Monday morning was dreary and overcast, so I did not take my planned walk to the fort. The day may have cleared but I was too busy for the walk (an hour or more, depending on route and whether I do a lap around the fort). It was approaching dusk by the time I set out. The fort was closed, but I got to enjoy a gorgeous sunset of orange and magenta over south Baltimore.
Tag Archives: baltimore
The finance office in Baltimore City is ridiculous.
I paid my quarterly water bill and an alley paving fee last month. Separate checks, separate envelopes, separate account numbers, separate invoices. And on Thursday, I got a delinquent notice for the alley paving bill. WTF? The check cleared! So I checked my account online. My water bill shows the payment I made PLUS a credit in the amount of the alley paving payment. Obviously, despite noting the account on the check and sending it separately AND including the invoice, the finance clerk applied the payments wrong.
So I called to get them to apply the alley paving payment properly, since I do not appreciate getting a delinquent notice. Their answer: provide proof of payment and request that the payment be transferred.
Okay, they HAVE proof of payment on their books. This is their error. Why do I have to get copies of my canceled check and take it to the finance office in person to get it fixed?
If I hadn’t labeled everything carefully and intentionally sent the payments in separately, this wouldn’t be so irritating. But I was very careful, mostly because I’ve dealt with the finance office for years in a professional capacity and have never been impressed by their performance.
There are times when I wonder if the city hires incompetent people intentionally.
• Met with a realtor yesterday to talk about selling my house. Banker call today to see about financing for new place. Need to arrange a week’s stay to see how/if I can deal with commute change and the shift from urban to rural.
• Had lunch with the Executive Director of the nonprofit I’ve been on the board of for 10 years. Love the group but lack time and enthusiasm right now. Rotating off the board, but still on a committee and volunteering. Am one of two board members left from the board who hired the ED and worked to keep the organization from going under. She thanked me for that yesterday. *shrug* What else was there to do? Walk away? My modus operandi: just keep going, do the day to day work and treading water, get through it.
• Two more divorces in the extended family (for a total of four within two degrees of separation). One a surprise only that it’s happening now: long separated but wife threatened suicide when papers filed years ago. Now she’s filed the papers. The other is a surprise and has stepdad heartbroken.
• Stepdad’s biopsy results are due back tomorrow. He says Mom doesn’t need to come with him. She thinks it’s because he assumes all will be fine and is being an ostrich. I think it’s so he can tell her everything is fine, even if it isn’t. His fatalism when it comes to his health is disturbing. Based on family medical history, he’s confident he won’t make old bones.
• Mom heard from cousin in Afghanistan. He says it’s hot (120F), tedious, boring but still dangerous.
It’s still snowing. Has been for more than 24 hours now.
This picture was taken at about 8am this morning; three or more inches have fallen since then. The big lump in the lower left hand corner? My car.
I shoveled my front stoop off, after struggling to just get the door open; my neighbor used his mini-snowblower to get a path (one person wide) cleared on the sidewalk on our block. Then I went out back and shoveled a path to the satellite dish, so I could clear it off and get the local news and continuing weather forecast. (How much more snow?)
The street is impassable. One brave neighbor cleared his Blazer off but was unable to get anywhere, the snow has drifted so high. The blind center across the way had someone out in a bear cat, hauling away some snow, but he’s quit, after leaving a near mountain of snow built up in the middle of the street.
I’m thinking that the plumber is not going to make it on Monday.
And more snow, 3 inches or so, is expected on Tuesday.
Yeah, driving to a SuperBowl party tomorrow? Not going to happen. Instead, I’ll slog my way to a neighborhood bar (assuming any are open) and watch the game there.
It has been announced that Mayor Dixon will be resigning by February 4th. Her resignation is part of the settlement agreement and Allford plea entered. Essentially, she’s admitting prosecutors had enough evidence to get a guilty verdict, but is avoiding a conviction. Why does that matter? Well, it means she can keep the $83,000/year pension. And work for or be re-elected to city or state office after her probation expires.
I’m guessing the pension was a primary concern.
As a Baltimore taxpayer, that just pisses me off. $83k annually? In a city where services are being cut, the public schools are a disaster, the median income is $30,000 (according to the 2000 Census), and 23% of the population lives below the poverty line…is $83,000/year really appropriate here?
A snow day has been declared for tomorrow! Yay!
Except I have a good bit of work to get done before everyone bugs out for the holiday or the end of the year.
And I’m feeling a little stir crazy. Shoveling and hiking/sliding/stumbling to the grocery store are insufficient social activities for me. Guess I’ll walk up to B&N tomorrow, maybe have lunch out?
The jury found Mayor Dixon guilt of one count of embezzling gift cards. It was only one count of four, I believe, but any guilty verdict by a Baltimore jury is remarkable. I’m wondering what will happen next? Assuming it isn’t overturned on appeal, I think she should not be able to remain mayor.
I’ll admit, though, to being biased. Dixon’s public persona as mayor makes me cringe, with the horrendous grammar and non sequitors and inability to speak or answer questions without a script. Except to spout platitudes, of course.
Explain to me again why city tax payers should pay for a trip to Egypt for her? Or for her defense counsel?