Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
comic strip overdue media

Tuesday, May 02, 2017


If I have seemed particularly stressed of late, it might have something to do with the fact that I spent the last nineteen days without any money coming in, save a $41 Kentucky tax refund that credited yesterday. I set in motion everything to have income, including unemployment benefits, coming to me a month ago, but things came in much later than expected. I have been bugging the mailman, who comes about 1:30 pm for parcels and 3:30 pm for regular mail, to look at what might be there for me, as I was expecting two cheques, since the unemployment office voice response system said one had been mailed Friday. The other was my final cheque from work, which I expected about mid-month, but in retrospect that was entirely too optimistic. Unfortunately, because of everything, I am now late on several bills, had one credit card actually suspend, and was seriously worried about paying my rent. I had almost no food in the house, was subsisting mainly on rice, premade Indian dinners, and homemade bread with honey, and was running low on gas. In fact, today, my gas light went on almost the moment that I checked my mail and discovered one of the cheques. Then, when some friends and I went to the credit union (they needed to do some things there, too, and we're all members), I discovered that the unemployment had actually been put into my account electronically, like it was supposed to, today. So I guess when it rains, it pours, and all I can say is, thank goodness. I was really getting stressed.

The first thing I did was get some gas. After helping a friend apply at the VA (my, they have a confusing site; the link to the job was a closed position from a year ago--I had to go find the correct one via a search, and I'm still not sure we did everything right), I took him home and then went to the grocery, where I proceeded to fill up an entire cart, something I have not done in years. The bill came to $225, but I should be good for quite some time. The fridge is completely full, save the crisper, since that doesn't really keep things crisp long enough for me. Instead of fresh vegetables I got canned, but otherwise things were pretty healthy. I also got a small desk fan that is helping in the living room.

I started the morning with a trip to the library with some books and CDs that were due yesterday that I was returning before they got in this morning so they wouldn't be overdue. Then I got a phone call asking for a ride when a friend got called into work on his day off because the other person in his position came to work sick and had to be sent home. After that I laid down for about an hour, as I didn't sleep well at all last night. Then it was time for pulmonary rehab, and I had a good session, starting with the breathing exercises and then working on the treadmill and weights. I have become puny. I have never had much upper body strength, but lifting ten pounds in several types of repetitions is challenging. When I was in high school, I could do the press with my feet to the tune of about 190 lbs--more than I weighed, and better than any of the football team that were in our class. Now I'm at twenty, and that's enough. I could probably go up a little bit on the normal press. They've got another though that has you press up on the balls of your feet like your on tip toes and lifting that way. Between breaking my ankle and general deconditioning, that's harder. I remember when I was in physical therapy for my ankle, doing that from a standing position was the very last thing I could do of all the exercises, which surprised them.

Even though I don't officially have anything scheduled tomorrow, I think I'm going to busy. I have to:
  1. Pay my car registration, which is past due (it was due by April 30th, and so I'll have to pay 3% more. Fortunately mine is under $50 even with a special library association plate, so that's not too bad. It's actually still under $50. But I had a couple of police cars behind me today and was just a bit nervous. I know a citation would probably be dismissed if I brought in proof of an updated registration, but still....)
  2. Balance my cheque book. I'm no longer destitute, but I can't go willy nilly. This has to last awhile, as the unemployment is not enough to cover my bills alone.
  3. Pay my rent.
  4. Pay my electric bill.
  5. Pay my credit card bills.
  6. Pay for my Internet connexion [I don't have cable TV, but I have an Internet connexion with Wi-Fi through the cable company].
  7. Pay my cell phone bill.
  8. Let my student loan servicer know that I am unemployed. Since I'll be paying a lot for health and dental insurance, I think I should try to see if I can get a deferment or reduced payment.
  9. Check to make sure my COBRA enrollment went through--the pharmacy ran my meds and it was saying I was uninsured. I think the website said to wait five days to get it through, and it's just now that. I didn't get my first paper work so they sent me it again (I got it yesterday) but also e-mailed it, so I enrolled online. I also need to pay my bill with them.
  10. Get my allergy shots.
  11. Apply for a job.
  12. Pull things out of the walk-in closet.
  13. Call in my air conditioning issue and the fact I have to jiggle the toilet handle to keep it from running. [The walk-in closet is where the pan for the air conditioning is, and most likely it needs to be emptied, hence the need to get the mass of stuff out of it. There aren't many things, really--they're big, like a bedside commode or shower chair, that sort of thing. I don't need to take everything out, just enough so they can get in. I did put a new light bulb in the other day that I had, though.]
I'd say that's pretty busy.

I did find out I didn't get the one children's librarian position at the Lexington Public Library that I'd applied for in March. There's still one other position that I haven't heard about from them, three from UK, and I'm about to apply with the state. I've applied for the last before, with no luck, but 1) I have to apply actively on unemployment, and 2) maybe persistence will actually pay off. I also need to mail a form and cheque that have been sitting above my computer for two weeks waiting for money in the account to get my certification from the state of Kentucky, which is required to work in public library settings.

Okay, I think I'm going to get something to drink, maybe a snack, and sit down and enjoy something, like watch a DVD or listen to some music or read. I dropped my friend off about 7 pm, went to the store, got out after 8 sometime, and probably got everything put away by sometime after 9. It took four trips back and forth from the car just to get everything in. :) I don't think I could get anything else into my cabinets or fridge if I tried, and that's great. Not having food may be helping my weight (I'm 8 lbs less than when I was working), but it doesn't help diabetes, that's for sure. There's some days my meal consisted of glucose tablets, just to keep my blood sugar up, and that's not really what they're designed for--they're more rescue to be followed by real food. Like I said, it's been a hard two to three weeks.

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