Radiogurl a la Carte

Saturday, Jul. 17, 2004

Oops. How did it get to be nearly 3am? I only just finished reading through the diaries on my buddy list! I am so behind...

Finally managed to sleep Thursday night - so I'm guessing that's what screwed me up tonight. Figgers. I haven't put the sofa on layaway yet. From the looks of things, it will have to wait. I paid what needed to be paid and now I'm broke. But hopefully with lower utility bills next month it'll let me put a little more money back over the next few weeks.

I'm still waiting to hear about the car - I don't even know yet if it's fixable or not. It's 14 years old with 130K miles. If I could afford new I wouldn't even consider fixing it. Then again, if it costs as much as a new car to fix it, I guess I don't have a lot of choices left to me, do I?

I bought groceries this time out, which was not an inexpensive undertaking. I was out of absolutely everything. I still need to pick up some Splenda and hopefully some low carb hot cereal. Most of the low carb cereal is inedible unless you take your sugar rush straight. I don't care what form of sweetening it is, it's TOO SWEET. But there is one kind - and ONLY one kind, far as I can tell - of hot cereal that's really yummy, and breaks the relative monotony of the diet. Trouble is, it's only available about once every other month when I'm at the grocery store. I assume it's because EVERYONE stocks up when they get a delivery.

Yes, I am still doing Atkins. I am not losing much at the moment, between the stress and the binge eating. I'm cheating with low-carb munchies but if you eat enough of those, they'll still counteract what you're doing elsewise. It was mainly because I had nothing left right before this pay period so I scarfed down whatever I could find and figured tough noogies if it wasn't diet-friendly.

Now that my fridge is appropriately stocked I do intend to return to it. Truth be told I just FEEL better when I'm eating what I'm supposed to. A certain amount of it is probably psychological but I discover that now when I crave something, it's typically a salad rather than chocolate.

I emailed my sister and let her know I'm not dead. Pointed out that since I am functionally without transportation until further notice, she could come up here to visit. Not holding my breath. For some reason, mathematical principles don't apply when it comes to family visiting me vs. me visiting them. I.e., it is further for her to drive here than for me to drive there.

On a side note, we were barraged with phone calls and emails about a local judge this week and last. Virtually every one asked about or claimed that the judge had been arrested north of here for DUI or drugs or drug trafficking. Variations on a theme. We get inquiries about things like that all the time, but it's unusual to get THAT many in such a short space, all saying more or less the same thing.

There's been a longstanding rumor that this judge was in court for drugs eons ago, in another city. Well, guess what. The judge was in drug court, sure enough.

It's part of his job. He was the presiding judge at drug court.

Still, I wasn't prepared to arbitrarily dismiss it when I had so many people inquiring, so I phoned the judge, told him, "Look, we're getting hit with this right and left. I'm getting people telling me that this happened and it's being covered up." He naturally said it was a line of hooey and explained the above anecdote about drug court, said he mentioned drug court during a public meeting and the rumor factory started churning things out from there.

I have been around drug addicts and drunks. I have never seen anything from this man suggesting any of the above habits, but it's my job as a reporter to say, "Hey, is there any validity to this crap?"

Now mind you, I didn't call him until I'd already done my homework. I'd already spoken to all four police agencies that operate in the area of his supposed arrest. Three of the four said, "Not on our watch." The fourth has a two-week window to get reports in from their officers, so while ostensibly something could still be hanging out there, it's pretty darned unlikely unless it is being covered up. I really don't think so but with all the ongoing stuff, I figured it might actually help stall the rumor mill if an impartial reporter says for the record, "Look, I did my homework. It's bullpucky."

The judge is not well liked by a lot of people in the community, because like it or not, this is a drug-centric area. I think he's simply doing his job. There are other personal details that I know that I won't divulge here out of respect for his privacy, additional things that make it extremely hard to buy into the drug/DUI story. And no, we are not personal friends. I have met and spoken to him but that's the extent of my dealings with him.

Point being, I was trying to set the record straight, reported more or less, "Look, I know what people are emailing and calling about, and t'aint so."

So I got in to work today and received a snail-mail letter demanding copies of the respective emails. Hel-lo?? Even if you ignore the issue of journalistic privilege and protecting your source, I didn't keep the emails. It's kind of ironic - if it had in fact been only one, I probably would have, but because there were so many and they were repetitive, I figured there was no point.

I was frankly amazed that a judge would ask for that information, even in an unofficial capacity. (Unless he were a federal judge, in which things like civil rights and the constitution are nearly meaningless. But that's another diary entry.) I consider it an invasion and stepping over the line. What do I do, tell people never to email me news tips? Or delete them as soon as I get them, making sure not to keep their information?

Obviously in this case it's irrelevant because I already had deleted the mail, but it still irks me to no end.

Before - After

In the grander scheme of things, no soul can truly be replaced. Each one of us has a place in the universal tapestry. We each contribute our own color and texture. When one thread is snipped too soon, it distorts all the threads around it. Other lives can unravel and tear. If the wrong thread is ripped away, the whole fabric of life becomes dangerously fragile.
- LeiLani, aka Radiogurl aka Bright Opal (1957 - )