commented on Movie Star Has a Promising Future as a Book Critic
@2 - You nailed it on "Divergent." I read it as part of my job but it was so dully written, I could barely finish it. The story seems canned, but if the writing had been stellar, I wouldn't have cared.
Just because the audience are teen readers doesn't mean the book has to be written like a 14-yr-old wrote it. Ugh. There seem to be a lot of teen books like this, words thrown on a page to tap the market. Not all, thankfully. (God bless John Green). Too often these days I read a teen novel where the story is interesting but the writing is painful.
I didn't mind the Twilight series though. It was drivel, of course, but decently written for 13-year-old readers. The fourth book was an editorial mess, though (the first three were okay). And the first Hunger Games was interesting and not badly written (the rest of the series annoyed me).
Rainbow Rowell's two teen books are very well written ("Eleanor & Park" and "Fangirl"). I would like to see Shailene Woodley star in one of these two when they get made into films. I like her a lot as an actor and I'm glad to hear that she appears to be a thoughtful human being as well.
commented on Gaydolph Hitler, World's Most Notorious Bi-Phobe, Helps Out a Young Bisexual
It's not that bad, Dan, and even if every page had a typo, it is better than nothing as the LW stated.
I love the book, personally. I have given over 10 copies away to teenagers when they go off to college (all females). I throw a box of condoms and your book in with a bunch of other dorm room necessities. The giftees mostly do not mention the specific contents to me! but a few have told me years later it helped a lot. I like to think your book circulated through many a residence hall. I definitely think a new book "More Savage Love"? is needed. How about another book of columns with some follow-up?
commented on Elliott Bay Books Owner Says $15 Minimum Wage Could Be "Possibly Fatal"
[not to change the subject away from original post, but must comment on this]
@105 - re: home healthcare workers. You are right, they don't make shit. My husband is a part-time worker, more as a good deed than as a way to make a living. The pay is slightly higher than minimum wage, about a dollar depending on which middleman agency you have to get your paycheck from. NO PAID HOLIDAYS (not even time-and-a-half when you have to work the holiday, as the sick and infirm don't get a holiday), NO PAID VACATION, NO BENEFITS WHATSOEVER. NO CONSIDERATION THAT YOU ARE A PERSON TOO.
What most Americans do not know is that home healthcare is primarily paid by the federal government through (middlemen) agencies. The gov't does not pay my husband, they pay some opportunistic jerk who runs a bare-bones office and does the absolute least to adhere to the rules and regulations (functioning more as a payroll service than a healthcare agency).
In our part of the South (not rural) there are only a handful of agencies, I assume because eventually the gov't catches up with their scamming? or maybe the reimbursement is quite low? I would like to know.
The man for whom my husband works (a quadriplegic) gets no help from the agency. He has to place ads and find his own help, which are then supposedly vetted by the agency (not). He has been through four or five agencies in 15+ years while my husband has helped him. One routinely bounced paychecks to my husband if he didn't get it cashed by Monday afternoon (told him they did not keep funds in it after Tuesday...what?), which meant he had to drive 40 miles roundtrip to pick up the paycheck in Friday traffic because when he asked them to mail it, of course, it never arrived til Tuesday.
They hoped for better treatment (direct deposit?) so switched agencies and the new one then promptly outsourced the payroll to another agency (!!) which then re-categorized all the employees as independent contractors (no pay increase for the workers), which is not legal (checked with four different accountants on this). Of course, most of the home healthcare workers are poor, undereducated, immigrants, etc. and they are fine with getting 1099ed, because they mistakenly think they don't have to pay taxes on the money and then get ugly surprises down the road. I pitched a fit about it to my husband EVERY DAY until they switched agencies again.
These agencies are supposed to make sure the workers are decent employees (on time, good hygiene, etc.), keep up with their immunizations and CPR training (among other things). But in our experience, this is rarely the case. The agency is also suppose to work with the social worker attached to the "patients" but our experience has the social worker only interested in recommending an agency to get a kickback from the agency. The agency is supposed to hire the workers, but that seems rare. The agency is suppose to provide emergency fill-in help when needed and that is almost unheard of, in our experience.
During the recent (two) very bad snow and ice events, my husband walked in the dark, four miles roundtrip (up very steep, icy hills) because he is a good guy and no one else would help this quadriplegic. I only mention this because it pisses me off--no acknowledgement from agency, not even a thank-you. No one cares about these sick, handicapped, infirm individuals unless they have families to advocate for them. How many of these individuals have shitty healthcare workers who give them crap assistance, steal from them, take advantage of them? Certainly the agencies who the government pay to oversee the care do not GIVE A FUCK.
I wish someone would do an investigative story on the home healthcare industry so the general public would quit thinking these workers are getting paid $20-30 an hour. Maybe the federal government pays the agencies this much, but the workers are lucky if they get minimum wage (less than $8 an hour in most of the South). I do not recommend these jobs to anyone, unless they want to do it as a charity.
Sure, there are wealthy individuals who pay privately for home healthcare, but these jobs are few and hard to find.
Rant over. Thanks for listening.
commented on Harold Ramis
He was a good actor. He was a GREAT writer. RIP, sweet man. Gone too soon.
commented on Effeminate Gay Men Haven't Disappeared from TV
I watched "Sean Saves the World." I wanted to like it. I truly did. I watched three episodes and it was really awful. The first show was painful and they went downhill from there. The characters weren't too bad, but the writing was rotten. All the actors did their best with the material, but they couldn't overcome the poor writing. I knew it wasn't going to last long. I hope Sean Hayes can find something else, because I enjoy watching him.
commented on Here In My Car
Look, I live in metro Atlanta and the weather forecasts were very murky. Maybe it will, maybe it won't: snow. and if it did, they acted like it wasn't going to be much: dusting to an inch. Then the Nat'l Weather Svc. even downgraded their warning and everyone said, well, there you go.
AND THEY DIDN'T CLOSE THE SCHOOLS.
The school thing was the killer. So people went about their business and then it started steady snow, no wind, about 11 a.m. in the northern Metro. And the temp started dropping. The school systems realized they were idiots and started calling parents, school closing after 1 p.m. and the city lost its mind.
Everyone jumped on the roads by 12:30 and by 1:30 the snow was heavy enough and had accumulated enough to make the roads slippery. And slippery in Atlanta is killer because Atlanta is all hills. You think Seattle has hills? Atlanta is hills on hills on hills and no one has proper vehicles or tires or preparation. So, essentially, a million people all going home at the same time in steady snow on hills. The secondary roads and subdivisions and apartment complexes (of which we have way more than gated communities, thank you) weren't salted at all, even though major arteries had been covered.
Not to defend Mayor Kasim Reed, but the city and counties were out early salting and sanding before the precipitation starting coming down, but only major arteries. And once the streets became gridlocked, the govt vehicles couldn't get through to hit them again.
There were way too many idiots driving, too. Acting as if they were above the traffic laws and the laws of slippery. As a result, accidents clogged the already clogged roads and things came to a standstill. Literally.
More plows or sand/salt trucks would not have helped. Closing the schools the night before would have helped a lot. There were school buses full of kids stuck for 3, 4, 5, 6 hours in the traffic. A lot had to turn back and return the kids to school. It seems to have been downplayed in the news but schools had their kids all night and into the next day because they couldn't bus them home or their parents were stuck in traffic and couldn't get them home. Of course, then the schools needed to have at least one policeman there overnight. Which meant one less cop out trying to help on the roads. Not good. Hmmm?
The 4 inches of ice and snow we got in 2011 was worse, but hit Sunday night and everyone was at home and so it didn't turn out this way. But this exact SnowJam occurred in 1982, evidently, with snow coming in at midday. And now we have SnowJam 2014. And probably will again. Sadly. Because no one learns.
Well, not totally true. I was lucky and my big boss had a horrific experience in 1982 so he said to home at noon and while I was in heavy traffic (like regular rush hour), I was home in 45 minutes. But anyone that waited much past 12:30 had their commute multiplied by 100 and that was if they were lucky enough to get home. My husband left at 2:30 and made it to our exit on the highway by 5 p.m. but traffic just stopped due to accidents on the secondary roads. And then people's cars starting overheating or running out of gas, another problem as the hours went on, adding to the blockages. It took him 9 hours to go one mile and even then, the last 300 feet he had to drive illegally in the empty lanes to reach the entrance to our subdivision.