be thankful to have a job. But I've never not had a job (or two or three) and have nearly thirty years invested in the company. All I ask is to be treated fairly when it comes to benefits and salary reviews. I shouldn't have to fight for what's supposed to come my way on schedule.

Oh, well ... onto this week's photos. I don't think I had any really fantastic images this week although I came across a few good local finds. Clicking on an image will open it larger in a new window.

No Loitering

I've been trying to get a picture of this public bench near the Plainfield (NJ) courthouse for weeks, but people are always loitering on it. Um ... what other purpose is there for a bench other than loitering? It's actually a bench for the bus stop. However, the issue is street people doing their thing loitering which seems to be the problem.

Street Art in Plainfield, New Jersey

I took a walk down a street I don't normally travel and came across this find in the parking lot for the YMCA buses. I couldn't get real close as I was photographing it through a fence. Now, I'm not an advocate for plain old graffiti, but I do like the more artistic doings. This was tagged by the NYC X-Men who hit the train station with tags a while back but no real art.

Plainfield Street Art Continued

It looks like they first painted their canvas black, then went to work. I wonder how long this took them to do?

More Plainfield Street Art and the fence between us

See! I told you there's a fence! I guess I could have walked around the block to get better shots.


This little office (?) is part of an abandoned garage on a lot owned by the city of Plainfield, NJ.

Flowers never bend with the rainfall

"So, I'll continue to continue to pretend that my life will never end and flowers never bend with the rainfall" - Simon and Garfunkel. Photo taken on East Front Street in Plainfield, NJ.

Goldfinch (?) on a dead tree

I spotted this bird on the same dead tree where I previously photographed a woodpecker. I believe it's the New Jersey State Bird -- the goldfinch. I could be wrong, though. Birds aren't quite my area of expertise. Bridgewater, NJ.

Plainfield NJ Train Station in sepia tones

I'm in a Simon and Garfunkel mood right now ... "Sitting in the railway station, got ticket for my destination...."

Living in America

This group of (possibly) homeless (probably) undocumented guys were enjoying a patch of shade in yesterday's one day of sunshine. The one guy obviously wanted his picture taken when he saw the camera, but two others scooted away fearing their images being captured. Plainfield has a large number of men like this -- day laborers who tend to live in apartments by the dozen, abandoned buildings, some handmade shelters along the railroad tracks. I know there are a lot of social ramifications, but their presence doesn't really bother me. And, I'm taller than all of them!


Nana in the NW said...

Oh My....I am the first commenter! Love to see a little slice of your life via photos. The "No Loitering" over a park bench is priceless!! So sorry to hear about your troubles and frustrations! Is VerizonFIOS the only service available in your building? I wouldn't want to not have cable/internet but it is also very frustrating when something goes wrong and you have to depend on techs to "fix" the problem. Recently has computer issues and I spent 3 hours on the phone with a tech in Indonesia fixing my problem!! It was very hard to understand what he was telling me so luckily they were able to remote access my computer and fix it w/o talking me through it.

It's Seafair weekend here in Seattle(hydro-plane boat races and airshow--Blue Angels) and the temps are hitting 90 today. Always a busy weekend and I love to watch the races on TV.

Hope you can relax a bit today and enjoy some down time before BB tonight.

Jackie said...

No, they're MAKING FIOS available in the apartment building. And we have no choice -- they must install their junk in every apartment, then charge folks if they want the service to install more junk. I have Verizon DSL for the Internet, plain old Verizon for my phone, and Comcast for my cable TV.

I have this thing against people entering my apartment when I'm not here, especially without proper notice. That's what they did. I don't want FIOS - it's a cheap start rate but the fees to start the equipment are huge and the price goes sky high after the initial period. I already juggled my work schedule once when FIOS was looking at the building, requested we be available and didn't show. They gave a very vague letter on the latest and barged in here when I wasn't home. It's a good thing my poor cat is gone as she would have freaked. Had my place been burglarized as they didn't lock it securely, we'd be talking lawsuit.

Yes, I'm angry with Verizon FIOS. NO WAY will I get their service.

Right now it's as dark as night and stormy here. I better get off the computer for a bit.

jennapooh said...

Love the train station in sepia. Very nice...

sizzie said...

Jackie, I completely understand the 'entering your space" thoughts. Those regular bug spray times used to really freak me out. I didn't want bugs, but I considered the sprayers pests as well and also the smell made me sick for a week. We had Alltel and Verizon bought them, so now, without our asking, we have Verizon phones. so far so good, but really, I didn't ask for them.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us, Jackie.

Laurie said...

Jackie, I enjoyed your recap of the week. Sorry it wasn't a better week for you! The pictures are wonderful. I love the bird on the dead tree. Life and death all in one shot. Great!

Sally said...

Your "...the week it was..." posts are among my favorites: a mix of clever writing, good photography, glimpses of nature and city life, with some song lyrics and wry observations thrown in. Well done!

That sepia train station shot is so good it should be in a brochure or on a postcard.

I like your approach to life, showing a lot of compassion for the have-nots (animals and humans) and little tolerance toward callousness shown by the haves (businesses, employers, landlords).

Hope you reported the Verizon crew for not locking your deadbolt!

joy n said...

I can commiserate(sp?) with you on your lousy week, Jackie. I would HATE for anyone to walk into my home without permission and without me being there. Especially when they're there to install something I don't want! I had no idea that apartment dwellers in those big buildings have to give up certain rights, particularly the right to privacy. Then, to top it all off, they leave your apartment a mess and susceptible to thieves! I truly hope this next week is MUCH improved and all your problems find a way of working themselves out for you. A pox on your nasty landlord! At the very LEAST, you got your elevator back and that overdue raise.

I love the no loitering photo, too. I can see why the loiterers want to sit in such a peaceful looking place. The abandoned buildings also are cool. The sunflowers and the goldfinch are beautiful shots.

Here's hoping they get Ronnie out of the BB house tonight. Maybe it'll cheer you up a little.

Tomorrow HAS to be a better day, right?

joy n said...

Not tonight for Ronnie, but you know what I mean.

wv is breerfu. Your photos are breerfu. (beautiful)

Anonymous said...

I agree with you. I live in an apartment and had to clean everything out of my front hall closet so they could install FIOS. I was told that they would install on Tuesday, but did not come until Friday. I had all my stuff from my closet in my living room for 4 days. I was not happy about that either. I am not getting FIOS either, but the same thing, they had to put in all the apartments. They also DID NOT bolt my top lock when they left.


joy n said...

You guys should write letters to the editors of your local papers.

What they do isn't right and very unsafe. Fear of lawsuits might change their policies.

Margo said...

I just wanted to mention that I will be late to the party tonight. We are meeting my sister etal at (Pi (Pres Obama fav pizza) for my nieces 19th B-day.

Hope everyone has fun and I'll try to snag you a piece of B-day cake.


Becky said...

Jackie, wonderful pictures! I swear they each tell a story. Sorry you had such a lousy week. If it were me I would call Verizon customer service and file a complaint. I would also send a receipt requested letter informing them about what they did -- and didn't do.

WV dedder I think come Thursday that Ronnie will be dedder than a doorknob.

Witt said...

Jackie, I am sure Verizon FIOS has cut down a forest with all of their offers and burned out at least one fiber optic cable leaving me messages of "what??? are you still with plain old cable?" Well, I love my plain old cable (which isn't actually all that plain but I love it). The initial fees (the ones they publish in 48 or 72 font) sound great but then add up all the fine print...yikes!

I'm sorry about the invasion of your privacy, but congrats on the retro pay, every little bit helps. Loved your photos!

Witt :)

Brent McKee said...

Love the sepia toned train station. Between the architecture the lights on the platform and the sepia tone this shot looks like it could have been taken anytime in the past 125 years. Lovely.