That all crucial three dollar check

So, disabled people in theory get to ride public transport at a discount rate in San Francisco and in fact in the entire Bay Area. To get my disabled rate card for the bus I had to bring my accessible parking placard to an office in Downtown SF and pay some nominal fee for a card. This proves I’m disabled I guess. Most transit cards, you can just buy at a Walgreens or in the train station.

That errand took nearly a whole day for me to take the bus, wait around in this office, get sent to the DMV for some reason I couldn’t fathom, spend hours at the DMV, get back on my 4th bus of the day to the Regional Transit Center office on Van Ness. Pay my 5 bucks or whatever it was and be done. I got a plastic card with my photo & an RFID chip. But this is already bullshit. How much proving I’m disabled do I have to do here for this petty benefit? Can’t DMV make it known upon request that yes, in their eyes, I’m still disabled?

Once I had the card – maybe a month later — I could get online to refill the card and even set it up to refill automatically once a month. That part was nice.

In July, I got a badly xeroxed form with a handwritten note saying I needed to check a box to say I was still disabled, and write in the number of my parking placard. I also had to enclose a check for $3.00. Ridiculous!

So I sent this form in a couple of weeks ago. Today my bus pass suddenly didn’t work.

I called the Clipper card people who told me to call RTC which is run out of some company called Cordoba. They said they were getting tons of phone calls, because many people hadn’t gotten their renewals yet.

The phone call with RTC was just frustrating. They acted like they were angry with me and were very condescending. “Well, did you SEND IT? Did you send it to (po box and address.) How do I know? I sent it to the address it said. “Well did you enclose a check for $3.00? If you put cash in, that doesn’t work.” Yeah I’ll bet it doesn’t. They haven’t gotten my renewal letter, and didn’t have any suggestion about what to do other than wait.

The whole process is so silly and inefficient. They need to recognize that lots of people aren’t going to become magically un-disabled, and save themselves a lot of petty paperwork. I wonder what actually happens to that piece of paper I got mailed? No one needs that damn piece of paper! And I don’t think they need any yearly check for 3 dollars either, isn’t that what we pay taxes for?! Really you are gonna hassle every single cripple in the Bay Area every July for a check for $3.00?

I bet that has bad results especially for all the people I see downtown who might not have their shit together to the degree I do. I doubt the intended service manages to serve this population well.

/end rant.

Weird pseudo-date school fundraisers

I’m kind of a jerk about school fundraiser events and in fact it is an area you might call me un-civic-minded. The girl scout cookie thing, the wrapping paper, the cookie dough, the auctions… God I hate the idea of the auctions, I’m sorry.


What the hell people. Just pay your taxes! And go vote for higher school taxes if that’s what it takes, and if you’ve got a wad of money extra then give it to the district so they can spread it out fairly, or donate it to the Teachers’ Union to help the teachers get some decent pay. Instead of dicking around endlessly organizing your Box Tops and your toy drives. It drives me crazy… Go get a job. Instead by volunteering you are enabling a classist system that means schools that serve wealthy populations get decent funding, and schools where there aren’t a bunch of housewife-role-filling parents don’t. Plus, women pressured to systematically disempower themselves by doing unpaid political and fundraising work. That is bogus! I respect organizations like the PTA, and the women who do the difficult politics of them, and YET… again… how about making those jobs into REAL PAID JOBS. You’re doing work, ladies. Demand a paycheck for it. What are you teaching your sons and daughters in this meta message? That you… that mothers… that women’s work is invisible and unworthy of being considered “real” work.

Chew on that during your next Auction.

And now to the substance of my rant. Ever since I heard of Father-Daughter Dances, which was mercifully only a few years ago, I’ve loathed the idea. What a weird thing. And it ended up… or maybe started, I don’t know, in these grotesque and oversexualized Purity Balls. Gross! Why would you at all want to imply that it’s normal for dads to take their daughters on a formal date in a ball gown?

Why do I rant, you ask?

I am asked to participate in a Mother-Son Dodgeball Dance. Oh fine, I’m over-reacting to a cheesy 2 hour long fundraiser and I could pay up the 20 bucks and go to it and sit in the corner glowering in my wheelchair. But no… I won’t.

There are so many things to dislike about this whole deal. For one, the implication that I need some sort of special school event to make me bond with my son. For another the weird violent undertone of the whole thing. For another, my son isn’t a jock and I hate the way this is slanted to make “sportiness” and sports and dodgeball into a male thing, a boy thing, a thing that naturally as a female I wouldn’t normally do but have to be pressured to do.

Here is the flyer:

“Boys… Here’s your chance to ‘Get Mom’ at the thing you do best! Mom… Here’s your chance to show him how you get your head in the game! When you’ve worked that out, get out and shake it! $20 includes admission for 2 with disc jockey, momento photo, sweatband, drinks, and treats! Sneakers required! It’ll be a blast!”


You can see I hate it just from the jolly fakey sporty tone and the bad spelling.

But further how about that “Get Mom” idea? WTF? Sure… because all little elementary school boys like to play “violence towards women” so much that they need special lessons for it?

And how about that “sneakers required”… does that strike anyone else as an implication that Moms wear pointy toed shoes at all times even to “Dodgeball Dances”? Special reminder! Get wild n crazy and kick off those lawyerly pumps!

Though, the real truth is… if it was a World of Warcraft Mother-Son combat night then I would gladly accept the challenge.

I hated dodgeball!!!