I had one of my favorite short bus drivers. Oh, lord, it’s so stinking hot, though. I just got done with an EEG (first acronym) and my driver let me know we had another rider to pick up and drop off before I could get home. NBD (no big deal – second acronym) – this is a ride share, after all, I can’t expect a straight shot when I’m about 17 miles from home. That would be just rude.

So I was talking to the driver about P.O.W.W.O.W. (Produce On Wheels – Without Waste) and M.O.M. (Market On the Move – third and fourth acronyms). Market On the Move basically started out as a less sophisticated organization where lower income folks could line up in the Arizona sun and get some produce for $10. It was usually something like spaghetti squash and tomatoes, maybe some peppers. Now, it’s crazy. And by crazy I mean incredible. It’s not limited to low income households. There are various locations set up around Phoenix and Tucson, and for $10 (or $12, it just depends on the pickup), you can get up to 70 lbs. of fruits and veggies PLUS things like Starbucks coffee, eggs, yogurt, meat, crackers, and just about anything else that comes down the line. It’s incredible. I can’t overstate that. It’s incredible. The intention is to make sure that no food goes to waste. And recipes are shared, and volunteers are organized, and hungry people don’t go hungry. I did see one person who was a total asshole about people still wearing masks, but this is Arizona, and there’s always got to be someone who is a total jerk. So in passing this info to my driver, I’m also passing along info he can pass along to other riders. This is absolutely fresh food, with the exception of a batch of blueberries one time. And that’s okay. Because oh my god, it’s so much food.

The other rider was picked up, and she was talking about how long it took us to get her, and how there’s a driver shortage because everyone is lazy. I spoke up and said consider the fact that employers aren’t paying livable wages. Later she admitted she never worked in her life and she only had income because her husband died and she was receiving his pension. So the irony here is that she has everything in common with people who need a livable wage. She acknowledged that people were getting priced out of their apartments, at least. She knew rent was getting too high, especially for those not getting a livable wage.

But then the other rider said that starting in July, everyone with at least one child was going to get $3,000 for each child. I said hang on, that isn’t correct. She said that’s what she was told by people on the TV. I told her that she should never, ever, ever accept what was just told her. She said the only way she could get info was by TV, because she is now legally blind. Now, I know people who are legally blind and they have apps that read info to them after they find it using their phones or computers. I could tell she was not comfortable with technology. But I’m not comfortable with her not getting correct info or preaching obviously bad and misleading info. So I encouraged her to to not repeat those figures with the extra zeros because they were absolutely fabricated.

The other rider expressed her frustration at shopping and not being able to see, and how much she would like a volunteer to go with her on trips because Walmart and Target didn’t always have someone available. I suggested she call the SHIP office in Phoenix to see if they could connect her with a volunteer organization. She didn’t know of the SHIP office (fifth acronym) and I explained that there was an office in every state, but it depended upon how the state ran it. Phoenix at least would be able to talk to her about Medicare supplement plans and Part D prescription plans, but when I talked to them a few years back, they also had info on volunteer programs. She repeated the acronym a few times and so I hope it stuck with her so she could contact them.

After she was dropped at home, my driver remembered that I had been in the corporate/legal side of real estate for 21 years, and he asked what I thought was coming up for the housing bubble (because, let’s face it, it’s likely). So I gave him some ideas. And he asked me what would be a way to get his foot in the door – or his niece, who just became a realtor. So there’s this very specific thing, and during our conversation we talked about it. But as I was exiting the short bus he asked me about it again. It was another acronym. The sixth acronym. And this is where my brain sucks. My brain totally dropped out. When this happens, it’s like the bottom of a pan drops out, and an entire lake appears. The closest I can explain is the scene where Truman in “The Truman Show” tries to row to the end of the lake and he reaches the edge of the set. It looks like that water in my brain when my brain decides to drop out. I stood at the top of the steps of the short bus to exit and I couldn’t remember the acronym, the acronym I had talked about thousands of times. My driver said it was okay, he thought he might be able to figure it out according to what I told him. (It was nice of him to say that, and maybe, it’s possible. But Jesus, Mary and Joseph, it’s better to have the correct vocabulary. There’s just so many acronyms.)

Now that I’m back home, and I’ve taken my medications, washed a few dishes, removed my sweaty t-shirt, eaten a bowl of my tomato bisque that I made from tomatoes I got from Market On the Move, the last acronym has risen up into my brain like the Hoff running out of the water in his red trunks. But it doesn’t do me any good.

Blueberry Throw Blanket

Watermelon Cards

Floral Brain throw pillow