sending collectors after lunch money in the richest country on earth

deep breath…

Cranston Rhode Island has announced that they have hired a collection agency to go after families of students with unpaid lunches over 20$.  According to the Cranston School District page one week of lunches costs 16.25 for middle and high school and 12.50 for elementary school. So we aren’t even talking about two weeks worth of lunches.

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screenshot from the Cranston public school page…  one child at a time — as long as they’re not hungry?

from the article:

The current unpaid balance is $45,859.

Votto says the school district has tried to collect unpaid balances in the past without much success. He says the lunch program cannot continue to lose revenue.

Votto says the collection agency will send a letter to parents who owe $20 or more and who haven’t paid their balance within 60 days.

In this article from CBS Boston which reported on the hiring it is mentioned that: “Students who owe money will receive the same lunches paying students receive.”

but that doesn’t fit with the policy from the Cranston Public Schools unpaid lunch page:

4.     Once a student has charged five (5) meals (middle\high school $16.25 & elementary $12.50) and no payment has been received, that student will receive a lunch consisting of a sunny butter sandwich, fruit, and milk in place of a hot lunch. This meal maintains the USDA standards surrounding reimbursable meals and will be charged at full price to the student’s account.

am I reading this correctly where the kid who has the lunch debt gets the prison lunch which still costs the same as the regular lunch? because THAT IS BULLSHIT.

and speaking of prison lunches, those are free, paid for with your tax dollars, so if we can pay prison lunches (which we should, and the prison thing is a whole other conversation for another day) we should sure as hell be paying for our children to eat some damn lunch.

Transworld Systems is the company that has been hired to do the collecting.

I HATE the idea of a gofundme to get this paid off, I think crowdsourcing government services which should ALREADY BE FRICKING PAID FOR is crap. But I’m not sure what the alternative is.

I don’t have a solution or a plan, I just have this rant, and some time on my hands and smart friends, so… I like our chances.

 


 

also – I looked – there is already a gofundme set up with a goal of 10,000$.


 

xoxo

 

sunday morning coming down

as I start this it is 8:19 AM. I’ve put my sheets into the wash because I found a giant dead wood beetle UNDER WHERE I WAS SLEEPING this morning. (sunday is bedding day anyways but I was hoping to put it off while I watched some netflix and wrote this post, but no, I’m a beetle murder in my sleep so new plan…) it is raining so I have some hope that it will stay bleak enough to facilitate day-watching of Haunting of Hill House while I clean in anticipation of the housekeeper.

before ALL of that, before I’d ever gotten out of bed, while the beetle was still in pieces beneath me (AAAAAAAH) I had already read three things:

  1. a text from my mother asking why my daughters “dumped (her)” – they left a group chat that she put them in with my sister, nephew, uncle and myself. They didn’t ask to be put there but she was spending 2 weeks in Disney when she did it so I think they thought it was a way to share her Disney experiences, which, you know, we are ALL about. Yesterday out of the blue she sent us this text: “M is reading a book about Trump and he has a weekly Bible study at the White House. Soooo perfect! I can trust anyone who wants to serve God!!! You can too.”  — OF COURSE I FUCKING RESPONDED!  I have avoided having this conversation with her for two years, I never wanted to have it. But now it’s out there, and so I had to ask the question that burns in my throat whenever a “Christian” talks about their president.texttomom


  2. the first thing on my Facebook feed this morning – super appropriate to thing 1 on today’s list. This piece about Religious Trauma Syndrome which explains my life from 7 when I was praying I would be a martyr because I knew I was already an undeserving sinner and there didn’t seem like ANY other way into heaven.  Until the day my youngest daughter asked me about this statue at Epcot (everything happens at Disney) in the Germany pavilion where St. George is slaying a dragon. I said “that’s Saint George, he’s killing a drago….” and that was it. I wasn’t taught that that dragon was a metaphor, I was taught it was an ACTUAL DRAGON. And I believed it. So my 20s were especially fraught as I tried to figure out who I was and what I believed and where, as a loud, smart, independent but married, woman, and mother, my place in the world could be.  So that was the second thing I read today.



  3. the third thing I read today is about beer. (<<<read that, it’s very interesting, a little frustrating, but good)  and also ‘men’s rights activists’ because if there’s anything men in this country are lacking, it is equality. amirite. I’m not a giant beer drinker – I like red ales and Kolsch and lagers and pilsners. though plenty of guys have told me that Kolsch isn’t actually beer, that real beer tastes like carbonated stomach bile – like the acid you use to strip your car battery. No thank you. not for me. but some people are into IPAs and porters and stouts and that’s cool, more power to you sister. So in LA, Ting Su, cofounder of Eagle Rock Brewery started a Women’s Only Beer Forum, to help the ladies explore their beer love. Like a wine class, which apparently we can have endless numbers of, but for beer. which is obviously only for the mens.  Anyways, Ting Su started this super-sexist-against-poor-men-who-don’t-get-to-do-anything group and got sued, by a professional plaintiff, and now she’s defending herself. And there’s a Go Fund Me.

    I want to go there and drink these! talk about GREAT packaging design. Also the word Manifesto is something I hold near and dear going way back to the early days of the Patriot Act. But there’s a conversation to be had here about beer, and equality and safe spaces and douchebros who can’t even pay for sex.

Which brings us back to Trump. (kidding) it brings me to 10:15 AM and I need to put my sheets in the dryer.

 

Prost, xoxo

angry feminist rant Tuesday.

 

 

underhiseye
this great piece is by Val & Mani Art and can be found here.
I’m going to feminist rant all up in this bench. (I’ve been re-watching The Good Place)
only a forking douchebro gets into a fight after a reggae show because he’s too drunk. but by all means, let’s put that forking douchebro on the highest court in the land. I KNEW THESE GUYS IN COLLEGE. these were the guys who 1. didn’t smoke pot because it was illegal but got blacked out drunk and got into their cars. 2. they got kicked out of school for selling roofies. but school would let them back for a big enough donation! 3. they’d ask you on a date, get PLASTERED and would refuse to drive you home, you’d spend the night on their nastyash sofa and then they’d tell everyone that they’d slept with you. 4. They’d cryyyyyy as soon as you told them no, CRY. “I just needed someone to hold me, I’m so sad, I miss my girlfriend from Niagara Falls”. bench, call your mother. 5. These ashholes picked and chose their sins with impunity. Premarital sex? heck yes. Wear a condom? no, contraception is a sin. Fork off.
I’m SO ANGRY. I’m so angry that we’re still talking about this. that every single other man hasn’t said NO WAIT, THIS IS WRONG, FIND ANOTHER JUDGE. instead they’re on forking camera talking about “ramming this thing through” ARE YOU MOTHERFORKING KIDDING ME?!
While the church child abuse scandal is reopening in the public eye, rightfully infuriating Catholics nationwide we’re REALLY going to let this happen?
***Ladies. you gotta vote. you gotta get evangelical about voting. “have you accepted freedom and democracy as your personal life and savior?” because if so you gotta vote. vote. vote.
and don’t TALK to me about Roe v Wade. I’d love the number of medically unnecessary abortions to be zero, but not because of legislation! the best way to do that isn’t to start restricting abortion, it’s to start educating! it is to teach consent, and contraception. “ramming this through” so that you can finally win some moral victory about overturning Roe… you have no idea what you’re really asking for. Stop it. Be better. Vote better.
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I bought myself this shirt this weekend. (plus 2 others, one of which was inspired by The Handmaid’s Tale, and another that says Black Lives Matter more than White Feelings, Check your Privilege.) Their entire shop is amazing, it is female owned and operated and the women running the company and designing the shirts are 16 & 18!  Plus with every purchase they’re donating breakfast to the food insecure. I love this generation. We don’t deserve them.
xoxo
ps. I just this second bought this shirt also… it was too good not to.  You should get one too. we can be twinsies.
useyourvoice

No Favorites Thursday

Dr. Christine Blasey Ford has been testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee today, I’m furious that in our names she is being put through this pain rather than just — oh I don’t know- finding a less problematic but still qualified nominee who doesn’t behave like he’s entitled to this goddamn job. and with this level of entitlement – think maybe he was a shitty entitled teenager too? because I do.

 

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so fricking cute, and I’ll wear a body-con but sometimes the week before you get your period you just need an empire waist. bonus points for making my pretty great boobs look even pretty greater.

I did shop the shit out of my feelings today – Torrid has a 40% off sale going for Platinum holders (people like me who shop the shit out of their feelings).  I bought three Emma blouses – I’m wearing one right now and I love it, I feel cute, I get compliments when I wear it and a thing I love about Torrid is that they make the same thing in different prints for women like me.  Also they are offering 4% back through Ebates today. Interestingly since I started writing about shopping I really slowed down my shopping… but sign up for Ebates. Since I signed up I’ve gotten checks totaling 1073.38. (Neiman Marcus offers 10% cash back almost all the time.)

So 300 dollars at Torrid later… I don’t feel better about things.

 

I think I need ice cream.

hotfudgesundae
Lunch! eating my rage.

 

also I just bought this. from here.

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xoxo

Packing for Imaginary Vacations. (when I have an actual vacation to pack for)

Y’all. on the 9th I had to have a tooth extracted and then this weekend I cracked a tooth on the OTHER side of my mouth – on an egg salad sandwich. So it was the tooth’s time to go I guess. So, I’m still not really eating anything delicious. But! Today someone brought a bag of fun sized candy bars to the office and there are Three Musketeers bars- which are definitely my speed right now.

So I ordered three boxes of chocolates from See’s.  And technically I bought extra to share but I might keep all three for myself because the world is shitty right now and I’m a sucker for a berry creme chocolate. And chocolate in general. And pretty much anything I can eat without worrying that I’m going to stab myself in the gums or break another tooth. (my teeth aren’t all this fragile, just those two.)

I have no regrets,  #becausechocolate

I got an email today with this dress in it. I’m not buying it because like I said – dental work – and also I’m currently pretending that I’m going to Egypt for 17 days in January/February. THOUGH. if I were going to Egypt this dress seems like it could be amazing with a giant hat to wear onboard the Sonesta Star Goddess as we travel up the Nile. Oh… I’m definitely putting together a fake packing list Pinterest board for my fake adventure through Egypt.  hang on…

ok. done.

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the dress:

handpainted dress
perfect, right? I especially love the styling with the shoes.

Anyways, like I said- I’m going on actual vacation on Saturday. I’m going to Disneyland! Don’t roll your eyes at me, I know I was in Disney World last month but this is different. I’ve never been to Disneyland! And everyone is going – Dave, the girls, my sister and her husband and my nephew, and the girls are each bringing a friend… it is a Disney field trip of the highest order. AND. we are doing a VIP tour because it stresses me out to be responsible for other people’s vacations – so to make sure we cover everything… getting a plaid. Wicked excited.

disneylandcur

I’ve been making the same list over and over this week – tweaking it a little each time. But yesterday morning it occurred to me that I’m bringing a big-ass-suitcase because I’m NOT stressing out about fitting my outfits and shoes into a little suitcase to prove that I can. That’s not fun at all.

How do I pack for Disneyland? Is it weird that I’m looking at strangers’ Instas to see what people are wearing in their photos?

AND THEN…

news breaks that Justice Kennedy is retiring and there goes all of my travel excitement and actual anxiety hits and none of this fun silly stuff matters.

 

I picked the wrong administration to start a blog about shopping.

action-alert

Call your senators. 

xoxo

 

 

Three Favorites Thursday. v3.

This week has not been conducive to lighthearted blog posts. I’ve started a few but every one of them turned into a screed. A justified and completely logical screed but still… so so angry.

So today among my favorite things are the people who will stand between this administration and the people they mean to harm, the people who are speaking up and out, and the helpers, also teenagers for setting a good example of self appreciation.

 

 

one

RAICES Texas and their Bond Fund.

raicesbondfund
Donate to the fund HERE.

What is RAICES?

“The Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services is a nonprofit organization that provides free and low-cost legal services to immigrant children, families and refugees in Central and South Texas.”

They are on the front line of getting these families reunited and with the summer refugee immigration surge just beginning they are needed now more than ever.

 

 

two2

Empathy, Activism, Protest.

Everyone is exhausted. Everyone thought that they couldn’t possibly maintain this level of outrage for going on 2 years now. And yet here we are. Marching, protesting, emailing our representatives so often that I just automatically recycle the response letters I get now. So many donations, so many emails from so many activist groups… it helps me feel like we aren’t alone, like these daily atrocities are not going unnoticed, unaccounted for.

I’m also a person who keeps rolls of stamps now because books just don’t cover it anymore. Because sometimes you can’t make a phone call, and a post-card sends the perfect little message.

Luckily I know a lot of creative women who have designed their own cards – like these:

postcards
Polkadot Paper Company post cards can be purchased from her Etsy store.

and these!

postcard2
These are new and I am EXCITED. Get yours from Fisk & Fern here. (profits go to the ACLU!) 

 

threethree

Finally –  National Selfie Day.

Girls are constantly being mocked for taking selfies, for sharing pictures of themselves, for LIKING pictures of themselves. How messed up is that?!  Now that our national embarrassment is an actual narcissist in the White House can we stop calling teenaged girls narcissists for taking selfies?

I get that women and girls are supposed to BE pretty but not KNOW we’re pretty, it makes us easier to belittle and control that way- but where’s the fun in that for us?

If you’re feeling your look, take a damn selfie, post it. Turns out not hating how you look is rebellious and incredibly political.

Why yes, I am about to post a bevy of selfies… (two with Manic Trout necklaces, two in Disney, one also with my new amazing Weighted Blanket which we can talk about later.)

 

Send a post card, be heard, post a selfie, be seen.

xoxo