Renovation to Mom’s house is nearly complete, an occupancy permit has been granted, and after over four years, there is a glimmer of hope that she will get to live in her own home again before she dies! (Plot synopsis here, if you’re new!)

Why, after fourfuckingyears, has this become a priority for my niece, DQ, and her husband, BJ? Progress was sporadic from the start, since BJ needed time off for vacations, deer hunting – not to mention his paying jobs. I had considered several options to increase his motivation over the past few years, but Mom didn’t want to make anyone mad.

The motivation came from an unexpected source – BJ’s parents. When DQ and BJ first married, BJ’s parents bought the house out of foreclosure, offering to rent the house back to them. This arrangement worked fairly well – until September, when BJ’s parents announced their plans to get a divorce. The house must be sold. By Christmas. Essentially, they’re being evicted!

Taking Mom to the cardiologist when this was breaking news, she let me know that DQ had been putting pressure on to change the deed to the house before moving in. For her protection. My reaction was a bit less than enthusiastic…

daisyfae: FUCK THAT!

Mom: I know. I don’t see any reason it can’t wait until after we move in, but she’s worried that the rest of the family will cause trouble and she’ll be homeless.

daisyfae: She has earned compensation for taking care of you!  No one is arguing that! She can always sell the land you gave them. [grinding teeth] You just tell me what you want to do and i’ll make it happen…

Mom: She’s putting pressure on me to set up an appointment with the attorney.

daisyfae: Under no circumstances are you to go to see the attorney to change your will, or the deed to the house, without me present. This will not only protect you, but it will protect DQ should anyone ever think there was coercion.

Mom: That makes sense. I just don’t want her to get upset with me…

daisyfae: Tell her it’s my schedule. i really am busy at work, so taking a day off is going to be tough.

And that’s where we left it…

The message was apparently delivered. A few days later i started getting passive-aggressive pings from DQ about setting up an appointment with the attorney. i was polite – and my schedule really has gotten tough.

This is unpleasant and stressful.  i became engaged in another round of “Trailer Park Mexican Standoff” via e-mail. Trying to take the heat for Mom, without causing any trouble. My instinct is to call bullshit, and be a far more direct, but Mom requested the sideways approach.

It didn’t surprise me to get a call from DQ as i was leaving work last Thursday. Because i was driving, i let it go to voicemail. Just not in the mood to deal with the bullshit. Retrieved the voicemail when i got home.

DQ: Took Granny to the doctor today because her cough has gotten worse, and she’s been very weak. Doctor sent us directly to ER. They’re going to admit her – probable pneumonia. I’ll keep you posted.


So much for my righteous indignation. When shit hits the fan, DQ does an excellent job taking care of Mom. All squabbles set aside. Priorities firm. We’ll sort out the legal stuff later.

Visited Mom over the weekend, and she took a few minutes to write a note to The Boy. Wished him a happy birthday. Told him she’s proud of him. Didn’t mention her troubles.


She’s home now, and is doing much better. We came up with a new plan of attack.  We’ll get back to the regularly scheduled bullshit later…

The Job Interview Challenge

When not allowing my house to be overrun by “hoards of unruly lads“*, i have a pesky day job, where i reside in the bowels of a large organization, geographically dispersed across the nation.  In any bureaucracy, hiring practices are often monstrously over-managed, with ridiculous rules and requirements to avoid lawsuits assure fair and open promotion processes.

As a result, a senior female generally participates in personnel selection processes for key positions.  Since we are a technology-based enterprise, the number of senior women can be fit into a gnat’s ass with a greased crowbar is low.  Being a Senior Technologist – With Ovaries – i am often asked to sit on interview boards. 

This is an important responsibility, which i do not take lightly – helping get strong candidates into the right positions makes a huge difference.  It also offers a chance to scout for undiscovered talent that can be shamelessly stolen considered for jobs i need to fill additional opportunities.  But sometimes?  It just makes my brain hurt.  Today offered such a moment.

Candidates were pre-screened through a resume review process, and as a result, THE SYSTEM [bleat of discordant music] coughed up three candidates to be interviewed.   Two were “knowns” from within the local population, the third was a woman from an organization far, far away.  And when invited to interview, she accepted.

The resume looked “ok”, but not a strong fit for the position being filled.  None of us had any real sense for how THE SYSTEM [crash of thunder] made the call, but it seemed she had checked all appropriate career boxes along the way.  The fact that she was willing to interview was a bit of a surprise since it really didn’t seem to be an ideal fit.

As we awaited her arrival, we wandered into the “So, any idea what’s up with this?” realm.  Knowing we had some time to kill before she arrived, i said “i can tell you what she looks like” and was challenged by other panelists to write my description down.

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