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Everything posted by Melody

  1. We had to wait a few weeks for my husband and my mom's initial appointments. We signed them up online.
  2. FWIW my husband got his second dose of the Moderna yesterday. Almost 24 hours later and the only reaction is a sore arm. He feels good enough to go to the gym today.
  3. My brother has multiple issues that make him high risk. When he got a positive Covid test, his doctor sent him to the ER of a local hospital for this treatment. He was back at work in a little over a week.
  4. Great news! My husband gets #2 tomorrow. Such a relief.
  5. Ditto. Though most of the lowest cost plans here require auto pay. This is another reason why we have stuck with TXU and pay a little more per KwH. I get why they do it: it mitigates risk to the company. But when you are pinching pennies, you can't afford to have someone else's hands in your wallet uncontrolled.
  6. I haven’t seen figures but get the impression that these wholesale energy plans are not that widespread and that the larger problem has been the cost of increased usage for those with electric heat. When you are budgeted for temps in the fifties and have a week in the teens and single digits, your bill is going to double or more. Also many down here have heat pumps but they don’t work in very cold outdoor temperatures and switch to full electric emergency heat when it is really cold. Ours was a real budget buster in 83-84. We have gas heat now. I expect it will be the gas bill that increases for us, solely because of usage. Right now the primary problems are water related including damage from burst pipes. Homes unlivable, or without water until repairs can be done.
  7. My understanding in the current situation down here is that the indexed plans are a small number of people, though these have had a large impact on those individuals. Most of the complaints are increases due entirely to increased usage. When you budget for a normal winter here but have temperatures fifty degrees below what is normal, it just costs more to heat your home. We have gas heat and fully expect a $150-200 gas bill. About twice what is normal this time of year in our area. But that will be because of the low temperatures and how much gas it took to keep our home warm and not the electric market. That is because of the weather, not the market. Some may need help. The rest need to suck it up like we will.
  8. I used "lazy," in reference to myself. We could stalk the markets hourly and make trades or adjustments to these contracts. (And they are essentially like stock investments.). We consider it too much work and choose the more expensive and stable plans and investments. But I don't expect everyone to be like us. If they can save some money by assuming the risk and doing the work, that isn't my business until they expect me to also assume the risk they voluntarily took upon themselves. In the same way that I don't expect any "profit," they make. It isn't that I don't have some sympathy for those who just didn't understand what they were signing up for; if the sales techniques aren't transparent then go after that.
  9. We do as well, which is why we choose more conservative plans and investments. It may cost us a bit, but it saves us all that work and inherent risk. For most people, these griddy type plans are probably unwise. In the same way that you don't invest your retirement funds into high risk stocks. But there are those who are willing to do the homework and able to accept the risk and I am not convinced that they should be barred from it.
  10. We are too lazy to be that "informed," know that we are, so stuck with a more expensive provider (TXU) and plan. We aren't fans of a bailout except perhaps the victims rather than those who just wagered poorly. Not sure how they would sort that out though.
  11. That was't my mom's experience with co-ops in Granbury over the years. She is so much happier with the utility service in Fort Worth despite its imperfections. And I think anyone signing up for a variable rate anything (whether utility, mortgage, etc.) is taking an enormous risk to save pennies. Much less allowing them unfettered access to your bank accounts. Our ONLY autopay is for our health insurance, but even that is for a specific contract rate. We have to approve it again every year when the rates change.
  12. Lol. It “proves,” that there is a lot of ignorance on social media.
  13. When you are working remotely, what the heck difference does it make where you are phoning in from? Man. I don't particularly like Cruz but this, like all the right wing criticism of Obama over not cancelling vacations during various national and international crises, is just bullcrap. Sick of the concern over optics instead of reality. We are in the twenty first century where they don't have to go horseback to Washington DC to do their jobs. Utter crap, and why I loathe the Red v Blue crowd.
  14. What I do not get is how stupid people are. The city and various entities are having to warn people not to run a generator INSIDE THEIR HOUSE! Two guys died in an apartment doing this. And then there was the dive team that had to go out to a lake up the street from my house this morning to make sure that nobody had fallen through the ice and died because some visitors to the park saw footprints on the frozen surface that went to the middle of the lake but none returning. Last I heard no body found, but various neighbors were posting photos yesterday on Nextdoor of people walking on that lake. Anyway, we are now getting warnings not to walk on the lakes or rivers. Geez.
  15. I was told by a friend who works for one of the electric service companies that (at least at that time, some years ago) ONCOR (the delivery company) was fudging the books because they can legally maximize profit by not doing maintenance and could increase fees without going through the regulatory process to recoup storm damage repair. In essence, it pays to neglect those of us who live in older neighborhood with large trees and overhead lines. The new developments have all buried lines.
  16. Unfortunately, they want an easy fix for a single issue so they can claim they "did something." And will do nothing else. Winters are not typically when we have energy shortages. And winterizing the production equipment doesn't deal with our most pressing needs overall. I don't understand why there are some still without power in my neighborhood. The demand crisis is past, largely due to the weather warming. But ONCOR is still not accepting outage reports when the remaining issues have to be local such as lines down, transformers blown, etc. I'm hoping they are monitoring it via their fancy new meters and sending out crews. For the most part, our winter weather outages have been local. That 2010 snow storm just showed up on my FB memories recently. Pictures of the snowmen in the neighborhood and of the lineman from that Florida outfit that sent workers up. He was repair the damaged pole that we can see from our breakfast room window. That deal was almost all on ONCOR because the damage was caused by limbs down. ONCOR no longer trims trees unless to repair an outage. Before deregulation, we had trimmers every year. We just had short term (rolling) outages in 2011 here. It wasn't too bad that year, at least not here in Funkytown.
  17. Unfortunately, this country is so hyper partisan that it doesn't ultimately matter what is true or fair. Like the wind energy versus fossil fuel argument the two wings are spamming social media with. And mostly posted by people who don't even live here and don't understand how the system works. There were multiple issues all coming together. And IMO, they could have been mitigated by an efficient rolling blackout system. So ONCOR shares some blame along with ERCOT for not managing this well.
  18. That would certainly be prudent. But my point is that Beto wasn't some hero suffering with the people as he is being hailed. His city and life were unaffected and his children were warm and going about normal activities. I was one of those in the dark and cold charging my cell phone in the car and wearing sweats under a bathrobe topped with a parka.
  19. If there is one thing the Beto heads are good at, it is spamming people with robo dialers. Word is he is running for governor next. I can't say if he called us because I don't answer calls from unknown numbers. But we were okay, my mom was okay, and neighbors checked on neighbors on my street. El Paso didn't lose power, by the way. And didn't generally get the same level of freezing for the same duration as much of the rest of the state.
  20. In a matter that is strictly in the state domain, pretty much. There is a U.S. House Rep who lives in my neighborhood. African-American, Democrat. He is somewhat active on Nextdoor. He had to explain this truth to some Trumper idiot who was griping about how he had done nothing about some local matter. I applauded. People just don't seem to understand how government works and who is controls what.
  21. Are you a Texan? LOL. Everybody with the means was getting the heck out of dodge to hotels. I would have, so am not a hypocrite that a holds our representatives to different standards than I hold myself.
  22. What are they going to do? Deliver firewood and shovel our walkways and driveways? Or maybe making guest appearances at various places interfering with the actual work going on. I have no doubt that these stay in touch with their offices by phone no matter where they are. I don't care where they are when accepting phone calls unless it is a bordello or some such. (Honestly that snow shoveling was the worst part of it for me. Dang, how do you live somewhere that it is a regular part of life. This storm was my first experience shoveling snow. )
  23. If we had the means to have a choice between freezing our butts off in a dark house and the Ritz-Carlton in Cancun, hail yes I'd have gone to Cancun. Honestly, the only reasons we didn't get a hotel room were because my mom wanted to stay in her house (we live next door to her), and the roads in my neighborhood were and are still impassible. My husband is on warfarin (a blood thinner) so even a small fender bender is dangerous for him. We bundled up, made coffee on the butane stove and lit the oil lamps. It sucked but we were not in danger and survived it. But I do not at all judge anyone who went to a hotel or anywhere else especially if they have kids. Not like Cruz has been one of the travel scolds. My criticism is that he didn't just own it and say STFU haters and instead tried to manage the optics on something that should not be an issue.. But that's what he does. Its what they all do.
  24. Not just rural. Quite a few people I know in suburbs outside city limits have well water. No electric, no pump hence no water.
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