Welcome 2018!!! You have been here for almost a week already, and I still find myself writing 2017 constantly when I am writing the date. So I love how a new year gives a fresh feel to everything and there always feels like so much freedom and joy in it. Mistakes we have all made can be left in the old year, and a new year is upon us. On that note, I encourage everyone who reads this to give themselves freedom and license to believe and hope for great things in 2018. Vision is important, and sometimes I can look to the past and lament (especially with “what might have been” or with my regrets), rather than look to the future with joy and hope. Let us all have more hope, joy, peace, faith, and happiness in 2018!!!
and being constantly overlooked
is my lament
as the years go by.
to recently be inspired again
and not let my writing gift go dormant
My ten day poetry class
has quickly sped to an end.
poetic inspiration flourishing
boy meets girl
and actually asks girl out
(yes, such a novel concept these days)
commitment more than a passing fancy
or moving on to the next girl
that promises more
and touches my heart
like a beautiful cherry blossom.
and a dash
of exciting world travel, too.
In my dreams
for the future.
as sunrises and sunsets,
come and go
and another spring bashfully peaks
through the horizon.
and wait for love
weighs down my heart
with much sadness.
I feel forsaken
Men in my age range
seem to prefer model-types,
exotic foreign girls,
girls who like to flirt,
or girls who run after guys
and make things happen.
So, I’m no model,
nor do I want to be,
and beauty ultimately should come from within,
but I fault too many guys
for caring too much about appearance
and putting it on a pedestal,
and not caring enough about qualities
like compassion or intelligence or courage.
I don’t have exotic foreign appeal.
Alas, I can’t compete with that.
And I’ve never been one
much for flirting.
I appreciate genuine connection
and prefer to be monogamous
with flirting, but in dating
and not with every single guy.
I’m more traditional in nature,
and want to be pursued,
but society seems to laugh
at that these days.
I can be both traditional,
as well as for women having equal access
and opportunity in both the home and work sphere.
like a long, cold winter
when spring seems like it is forever gone,
and I sigh
and grow in patience,
albeit somewhat ungracefully,
in this wait for beautiful and lasting love.
Inequality is “an unfair situation in which some people have more rights or better opportunities than other people.” The definition of inequality is “the quality of being unequal or uneven” and can include social disparity and disparity of distribution or opportunity (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/inequality).
In terms of digital inequality, this can also be referenced as a technology gap. I understand this very personally, because I was raised in a blue-collar family that was largely against computers when I was growing up. I think my parents either hated or were scared of computers, and my Mom as a postal carrier never had need of a computer. Today she gets upset when coupons are e-mail only since she doesn’t do e-mail, however, now that she is retired she surprised me when she took an entry level computer class with her friend at the community college. Personally, I never owned a computer or laptop in college. I would sometimes borrow my friend’s or my boyfriend’s computer, but mostly I would live at the library or computer lab when I needed to write papers. Finances were an issue, and my first real computer came once I graduated with my Bachelors and Masters degrees and bought an old computer from an acquaintance for $100. I know my experience may not be typical, but it is important to note that not every family can afford computers and technology, which can be very expensive. This reality does set a child behind in school and can be a learning disadvantage. A pencil and notebook is much less expensive than a laptop and affording home internet, and for parent’s struggling to put food on the table, technology is most likely not a priority.
Tonight I was disappointed and concerned when I went to my local library that is a star library in my state (Illinois) to pick up my federal and state tax forms and booklets. Earlier in the week I had no success picking up the tax forms at the main post office that always stocks them, so I figured that perhaps I was thinking about my taxes late this year and the post office was just out of everything. However, the sign at my local library said that the IRS decided to not send federal tax booklets this year to places that they always send them, like post offices and libraries. An extremely helpful woman at the library reference desk pointed out that the IRS also did not send supplementary forms like years previously, and a library staff member had to repeatedly call and ask for tax instruction booklets, only to be given 10 booklets that were quickly gone. Also, there were no IL-1040 forms or booklets at all, and it was unclear to me what the library was given regarding state forms.
People looking for tax booklets were instructed to go online to look up the information. This is not a good option for people who want to use a tax booklet and a paper form to mail their taxes in the old-fashioned way, which many older people still do. Also, the library had a sheet with a phone number to call to have tax forms mailed to you. That is a decent option for people that aren’t trying to do their taxes that night or at the last minute. However, it is a hardship and a hurdle for taxpayers to jump through when instruction tax guides are not free and easily accessible to people of all income levels. Many people may not have access to the internet at home, and most people would not like doing confidential tax information at the local library. I think this situation is inequality since it is social disparity and a disparity of opportunity for people of lower income levels.
Libraries and post offices are hubs of their community and provide services to people regardless of socioeconomic status, race, gender, or other factors. While I can understand the IRS wanting to save money in the costs of printing and mailing forms, which is good both economically and environmentally, it still troubles me that this move results in an inequality that epitomizes the technology gap that is a way of life for many citizens in the United States of America. I am a fan of freedom, and my hope is that people who are comfortable with old school paper tax forms can easily find and use them, while people who are comfortable with internet tax filing can utilize the internet to file their taxes. I do not want to see either option cease to exist.Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images
Starbucks Happy Hour is back for Half off Frappuccino blended beverages from May 1-10, 2014 from 3-5 pm. Woohoo! I’m definitely behind the times promoting this awesome special due to the busyness of my life of late (re: an exciting new car purchase and some vacation time largely without internet), so my apologies to all the people who have scrolled through my old Happy Hour blog posts trying to figure out the date for the Starbucks 2014 Happy Hour Frappuccino special.
But an exciting new twist this year is for My Starbucks Rewards Members! If you are a My Starbucks Rewards Member, then you can get an extra hour of Frappuccino Half off Happy Hour from 5-6 pm during May 6-10, 2014. This is great for working people who would largely miss this amazing promotion if not for the extra hour. Since I am a big fan of Starbucks, especially of their frappuccino blended drinks, I have a Starbucks gold card, but you can also register ANY Starbucks gift card that you have and become a My Starbucks Rewards member. Then you can use the gift card (and reload it) and receive the aforementioned special during the alloted time period. Please see the Starbucks website for Starbucks Rewards member information for this free program which has some cool perks, or if you want any other info about the Half off Happy Hour for Frappuccinos. Enjoy!