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Tuesday, November 8, 2005

Thereís an upside down buffalo on one of the stamps I put on an outgoing envelope I was working on at the end of the day, but thatís what you get for nudging me outside my comfort zone. Itís a long and pointless story, but thereís a short version: I was tired. I put the stamp on upside down. (And itís not even the right stamp. I was looking for a 20c stamp, but the closest I had was a 21c stamp, which has a buffalo on it.)

Sometimes I wonder if Iím in the right line of work. (Sometimes?) The construction trade is a paranoid world that is against everything I stand for. Okay, not everything I stand for, but everything I wish I stood for. Even though Iím sometimes a little pessimistic, Iím never paranoid. Thatís not a contradiction, no matter how it looks. I can feel down in the dumps without believing everyone is out to get me.

Not the Boss, though, and not anybody else in this business. Thereís paperwork on top of paperwork to cover every contingency (and every ass). The Boss always thinks heís not going to get paid for work that weíve done. Thatís why we file every possible provisional form whenever we enter into a contract, so that we can ďgo afterĒ somebody when they donít pay us. (The fact that they always do pay us hasnít convinced him that people are mostly honest, because he can always come up with a scenario thatís worse than the worst case scenario.)

30 October 2005

Cloud puffs.

So here I am after 5:00 pm, and itís pitch black outside, and Iím getting all the paperwork ready to file a preliminary notice on a company who has told me theyíve already put the check in the mail. (And I believe them!) Itís not as if I need something else to keep me busy, especially since the phone started ringing well before I was half awake this morning. Even working on almost no sleep, though, I wonít let them make me as paranoid as the Boss. Theyíre trying. Theyíre closing in all around me, but I wonít let them do it to me.

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As of this moment (it's 11:00 pm now), with 55% of the votes counted, all of the measures on the California ballot are losing (including the ones I supported). Many are too close to call, but of the ones that have been decided, two of the four propositions included in the governorís ďreformĒ program have definitely been defeated. Arnold staked his political reputation on these four propositions, which means that a year from now we could be seeing a new governor elected. That might be the most important outcome of anything decided tonight. The victory goes to the people, because he tried to go over the heads of their elected representatives and use the initiative process to turn a fairly progressive state to the right. No matter how the final tally shakes down, that cynical maneuver didnít work. I havenít felt this good about political trends since 1996.

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"I donít feel qualified to comment on specific military operations, except to say that it seems to me if they had any confidence that this would be a success, they would have moved in before the election instead of six days after."

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