Saturday, October 28, 2006

Fire Alarm

Here is the new fire alarm that was recently installed in an intercom inside everyone's apartment. It's much louder than what you hear in this video, and it often repeats over and over for 30 minutes or more when it goes off. Nevermind that it's always a false alarm. The fire trucks still come. Yesterday it went off four times, twice at night. Also yesterday they shut off the water for the second time this week (without warning) AND they had inspections of everyone's apartment and gave out $25 fines for any infractions. I cannot WAIT to move!

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Laughing Quadruplets

Are you depressed? A lot of my friends are, and I just wanted to do something to distract everyone from their depression, at least for a few minutes. So here is a little video that may help. Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

My eBay Account was HACKED!!!

And eBay could care less.

Late Sunday night, around 11:00pm, I received an email from eBay saying that they pulled an item I was selling off the site because it was illegal.

I have never sold anything on eBay. I've never even tried. I've always been a buyer!

So I went to my eBay account, and lo and behold, 35 items were listed in my sellers account. I didn't even know I had a sellers account. I thought I had to sign up for one if I ever wanted to sell anything. I still don't know the answer to that one.

Each of these items being sold were pirated DVD copies of various TV shows, like Desperate Housewives Season One DVD boxed set. New in box!!! (yeah, right)

Then an email pops in saying that item #2857463 (or whatever) has been sold for $70.00. I'm freaking out by then, and I decide, first of all, to unlist the remaining items before anyone else bids on them. I had to do some searching on eBay to figure out how to unlist them, and when I did, I learned it was a three-step process for each item. I won't go into details, but it took me hours to unlist these items.

Apparently, this hacker used my account primarily for the sellers fees, so now I have a balance at eBay for $115.00 in sellers fees. I was up the whole night sending emails to eBay (who still have not responded), and to the people who had placed bids. Two people got duped into sending their money to these hackers before I could stop them.

Finally, around 2 or 3:00 am, things settled down. Before that, the listings were coming in as fast as I could unlist them. I changed my password and all other security information, and finally the hackers stopped for the night.

Then yesterday, I got another email from eBay telling me they removed an item I had listed to sell because it was illegal. I went to my account, and there was nothing listed. Nevertheless, eBay suspended my account for 7 days.

What I really want to do is CLOSE my account altogether, but eBay won't let me into my account at all now that I am suspended. Even if I could access my account, how do I close it? I couldn't find anything on the website that tells you how! Besides, eBay will probably insist on me paying those sellers fees before I can close the account!

This is messed up. I am staying away from eBay FOREVER! They won't answer my emails about my account being hacked but they sure don't hesitate to send emails about the illegal items I am supposedly selling. They don't hesitate to charge me for sellers fees, either!

This has never happened to me before. What a world we live in! What a world what a world what a world...

I wonder -- does this happen often and eBay routinely sweeps it under the rug? That's what they are doing with me. Maybe they don't want the general public to know about their flawed security system. Maybe they will lose customers -- and sellers fees (which is how they make THEIR money).

Take this post as a warning. I doubt I am the only one in the world this has happened to on eBay, but funny you don't hear about it. I never have. Just don't let this nightmare happen to you. Stay away from eBay!!!!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Kitten Composer

This video from YouTube is too cute to pass up. Can you say, "Awwwwww...."

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Dear Friends

I know I gripe about living in this government high-rise, but there are some incredible and blessed people who dwell here with me. This video is my way of paying tribute and saying a few goodbyes. I hope you will see the treasures I see.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Hell is where I live

Since I know I am moving soon, this place is getting to me more than ever. It's heavy and dark and noisy all the time. I am going to use this space to complain, so if you don't want to hear what it's really like, please skip this post.

Last night, after a weekend of depression, I was watching American Idol Rewind (some special they had) when suddenly I hear a loud siren from the intercom they'd just installed in every apartment. It sounded like a car alarm at first, then a LOUD voice screaming "Attention! Attention! ATTENTION!!!! A fire has been reported in the building! Go to the nearest exit immediately. Do not use the elevators!!!" It repeated for about 30 minutes. I can't tell you how loud it was, but I turned the TV up as high as it could go to try and drown it out. No, I did not rush to the outdoor stairway. I knew it was a false alarm like it always is, so I tried to finish watching the show. The whole atmosphere in my apartment was as loud as a war zone, I swear. I felt sorry for Angel, who I know was asleep at the time. Nobody could sleep through that.

So finally it stopped, and I tried to drift off to sleep. I had the strangest dreams, and then I'd wake up, then more strange dreams and more waking up. It was a long night. Finally, just before dawn, my chance for sleeping was shot due to the constant noises outside.

I had a friend stay over one night with her daughter, and I'll never forget the look on their faces when they were woken up by the same morning noises. They looked shocked and they said, "Wow, this is LOUD! How can you live like this?" I hardly noticed the noises before, but now they are really getting to me. Major, endless construction, metal banging against metal, traffic on I-75 (a block away), horns honking, sirens blaring, people yelling, gunshots or something equally disturbing. It just goes on and on without a break. I honestly don't know how I've lasted here this long.

So there was nothing to do but get up and get ready to catch the infamous Kroger bus. That was the last thing I wanted to do. My energy level is incredibly low, and those shopping trips are stressful and hectic.

So I decide to get myself in gear amidst the noises in the hallway. The maintenance people were beginning their day on my floor. They contribute to the morning noises by banging their carts and mops and ramming on doors. I get paranoid that my door will be next, and who knows what they want! It's something different every time.

This place is so institutional, I feel like I am back at Topeka State Hospital. People here either die or are dying of AIDS, alcoholism, old age, heart attacks, etc. There's a white board downstairs that announces the latest death. Someone new every week. This morning it was a lady named Rosa who I was friends with. We weren't best friends or anything, but she was always so sweet to me. Last week it was a guy named Terry who I used to have wonderful talks with about nutrition and herbal teas and his days of homelessness. He was also an avid reader and wrote a few Sci-Fi books. He died alone in his apartment, like they all do, and the only way anyone found out was because of the smell. That is typical.

Before I moved in, they had just gotten rid of the rat infestation. So now, 8 years later, the rats are back. I've seen two so far. And the roaches are so relentless, I spend tons of money on every product available to get rid of them. Nothing works for very long. Maybe a day.

And doing laundry is more than just a chore. There are 5 washers and 5 dryers for 250 people. Usually the washers are broke except for two, so there's a long line of people waiting their turn for the next available washer. It takes all day.

And the post office! I need a whole blog for that story! Oh wait -- I have one, lol! It's at titled "Morris Brown Post Office Discriminates." I battled with them for three years to change their policy about delivering to our doors when necessary. I thought it was settled, but they are once again refusing to deliver my medication from which requires a signature confirmation. I just don't have the energy to battle with them anymore.

The other residents here stopped caring long ago. They are resigned to their fate. It is incredibly sad. I get to leave but they are waiting to die. I am surrounded by wheelchairs, walkers, bingo, and other nursing-home activities. This truly is an institution. No privacy, either. The maintenance men use their master keys if you don't answer the door fast enough. It makes me paranoid just to take a shower.

Just going downstairs to take a walk is a hassle (even when the elevators ARE working). People are constantly stopping me in the halls, wanting money or cigarettes or whatever. Today I walked to BP, and was stopped on the way by a woman who lives here. She was drunk and crying about her daughter, who just had her purse stolen. When I finally got away from her, I heard loud screaming. I turned around, and it was the same woman screaming at her daughter who was trying to push her down. She was hitting her, too, and the screams faded the faster I walked away. Two cops just passed them by like nothing was happening. I had to do the same, feeling guilty and irritated because there was nothing I could do without getting punched myself.

It's a hopeless situation for everyone here, and they just live with it like I've been living with it for years. Most of the older people here grew up picking cotton and are now retiring in this hell hole, dirt poor, illiterate, and waiting to die.

So how did I end up here, and why have I stayed so long? Because I don't deserve better. That was drummed into my head since childhood. And I've been living up to those expectations. That's why this move is so significant for me. This move is a far cry from what I am used to. I don't deserve better than this, and in fact, this place is better than the last place I lived. So now I am having to work through a paradigm shift just to accept that I DO deserve better. And you know what? So does everyone else who lives here. But they were beaten down long ago, and that's how I feel at this moment.

I know this is temporary. I know I have hope. I'm just not feeling it right now. I'm confused and scared and depressed. I've always sabotaged success, and this time I can't sabotage a move upward. I just can't! I would die here.

Right now, there are the never-ending noises outside my window -- that endless construction -- and in the echoing hallways outside my door. Someone is yelling really loud. Who knows what it's about.

Okay, that's enough. The pity party is over. Angel is cooing softly.