About Me

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Recent retiree--35 year's experience teaching reading, English, adult basic education and volunteer leadership skills. Started this blog to exchange ideas and commentary with friends and others having an interest in joining the discussions. Greatest life accomplishments include: 1.organized my 3rd grade class to check out library books for me to get around librarian's weekly limit--Amazon.com, the Mullins Elementary 3rd Grade Class of 1956 is still waiting for "thank you" notes; 2. volunteered in the Peace Corps, island of St. Kitts, West Indies; 3.taught adults to read, earn their GEDs., and speak English as a second language; 4. bought a border collie puppy for $6, got evicted rather than give him up, and began a life-long love affair with all things "Dog"; 5. joined a physical fitness boot camp in my mid-50s--don't mess with someone who's been doing regulation pushups in wet grass at 5:30 a.m.; 6. walked across Northern England with best friend Sally--over 80 miles from the Irish to North Seas; and 7. travelled to many foreign countries for pleasure and work.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Fun Monday - I Am Annoyed

Our Fun Monday host for December, Jill over at Life is Not Bubble Wrapped , gives us a chance to vent this week with her assignment for Dec. 13th. She asks us to post our biggest gripe of the year--anything goes. When I read Jill's assignment I immediately thought of my favorite fictional and film character of this year, Lisbeth Salander from Swedish writer Stieg Larsson's Girl with the Dragon Tattoo trilogy. Lisbeth Salander is this bizarre, goth-looking, anti-social young woman who is also a brilliant researcher and computer hacker. She was the victim of abuse by her father as a child and social services whose job it was to protect her while growing up. As an adult she is attacked from many fronts, accused of crimes she didn't commit, and forced to defend herself against powerful people in government.

Her weapons of choice include a taser gun, tattoo needle to brand her rapist, golf club, kick boxing and most importantly, a cool analytical mind. She does not gripe, pity herself or expect someone else to solve her problems. She defeats her enemies with the truth.

One of my favorite scenes in the third book of the trilogy, Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest, was when she showed up for her trial for attempting to murder her father, in this t-shirt that proclaimed: "I AM ANNOYED". I would love to own a t-shirt with this slogan. Lis doesn't gripe about her horrible life. She just say "I am annoyed and you better watch out!"

Now about my biggest gripe of the year. I actually don't feel totally right in even bringing it up when I think of the predicament many people are in about this very issue, but it is what it is. In a nutshell I am annoyed because of a big jump in my health insurance premiums. Here's the deal. When I retired I had been with my company long enough for them to continue paying half of my monthly health insurance premiums. I felt very fortunate to have the excellent coverage provided by our company plan. In November I turned 65 so had to go on Medicare. I expected that my company premiums would go down because of being eligible for Medicare. Not so. My Anthem plan became my supplemental coverage, but the premiums won't go down. In fact, it will increase $30-40 monthly. On top of that, a healthy chunk of my monthly Social Security check is now going for Medicare.

So that's my major gripe of the year. When I think about what my health insurance costs and that it's coming from three different sources--my former employer, me and the government--it just boggles my mind at the mess our health care is in in this country. I'm grateful to be covered, but am wondering: how can I get the same excellent coverage as our esteemed members of Congress--at what they're paying?

(Image credit for "I Am Annoyed" icon: Community Live Journal blog)


Pamela said...

we all hear ya

Debs said...

That sounds like a very fair gripe to me.

Over here (UK) we have the NHS and people are always complaining about it. They're understaffed and pushed to the limits and do make mistakes, but it seems like an excellent system when you think that it's free to everyone, unlike the system you have over in the US.

laurie said...

that's a reasonable gripe. but i have two smaller, more selfish, seasonal gripes:

summer: people who walk on the bike path.

winter: people who don't shovel their walks.

i should become a hermit.

Jill said...

Thanks for playing along, Faye. Hopefully more people link up as the day increases. I know I waited a long time to post. I get where you are coming from. My own post is kind of like 'really?' but still, if it's your gripe, it's yours right? My dad retires on Friday. He will go on medicare. He is supposed to get some coverage from work, I hope their premiums dont go up. they just finished working on their house and have that to pay off, they dont need high health bills, too.

Sayre said...

I hear that from almost all the over-65 members of my family! There's got to be a better way of dealing with it than charging people who are now on fixed incomes even MORE!

My post isn't up yet, but will be this afternoon. I went out of town yesterday and didn't get a chance to post. And of course this morning I've got actual work to catch up on!

Jan n Jer said...

I hear you on the health insurance issues Faye...dont even get me started!!! Mine went up so much I had to go over to a very high deductible in order to keep it. I am hoping that when I go on medicare my supplement will be much lower...we will see!!! Clearly something needs to change here in the USA!!! Yep, I would love to be on the same plan that our Leaders are on, I'm sure its an excellant plan an they dont have to worry like us regular people do!

The Church Lady said...

The whole health care issue is a big mess. I fear it will only get worse. I hear my mom's griping all the time about it. I am lucky (right now) that my hubs has good insurance through his company.

joangee said...

Just watched a TV programme this morning which showed 'rip-off' Britain and the way insurance companies raise contributions but fail to honour their obligations.
As for our decrepit NHS (sigh) so much money's wasted and side-tracked away from front-line services! I could write a long rant... lol
The idea of an 'I Am Annoyed' tee shirt appeals to me too.

Gattina said...

I don't understand your health care system either. Here we are all covered. A certain amount depending on you gross salary is taken off with the taxes you pay and that's it. Some companies pay a complementary health insurance which covers more, but of course when you leave the company it stops, or you have to pay it from your pocket. That's up to you. Apart from the legal one, we have a complementary insurance for a private room in hospital.