Monday, May 12, 2008

Bah!

Ok, I tried to make a Mother's Day post. Maybe a poem about Bad Mutha's, including some recent articles I read that make my normal feelings of motherly inadequacy seem minor. Maybe a post about great mothers, or prolific mothers, like Mrs. Duggar who is working on her 18th, and is making a new definition to "clown car".

I just didn't have the energy. Or the interest. It's been a long, long week. LOL

Hubby was gone for the weekend. One of his nephews got married (on Mother's Day weekend!!), so he reluctantly ::koff:: packed his sarcophagus-sized-and-shaped golf case with his clubs, clothing and necessities and took off to an old and revered country club/golf course in the south (on Mother's Day weekend).

Poor baby was unfortunate enough to have booked on American Airlines, so after the first 3-hour delay for oops checks, he missed his connecting flight. But they got him there on time for the festivities (on Mother's Day weekend).

Luckily for him, he pre-ordered me a lovely bouquet which was delivered while he was gone. Otherwise, when he came back from (Mother's Day weekend) the trip, he might have had a hard time getting into the house. He also bought me several lovely gifts which he'll find out about when his next credit card statement comes in about a week or so. He's so generous! That's why I love him so!

Big Kid got up and made coffee for the first time in his life. For moi. He also gave me a shoulder rub. Little Guy made me breakfast and a home-made card.

Ahhhh, wouldn't trade these guys for all the tea in China.

But maybe for a 15-minute Colin Firth pole dance. Maybe. Ok, probably. I'm bad.

Last week----gak!!. All I can say, is that it's over.

First of all---the semester is over. Big Guy and I got all A's. Woohoo.

Apparently our home visit for Little Guy's guardianship hearing went well. The home visitor had to interview my ex, and I had all kinds of apprehension about that. Since he converted to Mormonism when he married his current wife, I could only IMAGINE what kind of objections might come up. I was thinking of all kinds of rebuttal statements if anything needed----like, "so WHAT if we have cocktails on Friday? Once when I was married to ex I was the designated driver and he was so drunk he puked CORN out of his nose onto the dashboard of our car for pete's sakes!" Or "Coffee? You say that in the same tone as if it was COCAINE!!"

When I got the report back, all it said was "I have no objections. She's had sole custody since we divorced when he was 3 and I'm fine with guardianship."

Which in a way is kind of sad too. Ex didn't show up for our divorce hearing or ask for any custody or visitation, so it all came my way sort of by default. I've been liberal---strike that---instrumental in pushing any and every kind of visitation over the years, just so the guys can keep a connection to their dad. His family has been really great with staying connected and involved. So on one hand, I'm immensely relieved, on the other hand I'm kind of pissed off.

How weird is that?

We went to Little Guy's social security meeting last week as well. Since he turned 18, I've had a checklist of things we need to apply for/take care of for his future.

Here is our government at work. LOL

I filled out like 20 pages online of preliminary stuff. We could have done it on paper, but we were encouraged to do it online. Every doctor the kid has seen, along with names and addresses. Every therapist the kid has seen, along with names and addresses. Every diagnosis, test result, blah blah blah. Did it, finished it, got the retrieval case number, then had to print out and fill out 7 disclosures of information so they could find out for themselves.

Luckily I brought along the hard copies of his initial diagnosis and his last triennial review from school.

Because even with the retrieval case number, everything was gone gone gone from the SSI system. And I didn't think to bring the names and addresses of everybody because I thought it was all done online. feh.

Had to run down from the mountains early this morning into the city to bring the case-worker a hard copy of my child support payment records for the last month and Little Guy's birth certificate. She could see me before her day started at 8:30am. The office doesn't officially open until 9am, so all of the stations were closed. The place was filled up with people without appointments who were waiting to be done first come, first served when the windows opened up.

You have to go to a kiosk and punch in information. Have an appointment? Punch in the last 4 digits of the social security number. Then you get a "you're checked in" ticket. Otherwise, you get a "number" of when served.

Got there, and realized that I suddenly couldn't find Little Guy's Social Security card. Looked through my wallet like 5 times. Found his ID, and I had had them together when we visited last week. But his SS card was gone, and I didn't remember the last 4 digits. I took a wild guess and punched in a few numbers. Got a "when served" ticket.

I went over to the security guard's desk. Explained that I had an 8:30am appointment and with who, but couldn't find the kid's card and wondered if maybe I had left it there the week before.

He preened and postured for a couple of minutes, then pulled open a drawer and pulled out a huge stack of SS cards that had been "left" at the office.

Whew! At least I wasn't the only overwhelmed dumbass on the planet!

He laboriously and painstakingly thumbed through them. Little Guy's wasn't there.

So I said, do you have a list of extensions? Could you possibly ring this person and tell her we're here?

"Why don't you punch in the last 4 digits of your SS number and it will tell her you're waiting?"

I patiently explained again that this appointment wasn't for ME, it was regarding my son, and I didn't know the last 4 digits off the top of my head.

So he preened and postured again, and threw in a few sighs, then pulled out a big book. He went through it, page by page, and I had to spell the lady's name a few times because he was going phonetically, and not by actual letters. He found her extension, punched it in, and said, "she's not answering, she must not be here."

Which brought on a whole bunch of questions in my head. Was she here at all? Was she sick? gak?

Could you possibly try her extension again in a couple of minutes or go back and check if she's here?

No, no, he can't leave the room to go back and check. Why don't I sit down and wait until 9am and somebody can help me when the windows open up. Ok, I understood that. He was the only guard in a room full of people who hadn't managed to get a full cup of coffee in them before showing up that morning to wait in line for ages to be served. Kind of like an Ozzfest concert.


A recipe for complete anarchy, I tell you!

So I went to a back table and dumped out my purse. Went through absolutely everything. My wallet, every pocket, every cranny. The doofusy security guy came by and asked if I needed a pen to fill something out, the helpful little booger.

I finally found the card in the new checkbook for the account we had just opened for Little Guy. I guess when producing this the week before, I had slipped it in without realizing it. I went to the kiosk, punched in the numbers and got a "you are checked in" slip right before 9am.

I went and sat down in the waiting area.

They have a big screen TV on the wall that shows children's movies with English subtitles (the sound is turned off). When we were there last week, while waiting, we saw the better part of Shrek 3.

The TV was turned on with the menu displayed. The screen was displaying the menu option of subtitle language. Shrek 3 again.

Security Guy left us potential anarchists by ourselves and used his key to go to into the area where the appointments were to click on the DVD player to get down to the "English" subtitle screen. Took him 3 tries back and forth. In and out with the key. Then he managed to go back again and hit the "play" button.

Yet he couldn't check to see if the lady we had an appointment with was actually there (it's not a huge office---there is like 10 caseworkers back there).

9am arrived, and the windows came up. They announced that everyone with "U" tickets should go to Window 4. Security Guy came over to me and said, "don't you have a U ticket?"

Obviously that meant he wasn't completely brain dead. Lazy and disinterested in customer service, well that's another story. But then again, he was carrying a gun and I wasn't.

I was pretty frosty.
Nope, I found our card and we're checked in.

Just then, our case-worker came to the door and called me.

Turns out that due to computer problems, her station was shut down. She had moved to another one, and wasn't able to access any of her files until 9am. Not that she needed to access OUR files, mind you. She just needed to Xerox the hard copies of what I had brought. Which could have been taken care of right away if Zippy the Pinhead had just called out her name while he was ignoring potential anarchy and loading Shrek for the viewing pleasure of all the senior citizens and disabled persons waiting in the lobby.

::sigh::

22 comments:

Beth said...

Sounds like the week from hell except for those Mother's Day gifts and those A's.
Bureaucracy. Blah. I'm proud of you - you didn't lose your cool. (Too much at stake.)
May this week be calmer for you.
Take care.

Star said...

I was once on a jury panel and we were placed in an empty courtroom for about an hour merely so the guy in charge of us could use a phone, and call everybody in city hall (in a major metropolitan city) to find out if soe actress spelled her name with an "I" or an "E".

Valerie Marie said...

Poor you! Beth said it "the week from hell"... I'm so proud of you: A+A+A+A..... ((ATM))
p.s. "feelings of motherly inadequacy" ??? You??? You're my hero!

mrsb said...

LOL! Nothing better than navigating the red tape.

I've got an IEP meeting this week to set up things for my son's move to the middle school next school year.

Should be a blast!

Congrats on all the A's!

Melissa said...

gah! I hate the red tape associated with anything government-related. You poor thing!

Glad to hear the rest of your week worked out--all A's! You go, Girl! And no grief from your ex! And flowers! Whoo-hoo!

Jana B said...

Ahhhh... our tax money at work. Gives me all kinds of warm fuzzy feelings to see their efficiency. *rolling eyes*

I'm glad your ex didn't give you any grief!!!

Brenda said...

WoooHooo! All A's! Good for you two!

As for the rest of your week, are you sure the universe isn't conspiring against you too? I think it's been stomping on me lately.

Brenda said...

P.S. I like how you used the credit card to buy yourself a little extra something for mother's day. I think I'll use that idea around here!

litzi said...

Hi Attila,
Hopefully now you’ll be able to kick back and relax after the vexing week you experienced.

The red tape of bureaucracy is prevalent all over. I had jury duty last month and witnessed 2 full days of the hierarchy of authority squander 200 potential jurors’ time for naught. What’s so frustrating is that the system that’s continually wasting peoples’ time and money could care less whether the average person is inconvenienced or not. The wheels of justice move like they were slathered with mole-asses.

I hope you’re enjoying the Mother’s Day gifts you bought for yourself!

Heather said...

People are frackin' irritating!

I hope you had a good Mother's Day weekend, and I am so glad that you did well on your semester end! :]

Stinkypaw said...

Congrats on the A's!

And what were you thinking, brains isn't required when you get a firearm, c'mon! You should know this! You're American and look at who you have for President!

...sorry couldn't help that one! Heee

Lola Magnolia said...

Gosh, and here I was complaining about a moody parent not permitted to make food for an event! ;)

I'm glad to hear you got things taken care of. And congrats to you and Big Guy for doing so well this term!

Flamenco Mom said...

Hi Attila! Congrats to you and Big Guy on a great semester. Time to celebrate!

I HATE dealing with red tape. Between school (for me), health care admins and services (for Miss Z), I am just so over it! Why can't they just make it easier? I mean, wasn't there some law passed about paperwork reduction or some such nonsense? Sheesh.

Angela said...

Yes I do love those trips.
Glad your mothers day went well.
Awesome job on the A's

Jennifer McKenzie said...

OMG I got half way through the mind numbing government experience and gave up. Why didn't you?
You're a better woman than I, ATM.
I'm glad the boys stepped up to the plate for Mother's Day. They rock.

Eileen said...

SSI is such a frustrating process. I have had so many problems with them personally and professionally. It is not run well, at all. I hope it all goes well for you and the rest of the process is smooth sailing.

I am glad you had a nice Mother's Day, despite the fact that hubby was out of town. Sounded very sweet.

Congratulation on those A's!!

XOXOX

Liesl said...

I think I had a better time having oral surgery than you had with the SSA!

Traceytreasure said...

Wow! I need a nap after all of that. You do realize that you can't take weapons into these types of places, for all the reasons you listed....I hope you are enjoying the super, generous Mother's Day's gifts from you hubby!! Maybe you should think about a day in a spa after having to watch Shrek 3 and all that other fun you had!! Hugs!

Queen Goob said...

I'm embarrassed to tell you I work for the government.
Love ya! Mean it!

Valerie Marie said...

"But maybe for a 15-minute Colin Firth pole dance. Maybe. Ok, probably. I'm bad." LOVE YOU!!!!

mia said...

Reminds me of the time J went to the races on my birthday. Ugh.
Happy belated Mothers Day and
GOOD JOB on the A's!!!!!!
xoxo

Joe said...

A couple I know got married on Super Bowl Sunday. Where that idea came from I'll never know.