October 31, 2014

Friday Music and a few facts you should know



I was planning on putting up some Traffic this morning, or maybe some good southern rock.  Instead I put up a spooky homage in honor of the date.

It looks to be a blustery late fall-type day around here with strong winds, rain, sleet and maybe even a bit of snow by the time Saturday rolls around. I suppose it is better to have some strong winds to shake the leaves from the trees. I would rather rake a bunch of leaves at once rather than a smaller amount every few days.

Warning explicit language follows.

What the hell is wrong with that stupid cunt in Maine who was exposed to Ebola in Africa? She is supposed to be a nurse.  What happened to "do no harm"? Any sane person would try hard to avoid being the next "Typhoid Mary", but apparently this woman is a narcissistic piece of shit that would rather risk infecting her friends and neighbors than be inconvenienced for a couple of weeks. I would bet my next paycheck this bitch is a fucking liberal..

End of rant

I start my new gig on Monday, Posting will be scarce for a while as I spend my days buried in training and real life 8-5 office schedules.. Not that anyone cares, but I did not want my loyal readers to wonder where I went for the next few weeks.

October 29, 2014

Matin noir

I have a long list of gripes and complaints. Most are petty and peevish and boring. I'm not going to heap that crap on you today (for a change).  Instead you should click on the links over there on the right. Or the left if future you is reading this and future me changed the template and moved links to the other side of future blog's page.  If future you is reading and future me did not change the future blog template -- never mind.

October 27, 2014

The customer is always right, except when she is not.

I am generally a pleasant person to be around.  It may not come across here on the old blog, but I can usually be pretty charming.  I would not be a successful sales guy if my personality was constantly abrasive.

Yesterday was weird. I was working my gig at big retail store. A middle-aged lady of Japanese extract asked me about a particular camera. I tried to be helpful. She spied an "open box" item, a discontinued display model offered at a substantial discount. She asked the original price and I told her I would have to look it up. This irritated her to no end. She told me I should know the prices. I apologized to her that we offer over 80,000 SKUs in the store and I cannot memorize them all.

She decided to buy the camera. I asked a manager to unlock the anti-theft device and he said he would see if we had the original box. I explained to the customer that there may not be a box, nor manuals, etc. She found this notion, as she put it "ridiculous" and told me that to throw away a box was irresponsible and stupid. I explained that display models stay for months and we cannot possibly warehouse the original packaging for every camera, computer, television, video game console, and appliance that is on display. She told me she always buys "open box" and has never seen any item offered without a box. I told her we were looking for her box, but that there were lots of appliances, televisions and computers in the store sold "as is" without the original packaging.

She insisted that it was dumb to not have the box.  I again told her that we were looking for the original box. I pointed out that the camera was half price due to the fact some accessories, including the original packaging might be missing.  I guess she found this fact offensive. She replied, and I quote, "You do not have to be so rude. I do not want you to help me. Go somewhere else". 

So I did. I left her standing there. I don't need shit from a customer at a low-wage part time temporary gig.  I don't make commission. I assume the manager finished the sale after his box search. I do not doubt she complained about me to him. The boss never asked why I left the customer. In fact the whole incident was never mentioned.

RIP Jack



greatness

October 26, 2014

Puff adders in the closet

I made a lasagna this morning.  There is nothing like the smell of tomato sauce and fresh squeezed garlic at 7:30 in the morning.  The lasagna is for supper tonight. I have to work all day and if I wait until I get off at 5:30 to start cooking, it will be very late when we eat. This way I just have to stick it in the oven when I get home.

The youngest is home for the weekend from college.  I haven't seen him for more than a month. Unfortunately I had to close last night so I have not seen him much. His dog is currently curled up sleeping in the wife' recliner. The dog snores.

It looks to be a great day, enjoy it!

I read that a python birthed a brood of killer babies without sexual congress with a male snake. WTH? It is bad enough I have to worry cobras might be slithering in my bedroom window and black mambas are hiding behind the garbage cans.  Now pythons are spontaneously hatching babies with bad intent. Pythons and anacondas are already skulking under the porch of every home in south Florida. If reptiles can start reproducing at will there is no hope for man.  I better go check my attic for rattlesnakes.

October 24, 2014

Friday Music



I was in London the day George Harrison died. I remember the headlines on the papers displayed in Trafalgar Square. I should have bought a paper, but being the tightwad I am, I did not want to exchange any currency when I was only going to be in London for a couple of days.

Shoulda, coulda, woulda.

I think this is a beautiful song.

Zippy titles are hard to write

The wife came home sporting a new haircut last night.  It is drastically different from any previous hairstyles. I like it, but she really looks different. Sometimes change is good.  We will see if her courage holds out and she tries to tease it back to the old style this morning.

October 23, 2014

Obama's Banana Republic

It seems the illegals freed from detention facilities last year during Obama's hissy fit over sequestration were not just innocents with misdemeanors and traffic tickets as Obama and ICE claimed. Instead many were accused of drug trafficking, kidnapping, and homicide according to an article in USA Today.

All politicians lie, but it seems this administration will say and do anything to pursue its agenda, and the consequences are often dangerous and deadly for the American people.  This whole affair has a Castro boat lift feel to it, only it is our own President emptying out the jails.

Congress can hold another hearing and do nothing. The press will ignore it, lest their role in propping up this failure comes to light, and the public will tune in to the latest Housewives of Wherever while the Obamanistas snatch away their freedoms a little at a time.

October 22, 2014

White puffs of cotton drifting on a light blue sky

I had to go pee in a jar for the new boss this morning.  When I got home I wiped a dust rag over the furniture and ran the sweeper on all of the carpet, including the stairs.  I also threw a load of towels into the washer and dryer. What a good boy am I.

It is a gorgeous day here in Hoosierdom, bright sun and the trees exploding in russets and golds all around. I took a spin around the backyard and would have sat on the patio and burned a stogie if I was not heading to work in a bit.  Instead I will publish this bit of nonsense, read a little and reflect on the good that is in my life.

Best wishes for a great day, blog buddies.

October 21, 2014

The Power Behind the Throne: the Julio-Claudian Women and the Early Empire

It is a cool overcast fall day. I have the day off and think I will mow the yard this afternoon.

I'm back. Sorry, I just remembered I forgot to put the trash by the curb. Where was I?

Oh yeah, yard work.  I probably should pull the tomato plants today.  I brought in a bunch of green tomatoes ( tomatos? Help me here Dan Quayle) over the weekend when there was a frost warning. They may or may not ripen. They may or may not get fried before they get a chance. The thought of fried green tomatoes makes me want some pimento cheese. I do miss going to the Carolinas, a staple of my work travels for the past 20 years. If I had a dollar for every hour I have spent in the Charlotte airport I could make this month's mortgage payment with enough left over to buy some beer. Lots of beer. And a jar of cashews - the good ones, salted and whole and big. And maybe even a box of cigars. I have spent a lot of time in Charlotte.

Every time I write that it makes me laugh for reasons I cannot/will not explain.

I am rambling, a sure sign I have nothing to offer on this October Tuesday. Have a great day.

October 20, 2014

Tyranny in its purest form

Many of my readers do not concur, but I really do not have an issue with gay marriage. I figure who a person loves and what they do in a bedroom in a private affair; as long as it is between consenting adults. As a matter of fact, I do not believe the Government should be in the marriage business at all.

I do, however. have a big issue with forcing gay marriage on people who have a moral objection. Service providers like churches and ministers should not be forced to do the wedding of a gay couple. That was my argument months and years ago, and it has not changed. This is exactly what I am talking about.  This is wrong, wrong, wrong on every count. A Christian minister should not be forced to marry a gay couple. A Jewish rabbi should not be forced to countenance a Muslim wedding ceremony, nor should a Catholic Priest be forced to marry a couple with Hindu Rites. Your right to a same-sex marriage is in no way impeded if a given church or minister will not do the wedding. You do not have a right to the First Methodist Church Fellowship Hall. You do not have a right to the St. Mary's transept. You do not have a right to get married at the Hitching Post Wedding Chapel.

The First Amendment does not promote a religion-free society, it is exactly the opposite. The Constitution guarantees the right to practice religion.

Thoughts on the weekend

Notre Dame got robbed.

The Colts put a beat down on the Bungles.  That was one of the most dominating performances from a Colts defense I have ever seen. No, from just about any defense I have seen -- including the '84 bears and 2000 Ravens.  I twas in that category.  The Bengals are a good football team. The Colts lost two games by a combined 10 points to the Broncos and Philadelphia. The Eagles loss can be blamed on play calling.

Peyton Manning may be the best quarterback to ever play the game. He could be named MVP every year, other than he is graded on a scale all his own, instead of comparison to the rest of the league. If he had possessed any sort of defense in Indianapolis (see above), he could have won two or three Superbowls. Anyone who claims Manning "choked" in last year's Championship against Seattle did not watch the game.  It was the Broncos Defense that came up short.

Jay Cutler really is the Jeff George of this era.

October 19, 2014

Bon jour

Hola blog world.  I start the post of in a bilingual way in honor of the awesome Mexican food we had for supper last night. The spicy enchiladas inspired some very weird dreams, though, including one that seemed to be entirely in French.  I studied that language in high school and my freshman year in college. A trip to France more than a decade ago was proof positive I have forgotten most of the French I learned in my youth.  I guess my knowledge of French is buried way back in some dusty, unusable file deep in my brain, because I could understand most of what was said and converse with semi-fluent sentences in my dream.  My accent was still quite bad, however. This morning my normal language skills have returned; that would be a smattering of words in French, Spanish, and German (mostly the ability to count and order beer) and a semi-fluency in basic American English.

It looks to be a great day. Shut off the computer and go enjoy it my friends.

October 18, 2014

Seasons will pass you by

It is still dark out even though it is not that early. The neighbors across the street have decorated their bushes and shrubs with orange Christmas Halloween lights. I sit here skimming the interwebz on my iPad, drinking coffee.  I have to head into work today, a nine hour shift at the part time big box retail store. That is not a complaint, just a fact. I have tomorrow off, that is a grand thing. Ho hum life goes on.

On my way to work Yesterday I heard a news report about Ebola. Congress was looking to put travel restrictions in place to the plague-ridden African nations. According to the reporter, the White House objects, claiming other methods are more effective.  What measure could possibly be more effective than not letting the disease in the country? I think common sense dies Washington.

This is the pathetic content you get nowadays. No wonder a mere handful of readers bother to poke their head into the door to see what is going on. I once averaged more than 100 readers a day, often twice that many.  Perhaps hours of windshield time and staring at hotel walls will stir creative juices, because it is clear I don't have much to offer readers these days. Your patience is appreciated.

I hope you have a great Saturday.

October 17, 2014

Friday Music



What say we mellow out today? Note, this is not an oldie.  Sometimes I surprise myself.

I do dig this song.

October 16, 2014

Glancing down one of those dank, dark alleys that intersects with Memory Lane.

I was listening to some tunes this afternoon. It is weird how a song can trigger a memory. In this case the song made me think about an old girlfriend. Not in a longing way, but in a "I wonder what ever happened to her?" way. Has this ever happened to you?

I started dating the girl who is now my wife at the end of 1978 when I was a mere boy of 16. She is the love of my life and I have never looked back. But before her, I dated a girl for about six months. In between, I dated several random girls, mostly one date flirtatious efforts that went nowhere. The girl that popped in my memory was my first kiss. We parted on bad terms. Shit happens. I have always possessed a strong streak of assholery. In my defense, no sane chick starts mentioning marriage at the age of 16.

Anyway, the song that cropped up on my iPhone spurred a memory. I am not sure why.  I have heard the song hundreds of times since the halcyon days of the late 1970's. Never before has the tune triggered these thoughts. The moment passed and I was not even tempted to look up the old flame on the interwebz. I just found the whole thing weird.

So what, who cares?

I woke early again this morning. And yesterday morning. I suppose I am going to have to get used to it. Maybe it is because I'm getting older?  There is no point in complaining about it.

Things have been a bit slow around here with not much to report. You have your own weather and do not care about mine. I suspect you have even less interest in what I had for lunch or my boring walk on the treadmill.

The upcoming election bores me to tears. My local Congresswoman is a virtual shoo-in, this district being so Republican I'm not sure the Dems are even trying. On the national stage it seems the Republican platform consists of  "we're not Democrats". Even though polls show the public agrees with the conservative position on immigration and health care the GOP just wants to be Rovishly Democrat Light and keep losing general elections.

Oh, I got a new job.  I start next month.  Posting will continue to be sporadic, It is not like the world is clamoring for my opinion anyway.

October 14, 2014

Paranoia Strikes Deep

I cannot help wondering about the whole lack of response from the Feds on the Ebola thing. For the life of me I cannot understand why we have not put travel restrictions in place for the plague-ridden countries. I don't consider myself a "black helicopter is watching me" kind of guy. Still, I cannot help wondering if something foul is afoot. After all, I never thought our Government would provide guns to criminals in an effort to pass stricter gun laws. I never thought any administration would systematically spy on its own citizens, monitoring emails and phone conversations. I really never thought I would see the heavy hand of the IRS used to target citizens that diasagreed with the President's politics. All have come to pass under Obama.

So, many in the administration and Democrat Party are convinced the Government is the best means to control the heath care of the populace. The American people are not only unconvinced, but an overwhelming majority want ObamaCare repealed. What better way to convince the people to change their minds about Government Health Care than to overwhelm the medical community and health care system with a a plague of infectious disease like Ebola?

Far-fetched? I am no longer so sure.

October 13, 2014

1492 yadda yadda

I for one am damn glad Columbus "discovered" the Americas. I don't care what  the revisionists and progressives believe.  I am proud to be born in the greatest nation in history.


October 11, 2014

What the heck?

I swear I am living in a dream, a matrix-like world where the absurd is normal, the normal absurd.

Take this for example  This has to be a story from The Onion. No one is that batshit crazy. This is what the left envisions for us. I hope I am not alive to see such idiocy become commonplace.

Never mind, that fed-up world is already here. The stupid people are now in charge:

Example 1,317

Calgon, take me away.  Oh wait, it can't, it is bubble bath.  I suppose they owe me money. At least I have Coke, The Real Thing.  No it contains artificial ingredients.  They must owe me money. M&Ms once melted in my hands on a hot summer day. Ca-ching, cash in the bank account for me. Where does it stop?  I bet there is a kid out there who had chicken pox but did not like hot dogs.

These morons vote. That's how we get The Obama for two terms.  Worse yet, they breed.

We are doomed.


October 10, 2014

Friday Music



I know you are so very sad I have not posted any music for a while. Really, you are sad. Admit it. You can't live without seeing what music is playing in my head. Well today it is the Byrds. Enjoy.

I said enjoy...

I nearly died today

Well, I was really uncomfortable.  I forgot my Chapstick at home and had to work all day without the comforting presence in my right pocket and the soothing coat of petroleum based products on my lips only a Chapstick can provide.  It was pure mental and physical anguish.  I think I read somewhere Chapstick Deprivation was the next step for those recalcitrant terrorists who would not break under waterboarding down at Gitmo. What, you don't believe me? Was there Chapstick in the Hanoi Hilton?  Did Sing-Sing distribute Chapstick in the canteen? Consider this: Trail of Tears -- no Chapstick, Bataan Death March --no Chapstick, Andersonville, Auschwitz, and Alcatraz--no Chapstick. Clearly a day without Chapstick constitutes a war crime and cruel and unusual punishment. I am pretty sure it is covered under the Hague Convention as well as State and local law.

I know, it was a miserable and horrible day. I am lucky to survive.

The Colts won. That helps.

October 8, 2014

words have meaning

I have long been a student of history. Most of you may know I was a history major in college.  I am not a historian, but I do know a bit about history and historiography. I learned how a historian should recognize his bias' and try to eliminate them.  I also know that a mere recitation of facts is boring and unreadable. History is a story, better than any fiction.

It is funny what a few words can do to change a passage or interpretation. I just started to read a memoir of the Vietnam War. I was eleven  when the last combat troops left Southeast Asia. I was thirteen when the helicopters lifted the last Americans from the roof of the Embassy in Saigon.  In truth, the protests and anti-war movement occurred before my time. I'm certain I can look at that turbulent period without the the color of personal experience. I know many Vietnam Vets,  yet I think I am (just barely) far enough removed from the historical period to look upon it with a fairly unprejudiced eye. I can only look back through the lens of this time period  through pictures, film, newspaper, and first or second hand accounts.

I find a few passages in this memoir interesting. In the forward by the co-author, a bias is clearly exhibited. As the "editor" who provides historical insight to the manuscript, the bias leaves me a bit skeptical he is a fair and impartial historian. As a reader I think I will have to view anything he writes with a skeptical eye.  For example take this passage:
Late that summer. the whole world watched as policemen rioted in Mayor Daley's Chicago and attacked anti-war demonstrations at the Democratic Party Convention"
In all of my reading about the anti-war protests, including the research and writing of  a senior seminar paper  on the Chicago Seven, I have never heard the Chicago police described as the rioters. Overzealous, out of control, excessive force all might be acceptable, but I am not sure the picture of peaceful demonstrators sitting around chanting anti-war slogans while police rampaged through the city is an accurate description, no matter where your politics might lie.

Or what do you think of this passage on the Kent State shootings:
The young National Guardsmen who...fatally shot the students with M-! rifles recklessly loaded with live ammunition.

Again the tone and description indicates a bias and intent to color the facts. Editorial is not history. Opinion is not journalism. Where the rifles recklessly loaded? Perhaps, but that is a conclusion for the reader to determine.

Anyway, the book is Last Plane Out of Saigon by Richard Pena and John Hagan.  Vietnam evokes a lot of raw emotion to this day. I suspect this will be an interesting account. I have no doubt the author's diary is accurate.  Can I trust Mr Hagan's historical notes to represent facts and the historical context as he promises? Of that I have some real doubt.

October 7, 2014

What have you done for me lately?

Did you ever see The Blue Man Group? Do you know how they pound on drums and buckets and pipes? Imagine if you combined that experience with the drum solo Moby Dick from Led Zeppelin's live album The Song Remains the Same and you will have an understanding of my pounding headache this morning.

Normal humans would be writhing on the floor in agony. Some would be curled in a fetal ball, crying  in some sterile hospital emergency room full of illegal immigrants, ebola patients, winos, and kids with hacking cough, all watching a muted episode of Jerry Springer. Instead, I am pecking out a blog post for you.

I'm giving like that.

October 6, 2014

Query

Why don't we restrict travel from Ebola-plagued nations to the US?

Seriously?

October 5, 2014

Remember when I once wrote an entire blog post in code?

Hola Blog Buddies,

I am late hitting the webisphere this morning.  I slept late, a welcome respite from waking earlier and earlier each day this week. I ate a couple of donuts left from yesterday's trip to the bakery and am energized, enthusiastic, and trying vainly to tell myself that is true.

I have a rare Sunday off, my first in two months. I can watch football live instead of taped, already knowing the outcome.*

 Fall pounced on us with astounding quickness Friday evening and we went from chilly nights and gorgeous days to cold nights and chilly days.  When the temperature in the house reached 60 last evening the wife switched on the furnace. You know what the Starks say.

Hold on a sec or two, I need to get more coffee.

I am back. I know what you are thinking, I must have a really fast coffee maker or perhaps a secret means to control space and time. since it took you but a few moments to read the previous sentences. You mumble to yourself, "there is no way he could go out of the office, down the hall, down the stairs, through the dining room, into the kitchen, poke a K-Cup into the coffee maker, take a quick restroom break, eat another donut, throw away the used K-Cup, and get back upstairs to the office and type all of this in that short of a span". You might or might not be correct. I refuse to say if I can control the space/time continuum , the Feds may be watching.

I have been in a weird writing mood lately. But then, you get what you pay for around here. I hope you have a great Sunday.

Praise be the Lord for his many blessings.


* I know it is not taped, but recorded digitally.

October 3, 2014

Well then

Good morning bloggity world. Once again I woke up at 5 in the way-to-early-morning. I fought it for a. while but here I sit pecking away at the iPad keyboard with one finger. The neighbor across the street just left for work. It will be a rainy commute.  I need to go put some petrol in the wife's car before she leaves for work.  Ain't I a swell guy?

I don't know why, but I was ravenously hungry at supper last night.  It was the most I have eaten in weeks..  It's not like dinner was special.  I grilled some chicken breast with jerk seasoning, sliced what will likely be among the last tomatoes from the garden, microwaved some frozen corn and  prepared a box of Mac & cheese. It was a quick, bland, uninspired supper, the kind you fix when you both get home from work at almost seven. Still, I ate like a pig.

Have a great Friday.  I made other plans.

October 2, 2014

Shut the bleep up

The voice in my head talks all of the time. He rarely shuts up. I think he talks with his hands, banging away at the inside of my skull with wild gestures for emphasis. That would account for my headaches in recent weeks. Or it could be my fall allergies,.

The guy in my skull is always playing music in the background, classic rock mostly.  Sometimes he plays songs from old movie musicals. He changes the tune often and at random, unless he discovers a song I really loathe.  Then he plays it nonstop for about 37 hours.

Man, does the guy in my head like to talk. Politics, jokes, conversations he had last week, last month, years ago, are rehashed. He plans discussions he has not even had yet. The man in my head reads aloud entire pages from books he read days, weeks, months in the past. He recites passages, facts, and dates from old dusty history tomes consumed decades ago.  He reminds me of people and places at the strangest times. He talks about bills and debts and the stuff he needs to do. It is yakity yack all of the time, morning to night.

The man in my mind talks about sex a lot. He is obsessed with boobies and soft secret girly parts. He talks about them at inappropriate times, appropriate times and often in between.  His tone when discussing nekkid is a little less strident these days, and it dominates less of his one-sided conversations of late.

He talks about football and baseball and endless tales of his youth.  He argues with me, pleads with me, and insults me.  He encourages me to make sarcastic and caustic comments. He is sometimes bitter and mean.  Occasionally he tells me to write stuff here.  Good stuff, bad stuff, weird stuff, regrettable and forgettable stuff. He curses a lot.

The voice in my head is me and he will not shut the fuck up.

October 1, 2014

Does this ever happen to you?

I woke a bit after five this morning. It was wake up or piss the bed.  I stumbled to the bathroom. When I got back in bed I could not shut off my brain. Thoughts crashed and fought throughout my cranium like heavily armored knights at a medieval tourney melee.  So here I am sipping coffee surfing the web on the old iPad, ready for the day.

Yesterday was my son's birthday.

Today is my son's birthday.

Yes my two boys were born a day apart, albeit with a five year span intervening.  The youngest turned a magical 21, the oldest boy 26.  For good measure, I should point out my daughter just turned 28 two weeks ago.  And yes, as you count backwards on your fingers, I used to really enjoy the cold nights of late December and January. Hey, when it is cold out you gotta snuggle to keep warm...

I had the day off yesterday. I mowed the yard, washed the sheets and made a pot of chili for supper. We had perfect weather and I will admit to sitting on the patio for a while reading a book and enjoying a good cigar in the autumn sun.  The big willow waved a long limb in casual greeting and the pear trees sighed in the light breeze. I saw a chipmunk scurry along the privacy fence where gladiolas bloomed not so many weeks ago. Winter is coming and my sunny days on the patio will be but a memory.  On the other hand, that means the cold nights of late December and January are not far off...
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