April 30, 2015

What do you want for nothin'?

The wife and I went to the 'Natti to see the Cubs beat the Reds on Sunday. We had a great time. The seats were a gift from my daughter and son-in-law for my birthday. The weather was great.  Is there a better way to spend a sunny afternoon than watching baseball?


April 29, 2015

Liars and other matters

President Obama said that Republicans holding up his initiatives is the reason we have riots in Baltimore and Ferguson. I have a few questions.

1) what initiatives have been voted down by Congress that would have prevented the riots?

2) what Federal programs have been cut in the past 6 years? What actual spending has been reduced?

3) we have spent more than  $20,000,000,000,000 over the past fifty years to solve the very issues the President blames on Republicans. Tell me now, how much treasure and how many years will it take to solve the "plight of the urban city dweller"?  Let's spend it and be done with this nonsense.

4) why is it everyone else's fault when the very places that have high minority unemployment, poor education systems, high crime, etc. are all run by Democrats-- usually for decades? Maybe it is time to admit the liberal  Democrat policies are failures?

5) what does the higher incarceration rate for minorities have to do with anything? Is Mrs. Clinton and the President saying those in prison are innocent? Is there implication Whites are not arrested? Is there proof of widespread bias in the justice system? Bring out the facts, otherwise this is meaningless blather. Guys in sports cars get more speeding tickets than old ladies in a '98 Cutlass. So what?

5) why doesn't any Republican have the balls to ask these questions?


Mundane Musings

The coffee is hot, my toes are cold. Gray clouds are building to the west. A new day awaits. I have a very long drive ahead of me today. I am not excited about it, nor am I dreading it. It just is part of the job.

I have developed a large crack in the windshield of my company car. I first noticed it after the cold and rain over the weekend. It may or may not be getting longer. I am waiting word from the boss on how to fix it. Does he want me to turn it in on insurance or just pay for the replacement? In any case I will be on my way west with a broken windshield today.

Have a great Wednesday. I made alternate plans.

April 28, 2015

Burnin'

Nothing says "I am concerned about police behavior" like burning down a CVS. How Target, dress shops, and shoe stores were responsible for Freddy Gray escapes me.

Race is not an excuse to loot, and burning your own neighborhood is beyond stupid.

Riots, looting, and robbery is not protest.

April 25, 2015

Close to the Edge, Down by the River

It is a rainy Saturday here at the old homestead. The lawn is mowed, the walls repainted, my presentation for Monday's sales meeting is complete. I went and bought some donuts...mmmmm donuts....for breakfast. Since sitting on the patio, sipping adult beverages, and smoking fine imported cigars does not appear to be an option this morning, I think I shall find an old movie from the stash of recordings on the DVR. Andy Hardy or Esther Williams....Wait a minute, here is an Andy Hardy movie with Esther Williams in it! Never mind. I forgot I recorded "Breaking Away" last fall. I will watch it in honor of my son down at Indiana University. It is Little 500 weekend after all.

I'm off for more coffee.  It is good to be me, my friends. I hope you have a wonderful Saturday.

April 24, 2015

Once again I fail to compose a proper, meaningful, eye-catching title

The wife decided she wanted a collage of grandbaby pictures put up on the wall.in the entryway. Every frame is different and getting them all just right is a pain.  The adjacent hallway has family pictures  on both sides and she determined that was too much. So I patched nail holes yesterday and will have to repaint the walls sometime today. I took down pictures and a little shelf from the upstairs hall so I could hang some of the family pictures, so those holes had to be patched and it too needs painted. Yes, it is a different color. I really love my wife.

I have to get the lawn mowed today, Saturday is expected to be cold, wet, and blustery. Sunday will find me at the Cubs/Reds game. Look for me behind the plate, about ten rows up. The ducats were my birthday gift from my daughter and son-in-law.

In the meantime, I have the company sales meeting on Monday and I have to finish my presentation.

I hope the wife will go get some roller covers so I can paint tonight. That way I can put up the pictures and things on crappy-weather Saturday. I can mow at lunchtime today,  and work on my presentation the balance of the day. That leaves Sunday to go to the game and I can review my presentation Sunday evening.  No problem.

Today's Friday Music, if I posted it, would be a little Sinatra: probably "I've Got the World on a String". You may substitute your own selection.

April 23, 2015

Tax the rich

Let us say we follow the Democratic Party agenda and flat confiscate by taxes, legislation, whatever the total income or even the wealth of the top 1% , even though they pay 20% of the taxes. According to leading Cherokee Senators and Democrat Presidential contenders, the 1%ers are the problem. Apparently if the richest become poor the poor will become rich or something.

Anyway, assume we eliminate or "topple" the top 1%. You know what we will have then? A new richest 1%. If we give the confiscated funds to the poorest 10%, you know what we will have? A new poorest 10%. The only way to eliminate the rich and the poor, since those terms are relative, is to make everyone the same.  We all have the same house, food, standard of living, income. Some would call that Communism in its purest form. I call it an unworkable fantasy.

It does tell us a lot about the Democrat Party though.

As always, your rebuttal is welcome. I do reserve the right to ridicule your arguments.

Daddy, what did you do during the War on Women?

i had a need to recycle my morning coffee, so I pulled into a rest stop in south central LandofLincolnstan. My knees and ankles were stiff as I gimped up the slight incline of the sidewalk. As I neared the doors I heard a sharp clip clap behind me. Glancing in the glass I saw a woman coming up the walk about ten yards behind me.

I opened the door and stood aside for her to enter. She was in her late twenties, maybe mid-thirties, I did not look that close. She wore a nice business suit and heels, the source of the noise on the sidewalk. She looked straight ahead as she neared me, and as she came to me she said, just loud enough for me to hear "I can open a door".  Speechless, I pushed open the door marked 'men' wondering when manners went out of style.

April 22, 2015

Mr. Roboto

I went downstairs for my mediocre but free Hampton Inn breakfast this morning and the breakfast area was filled to capacity with nerds. Aparantly, there is a high school robotics competition here in St Louis today. Typical of most high school kids they are loud and rude. Nerd parents can be Little League parents too. Hover. Push. Back off, mom. And while you are at it you can stir your coffee and rehash your journey through diet soft drinks over at a table so the rest of us can get our caffeine fix?

Over in the corner two girls have notebooks spread out studying blueprints. At the big table in the middle a couple of Geek Sqaud wannabes held court with a few sycophant followers. Nervousness and excitement filled the air with an almost tangible electricity. I just wanted a place to eat my bowl of watery oatmeal. Apple Watch, here is you market.

As I headed to the elevators a group of moms and one dad were in the lobby making up sandwiches to throw into a big cooler. "Where is the ketchup?" One frumpy gal asked. "Didn't we buy ketchup? How can you eat a ham sandwich without ketchup?".  Some people eat sushi, monkey brains or snake. Pig's feet or kidneys or fried grasshoppers are some folks idea of tasty foods. Blood sausage, souse, duck feet, and  haggis are considered good eats. But ketchup on a ham sandwich? I think I'm gonna puke.

April 21, 2015

So Sorry

With typical arrogance, Snapple has decided the best selling point of their product is that it comes from New York and that New Yorkers love it. For many of us in flyover country that indicates a strong reason to NOT buy the product.  Many of us do not agree the center of the world is found on Manhattan and culture ends at the Hudson.

What kind of shallow jackass thinks the rest of us will say " Wow, some construction dude in NYC is shouting about Snapple, I should buy some".

Eat me.

Ease on down the road

WTH Mother Nature? It is a chilly morning today with temps in the low 40's. There is a frost warning. I hope you did not put your tomatoes out yet. The furnace kicked on at about 5:00 this morning, it was set on 65. Oh, well the weather is what it is.

I made a batch of fried biscuit donuts for our breakfast this morning. I rolled them in sugar. I suspect you wish you were me on this chilly Tuesday.

Once again I have nothing of import upon which to pontificate. Strange, I know.

April 20, 2015

when the lights go down in the city

Here we are on a rainy Monday and my wagon is empty of blog fodder.

I was walking across the living room holding my granddaughter this morning when I heard something hit the carpet. I said "what did you drop" even though I did not think she had anything in her hands. I turned to see I big glop of puked up chunky milk there on the carpet. What she dropped was her breakfast.

The power was out for the better part of three hours yesterday afternoon and evening. I don't know why. What a pain. I like my electronics. Luckily the dust rag and cleaning cloths still work. At least that was my wife's plan. Ha, my Kindle runs on batteries.

I'm still sore from the yard work I did Friday evening and Saturday. We have a giant willow in the backyard. It is gorgeous, but it sure does shed sticks. I filled a whole garbage can and still have almost an equal amount to go. My body is still protesting this hours-long game of pick up sticks. My thighs and back scream in protest every time I get up or down.

Hope you had a great weekend. Now get to work, you laggard.

April 19, 2015

Happy birthday

on this date in 1775 America was born. Like most births it involved blood and pain and noise.

April 18, 2015

Lighten up, Francis

Stevenson College in California apologized to students for serving Mexican food at an intergalactic space alien themed party. Some students complained because, well aliens, and some immigrants are illegal aliens. I'm serious. You can look it up. This is what the PC police have wrought. Common words, used correctly have become insults. Alien means foreign, different. It works for ET, it works for a person from another country. The controls used to operate a forklift could be alien to you. Are our college students really that ignorant? Sometimes serving Mexican food is just good eats. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

April 17, 2015

Third boxcar midnight train

Thick fog shrouds the neighborhood this morning. The Bradford pear blossoms make the trees look ghost-like against the eerie background. It promises to be a grand spring day later. It is Friday. The end of another work week. Life is good my friends. The granddaughter is squawking and chatting away in phonemes* downstairs, happy as a any four month old can be. My coffee cup is nearly empty, and so is my tank of ideas for this post.

If I bothered to post any Friday music, it would have been Roger Miller's sing along classic "King of the Road".

* I did learn something in that psych class 34 years ago.

April 16, 2015

I try

I resolved some time ago to let life's little annoyances roll off me like water on a duck's back.  You may not see it much on these pages, after all steam needs an outlet, but in everyday life I am a much calmer relaxed person. Unfortunately, I started today irritated.

I taught myself in Jr. High to get up with an alarm. Both parents worked and I needed to get up for school. After the first time I overslept, I put the alarm across the room. Presto, the alarm goes off to this day and I get up.

The wife is a chronic snooze slapper. In the early days of our marriage when I worked afternoons and she mornings it used to piss me off to no end when the alarm went off three or four times. I could never get her to understand that when the alarm goes off I wake up. If I wake up twice in ten minutes, I'm up.

This morning the wife had to get up at 5:45 am (babysitting stuff). So to my disgust,she set her alarm for 5:25. It went off at ten minute intervals until she finally got up at 5:45. She then had the gall to inquire on exiting the shower why I was up already?  Mr. Asshole urged me to say words of regret  like "rude, selfish, ignorant, bitch, fuck, stupid alarm". I said none of those. I just shrugged and sipped my coffee. You would think my tongue would be scarred after thirty plus years of biting it.

Trailer for sale or rent...

if you ate driving in the left lane on the Interstate and people pass you on the right, you are an asshole.

If you speed up when said people are forced to pass you on the right you are a fucking asshole.

If you are driving a Prius and do this I am certain even your kids think you are a fucking asshole.

April 14, 2015

I do amuse me

I suppose it is truly spring. My car's windshield is spattered with bug smears, the roof with bird shit.

Is it weird that I mumble "Toto, I don't think we are in Kansas anymore" every time I cross out of Kansas? I also have a compulsion to reach my hand forward to make sure I am the first in the car to get back into Indiana, even when I'm alone in the car. Look, you may think it strange, I find it amusing. Since I alone am arbiter of taste and humor around here I say it is right and good. And so it is.

I wish I had tucked a cigar into my briefcase. It is a fine day and I would not mind sitting outside the hotel stinking up the place. Instead, I will read a little more of my Louis L'Amour short story collection and then walk across the street for a cold beer and some BBQ.

I have spent more than two decades as a road warrior. I am visiting towns and cities that have not been on my path in the past. That is kind of cool.  I used to keep an old atlas with every town I made a business stop or stayed in a hotel highlighted. If I still did that the map of the states would look like a kid had mistaken the Atlas for a coloring book and had gone wild with the yellow markers.

April 13, 2015

So this is what road rage feels like

I found myself behind one of the biggest jerks I have encountered in palmist four decades on the nation's roadways today. I-70 is under significant reconstruction across Illinois, and the repairs are much needed. In one 7 mile stretch of one lane highway the pickup in front of me traveled the entire construction zone at FUCKING IDLE SPEED. After 1/4 mile there was nary a vehicle in front of him, he was just inching along, letting his truck go at its own speed, cell phone pressed to his ear. It took almost an hour twenty to get through the construction zone. What the he'll is wrong with people? I bet traffic was backed up 15 or 20 miles by the time we got out of the construction zone. This rat bastard's assholery delayed me enough that I hit St Louis at rush hour, and into KC two hours later than I planned. I try hard not to wish bad things on people, but this doichebag has it coming.

A taxing time

I finished my taxes this weekend. I also did both of my son's taxes. Actually all were done back in February, but since everybody owed some money, the youngest to the Feds, oldest son and I both owe the State of Indiana, I put it off finishing the forms.

The oldest boy always owes State taxes. He works as a waiter and they never withhold enough from his credit card tips to pay the State. Some days he would get nothing.* if they kept the full withholding. Anyway, I don't know what I was thinking when I filed his Federal taxes in February. He did not owe State taxes for once, he had a refund coming! This due to the fact he works a few shifts a week a manager and those hours are paid a higher, guaranteed wage via an actual paycheck instead of tips. A welcome screw-up on my part.

The youngest owed the Feds even though he is a full time college student. He works about 25-30 hours a week, more in the summer, to help meet expenses. He had to work more last summer/fall during my long unemployment, something I appreciated and loathed at the same time. I gladly paid his tax bill, not glad to pay the taxes, but glad to pay them for him.

I owe the State because my asshole former employers did not take out State taxes when they finally sent my due bonuses and commissions for the first half of the year (in December).




*Remember your friendly waiter DOES NOT make minimum wage, He/she works for tips. The State minimum wage for servers is like $2.15. If they don't make $2 an hour on tips most get fired for being lousy wait staff. Tip well folks, the server does not cook the food.

April 12, 2015

polorizing palaver

It looks to be a promising spring day here in central flyover country. It is a chilly 47 as I tap the keyboard, but we will be a sunny 60 plus this afternoon. Perhaps I shall venture out to the patio for a nice cigar this afternoon. I have plenty of yard work to do, so I may do both. Only time will tell.

It looks like Hillary will launch her campaign today. That prospect excites me about as much as another Bush in the White a house. What is it about politics that attracts such icky people?

Am I the only one who finds the idea of self-driving cars horrifying? Isn't that concept called a train? No matter how bad my fellow drivers behave on the roadways, I prefer to drive my own vehicle and I will be the old codger who refuses to give up the steering wheel. That said, what the heck is wrong with those people who refuse to use cruise control on the interstate, but lack the ability to hold speed for more than thirty seconds at a time? Will the self-driving Prius with Ohio plates actually get out of the left lane? Maybe these self-driving cars of the future are a good idea after all.

April 11, 2015

Oh No

My son-in-law is in Cheesehead land. My wife is working a rare weekend shift at the occasional part time job. My daughter has meetings this afternoon. That leaves me as the only available babysitter for my granddaughter. A semi-insulting panic has set it. "Will you be OK?"

I raised three kids of my own. Especially in the case of the two oldest, I spent a lot of time changing diapers and feeding them bottles. She is four months old. Even though I think she is perfect in every way, let's be honest. She sleeps. She eats. She shits and pees. She coos and kicks her feet. She cries.

I got it.

things you should never do

On the cruise ship they always have several desserts on the menu, including one low sugar or no sugar offering. One evening a low auger pumpkin pie Was offered. My wife loves pumpkin pie. She ordered a piece. The waiter told her maybe she should get something else. She said no she liked pumpkin pie. He told her it was "not like real pumpkin pie, maybe the chocolate raspberry cake instead?" Again, she said she would try the pie anyway. He said he would bring both the pie and some of the cake.

When he left to place the order I told her she should never order anything the waiter says is bad. She replied "how bad can it be?"

It was bad.  Really bad. It was tasteless white custard with a scant sprinkling of pumpkin pie spice. Trust me, that description makes it sound more appetizing than it was.

She ate the cake. She ate half the pie, just to prove a point. After 30 plus years a part of me has rubbed off on her.

April 10, 2015

Lurking just below the surface

Spring.  My least favorite of the seasons.

Have you ever had your head cranked tight in a vice  vise. Then you sneeze every five minutes? Add in a constant desire to sleep. Welcome to my world. Pollen, weather, perhaps the very clouds are all combining to make this a crappy day so far. I suspect I will be short-tempered and irritable, so if you are looking for an argument, bring it on. Otherwise, I am going to have to bite my tongue lest I bite my fair spouse's head off over something trivial that will rub me like sandpaper. I have a strong tendency to be a jerk when I don't feel good. It has taken me fifty plus years to recognize this trait and try to forestall a quick appearance from my alter-ego, Mr. Asshole.

April 9, 2015

What do you want?

The South Carolina cop who apparently shot the man in the back has been fired. He has been charged with murder and is locked in jail without bond. All as it should be. He will get a fair trial before a jury of his peers.

We don't have vigilante justice in this nation. The system is working the outrage is misplaced.

April 8, 2015

trust and do not verify

I know a bit about negotiating. To have an agreement both parties have to accept THE SAME terms and conditions. Try going to your car dealership and "negotiate" like Obama. Tell them you are going to pay $10,000 for that white Prius. Then proclaim that you have a deal.

Surprise! You do not have an agreement. You will not have a new car to drive ten miles under the speed limit in the left lane of the interstate. The sales guys will laugh at you, just like the Mullahs are laughing at Obama. Iran thinks Obama is even weaker than Jimmah Carter.

As long as Iran claims the terms of the deal are different than Obama says, then there is no deal. This is what happens when you elect a person with no experience as President.

As long as Iran claims their goal as a nation is to eliminate Israel and then to destroy America, we would be stupid to lift sanctions. You do not have to be a history major to see that as long as only one side wants peace there is no peace. Only the strong survive. Darwinism works for nations as well as biology.

Maybe you liberal wimp types can relate to these terms: if you give your lunch money to a bully all you have done is guarantee you will go hungry again tomorrow.

Mundane

I think vacation is catching up to me. I had to force myself out of bed this morning. I stumbled downstairs and made a coffee cake from a box mix. I may make a rare appearance in the main office later this morning.

The neighbor's dog is doing its constant howling/barking thing.  I hope they get their house sold soon.  I will not miss that damn dog. Of course it is not the dog's fault. It is the owners'. It appears the house is priced to sell, so if you are looking for a nice house on a quiet cul-de-sac with wonderful neighbors...

The sky has that weird yellow gray cast to it that always presages nasty weather in these parts. The weather map is sporting various hues of red to the south and west, not a good sign. Sharing the goodness that is me with the folks at the office may depend on just how wet I will get walking from the parking lot to the door. There is always tomorrow and I have no pressing need to go anyway. I'm sweet, as you know, like sugar and similarly will melt in the rain.

April 7, 2015

Thinking about stuff

They have these machines that take a photo and "print" it on a cake. If I owned a bakery and you wanted me to print a graphic pornography image do I have the right to refuse? Can I just say no to a cake shaped like a giant penis or a par of boobs? What I'f the local Skinhead club wants a swastica in red icing? Is there a line a business can draw? What do you think?

Easy homemade chicken and dumplings

A little seasonably warm weather mixed with rain and a healthy shake of thunder gives us a dose of spring fever today. You can almost watch the buds grow on the slender branches of the maple tree out front. The grass is greening even as I write. Honest.

There was a basketball game last night. I did not watch.

Is there anyone outside of the Administration who thinks this deal with Iran is a good thing? Can someone explain it to me? I am not a complete moron, and sometimes we may not agree on politics, but disagreement does not mean the other party is dumb (naive perhaps, but not dumb). For the life of me I can see nothing good in this deal.




April 6, 2015

State of journalism

if making up stories from whole cloth, ruining lives and reputations in the process, does not get you fired from Rolling Stone, I'm not sure what will.

At this point I am not sure I would trust Rolling Stone as toilet paper. Of course that magazine's integrity for fair and honest reporting ranks right up there with the bias found throughout the media.


April 5, 2015

Dear Al, Dear Jessie

What time will you guys be in Lexington to protest the hate speech from the Kentucky basketball player? I assume he will be kicked out of school for his rasicst and profane comments, just like those rascist and profane frat guys in Arizona?

We do not tolerate that kind of hate speech in America. Right?

Happy Easter

I dreamed I sailed away. I saw exotic ports, I drank cold drinks with paper umbrellas. I soaked in the sun. I zip lined through jungles, I snorkeled over coral reefs. I drank Mexican beer on a Mexican beach. I drove a Jeep in the warm rains on a dirt road in Central America. What a dream; seven days, four ports and three countries were framed by endless ocean vistas from the deck of a ship. It was not a sleep dream, it was a dream vacation.

I have been gone for 8 days, living the high life. Now I'm back, it is chilly and I want to be drinking my coffee in a deck chair, not my recliner.

Yes, I cheated you with canned posts. But this one is so fresh you can still smell a faint lingering fragrance of Mexico, Belize, and Honduras. Mea Culpa.

It is sometimes good to be me.

April 3, 2015

Today my mood ring reads "belligerent"

if I had any intention of posting Friday music today I would choose Vacation from the 80s girl group The GoGos. Because I need one. Not a GoGo, but rather a vacation. It is not likely I will have either.

But it is the Holy of Holiest days and I will offer a prayer today. You may spend your Friday as you see fit.

April 2, 2015

Like the song says

There is a song called "I'm in the mood for love". Robert Plant sang he was in the mood for a melody. There is even a big band tune titled " in the mood".

But I am not in the mood to post anything of value.

April 1, 2015

Reparations. Why not?

Slavery was a horrible thing. Some Black leaders have called for reparations.  I am on board. Any former slave should get $10,000,000 in tax-free payments. Now if you were born anytime after April of 1865 you will have to get by like most of the rest of us. Work hard, get an education, never let anyone tell you you can't succeed.
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