July 31, 2012

Short skirts and stilleto heels

Minutia and trivia amuse me. When I was younger my brain was filled with facts and figures and entire passages from books and movies. That stuff is still in there, I guess, but I just cannot access the files and folders as readily. This love of useless stuff was piqued last night as the weather reader reported yesterday marked the 27th day in July our high temperature peaked at 90F or higher. I was trying to remember the three days it did not get that hot.

The Man is predicting rain today. I will believe it when it happens.  Lately Mother Nature has acted more like a prick-tease high school girl than the middle aged matron on the margarine commercial.. You remember that PT chick from your randy youth. She goes on a date, gives a few lingering kisses, lets you fondle her boobage through her tight sweater.  The next date she shows a little thigh and leaves you excited, overheated, and wanting more.  The "more" is never delivered. That is the way Mother Nature has been lately.  She darkens the sky with some clouds. Sometimes she brings on the wind and thunder, but never more than a light mist of rain. She teases us with that long soaking we need, but laughs as we get all excited for nothing. Is it ironic that these two women, decades apart, both force us to take frequent cold showers?

On the bright side, I have not had to mow the lawn since late May.

July 30, 2012

Responsibility

I know this couple. They have owned their own small business for decades. They certainly are not rich, but they are not eating ramen noodles for supper either. Any of us would describe their life as decidedly middle class.

They met at the university. They married and moved back to the small town where I live and raised a couple of kids.

In the building next door to their existing business they started another mom and pop. They worked hard, very hard, running both businesses.  They were there six days a week, and vacations were rare. The days were long, but they provided the usual for the kids, dance classes, football, baseball camp, cars, college. One of the business failed.  The other hangs on in these tough times.

Why did one business fail? Leftists like Obama will claim successful business owners only got what they have through the hard work of others, through the government. Yet these fine people had two business, on the same street, a few blocks from the same bridge. Both had a similar education and even shared some teachers.

Why did the government and everyone else cause business number two to close?

If you and I were responsible for building what these people have, aren't we responsible when things do not go well?

See how silly President Obama and Cherokee Princess Warren sound when you look at their actual philosophy? What kind of world would we have if no one was ever held responsible? You did not build that business, You did not build that house. You did not paint that artwork. You did not write that book.  You did not run that business into the ground. You did not shoot up that movie theater.

July 29, 2012

Dead white guys are no longer "history"

A couple of weeks ago I was on a business trip and took the long way home in order to stop by the grave site and home of the legendary Sgt. Alvin York. I even wrote a post about it if you bother to scroll back a bit. I am not going to link it 'cause it is not important to this post.

I showed the pictures and described the visit to the York home to my wife. A blank look was followed with a questioning "who"?. My daughter was visiting at the time, she gave me the same "so?" face as her mother. They had never heard of Sgt. York. I showed the pics to my son when he came home. When questioned, he said he "might have heard of him", but allowed he did not know who York was.

My dad knew.  My brother knew. The rest of my family and friends had no idea regarding the heroism of one of America's most decorated soldiers.  I think that is sad.,

The movie "Sergeant York" was on TCM last week. I recorded it on the DVR. I am going to try and make the wife and boy watch it with me. They won't.

Audie Murphy -- isn't he in that one John Wayne movie?

July 28, 2012

Dear Sir Paul

Dude, your voice is gone.

And your dye job looks silly.

Your friend,

Joe

July 27, 2012

Increasingly on the fringe

I am afraid I am increasingly out of touch and perhaps even wrong when it comes to my perceptions regarding the role of the Federal Government. In my travels I often listen to the local radio stations, usually news talk or sports talk. I was getting in some windshield time earlier in the week and the hourly news included a farm report. That is not unusual in this part of the country. A great deal of the report focused on the next iteration of a Farm Bill, but more importantly, on the efforts to pass an emergency "drought relief" for farmers.

Farming is a business. Why are we, as taxpayers, bailing out the farmers*? Isn't drought one of the reasons for Federal crop Insurance programs? Does the government step in and give money to other businesses in times of natural woe?  Was there a program to help struggling snow plow operators this past winter when a capricious Mother Nature refused to send snow our way? Do we get emergency "rain relief" to pool salesmen and water park operators when we have a wet cool summer? I am sure farmers across the nation will point out that farms produce our food and without a viable farm system starvation faces the nation.

Bad crops equal higher prices. The law of supply and demand even applies to the mercantile exchange. The CBOE pays more for corn futures when the yield outlook is low. If the taxpayers are expected to pay the farmers for the ill effects of nature, shouldn't the farmers pay more to the taxpayers in times of abundance?

Better yet, shouldn't the government stay out of the farming business altogether?


* I won't even get into subsidies and pay not to plant programs.

A moment of silence

The International Olympic Committee refuses to honor the fortieth anniversary of the terrorist attacks on the Israeli Olympic team at the 1972 Olympics in Munich, Germany. It has been reported the IOC fears it will antagonize the delegations from various Arab nations.

I hope you join me in a moment of silence, prayer or reflection for the innocent victims of hatred and intolerance. If honoring these athletes is not part of the Olympic Ideal, then I am honestly not sure what the Games represent.

July 26, 2012

Friday Covers -- Thursday edition

Inspired by my man Yabu at Bad Bad Juju:



Desiree Bassett puts some hot electric guitar into a timeless classic



For some reason this version makes me want to cry.



No commentary required.

July 25, 2012

Tick tock goes the clock


And then the one day you find
Ten years have got behind you
No one told you when to run
You missed the starting gun --Pink Floyd

It is  as inevitable as water flowing down the Mississippi. Life moves forward. In just a few weeks my youngest and last remaining "at home" kid will head off to college.  He will be a freshman at Indiana University.

We have watched him grow up here on the old blog. When I first started writing he was active in little league and youth football. He learned to drive, went on dates, graduated high school.  By mid-August he will be packing his car and heading to Bloomington, Indiana.

The nest will be more than empty. When the daughter headed off to college, to life, work, and marriage, it was tough, but there were still two boys at home. Then the oldest son headed off to the university and life in another town, making music. But one remained. The five year separation between the middle and youngest son helped keep the empty-nester wolves at bay.

That time is nearing the end. I can see it in my wife's eyes. She is going to struggle with this one even more than the others. And she had a hard time as they left to pursue their life.

I have never been one of those parents who cannot wait until their kids get to be adults and move out. I enjoy my children. I like having them around. I am a lucky man. Watching your offspring spread their wings and jump from the nest into life is hard. I suspect my parents sat at night and wondered how I was going to get by. Perhaps they wondered what they were going to do with their time, walking the house peering into empty bedrooms.

I think it will be hardest on my wife. Travel is part and parcel of my job. Always before there was a kid at home, or coming home to keep her company, even if only in a metaphorical sense as he played video games behind closed doors. Now, just an empty house will echo her silent conversations. Me? I like my own company.  I spend all day in an office alone and hours on end in a car or hotel. The wife does not like alone time so much. 

In many ways the coming weeks will be filled with joy. The boy is so happy and excited to start his new life, you cannot help but share in his enthusiasm. It is with pride you realize you have prepared your child to enter the world, despite a complete lack of instructions,direction,  manuals, or on-line tech support. That makes me happy.

So I keep telling myself.

July 24, 2012

Whoever built this blog sure did a crappy job * Updated with cool video

The cursor is blinking away. I am staring at it, waiting on someone, anyone, from the government to build this post. There are actually four phones here on my desk, and so far this morning not one has rung, buzzed, beeped or chimed with the latest words, phrases and themes for this entry.

---aside. yes, there are four phones on my little Sauder-built black aged wood-looking desk: my cell phone, my work land line with a local number, my work internet phone (with a corporate number), and the house phone via a cordless handset.

As we took the irrelevant side trip about my plethora of phones the government failed to build this post.  I guess the Obama team must be off golfing or fundraising. No time to build here. Perhaps they are busy closing Gitmo, or getting our money back from GM? Maybe the Golfer-in-Chief is busy lowering the oceans and cooling the Earth.and does not have time to build at this crappy website. Oh wait, President Obama's laser-focus on jobs means he is meeting with his Jobs Council, I bet. What? You mean the Jobs Council has not met for months? Never mind, I forgot the Stimulus solved the economy and unemployment problems Bush caused.

Oh look! I built a post all by my self. Millions of Americans get work done, create wealth and jobs without the government helping.  Usually despite Government interference. On second thought, this post is about the Obama and Democrat insane insistence that nothing can be done without the government, the government was responsible for the content...Well I can take solace in the notion this crappy post is a perfect example of what happens when the government gets involved.

update. Nothing else needs to be said:



* Since this place went live in 2005, it is probably Bush's fault

July 23, 2012

Something needs to be done about these insane laws

Thirteen are dead. Do we blame the truck? Do we blame the refusal of Federal officials to enforce immigration law?

That would make as much sense as blaming guns for the action of one evil person.

BTW shooting a dozen people is already against the law

While we are at it, I am sure I will not be the first nor the last to point out one of the worst single shooting sprees in history took place just one year ago in Norway. That country has some of the strictest gun laws of any nation and is surrounded by countries with a similar stance regarding firearms.

All the legislation, all of the laws imaginable will not stop a person determined to act. Unless you envision each of us living alone in a cage like at a zoo, this is life on Earth, where free will rules and evil is just around the corner.

July 22, 2012

3662

There is already an ocean of ink, both real and electronic, devoted to the acts of one crazy individual in Colorado. That won't stop me from injecting my two cents, even if my opinion is only worth one and a half pennies.

This shooting was perpetuated by a sick, evil individual. The Batman movies were nothing more than the excuse for the gunman. The notion we should take the movie from theaters is ridiculous. That is like saying we should ban university classrooms in the wake of the Virginia Tech massacre. No amount of gun control, paperwork, UN Treaties, blaming the Right or Rush Limbaugh, or lengthening gun permit wait times would have prevented this from happening. The guy was smart enough to make his own tear gas and by all accounts the mousetrap of destruction planted in the apartment was advanced.  The killer would have found a way to make himself famous through illegal guns, homemade bombs, anything. Short of banning and confiscating every gun in the nation and somehow every Firework, box of ammunition and household cleaning supplies, this could not have been avoided. Guns will never be banned or confiscated in this country. Not without a bloodbath that will make the previous Civil War look like the invasion of Grenada.

I am not sure why a private individual would need all of the body armor the assailant was allegedly wearing. But that is none of my business. Some people are spending tens of thousands of dollars building modern bomb shelters.  Some people might look around my house and wonder why I need a 52 inch big screen TV. How a person defends his self and loved ones is not relevant to me. At least until those methods impede upon my own freedom. Say your self defense methods involves letting loose a herd of poisonous snakes in the lawn next door for instance --that is not an opotion. But if you find it necessary to pretend you are a Ninja warrior, SWAT wannabe, or medieval knight,  have at it.

There are sick people out there folks. The desire to be famous is part of modern society. Little could have been done to save the lives of the dozen who died and scores who were shot. Perhaps if one person in the crowd had a concealed weapon and fired back it might have helped.  We will never know.

July 20, 2012

Yak milk is pink

 We had a few brief showers Wednesday and Thursday and you could almost hear Mother Nature sigh an audible "ahhh". It is amazing what less than a half of an inch of rain can do for a lawn when there has been no precipitation to speak of for 45 days. Some parts of the grass are actually sporting a pale green hue this morning. Weeds have popped up by inches over night. It is still hot. I think that has something to do with summer.

Did you know as part of ObamaCare health care providers like hospitals have to conduct a community needs survey every three years. This is the gift the government brings. Now the local hospital has to hire a person to coordinate this regulatory burden. This increases costs. Chalk it up as just an example of why ObamaCare will not make your health care more affordable, but will add layers of bureaucracy, red tape and governmental interference, and increased local costs into what used to be a semi-reasonable operation.

July 19, 2012

reasons to vote for Obama

A suggestion

Not only am I tired (see previous post), but the day is not starting off well on other fronts.  In fact, I have developed a case of red-ass in monumental proportions. I suggest friends, family, co-workers, customers, commenters, phone solicitors, and the general public-at-large tread lightly.

I am not in the mood for bullshit, and I suspect i will be awash up to my ankles before the day is through. I would like to imagine a peremptory "fuck off" will help.

You have been warned.

What's goin' on?

It has happened two nights in a row. I wake around three in the aye em, wide awake and ready to start the day. Not on purpose. I pad to the kitchen to grab a drink of water and then the head, and somehow my old buddy insomnia takes charge of the situation. Unfortunately I don't go to bed until around 11:30 or so. Four hours of sleep is not enough for this 50 year old man. In my youth, no problem. I spent most of my teens and twenties managing about four hours sleep. Now, my beauty fading, I have to get the deep sleep to rejuvenate my brain and body.

Now it is really time to start the day and I am exhausted.

July 18, 2012

Mystery of Amelia Earhart is solved!

I can report with near certainty, I know what happened to Amelia Earhart. 

She died.

She is with Lucca Brazzi.

Maybe she crashed at sea. Maybe she and Fred Noonan putzed along for years like Gilligan and Mary Anne on some desert isle.  She might have drowned fishing for snapper. It could be she was swept away in a typhoon. She could have met her end via snakebite or a peck from a rabid seagull. As the Munchkins might say "And she's not only merely dead, she's really most sincerely dead."

In the end, she met the fate of many intrepid explorers and seekers of adventure.  She failed.

The millions of dollars spent at the time of her disappearance and since will not change that unalterable fact.

Like Robert Scott, Earhart remains a historical figure only because her failure resulted in tragedy and death.

But my wife did live in a residence hall at Purdue University named after her, so there is that.

July 17, 2012

Obamanomics

Mountain Goat Memoirs

I had to do some rare travels over the weekend.  Monday morning found me traveling the hills and dales of the north-east corner of the Volunteer State. I finished early yesterday with my customer and picked up the trusty old atlas. Just a few ridges away was this house:


If you are a hard-core war movie fan you will recognize that abode from the pivotal scene at the end of an Academy Award (insert applicable trademarks symbol) winning picture. Yes, that is the home of Sergeant Alvin York, one of the most decorated soldiers in American history. I also made a quick stop to the York burial site, just a short distance away.

I have stated it many times and fellow road warriors will testify; life on the road is not the fun and glamour most of you imagine.  It is these little side trips that makes it all worthwhile. And the paycheck. I like the paycheck.

July 16, 2012

But seriously folks

I am begging for a response to this post. I encourage anyone to give their viewpoint, especially those opposed to my position, because I truly cannot see the other side of this question.

Why is asking for identification prior to voting a big deal? The State GIVES free picture identification to any citizen. There is no financial burden.

You have to present identification to board a plane, to collect unemployment, to serve on a jury, cash a check, buy booze, buy cigarettes, and start a job. Most employers, schools and government workers have picture IDs assigned. You even have to provide a picture ID if you want to get in and see the US Attorney General give a speech about how awful picture ID requirements are. But to prove you are you before voting, before we participate in the most important task as citizens, is asking too much? I just do not get it.

Perhaps the Senate should investigate the Designated Hitter Rule next

Perhaps there are issues more important  for the US Senate to get involved in than what ugly French-metrosexual-looking uniforms the US Olympic team is sporting this year. OMG the the uniforms are made in China! Yes, and I suspect the same is true for every stitch of clothing you are sporting at this moment.

How about the Senate spending a few minutes to actually pass a budget instead?  After all, it has been more than 1,100 days. That is more than THREE YEARS for the math challenged. The previous Olympiad had just finished the last time we had a passed budget. Chew on that for a second or two.

I suppose fashion is more interesting than finance.

July 15, 2012

I've about had it

If Romney tags Condi Rice as his VP choice, I will refuse to cast my vote for him in November. I am sick of the RINOs running the party. If he chooses a conservative as running mate I may hold my nose and give a nod to Romney, 'cause he is marginally better than The Obama, but I'll be damned if I will give the Republican honchos another RINO to wait in the wings.

We need to focus this election on The Obama's piss-poor performance, not give the liberal press and Obama ammunition to blame Bush all the more.  The election needs to be about Obama, not Bush and a Rice nomination will change all of that. It is time to hold The Obama accountable, not to rehash the policies of W.

My favorite spam comment this week.

Maybe you could write next articles referring to this article. I wish to read even more things about it!

It was on this post.

That Anon E. Mouse is a witty guy. Sadly he forgot to add the link to whatever he was selling. That sort of incompetence is not to be tolerated. He has been duly banished to the voids of the Ethernet. Can electronic screams be heard if no one is listening?

July 14, 2012

Analog Brain

My brain spent the night composing the beginnings to various short stories. It reworded and reworked various vignettes all nioght long. Two in particular were quite good, at least in my mind. As usual, all my brain composed was the beginning of the story. I have no idea what to have these characters do. What is the story? I have a whole notebook consisting of beginnings of stories I have written over the past thirty-plus years.  There is never a middle or an end. Do you ever dream about words and writing?

Somehow I cannot escape the notion that my aborted stories are a metaphor for my life. Things start off promising and then kind of fizzle. It is sad to think I peaked in the third grade when I was designated head projectionist and master of the filmstrip machine. Ding...

July 13, 2012

Before I die I want to be a Judge for one day

Take her out back and give her something to really complain about. That is my remedy. 

The lawyer that filed this case -- there is no punishment good enough. Perhaps a whack with a ball bat for every dollar he cost the legal system and the defendant and his attorneys defending this suit. Plus an extra home-run swing for my aggravation at reading such ridiculous nonsense.

Seriously -- Justin F-ing Bieber? It is a good thing this asshole did not take her daughter to a heavy metal gig.

I am willing to bet she voted for Obama. Any takers?

I think the term "money-grubbing bitch" might be appropriate.

Button your lip

July is sure a slow time for the interwebz. The blogroll buddies are posting way less often. Hits are down. Could it be content? Nah, I have been pecking out the same old crap for a long time now.  In fact July is always a slow month in the blogosphere, at least in my tiny, tiny corner of it. I suspect things will liven up in a month or so as the elections get closer.  Many words will launch into the Ethernet as we compare the choices for President - disastrous and really bad. I think this year will mark around a half dozen elections in a row where I would proudly mark 'None of the Above' were I given that choice. Sometimes  I think a 'vote-em-all-out' philosophy is the way to go. Then I look at the current occupant of the Oval Office and realize just what we get when we elect a guy with no experience running anything. It is a sad, sad state of affairs when the management trainee down at the plastics plant has more managerial experience than the current Commander -in-Chief brought to the table.

But it is Friday! The atmospheric analysts have manipulated their models and are prognosticating some precipitation for this arid area.

I'll pause while you read that again. Feel free to imagine the satisfied smirk on my fleshy face.

It is not often that I hope for a rained out weekend, but we could sure use it. I bet you could too.



What? Why are you still here? Put your hand down. What do you mean you have a question? Oh, the picture?  It has nothing to do with the post. Nor does the title, but you should know by now that is often the case around here. Yes, yes the picture; those guys are found in my favorite Bugs Bunny cartoon. They make me laugh. Oh, that's so sweet, you did not really think this place was for your amusement did you?

July 12, 2012

And why would you vote for this guy?

Soooo....

As near as I can fathom, here is Obama's platform for his second term:

Raise taxes on the "millionaires" making $250,000 or more per year.

That is it.  He has no more idea on how to fix the economy than my neighbor's dog.

Either the inexperienced community organizer really has no clue, or he is afraid to tell you what he has in mind.  Which is it, loyal Democrats?

Waiting is more than a movie title, it is my life

I like to get to the airport early. I vowed early in my traveling career to never make like OJ Simpson and run through an airport*. There is always another flight. I was walking briskly on the moving walkway** that leads to the terminal earlier this week when my cell phone rang. It was the airline, my 3:30 flight was delayed until 4:15. Damn. My premeditated arrival time just grew a bigger cushion. Shortly before 2:00 found me heading into the B gates security area. Oh well, I had plenty to read on my trusty Kindle ereader.

I entered the security area. There was no one there. As in passengers.  I walked right up to the ID checkpoint, no need to use the frequent traveler shortcut. After chatting with the agent I headed to the naked passenger viewer line. I slipped off my shoes and belt.  I grabbed my liquids from a handy pocket of my bag and padded to the machine. I performed my requisite moose horn pantomime***.  Out of habit I grabbed my stuff quickly off the belt  and plopped down on the nearby bench to re-shoe my feet and re-belt my pants. 

Throughout the afternoon the digital minutes clicked by as I read away in my Kindle.  Me and Michael Corleone  got that bastard Solozzo****. The plane suffered yet another delay and a move to a different gate. Finally around 5:00 the flight was cancelled altogether and we were told to go down to another gate for re-assignment. I was among the first in line and scored a seat on a plane leaving in 45 minutes. I had to trade my aisle seat for a middle seat, but Charlotte is only a little over an hour away by plane,

Only about 20 minutes late, the aircraft pushed off from the gate, waddled across the tarmac and parked. The man-in-charge came over the scratchy speakers and said we were on ground hold. He said we could pull out our electronic devices since we were going to be there a while. At least he left the A/C on.  The last time I was stuck in the biscuit tube they call an aircraft I was in Detroit and the pilot turned off the engines and let us swelter for 2.5 hours. We sat there for a little over an hour and a half before we got the go-ahead to brave the wild blue yonder.

I finally arrived in a rainy Charlotte***** sometime around eight thirty in the PM. The trip only a few scant hours shorter than I could have driven it. Such is life. I arrived a the Hertz counter, my Gold reservation long since given to another driver.  The happy lady asked if my flight was delayed. I gave her a ten second synopsis: delayed, cancelled ground hold. She responded by finding me a brand new car, a VW Passat with 23 miles on the odometer.. It smelled new, no rental car odor. The hotel surprised me with an upgrade to a suite. Diamond membership does have its rewards. As a bonus, since I arrived so late there was no issue with traffic!

So while the long day started poorly, it ended well. So, you wish you had a job like mine and get to travel all over the place, eh?

* Remember when OJ was famous for something besides knives and gloves and murder robberies?

**Walk left stand right. I am not sure why the concept of a moving sideWALK is so complicated for the average traveler.

***If have been in an airport lately you know what I mean by this

**** I am aware that is not proper English

***** "I arrived in Charlotte" -- every time I type that phrase I crack up for reasons I cannot publicly explain.

July 11, 2012

Wayback Wednesday

Some songs just sound like summer. They evoke memories of sweltering days, and cruisin' the strip.  Songs can bring to mind the nights driving the country roads flinging just-emptied beer bottles at mailboxes or sweaty kisses with your date at the drive in. Some tunes just remind us of the joy of youth.

One summer Mom volunteered my brother and I to scrape and paint our grandma's garage. It took us far longer than the job required, but finish it we did. I have every reason to believe the job was often interrupted by joking, by bickering, and plain old screwing around. That is what brothers do. I am also more than certain Otter found plenty of excuses to just disappear for long stretches while I worked my ass off in the summer sun. That's what he did. Grandma always did like him best.

I do remember this song got a lot of airplay on the radio and still today those opening licks take me back to the summer of 1978:

July 10, 2012

Reason 64 you wish you were me

Things finally cooled down a bit -- to the low nineties -- yesterday.  I threw some chicken tits on the grill, rubbed down with some fine secret rubbing stuff.  I love to rub breasties. When they were almost done I slapped on some first rate BBQ sauce. I served them with some fresh corn on the cob and some cheesy banquet potatoes. I also made some biscuits. I wanted some fresh 'maters, but I did not make it to the farmer's market in time. For dessert I diced up an apple, a kiwi, pitted some cherries and rough cut some strawberries.  I threw in a few cashews and made a nice fruit salad.

Just describing the meal makes me hungry all over again.

July 9, 2012

Jessica Bruning is ignorant

Last evening I was reading an article from USA Today on my Kindle Fire. The article was about the paper's Swing States Poll. The article quotes one Jessica Bruning of Holstein, Iowa. While I am not a big fan of Romney, it is clear Jessica Bruning of Holstein, Iowa is from a fitting place, she is clearly as dumb as a cow.
What has she learned? That ...Romney "wants to cut taxes for the rich people and raise them for the poor."
"I don't think that's cool," she says. She plans to vote for Obama.
This woman outta take a minute or two to actually read a paper or watch the news. No politician, not Romney, not Obama, has actually said they are going to raise taxes on poor people. Her comment is astoundingly stupid.

Of course Obama, by refusing cooperate with the Republican majority, will drop a monumental tax increase on the poor and middle class by letting the Bush Tax Cuts expire. But Jessica Bruning of Holstein Iowa cannot be bothered with truth. Obama has burdened the entire Nation with billions of new taxes in ObamaCare, but we will just pretend we are Jessica Bruning of Holstein, Iowa and ignore those unpleasant facts.

Jessica Brunng of Holstein, Iowa is like a lot of Americans.  She does not have the time nor inclination to actually follow the political affairs of her nation, but she will take her uniformed ass straight to the polls and vote in November.

If Jessica Bruning of Holstein, Iowa indicated she favored the big-government Democrat policies of the President and intended to vote for him based on that, I can accept her position. Hell, some people actually believe in Scientology and peaceful Muslims. But deciding to vote based on some made-up shit she misheard down at McDonald's -- that is just ignorance on display.

July 8, 2012

Memory Lane is more like a dark alley strewn with abandoned cars, garbage, pimps and potholes

Yesterday was soul-sucking hot. I suspect it is a mere preview of what I can expect in the afterlife. I hope not, but ...

Anyway, yesterday was about as uncomfortable as any day I can remember. I have spent some hot days in the sun. In my youth I worked summers as a roofer. I spent my days perched high above the ground, usually on industrial sites: repairs, replacements, new stuff.

Let me tell you, you know hot when you spend the day in the sun, sans any shade at all, working in 180 degree hot tar. The sun burns your face, the tar burns through your heavy work boots. But my discomfort was mitigated by muttering a constant mantra of $12 bucks an hour...$12 bucks an hour...Throw in an occasional bonus of overtime plus travel expenses and you have a pretty good summer gig.  A weekly check that topped five hundred bucks is pretty good for a part-time summer job these days (provided you can even find a summer job).  It was unbelievably good money back in the early 1980's.  To measure that kind of wealth in college boy terms, twelve bucks an hour was two cases of beer earned every hour -- and that meant the good stuff, not Kroger Cost Cutter beer, Fallstaf or Carling's Black Label.

It was brutally hard work. The fucking union took $70 a week off the top of my paycheck. Even today, more than three decades later, the idea that more than one-half a day's work went straight into the pockets of the AFL/CIO pisses me off. For ten weeks every summer some Mafioso or Commie Bastard or Democrat stole money from my labors. Some things never change, do they?

July 7, 2012

I've got this pain...

I was set to talk about wounds and pain and swelling and such. It suddenly occurred to me I am becoming a 70 year old woman, every one-sided conversation we have around here is about what the fuck is wrong with me.  Sorry.

 I am not that old. Yet.

Maybe I have told you a little secret in one of the three thousand plus posts I have cobbled together over the years: I used to be a librarian. Yes, indeed, and let me tell you something,  librarian conventions are not nearly the fun you imagine they are. I was the librarian at a branch library in a very small town (population 2,500). I was the man at the place, in fact,  the only employee.

Anyway, on my last day at the little library I ran I was chomping at the bit to get out.  Mrs. Mays came in late in the afternoon, like she did every day.  I gave her the standard greeting "Good afternoon, Mrs. Mays, how are you?" And as usual she started to tell me. She listed a headache, back pain, whatever. And like many twenty-somethings I lost control and just blurted out "I'm sorry, Mrs. Mays, but that was a rhetorical question". She stared at me for a long moment , gave a mighty harrumph and headed into the stacks.

Alberta, one of my favorite patrons, was in the building, and began to laugh her head off. She came over and in her typical loud fashion exclaimed "I have wanted to tell her that for years".

The day was winding down and I was making sure the place was clean and tidy and ready for the next librarian to take over. The door banged open and Alberta was there. She asked me to come outside. There, in her little wagon she used to haul books back and forth to her house a few blocks away, was a case of beer. For me. She said it was a reward for being such a good friend over the past couple of years, but mostly for "shutting up that Mays bitch".  Alberta added in a stage whisper " I have hated that old lady for thirty years".

When you come by here to see what is going on you are only metaphysically wondering how I am today.  You really don't want to know or care. You just want to be entertained. Or something.

So, I am not going to tell you about that kind of shit. At least not today. 

Have a great weekend.

July 6, 2012

Hot Town

It is hotter than Hades around these parts. I bet it is at your house too. It is summer, that's what happens in summer -- it gets hot. I bet come January it will be much colder. I could be a weatherman.

We did not do much on the Fourth, as I posted there were no fireworks in my little city. I watched me some John Wayne in Hellfighters and Frank in Von Ryan's Express. For supper I threw some burgers on the grill. I made homemade potato salad, macaroni salad and deviled eggs to round out the meal. Earlier in the day I made some brownies too.

Back to work yesterday, it seemed like the second Monday of the week.

I had some interesting political discussions tis week.  Two different buddies on two different days expressed the same attitude. One is a moderate, the other a staunch Democrat Union guy, a lifer in the Postal Service. Neither wants Obama to take another run at things, and neither is crazy about Romney (that makes three of us). Both think ObamaCare is a horrible idea, there is no way the cost can be contained or the current level of care they both enjoy can be continued. Both are in a strong "through the bums out" mode concerning Congress.

I'm not sure what this means, after all anecdote is not data, and a sampling size of three is not too relevant. But I think the People are fed up. The Democrats and Republicans did not get the signals in 2010 and I think there is Hell to pay for many politicians come November.

July 5, 2012

Don't look Ethel

I posted a tale of woe a few days ago about how my new running shoes blistered my heels.  Despite wearing them around the house and lacing them properly, I still got a painful blister. I blame it on using the treadmill, even though treadmills usually don't cause me any more trouble than pavement in the neighborhood.  Mostly these shoes are just cut differently from the Asics I usually wear.

Lest you think I am complaining about a tiny little blister on the back of my heel, here is what it looked like yesterday evening:
Click for an even better view. Nothing stirs your appetite like a close-up of an oozing sore.
Do you have any idea how hard it is to take a cell phone picture of the back of your foot? The stuff I do for you...It has formed a bruise/blood blister under the regular blister.

That bump on the left is my anklebone for size reference. Yes, before you point it out I am aware I have skinny ankles. 

By the way, you probably should skip this post if you are squeamish about sores and such.

July 4, 2012

Happy Independence Day



No fireworks around here. The authorities are afeared the prospect of kiddies waving sparklers will set the county aflame.  No personal nor public boom-boom allowed. I understand, but my mostest favorite holiday won't be the same.

Happy Birthday America

July 3, 2012

I wonder, wonder

..if the Liberals who are praising Chief Justice John Roberts for his wisdom when he ruled that that it is not the job of the court to protect the people from the consequences of their political choices would be so effusive with their praise if he were to uphold the Defense of Marriage Act under the same grounds?

Tight Laced

I laced 'em as tight as I could stand. But my best was not enough, I guess. My new running shoes made big blisters on the back of both heels. The right one is nickle sized, the left heel blister is about the diameter of a quarter.

When your feetsies are mostly numb that means the sores are generally raw and oozing blood before the pain reaches the brain.

July 2, 2012

Powerless: a rambling vent that will not make sense to any of you but makes me feel better. Or worse.

After a weekend, I am more pissed about the politics in this nation than ever. I think I may be out of step. I am all for helping out my fellow man. But it is not charity when it is forced by threat of law.

People make bad choices. I have made more than a few myself, believe me. Bad things happen to very good people. We all have a duty to help those who most need it.  For instance, I have no issue with unemployment benefits. I have lost more than one job.  I know that unemployment would have saved my family had I not been lucky enough to land new employment right away.

As much as it pains me, we cannot provide a safety net for everyone.  This realization is what puts me out of step, I guess. Every politician, regardless of party, needs a big sign, lit in changing neon colors, flashing these words above his desk: "That is someone else's money you are spending".

I am lost.  Cannot the powers-that-be see the end result of the progressive game we are playing? ObamCare costs will spiral out of control very quickly as people make bad life choices. The People will call for restraint. Just as the anti-smoking lobby has pinned their attacks on the increased cost to the rest of us in healthcare, the anti-fat, anti-meat anti-whatevers will bring their "I know better than you" attitude into the fray. Soon the Government will not only decree what size soda you can drink, but what you need to eat as well. In a few decades the McDonald's and Burger Kings of today will be relics of a nostalgic bygone age like drive-ins and the general store. And why not, if I am paying for your everyday living expenses I have a right to dictate how you spend that money. Haven't we all decried the food stamp (yes I know debit card) user at the grocery buying steak and name brand stuff while we are counting quarters to buy hot dogs? Aren't we all pissed to see them buying cigarretts and beer with the cash they did not have to use for foodstuff? I will be just as pissed to see you eating Big Macs and large fries while I am buying your Metformin and Lipitor.

Trust me, today it is healthcare, tommorrow it will be long-term care for the elderly. Our grandkids will know only a government that  provides for their every need. The individual you will have to sacrifice for the collective us. Already the battle cry is faint in the distance, but drawing nearer: "the rich do not pay their fair share, who needs all that money, why do they have all of those cars..." How far off are government mandated salaries and wages?

I don't know. When you lose every battle is it realistic to think you can win the war?

July 1, 2012

Dear Fellow Hoosiers

Joe Donnelly is running to represent Indiana in the U.S. Senate as a candidate for the Democratic Party. He voted for ObamaCare, the largest single tax increase on the middle class and poor of this country in history.

Had Joe Donnelly voted NO, ObamaCare would not have passed.

Let me repeat, Joe Donnelly voted to increase your taxes, reduce your healthcare options, increase your insurance costs and to increase the national debt by more than a trillion dollars. He could have stopped it, but he did not have the courage to stand up to Nancy Pelosi. Joe Donnelly lacked the courage to vote in the best interest of the taxpayers in Indiana.

Remember who to blame come November.

*fixed. I'm an idiot.  New rule, no posting before coffee.
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