March 31, 2016

A Post

i guess I should put up a post, lest you think I have abandoned the place.

I'm alive and well, and inundated with work. It happens sometimes.

March 29, 2016

It is not you, it is me

Brrrr. It is a chilly 30F right now. But it will be sunny, so that is a plus.

I wish I could blame writers block for the lack of meaningful content. The truth is I just lack motivation, passion, and inspiration.

What say we take the easy way out and post something interesting from YouTube?



March 28, 2016

I wish

...I had something of interest. I don't. Do you care I just ate a couple of bones of ribs,  the wife's leftover Sunday dinner? I didn't think so. Do you care about basketball? I have no commentary, didn't watch any of the games. Maybe something later. Maybe not. I'm alive and breathing. There is that.

March 27, 2016

He has risen

it is not about the candy or colored eggs. It is not about the Easter Bunny.

March 25, 2016

This is not the post you are looking for

What, do you think in the midst of all of the recent punditry, soapbox standing, and political posturing I have subjected you to I have forgotten about the Friday music?

To quote the Duke in Big Jake: " Not hardly".


I'm sorry

I'm sorry our President feels the need to apologize to the world for the United States. He apologized to the Argentinians* yesterday. I suspect he apologized to the Castros earlier in the week too. After all, if it wasn't for the US inventing baseball, the murdering thug Che would not have had a baseball stadium for his executions.

In Argentina Obama said he is sorry we did not do more about human rights abuses. In those days the democrats and the public had enough of interfering in the internal strife of other nations. We had just finished in Vietnam.

I used to dismiss it out of hand when Obama's critics accused him of hating this country and all it stands for. Not any more. No wonder Trump's campaign theme of making America great again resonates with so many.

If Obama wants to apologize for the human rights violation leftists/progressives/socialists/communists perpetrated in this same era in Vietnam, North Korea, Cambodia, the USSR, Communist China, Angola, Nicaragua, El Salvador, East Germany, or Yugoslavia that might be worth listening to.

* no link, the story makes me sick and sad.

March 24, 2016

Blamestorming

It is the lack of jobs. It is the hopelessness. It is discrimination. It is because they live in these horrible ghettoes. It is because they feel shut out of their adopted nation's language and culture. It is economic inequity. It is all bullshit.

It is their religion that causes these animals to blow up and murder innocent people. There is a Chinatown in every major city in the world. They face economic, language and cultural barriers. They face discrimination. Yet they are not the ones blowing up children watching a marathon in Boston or in Chechnyan schools.

Millions of people live unimaginable poverty in Mumbai and Calcutta and New Deli but it was not Hindus who flew planes into the World Trade Center, blew up a bus in London, or airport in Brussels.

Immigrants and refugees from Central America and Mexico come to the US. They live in the shadows, congregate in ghettos, face language barriers. Do the jobs Americans won't do, which translates to hard menial work with substandard pay. Yet Hispanics are not blowing up Paris cafes, shooting up newspaper offices, or bombing trains in Spain.

There is one common denominator in nearly every act of terrorism for the past 30 years. It is not poverty, it is not language, it is not nationality. It is Islam. And it is sure as the next sunrise not a religion of peace.

March 23, 2016

I want to hear the scream of the butterfly

I don't want oatmeal for breakfast. Maybe I'll have some toast. I could fry up an egg. Who wants to make me some biscuits and gravy?

I have to get the company car serviced this morning. Then I need to make an appearance at the home office. I plan on being there no more than a couple of hours. Plans never work like they are supposed to.

I think, if I bust my hump, I can see ten customers in Wisconsin in two days, my front door to my front door. That includes stops on the east coast all the way to the greenest of bays, then looping through the east-central interior on my way back south. Plans never work out like they are supposed to. Another night in hotel will only help me keep my hotel chain Diamond Staus in 2017.


If the Unions won't turn on Hillary for bragging she is going to "put a bunch of coal miners out of business" then there is no doubt the Unions represent the Democrat Party, not the workers. If you are a Teamster, Steelworker, UAWer, IBEWer, or any other alphabet Union-type in the AFL-CIO, a Wobblie, Ceasar Chavez wannabe, or United Mine Worker and you tug that lever for a democrat you are a hypocrite, an ignoramus, and a fool. The fact that the Unions and Democrats in general are not condemning her words speaks volumes.

Do we really need a whole month of practice games in Spring Training? Watching those efforts is like buying tickets to see a cover band. The Little River Band Cover Band may sound like The Little River Band, but it is not The Little River Band. It is a cover band. With apologies to The Middle , I say bring on the real thing.

March 22, 2016

Obama and Harry Potter

It seems like our President is much like the characters in the Harry Potter series. In those books the evil Lord Voltemort is so terrifying that the people will not say his name. Instead, they called Voltemort "You-know-who".

Obama feels the same way about the scary, evil people in this world. He cannot bring himself to actually say "Radical Islamic Terrorists".

Sic Semper Tyrannis

If I look to my right I can see a beautiful full moon through the window. It is tinged orange-gold by the sun rising slowly under the horizon. The house is quiet. The sounds of traffic on the distant highway are a muted reminder I now live in the city. Life continues apace.

The headlines are grim and sad news: shootings, bombings, death, violence. The world is a dangerous place. Don't fool yourself, it always has been. There is a reason that "man's inhumanity to man" remains an enduring theme of art and literature. Do you think life is tough now? Life was cheaper a thousand and two thousand years ago. Man is nature's top predator and always has been since Cain whacked Able.

Do you think Clinton or Trump are any different than a feudal lord who believes his power derives from Devine right? You are no more important than a serf on a manor. You are a body to be used; you grow fodder, you are cannon fodder, you are just votes.

I've been studying on the last days of Rome: the debauched Emperors, the constant change at the top, endless wars. But the Empire chugged on, administered by the bureaucrats, governing while the politicians politicized. In our minds the Roman Empire lasted centuries. It was only a couple of hundred years between Augustus and Commodus (whose name includes "commode" and "odious" for good reason). Don't fool yourself into thinking the last years of the Republic were so great either. Funny, Julius Caesar and almost every ruler that followed vowed to return Rome to its glory days. Cicero was pining for the good old days almost a century before we started numbering the years forwards at zero.

Jefferson and Madison would weep at what their experiment has become. Washington -- a close examination will reveal he liked being large and in charge. Adams was disliked by just about anyone who ever met him. I suspect Trump and Hilary and Cruz were never the homecoming queen or king either. They will get their revenge now on us ignorant peasants.

Instead of baking delicious cakes, Dolly Madison should have made James put in a term limit provision into the Constitution. We would all be better off.

March 21, 2016

Two households, both alike in dignity, In fair Verona, where we lay our scene,

I had to get up and pee at O'dark-thirty. That happens when you get older. I managed to go back to sleep, even though work stuff was slipping past the weekend firewall I erected in my brain. Some weird dreams ensued. Most days I wake up on my own at around 6:30 or so, if not earlier. The wife's alarm goes off at 6:40 if I sleep later. Since she does not have to watch the grandkid today she did not set her alarm. Somehow I slept until just past seven. How did that happen?

I had a good weekend. It was chilly, but it did not rain. I cooked some burgers on the grill yesterday. Two thirds of my kids came to see me. Life is good.

Have a great Monday

March 20, 2016

Because it is my blog, that's why


I ain't got time for that now

Last week -- no, it was the week before -- I dropped the boss off at the hotel. He wanted to change before boarding a flight to Germany. Since the hotel has a shuttle to the airport I headed towards home. I passed a big school. The sign on the corner told me it was Maine North High School. Synapses fired. Ahh, that is where they filmed the classic flick The Breakfast Club.

I called my wife to tell her what I had seen. She asked me "Why do you even know crap like that?". Sigh.

I suspect you are not impressed either.

March 19, 2016

No time for dancing, or lovey dovey

Saturday. Once again I woke up early. So it goes, I guess. That means I have more time to blog before I do whatever it is I might do later this morning. Yay for me. Yay for you, maybe. I suppose it depends on your point of view.

Hold on for a sec.

OK, I'm back. I had to go downstairs and get some more coffee. I also copped a couple of the wife's little chocolate donuts. Is it rude to type with your mouth full?

The youngest boy will be here this evening. He is going to supper with us before heading to a concert later tonight. He will be back to spend the night. Unfortunately he has to get back to school since he has to work in the morning. I hardly get to see him anymore.

Tomorrow, my other two kids and their families/girlfriends, etc., are coming over for a cookout. It is supposed to be chilly, but the grill works fine in cold weather. Cheeseburgers are on the menu. I sincerely hope I can avoid turning them into hockey pucks.

It seems I've lost my ability to cook a decent meal. Earlier in the week I attempted fried chicken, gravy, mashed spuds. I burned the chicken. This meant I had to grab a different skillet for the gravy (who wants black bits in their gravy?). Without good drippings the gravy was bland. It was also lumpy. WTH? I'm no gourmet cook, but usually my comfort food is at least a triple if not a home run. This effort was not even a hard hit single; more of a reached base on an error-type affair. I did redeem myself a bit Thursday. I pulled a frozen enchilada casserole from the freezer I made several weeks ago and made a pretty decent batch of salsa to go along with it.

That about covers the minutiae of my life. I think I'll read your blogs then see what old movie attracts my attention this morning. I might do one of the big "E"s: Esther or Elvis. And for goodness sake if you ask me who "Esther" is I'm going to come over there and bop you on the head like little bunny boop boop. Seriously...

March 18, 2016

So

....should I just assume you have stopped blogging?

This ain't no fooling around

Hoops mania is in full throttle and I don't care. Much. I'm not a big fan of basketball.

Here is something to ponder. The census counts everyone, citizen or not. Many non-citizens live in big cities and in some of the more populous states. When Congress apportions Congressional seats they do it based on the census, not the count of citizens, thus some states are over-represented.

So what? Well electoral votes are allocated based on Congressional seats, thus states with heavy illegal populations (who theoretically cannot vote) have more sway in the general election where electoral votes are usually winner takes all. Thus California, New York, Illinois, Florida, and Texas have more electoral power than they should because they have a larger population of illegals. Ask me again why the Democrats are in favor of open borders?

Squeezing lime juice when you have a cut on your thumb makes for exciting cooking.

It is Friday, finally the end of what has been a very long week. I think someone snuck an extra Tuesday in there or something.

In the midst of all this rambling I did not forget the Friday music:


What? Who doesn't think the mom is hot?  Plus the music is pop at its finest. Still reading? Tell me happy birthday on Sunday. Have a great weekend.

March 17, 2016

This ain't no party, this ain't no disco

It is still dark, but the birds are chirping in the trees. A spate of warm weather and some recent rain has the grass greening nicely. The tulips around the maple in the front yard are poking through the mulch and the trees are starting to burst out in leaves. Spring is here. Oh, we will still get some cold. It is supposed to drop into the thirties this weekend, but warm days are ahead. I was excited to see the trees in bloom on my quick trip to southern Missouri earlier in the week. The past couple of years marks the first time in more than two decades I have not had customers in the Carolinas, and I miss the warm weather and early springs those visits provided to help me through the February cold. In the end we had a very mild winter, little snow and not too many days of sub-zero temps. I can live with that.

It is St. Paddy's Day; since I'm not Irish nor am I Catholic. I mostly don't care. I won't wear green, unless by accident.

So ends another blog entry. Riveting stuff isn't it? You get what you pay for around here.

March 15, 2016

Well crap

Sitting in the car for hours on end yesterday I composed a first-rate post in my head. By the time I got to the hotel it was gone. I still cannot even remember what I was going to write about, forget the details of the post itself. Getting old sucks.

You might remember I bought a new phone a few weeks ago. During my drive I discovered somewhere in the neighborhood of 1,000 songs I had ripped from my personal CD collection have disappeared from my phone. WTH? According to the interwebz, and everything is true on the Internet, iTunes may even have deleted them from my library. I will have to check when I get home. If so, I'm gonna be pissed.

March 14, 2016

314

Apricot
Peach
Black raspberry
Apple
Lemon
Pecan
Sugar cream
Cherry
Strawberry rhubarb

All pies I would like to have on pi day

March 13, 2016

You can't say that

What happened tonight in Chicago is why we need Trump, as obnoxious as he is, to keep going. I am not a Trump supporter, and I reject much of his rhetoric. But he has a right to give a speech, even an obnoxious speech, without it being interrupted by demonstrators. All of us do. Trump is revealing how impossible it is to have a normal democracy with the activist left, who think their crying need for “safe spaces” gives them the right to silence their opponents. Link
Throughout history the left has tried to shut down and censor speech they found disagreeable. Even a cursory study of the French Revolution, Soviet Russia, Nazi Germany ( yes, Hitler was a socialist), communist China, North Korea, North Vietnam, the Khmer Rouge, Cuba, and modern Venezuela all show a tendency to silence any opposition and stifle free speech.

Leftism cannot stand the light of day. It is a vampire that sucks the blood of the economy and the citizens. I continue to be amazed at just how intolerant the supposedly tolerant left is. You see it in their speech. You find it at their blogs. They spew vitriol and hate at anyone who dares disagree. 

I find Hillary Clinton loathsome. I would vote for an illiterate crack whore from deepest Appalacia who could not even make change for a dollar before I would cast my vote for Hillary. But I would never dream of preventing Clinton from standing on stage offering her prevarications and outright lies.

It is not the supposed fascists righties who are blocking free speech. 

If you don't like what Trump says, do not listen. Vote for someone else. You have no right to keep someone else from listening or voting for candidates you do not like. Censorship is evil. Stifling the free exchange of ideas -- no matter how bad they may be -- is the first step towards despotism. Free speech exists exactly to protect the ideas we find most detestable. 

'Nuff said


The rock world lost another great one Friday when Keith Emerson died.

March 12, 2016

TMI. You were warned

Long time readers know from stories here that there was a time I had significant digestive issues. One of my meds, not the one that muffles the voices in my head, gave me significant bouts of diarrhea. I'm talking colonoscopy prep type episodes. Explosive, corrosive ass soup so odiferous it would make a sewage plant worker tear up in disgust occurred once or twice a week. I threw away more stained tightly-whiteys than you can imagine. I'm off those meds now.

These days I shit cellophane wrapped cubes.

That is a lie.

My bowel movements have become more routine these days. Now, my turds are compact elongated tennis balls, solid and firm. And they routinely stop up the toilet, especially the low water types.

Thursday morning I dropped an especially heavy load of these rocks into the hotel toilet. I wiped with only a little more paper than Sheryl Crow recommends, and flushed. I saw the familiar swirl of water and the slow rise of the bowl contents. I had log jammed another toilet. I finished packing and as a courtesy told the front desk about the situation as I checked out. I was, of course, a bit embarrassed.

Yesterday evening I got an email from the hotel apologizing for the stopped up crapper! They offered bonus points out of their concern that my stay was not perfect. The hotel apologized because I stopped up their toilet. Can you imagine?

For more than a decade I have stayed exclusively in hotels from the Hilton chain whenever I can choose. I have stayed at this particular Hilton Garden Inn more times than I can count. Now you know why.

March 10, 2016

Who was Dan Ryan and why does his highway suck so much?

I just don't have the energy. Traveling with the Very Big Boss from Germany this week. All day at customers, late dinners. I need to take five minutes for myself before I address the day's emails, call the wife and prepare for the morrow's efforts. Not complaining, just stating facts.

And writing incomplete sentences.

This seems appropriate:


I am not normally a big fan of jazz, but these guys just ooze cool.


About the blog

not today

You may provide your own content in the comment section


March 8, 2016

Mysterious musings

It is a gorgeous day and I'm stuck in the office. Worse, I don't even have time to crank out a meaningful post. You probably should not expect much for the rest of the week either. Unless I write something brilliant. Then you can set the bar higher. You should probably check by every hour or two, just to be safe. Or not. It is up to you. I'm not one of those liberal-types who is always trying to tell you what to do.

March 7, 2016

So long and thanks

18

For those of us in Indiana who ate Colts fans that number says it all.

18

Thanks for showing us excellence. I will miss you on Sunday's, that is a fact.

March 6, 2016

"Charge for the guns!" he said

After I wrote yesterday's exciting and thought-provoking post I went down to see what was available for breakfast. I looked askew at the wife's bag of little chocolate donuts. I considered the granddaughter's Cheerios. Then I spied the fresh pineapple we bought at the store earlier in the week. I had placed it upside down in the 'fridge so that the sugars would evenly distribute. I peeled and sliced and cored the fruit.

Man, do I love me some pineapple. This one was sweet and buttery and just the perfect state of ripeness. Every bite brought back memories of Hawaii, of summer evenings when I grilled slices along with chicken kabobs, of pineapple sundaes, of Mai-tais, Dole pineapple whip and ham steaks and pineapple. Yes, I love pineapple. Especially fresh pineapple. I had some for breakfast this morning too.

Oh, to be back in Hawaii.


March 5, 2016

Forward, the Light Brigade!

We tried a new pizza place last night. I'm not sure what was in the sauce, but I sure had some weird-ass dreams. Fortunately, the dreams faded away with wakefulness like fog in the morning sun so you will not have to read the nonsensical tales.

Traversing Illinois yesterday I drove for a bit on old Route 66. I suppose I should say I drove on new old Route 66. The original old narrow highway lay just to my right, about 30 feet away, crumbling apart. Grass and weeds poked through the old concrete. The nostalgic me kept one eye on the old road and was transported back to a time I never knew. I drove past the Mother Jones monument in the Union Miner's Cemetery in Mt. Olive but did not stop. I saw it from the road and that was enough. I was not that interested in paying homage to a socialist and Wobblie, anyway.

I cut across the Land of Lincoln on Illinois 16 and made it home just before traffic got really bad on the northeast side of Indy. Yay for me.

I'm not sure if we have any plans for today. It looks like it is going to be cloudy and cool, but not cold today. I'm sure the boss will have something in mind. Have a good Saturday.

March 4, 2016

Rode the six hundred

Friday at last. I have a couple of quick customer visits then I'm on the road home. I have to take only two major decisions this morning. Do I eat the crappy Hampton Inn breakfast or get something better? Do I take I-70 or back roads on my way home?

I had some first rate BBQ for supper last night. The place was packed so I grabbed mine to go and ate in the hotel room.  That was not my first choice, but such is life. 

I have been reading a historical novel about Richard the Lionhearted. It needs to get better and real soon. 

I watched some of the highlights from the GOP debate last night. Is there a single candidate, including the ones running for the donkey party, that you would want to have over for dinner? Could you imagine hanging on the patio with a beer and cigar with any of those assholes? I suppose that is true of just about any politician. I guess you generally have to be an asshole to get to the top. I doubt Caesar or Napoleon was a ball of laughs to hang with either. 

My first thought when typing the previous paragraph was to conclude that I would never be top dog. That concludes that I am not a self-centered egomaniac asshole. I like to think not, but then it occurs to me that I know some self-centered egomaniac assholes that are not top dog. I realize not one of you has invited me for dinner or to hang on the patio for a beer and cigar and I wonder....

I'm not handsome or athletic, I have no money, I'm not the smartest guy in the room. If I indeed have major personality defects, then I really have nothing to offer the world. That means I'm just another human toiling away on this mortal coil until my time is up, just like billions of others. Are you telling me I'm not a special snowflake? I'm not unique and special? As my old blogging buddy Dax Montana used to say --just damn.

March 3, 2016

We interrupt the normal flow of posts

Eat me Mitt Romney. 

We don't need a political lecture from the guy who blew a slam-dunk election against an unpopular President.

And you can just suck a lemon John McCain. 

You are a loser too.

All in the Valley of Death

We got less than an inch of snow overnight. Mostly it stuck on the grass. It is wet and heavy. I cleaned the walk and tossed some fake salt ice melt onto the drive. The snow won't be around long.

I wish I had something of interest to discuss with you this morning. I don't. Perhaps an interesting event during my travels will be worthy of a blog post tonight or in the morning. Not too interesting though. I don't want to be caught up in a Ferguson riot or a bank robbery. I could be happy to never be in another car crash.

I just started listening to a British history podcast I recently discovered. There are a hundred-plus episodes, each about 30 minutes long. I think I will listen further while I'm in the car today. I have only listened to a couple of episodes, but I like what I hear. The podcast is very much the way I would teach and discuss history if I was a history teacher. Most history curriculums are horrible and the associated textbooks even worse. Frankly, I learned more from Mike Wallace's "Biography" and the "And you were there" series narrated by Walter Cronkite* than I did from any history teacher in elementary, middle, and high school. I taught myself more history than all of those educators combined. That is not a criticism, but fact.

I wish you joy of this Thursday.

*Did you watch these in school?:


March 2, 2016

Half a League Onward

My phone tells me it is 19 F outside this morning. We might get a dusting of snow. I have no further comment on the weather.

I made a pot of potato soup for supper last night. Fresh brewed tea; mine plain, the wife's sweet, and BLT sandwiches rounded out the meal. The best part is I will get potato soup for lunch. It is one of those foods that reheats well. In fact, it may be better today.

It looks like we are edging closer to a Trump-Clinton election in the fall. A liar and a fraud. Seriously, this is the best we can do for Presidential candidates? Just as Obama made us miss GW, either of these two could make us long for The Obama. The US survived Fillmore, Pierce, Buchanan, Grant, Harding, both Johnsons, and Carter. We can muddle through this too. I honestly cannot imagine which front runner would be the worst. We already know we cannot rely on Congress to be anything but business as usual. More people liked the 1980s movie flop Ishtar than like the current Congress.

At least we don't live in Venezuela.

There is a lonely robin singing in the maple tree out front. That is a good sign. Spring is coming, baby.


March 1, 2016

Burning Down the House

Back in the late 1980s and early 1990s I was a very young customer service manager at a ball bearing plant. At that time there was a terrific shortage of bearings in the US. Lead times were long and delivery was poor. Customers were put on allocations. This means they were limited in the quantities and sizes they could buy; much like toilet paper is unavailable  in any progressive-run country.

Customers spent their days angry and frustrated and it was up to my little fiefdom to try and placate the seething buyer on the other end of the phone line. Often top executives from major customers came directly to the plant to vent their rage. One day a VP of Purchasing from one of the big agriculture implement manufacturers came to complain about our horrible deliveries, the allocations, and the occasional quality issues and their effects on the customer's manufacturing plants. Even a Deere can't run without bearings.

We are all in the big conference room. The heavies from the plant were present -- plant manager, department heads, production control, and little insignificant me.  Mr. VP ranted and cursed. The team from our side told how we have striven to fix the various problems in procurement, production, and quality. We described our heroic efforts in spite of nearly insurmountable issues to get the big customer his product.

"I get it", he said. "You guys are great firefighters. The only problem is it looks like every single damn employee here is a fucking arsonist".

Man, did I get the evil eye from the bosses when I laughed out loud. But it did break the tension in the room. When the big cheese customer left he was somewhat satisfied things were going to get better. After all, that was the purpose of his trip. To this day that is still the best line ever delivered by a customer to a supplier.
Consider everything here that is of original content copyrighted as of March 2005