Question Time Over Coffee

QuestionsSeason One

Interesting questions — and since I’m giving my wrist a rest today — or trying to — it’s a good time to answer questions.

What ways are you adopting to save on energy bills?

I’ve been working on this for years. Step one was changing every bulb in the house to an LED, getting a new boiler and replacing the elderly, cranky refrigerator. All of these needed doing whether we were saving energy or not. But we also replaced our washer and dryer to a far less repairable but much lower-cost models. The old ones were cheap to fix, but the dryer used tons of electricity and was inefficient. The new one gets the job done better and faster. The clothing comes out cleaner, too. We only do laundry once a week because the machines are huge.

Are there too many TV channels today offering too much content choice? Do you struggle to find something to watch?

There’s both too much content and too little stuff that’s interesting or unique. We find enough, but I have to admit I’m awfully tired of most superhero series, though Disney’s “Super Pets” was delightful. If they turn it into a series, I’m sure we’ll watch it. Anything about cute pets works for us.

How often do you read, watch or listen to news in an average week?

We watch the weather and we watch the headlines. I get pop-ups from The Washington Post and The New York Times. I probably read an article or two a week from each — depending. Sometimes more, often less. I also get The Smithsonian and National Geographic both of which I read both. And we watch Colbert, which is “news with a chuckle.” It’s hard to get a laugh from the news these days.

What would you say are five important life skills people should know?

1- History and discovering we are part of it, not exempt from it
2 – Basic kitchen skills including meal preparation. Everyone should know how to make a simple meal for themself and maybe a couple of others.
3 – Reading and communication, including writing and speaking and decent speech.
4 – Basic arithmetic and stuff they never teach you in school, like “compound interest.” You’ll need it and you’ll be so glad you understand it when you do.
5 – Basic understanding of technology from “smart” phones to computers. I don’t think you can get along in today’s world without at least the ability to use online services.

When at school how often did you complete your set homework?

In college, pretty much always, though college didn’t offer “daily” homework. It was more papers at the end of a course. I wrote good papers. Even when I had no idea what I was talking about. It really prepped me for technical writing later in life.

What don’t men understand about women and what do women want men to really know about them?

I want men to clean up after themselves. I want men to see dirt and not ignore it because someone else will deal with it. I want men to offer help without being ASKED. Seriously, guys, grow up.

What do people want from life?

I haven’t the slightest idea. I’m not even sure what I want except someone else to come and cook and clean instead of me.

What is your most comfortable pair of shoes and why?

Socks. Otherwise? Uggs (the soft ones) and sandals.

If your favourite colour wasn’t available what would be the next colour you choose to wear on your head?

If I can’t get black, I’ll take navy blue.

What are your Top 3 worst smells or scents?

Skunk, even drifting on the wind. That stale, urine subway stench. Trash that should go OUT already.

If you could spend a whole day in Disneyland with anyone – living or dead who would it be and why?

Garry. But we did that already. I wouldn’t mind doing it again, though.

Are you a Halloweener and if so how and why and if not, why not?

Nah. It wasn’t even my favorite holiday when I was young enough to partake. Now? I love the colors and the season, but that’s all.

What job did you want to have when you were a child growing up and more importantly did it ever appear as an opportunity in any shape once as an adult?

I wanted to be a writer. I grew up and became a writer. I’m still writing. I also wanted to be a photographer. I am. An amateur, but I enjoy it as much. Maybe more. Most professional photography is weddings, babies, and other formal events. Amateur photography is much more creative.

Categories: #News, Anecdote, Entertainment, Life, questions

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15 replies

  1. Some wonderfully inspiring answers in here Marilyn.

    Good basic principles as well for life, l agree on those and yes you are right with regards to what women want. I remember my mother years ago when l was a teenager saying the exact same. But l was a very tidy child to begin with whereas my sister was a mess, she still is a mess, l am still tidy, just not such a perfectionist as l used to be now l a tidy realist.

    Oh yes, Tramp urine is terrible, l remember when l used to work in London in the 80’s and the 90’s and using subways and thinking ‘sheesh! seriously!!’ it’s the same as public toilets, it’s just really terrible!

    It’s a battle for sure to get energy bills down. Our house is all electric and that is difficult more so as a rental so it’s not equipment we purchased. Our kit is electricity conscious.

    You did well to dream of being a writer and to make it a reality 🙂

    Kudos to you.

    thanks for taking part, a pleasure reading you 🙂


    • I had some talent. I remember when my first husband got cancer. I was 26 and had been working part time, not earning much and wondering if I should go back to school and get a masters. Then Jeff got sick and suddenly, I realized that whatever came next, I need to WORK. So I sat down and thought about what I could do and the thing that stood out was — I could write. As soon as I could hold a pencil, I started writing stories. Words were easy for me. I though “Well, I guess I should be a writer.”

      The best part of the 1960s was how available jobs were. It was so much easier then than it is now. Live people answered the phone. Life people looked at your resume. Human beings could hire you because they LIKED you — imagine that! Mind you I was a very good writer even from the very beginning, but getting a foot in the door was a whole lot less complicated then than now.

      I don’t know how we’ll survive winter. It gets COLD here and stays cold for a long time. We have an oil-burner/boiler — new — which used to be a savings over electric, but now, there’s no savings no matter what you have. At least the boiler is new and uses very little oil. The old one was 32 years old and it gulped oil like beer on a summer’s day.

      I enjoy these posts. Thank you for taking the time to post and respond!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Life was never easy, but certain things were much easier, as you say. I used to have a career as a headhunter and recruiter, both as an indie and a corporate. While interviewing was stricter, the whole process was less political, less hassling and more focused on actual people.

        In the years that l have observed from the 80s to the 00s and for you, before then, plus the ’60s and 70s, the employment system has become more focused on nonsense.

        We used to be people speaking with people, but now employers have become robots talking to people. Now we no longer have just one set being looked at, but they expect us to be social but not have a social life, and if their employees do have social lives, they expect the employee to share their media with them. Why? So employers can snoop on their employees. Hardly trust-building.

        There used to be jobs available for all walks of life, and to the degree that is still ‘there’, at the same time, it simply isn’t. It is easy to get a job if you are d, n and x first, yet the basic skills of a, b and c are now viewed last and, at times, unimportant.

        It’s a frightening world in which we live where sadly, as much as people are wanted to fill positions, employers seemingly only wish to employ unthinking rock slabs. They no longer even truly want individuals who think for themselves, a trendy attribute in the years before.

        Yes, this coming winter is going to be hard for a lot of folks.


  2. 👌👌👌✍️I’ll admit that I’m starting to dread energy bills. We have everything for electricity. So when I cook, I try to use the pressure cooker and the microwave as much as possible. I told my wife that my clothes don’t need to be ironed (but she doesn’t even want to hear about it), I lowered the temperature on the boiler by 10°C. If my wife wants to watch something other than me, I start a TV program on the tablet and put on headphones. I no longer leave the PC running all day, not even in sleep mode. I only release it for publishing posts on my site….


    • We’ve gotten it down to at under $200 — when the A/C isn’t running. It was such a terribly hot summer, there was no surviving it without cooling and the bills were nuts. They’ve raised prices here by 64% across the board, so if it was expensive before, it’s insane now.


      • Despite the fact that I have reduced consumption by 2/3, I will pay about three times more than before. In our area, there is a heating season for 10 months of the year.


        • For us, heating is about 5 to 8 months, depending on the year. This years, it turned cold earlier. I would have liked to leave the boiler off until November. ALMOST made it. But the cost of fuel (oil) is also REALLY high. If you live in a multi-season region, you lose no matter how hard you try. Our electric bills are double what they were and we are using LESS electricity.


  3. You choose the best suited profession for yourself



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