As a long time atheist and free-thinker I am constantly reading about others who have had the temerity to stand up for what they DON'T believe in.  One of the names that keep coming up is that of Robert G. Ingersoll.  The website that carries his name is informative, but I wonder: Does anybody out here in our community know of any documentary or film that focuses on his activism and speeches?  How come it has taken so long for me to hear of him. (Freethinkers; Susan Jacobson (I think))?

His website describes him as the "Most famous American that nobody has heard of."

I would like to know more; anybody got clues for me.

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I'm in the same situation, and when the Gas co. sucks their monthly fee out of my bank account, I'm going to be overdrawn.  Again.

I wonder if writing to my congressritter will help me find a social worker, and get some Disability added to my Social InSecurity.  (HAH!)  Two cats and a sister who has never been on anybody's payroll (Autistic/Asperger's) are getting on my nerves.

She gets $800 a month "disability" SSI....I did turn over the pool service bill, the TV cable bill (because I use neither) to her.  And lately she's been buying most of the food....because she eats 3 times as much as I do. And blows whatever she has left over on Avon. I think the Avon Lady is the only friend she has....

She is NOT sane, but she's a JeeHoover's Witless, so I can't get a specific diagnosis on  her, or even make her go for therapy.  Asperger's MUST be diagnosed and treated in early childhood anyway, and it's 70 years too late for that.

I pay ALL the other utilities, household maintenance, and I'm still paying off a debt from '09....I put the my hospital (back surgery) co-pay on my Mastercard, and a month or so after that I had to hospitalize a cat, and have her euthanized 3 days later. (Terminal kidney failure)  It was the vet bill that maxed out my card.  I will be done with that in 3 or 4 months, and then I suppose something else will break around here.

When I was still able to work, I did support her.....after Mother died in '93.

I can't talk to her about anything serious, or financial.  She will say I'm being bossy" and pitch a roaring fit.  If she feels like breaking something, her first target will be this computer.

She buys Avon soaps, lotions, candles, and collects the perfume bottles...uses the perfume, too, judging from the levels in the bottles.  And she has always loved nail polish, even though she doesn't grow exceptionally long nails.

I think whatever brain damage causes Asperger's has made her a confused JW....she was glued to the TV when Cosmos #2 was on, and had nothing to say about Neil DeGrasse Tyson's comments about origins and science.  I was employed by KCET when Carl Sagan's "Cosmos" was in production; I was SO excited, and she ignored it completely.

When I had my back surgery, I was SO tempted one night to call her and tell her that I was having 2 units of whole blood with my dinner. But I enjoy shaking people up.

There is nothing you can do in a real sense with somebody on a pension and also suffering from mental problems. They simply will not listen to you and spend money like water. I know people on SS that are paid on the 3rd of the month and flat broke less than 2 weeks later. Some of them apparently have no mental problems but are just ignorant.

All of 2014 I have lived on less than $1200 a month and I do it well by giving myself a weekly paycheck. Some people can't figure that out. I am used to being paid weekly (very weakly) so I still am today. Some people think I am a "magic man." Others think I am lying and that I really do have money. If that was so I would not have started working 3 days a week again recently. You just have to know how to handle money.

I used to know how to handle money, but when I was working, I didn't get paid as much as the men in the office got, ao I paid less into FICA, and am getting $1050 a month (this year)....the "cost of living raise" for 2015 is something like 1%, even though prices for food, utilities, and meds have gone up 10% or more. I get "Lifeline" rates for my phone and gas bills, but they aren't that much lower than what others get.

Our gardener is a doll...he only comes every 2 weeks to mow the crabgrass and put the dead leaves in the trash for us, and has not raised his fees in 10 years.

Our three closest neighbors have moved away....some living with their adult children....because they could not get an acceptable price for their homes, and this is an exceptionally GOOD middle-class neighborhood.

If I ever meet anyone who worked for Dubya and Cheney, I'm gonna punch his or her lights out. Even if it breaks my hands.

One thing you may try, sk8eycat, is state programs that might pick up the slack because of your lack of money. They might be in your county seat area not far from your court house. If you are having problems Google that idea locally and see what you can come up with. Around here some of them even help you with food.

There is a local office called BTAC, Burbank Temporary Aid Center, where I am allowed to get free food once a month....and a voucher for part of my utility bills once a year.  And free (white) bread whenever.  IF I can get somebody to drive me there and back.  Almost everyone I used to know in town has either moved out of state or died.....

There is a senior/disabled bus service that costs very little, but I need to use a walker, and I can't do that AND drag my little shopping cart at the same time.  I need someone to go with me....and I'm reluctant to ask the same 2 or 3 people to drive me, or ride with me every single time.  Maybe when Sue is recovered from her hip surgery in another month or so.

It's partly my own fault.  BUT I'm hoping to get caught up once the Mastercard debt is finally paid off. 

Grace's "church" doesn't do Jack Schidt for her.....her Avon Lady is another JW, and the poor woman is working 3 jobs now....doesn't even have time to take Grace to their "buybull study" meetings, and she sometimes won't come in the house if I have a Harry Potter (or some other Fantasy) book or videotape in sight...

I need to find a social worker who can tell me where to go and when....and my congressman does have an office here in Burbank.  I think I'll start with him.  Tomorrow.

The "County Seat" is spread all over Los Angeles; it isn't in one place.  Most of SoCal is City of Los Angeles; it's been that way since the "Water Wars" of the erly 20th Century.  Burbank is one of the very few independent cities in the area.  (Glendale is next door, but I went to the welfare office there years ago, and the social worker was very apologetic, but whispered to me that I was born in the "wrong country.")

Bertold, your genius is showing again.

You gave us a topic that all but screams for a discussion of its own: a just god would have told us of the the DNA, skills, abilities, et cetera of the couple who who become our parents and then asked if we want to go ahead.

Mark.Twain said he was quite happy for billions of years before he was born, and some of us might say the same.

...(Minutes later, after I'd written about the fits and misfits between my parents and me. I moved them to Notepad, perhaps for use in a mini-memoir.)

Inevitably in such a discussion, we will feel and want to express a variety of emotions: anger, guilt (religion's "gift" to humankind), understanding (given time to acquire the necessary information), appreciation, and more.

Challenges will include the following:

1) writing I-statements, not exclusively they-statements,

2) describing feelings ("I feel....") not thoughts ("I feel that...."),

I'll give it a try. Look for it in the Water Cooler. For a title, I'll use some of Mark Twain's above words. The discussion will either live or die. I'm okay with that.

First, though, lunch.

I hope I'm up to it.

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