July 15, 2018

Please Joe, tell me more

I started on the last book of the Sharpe series by Bernard Cornwell Friday evening. That is number 20, if you are counting. According to my blog archives, I started re-reading the series around May 29. That means I am knocking off a book about every 3 days or so. In my spare time. In my youth I probably could have read all 20 books easily in less than 25 days. I was a loser middle school kid then with nothing better to do than read and fondle myself. Things didn't get much better in high school.

It was easier to read in those days. I only needed 3-4 hours of sleep. There was nothing on tv. There were no video games. I could read two Louis L'Amour westerns in a day, if I worked at it. I can't sit and do marathon readings like that any more. You may read faster. Hah, those 20 books are without a doubt more books than my wife has read in 40 years, combined. By a factor of 20. That's just one more thing we do not have in common.

Anyway, to celebrate my almost done with the books moment, I watched Waterloo yesterday. If you can't find a copy come on over and watch it with me next week. You bring the beer and steaks. I will provide the popcorn. Just kidding. You could send me a box of Omaha steaks and I'll loan you my movie though. You will also have to give your first born and the title to your truck or car as collateral. That movie is rare and hard to find. Unless you go to Amazon. It is easy to find it there. But it is not a cheap DVD, you won't find it in the $5 bin at WalMart.

I think I'll start in on the Patrick O'Brien stuff again next. It has been a few years, so why not?

Edit. True confession this was a canned post. Freshly canned, mind you. I was in a chatty mood yesterday, but saw no need to throw up tree posts on a Saturday. OK, the picture was canned some three weeks ago, still I'm sure you get my point. Anyway, I did not watch Waterloo. I took down tne DVD to view it on the big TV. Instead I discovered a very good mini series on Napoleon * from about a decade ago that I had never seen. As near as I can tell, the costumes and facts are pretty accurate. The battle scenes are pretty meh.  The actor playing Bonaparte  is too old, though. Lest we forget, Napoleon was in his twenties when he conquered Italy as a general and was only in his thirties when he tamed all of Europe. He was just 46 at Waterloo. Take that Zuckerburg, you slacker.

*sorry, my crappy first generation iPad won't connect and link to imdb.

July 14, 2018

I know, let's let everyone out of prison

Today marks Bastille Day in France. For me it serves not as a reminder of independence, but as a warning of what happens when progressives get in charge. Getting rid of a king was a good thing, mind you, but the excesses and freedom-destroying ways of the leftists always ends in disaster. Things started with freeing criminals in France and moved on to outlawing churches right to chopping off the heads of people who failed to toe the line. Then they gave us a the metric system. Finally, the end result, as always, was a dictator.

Lest we think this progression an anomaly, see Russia, China, Cuba, Cambodia, and Venezuela.

From now on I will refer to lefty / progressive types as Levellers or Diggers* here at the old blog. At my semi-advanced age I still learn new stuff. Imagine my surprise when studying a bit on the English Civil Wars to run across a bunch of Marxists before Marx existed. At least the levellers admitted the goal was everyone would be leveled off, not a pipe dream that everyone would be raised to wealth.

The Leveller-types in Revolutionary France ended dressing like beggars so that they did not pretend to be better than the lowest of society. Imagine, the leaders of various Committees sitting around in filthy rags in the name of equality. Form over substance and hypocrisy are the hallmarks of Diggers. Even modern ones like millionaire Bernie Sanders.

*BTW the diggers were squatting on someone else's land. Note the Leveller-leanings in the article. Do a little research on your own to learn more. It doesn't cost nothin' to surf the interwebz. I can't do all the heavy lifting.

Saturday Snapshots

Hawaii 2014

July 13, 2018


It is Friday the Thirteenth. I'm not superstitious about this day. In fact, I am tempted to prop up my ladder and jog a few circles around and under it. I won't because the neighbors would think me insane and, well, there is no point in tempting fate. But really, I'm not superstitious.

July 12, 2018

Weekly Recap

I spent a bit of time on the road this week. I cut a zigzag swath across the Buckeye state from the southwest corner to the northeast corner and back in a US 30 straight line to the safe and comforting arms of the Hoosier heartland. Alas, no beers with Cappy or the MIA EOB since I stayed as far from metro Cleveland as possible. I wooshed into Wooster.

I have no interesting tales from the road to offer. There was no egregious driving, no interesting wayside attractions; unless you countenance the Smuckers Farm Store in Orrville. I did a quick drive-by, never exiting the car. I did not have time for a football side trip to Canton.

I spent a good portion of the drives listening to the Revolutions Podcast.

And there you have it, a quick summary of my week so far.

Riveting, ain't it?

July 10, 2018

Historical Beauty

George Romney  Wikipedia
Lady Hamilton (1765 - 1815) was married to Sir William Hamilton, British ambassador to Naples. She was the favorite model for artist George Romney. Mostly, she is remembered as the mistress of Lord Horatio Nelson, Hero of the Nile and Trafalgar.

She was known as a raving beauty in her day, and she is absolutely gorgeous by today's standards as well.

July 9, 2018

I joyfully drank from a plastic straw

I need some time off to recover from my weekend. Sheesh.

Friday we met some old friends for dinner. We went to our other friends' house to hang by the pool and play cards on Saturday. Yesterday we did yard work. The wife worked me like a slave driver to make up for the work we didn't do Saturday. I partially rebuilt a walkway through the fence. That involved moving pavers and hacking out roots that were lifting the stones.  I tore out six shrubs around the patio. We weeded the garden patch and trimmed trees and weeded flower beds. The wife would have kept working, but I waved a sweaty white flag and begged for mercy.

Other than that, we did nothing of interest all weekend.

July 6, 2018

Not so passing thought

I am reminded, yet again, That I have nothing to complain about.

TMI, boring stuff, wrap up. No weather report

I was up a good portion of the night sick. Was it the fish I ate for supper? I think not, there was no attendant stomach cramping. More likely it was my semi-regular bout of metformin's revenge. That medicine, while effective, has caused repeated bouts of diarrhea for years. I don't know why it has to strike late at night. Switching to the slow release version has helped. When I took the regular stuff I was struck repeatedly -- at least once a week. Tales of unfortunate attacks were often related in these pages. I am probably banned for life from the Dairy Queen in Brillion, WI. I will not go into detail about my intestinal issues this morning. Suffice it to say I'm tired.

Between trips to the downstairs bathroom I watched a couple of cooking shows, some classic Rat Patrol, Highway Patrol, Sea Hunt, and Flipper. I watched those half hour dramas as a kid. Rat Patrol and Flipper were in black and white at my house. Color TV was for the rich kids.

Here we are on Friday. Already. After thinking it through, I could get used to four day work weeks. Well, to be honest, I could get used to a different job. Then I wouldn't mind a five day week. Anyone hiring?

We have no big plans that I'm aware of for the weekend. One of the shelves in the wife's closet has pulled out from the wall, so a repair job is in order. I'm certain she will ignore my admonition that she has too many clothes.

Have a good Friday, I need to grab more coffee.

July 5, 2018

Easy strawberry dessert

It seems like Monday all over again. That is why mid-week holidays suck.

On the other hand, it is like two very short weeks with an extra Saturday thrown in.

On the other hand, I only have two hands so there is no third point of view.

That's all. I have nothing else today. Oh I am chock full of opinion, anecdotes, and nonsense. I'm just too lazy and tired to put in the effort.

Save those tears for something really important.

July 4, 2018

When in the Course of Human Events

...we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor

July 3, 2018

Tawdry Tuesday

Greetings Internet Warriors, friends, readers, and social media gadflies. I have little to report on this Tuesday morning.

It is hot. It is probably hot at your house too. It is summer after all. Six months from now I will likely report that it seasonably cold.

There is a threat of rain today, heat and humidity often bring on afternoon showers. I mowed the lawn yesterday evening in anticipation.

I'm trying to coast through the day to get to the holiday. We are going to a 4th of July party tomorrow: food, fun, and fireworks are on tap. I suppose I might force myself to drink a beer and smoke a nice stogie. I'll do it for America.

I'm warning you now tomorrow's effort will be a canned post. No fresh content on a mid-week holiday. I'm not sure if I will toss up a patriotic post, a musical interlude you will ignore, or a rerun. "Other" might fill the bill. What do you think? Do you care? Will you even stop by?

So many questions, so few answers.

That is on you, you know. The answers part.

Have a great day.

July 1, 2018

Apparently, hypocrisy is an actual political philosophy

Pundits, in a total panic, have argued in recent days that Trump should not appoint a conservative or orginalist judge to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Kennedy. HUH? These are supposedly intelligent people. They maintain "the balance of the court" must be maintained.

My belly hurts from laughing. First, would any of these hand-wringing journalists and politicians have argued at all that had Hillary won she should nominate a conservative to replace Scalia in order to maintain "the balance of the court"? None of these same people were lambasting Obama when he nominated Garland to replace Scalia. Why wasn't the same so-called precedent in place for the last President?

What a joke.

I will quote the President when I remind you that elections have consequences. Oh, and that president was Obama.

Second, let us imagine for a mere moment the confirmation hearings if we were to adhere to the imaginary "maintain the balance of the court" principle that never existed before leftists began to lose elections. Where do you find a so-called moderate candidate that is all over the place on his opinions?

"Yeah, Mr. Senator, I will opine according to whim. I promise to vote half the time with the leftist "The Constitution is a living document" faction and the other half of the time with "The Constitution says what it says" wing. My opinions will be crafted to placate whomever was most angry with me after the last decision".

Sheesh. Are people really that moronic to argue for that?

Finally, the appointment of right-leaning judges does not mean the nation will revert back to slavery, concentration camps, or 1984-type total government control. First, those programs are the constructs of the Democrats. What? who supported slavery and the KKK? Who appointed the Justices in the Dred Scott decision? Democrats. Who interned Japanese into concentration camps? Right, FDR and the Democrats. Which party is increasingly far left? Bingo again.  So a more conservative court is not likely to move us towards leftist political philosophies like fascism or Nazism.

Finally, righties and lefties alike need to be prepared. SCOTUS is not likely to get rid of abortions. There may be some limits imposed, but abortion is just like guns; a losing proposition for the party that bans them. The best way to lose elections for 20 years would be to get rid of the second amendment or to outright ban abortion. 

I would love to go on the Sunday news shows when one of these so-called political experts are offering the "maintain the balance of the court" argument. My rebuttal would be short and sweet:

"Are you on drugs or just stupid?".

June 30, 2018

Saturday Snapshot

Caribbean Sunset 2013
does anybody enjoy this weekly feature?

June 29, 2018

All is well

My mother has an abdominal aortic aneurism. She had a stent installed a few years ago in a life-saving emergency operation. It was discovered recently that the aneurism had grown and the old stent had slipped. A new operation was in order.

She spent 7-1/2 hours under the knife yesterday. Stents were added to her renal arteries as well. There were a couple of complications, none life threatening. The details are not important in this forum. She is doing fine and I appreciate your prayers.

In the meantime it is supposed to be hot this weekend. I slipped off and grabbed some donuts this morning. Tomorrow is. my anniversary.  There, I crammed as many random facts into one paragraph as I could this morning.

I hope you have a great Friday.

June 28, 2018

Diversionary tactics

I'm off doing other stuff today, like worrying about my Momma who is having serious surgery.

In the meantime, here is a musical interlude for those of you not familiar with the jaunty tune I referenced in yesterday's post:

Yes, not politically correct, but historically accurate. I am pretty sure the Librarians will purge this recording from their libraries like they have Laura Ingalls Wilder. You may file your complaints with the proper authorities.

I also like this version ( I have this CD):

June 27, 2018

Lemme save you time and energy

Merrick Garland, Merrick Garland

Screech screech


There Lefties, I have you covered.

Edit  More to the point, this is why, if you are a conservative you don't vote for the liberal party. It is also why George Will became dead to me. True intellectuals don't fall prey to hissy fit emotional crying jags when they don't get their way.

This, (Supreme Court vacancies) is reason nĂºmero uno that I cast my vote against Hillary and for the Trumpster. .

Mundane mid-week musings

I turned on the Cubs radio broadcast when I went to bed last night. I heard the start of the fifth inning, but fell asleep before the Northsiders started their big rally. I saw that the good guys won when I woke up.

That brings us to the next topic.

I woke a little after four this morning. It started with a need to pee. I returned to bed and after tossing and turning a while I gave up and rolled put of bed for the day. I peeled and ate a mandarin orange while the Kuerig did its magic. I suspect I will fight dozing off this afternoon.

The boy moved into his new apartment Sunday. I hate to see him go. He is an adult and needs his own place. Still, I don't mind him being here, even if he does drink all of my beer. He still has some stuff here. He is taking it in batches after his work. It's not like we won't see him, he works about a mile from the house and he can do laundry free here. He has to pay at the apartment laundry. 

It's been quiet around here. My daughter is off for a couple of weeks for summer break, so my granddaughter has not been coming over every day. When she was staying with us last week she cracked me up. It came time for the bedtime ritual of a couple of stories and a song. She always wants my wife to read and sing, but wanted me to do it one night. I read a couple of books and tucked her into bed. I sang a couple of refrains from one of my own kids' favorite bedtime songs: For What it is Worth. She did not like that one, so I started in with the opening refrain of Marching Through Georgia. She interrupted me again. "Those are not sleep songs, those are wake up songs. You can't sing anymore, get Grandma.". I got a Trumpian "Your Fired" from a three year old.

I need more coffee. You should check back often, I may have more to say that you won't want to miss. Probably not, but you never know...

Have a great day.

June 26, 2018

I see stupid people

A moron dropped a gun from his pocket at an Indy area IKEA yesterday. A couple of kids found the gat and launched a shot into the store. No one was hurt.

A few weeks ago a kid found a gun in the restroom of  a fast food restaurant. The owner of that gun was stupid too.

Both incidents were accidents.

There can be no firearms accidents.

Both should forfeit their right to bear arms. They have proven they are irresponsible and untrustworthy.

You will not find a bigger Second Amendment guy than me. When a person demonstrates his inability to handle those rights he or she should lose them for the public good. We don't allow felons to possess firearms because they have proven they are untrustworthy, and people who are careless with their guns should be punished too.

We take the keys from drunk drivers and we should start taking the Glock from idiot owners.

Yeah, I know slippery slope and all. I hate the term "common sense legislation". Common sense says stupid owners should lose the ability to endanger the public.

As always your rebuttal is welcome.

June 25, 2018

All you need to know

I was in the pissiest of moods yesterday and my foul humor is only marginally improved today.

I don't know why and I don't really give a flying fig.

June 24, 2018

Bernard, When I see what you have done, it makes me sick

My daughter bought me an old fashioned coffee percolator for Father's Day. It is great for the weekend when I want multiple cups of coffee. Three or four mugs from the Keurig gets expensive. I could drag out my drip coffee maker, but the percolator is nostalgic. It also makes a better cup of jamoke than the Mr. Coffee, I don't care what Joe DiMaggio claimed.

We went to downtown Indy to meet up with some friends last night. We at some good BBQ. It was busy in the city. Lots of people were walking and taking pictures on the circle. Everyone came back north to our humble house to play cards and eat snacks after. Ho hum.

I'm not sure I follow the logic. Lefties say you have to bake a cake or make flower arrangements because you can't discriminate on what people think, but a restaurant is cheered for refusing to serve Trump's press secretary. As the man says, lefties are not going to like the new rules. Remember when the filthy hippies were making movies and writing songs about how they couldn't get served and it was so wrong? I guess we are seeing the mean side of the leftist lifestyle. You can see how progressiveism always ends in the gulag.

June 23, 2018

June 22, 2018

I deign to disdain

Friday at last.  My Granddaughter's "week at the grandparents" will be over as soon as she wakes up. We had a great week.

Apparently they are playing a big soccer tournament. I don't care at all. No 'Merican Team is playing. I wouldn't watch even if there was. I am sure there is fresh paint somewhere calling for me to watch it dry. A guy once told me enthusiastically about a "football" game he saw. As near as I can tell the players chased each other for two hours. No points were scored. There was no overtime. Then he told me baseball was boring. I know this, the toy game that is closest to soccer is foosball, and it is far more action-packed.

On the news they said the Peanuts character Pig Pen was playing in the soccer game. I guess there was a translation error, they kept referring to "Messy". I wasn't really paying attention.  And I cannot emphasize this enough -- I don't care. And I started not one, but two sentences in a row with a conjunction. "But Joe, you say... Or is it four!  Score! That's more points than you will see in any three soccer games.

I bet the seventeen year-old next door has scored more in the past year than either team that played yesterday. Ba-boomp. I could do this all day.

There is a reason the Harry Potter characters play the made-up game of quiddich instead of soccer. The author didn't want everyone falling asleep in the middle of her books.

I suspect the yuppie metrosexuals walking around in their soccer jerseys couldn't name five players from their "favorite" team. At least the colors match their shoes. Question -- is there a Fake Madrid? 

Have a great, soccer free weekend. As always, should you disagree with my viewpoint, you may do so in the comments. You will still be wrong, but go ahead anyway. 

June 21, 2018

Missing you missing me

I'm back from a quick trip to the environs of the Motor City.  I had a good introductory visit with a prospective customer. I zoomed past the HQ of my former employer with a sense of nostalgia. I was sold along with the division I worked for. I worked with a great group of guys there. I last worked for that employer more than  20 years ago. Wow, that makes me feel old.

I have no entertaining travel stories for you. There was no egregious driving, the hotel was as expected, dinner was uneventful. I did forget to take my meds with me and I failed to pack an umbrella. The latter failure did not matter since it ceased raining as I pulled into the customer's parking lot. I hope I did not waste my limited share of good luck on a dry shirt.

June 20, 2018

blast from the past

Reruns are so blase. Click links instead. You asked. I deliver.

Click the links below.

I said do it.

Kittens and baby chipmunks will cry if you don't click the links. The unicorn disappeared because people like you refused to click links.

All the cool kids are clicking the links.

see here

and this one

From way back in the halcyon days of blogging -- 2008

OK, how about this; I had to go through almost four years of archives to find this crap, you can at least read it.

June 18, 2018

Getting Pithy

Monday. Woke up early yet again. I am watching sunrise through the hanging leaves of the big willow, leaning back in my chair, feet propped on my desk.  The coffee is good. The boy's dog snores gently in my recliner here in the office. The radio plays quietly on my Echo Dot.

It is going to be a hot one again today. It is summer. The weather does this every year. I'm on vacation today. We are taking my granddaughter to the zoo. I imagine we will see a lot of empty enclosures as the animals look out from their beds and wonder why the stupid humans are out walking around in the sun and heat.

Have a great day.

June 17, 2018

June 17

Happy Father's Day to all you dads out there

June 16, 2018

Saturday Snapshot

Jinshan Jiangtian Temple
Zhenjiang, China (2017)

June 15, 2018

The Breeze in the Boxwoods

Red licorice and coffee is really the breakfast of champions; I don't care what that wheat flake cereal company claims. I also don't care what the doctor-types say. Those same folks used to think horse dung poultices were just the thing for cuts and bleeding cured...pretty much everything I have no doubt scientists in the next centuries will scratch their butt-shaped heads and wonder why no one could grasp the obvious benefits of Red Vines, Twizzlers, and a hot cuppa joe.

The heck with that Garp guy too. Pay attention to the World According to Joe and you will be happy, content, and most importantly, right. Lots of people think so. I see rubber bracelets with "WWJD" on them all of the time. I am pretty sure that stands for What Would Joe Do? I can only conclude that slogan is a reminder to the wearer to consider how I would think and behave accordingly.


Oh. Never mind.

At least my T-shirt and undies line is still going strong. *

The rains earlier in the week have made everything lush and green. It also made the grass grow. With temperatures forecasted to hit the mid-nineties with high humidity over the weekend I think I will try to get the grass cut at lunch or this evening.

The granddaughter is coming to stay with us for a few days, so I took a vacation day for Monday. We will try to find something fun to do.

I've been tearing through my collection of the Sharpe series by Bernard Cornwell. I have been knocking off a book about every other day. My reading time has reduced my Internet browsing and that is probably a good thing. Summer reruns are on the TV, so I read a little in the morning and a lot in the evening.

That is enough of my rambling. Have a great weekend.

* only the oldest of long-time readers know about my clothing line.

More. The title is always the last thing I throw up on a post because titles are hard. It is probably a good thing my application to caption pictures at National Geographic was rejected after college graduation. I would have really sucked at it. Anyway, it seems my first choice as title for this post "The Wind in the Willows" was taken. I don't know, I think it has something to do with frogs or toads and badgers and boats or something. I have a giant willow in my backyard and all I see near it is a random squirrel taunting the boy's dog. I've never seen a singing hedgehog crooning beneath the swaying branches.


Not like my genius writing.

June 14, 2018

And the Prius you rode in on

I have been tepid in my support of President Trump. I will readily admit my vote was decidedly against Hilary Clinton rather than an affirmation of the Trumpster. Nearly halfway into his term I must admit I have been pleasantly surprised. Not only has he done the one thing I really hoped for in appointing an originalist to the Supreme Court, Trump has for the most part pursued a pretty conservative agenda. He has cut taxes, boosted the economy and attempted to enforce immigration laws.  In other words, check, check, and check. The Never Trumnpers were just as wrong as wrong can be. That tepid support is rapidly heating.

I wish the President would lose his twitter password, but in fairness, it does allow him to get his message out in a way that infuriates, confuses, and confounds his political enemies and the press (but I repeat myself).

Which leads me to the point of this post. The unrelenting assault of the left and the press has steadily shored up my faith in the President. I like him more every day. I see the unhinged hatred of the left and reflect that Fuzzy Curmudgeon was exactly right when he predicted that those reactions would just get us more Trump.

When you actively hope for an economic collapse (Bill Maher) or that the NOKs will start a war, then it has gone beyond politics into actual derangement.

Reasonable people can disagree. Hoping a particular agenda does not pass or succeed is one thing. Wishing misery and hardship on fellow Americans is quite another.

Shouting "F-Trump" may make you feel good. What many of us, roughly half of the country, hear is F-you to us. When Progressives describe half the country as ignorant racist mouth breathing hicks that are not deserving of their 1st Amendment Rights or 2nd Amendment Rights because we don't agree with you and thus should shut up and listen to our betters, it affirms we voted the right way after all.

I need a title that won't drive me crazy

It is a gorgeous day. It is slated to be in the eighties with mild humidity. The coffee is hot and delicious. I'm alive. The Lord has blessed me in so many ways.

June 13, 2018

Wherein I go all Chatty Cathy

Because everything Trump does is wrong and evil and probably raciiiist according to the media, we are told the "deal" with the NOKs was really no deal at all. Kim won't get rid of his nukes. We got nothing in return, the talking heads tell us. They may be right, but at least we didn't send a literal plane load of cash to pay for a bad deal. That was Obama-style negotiating. As a professional negotiator I can attest giving nothing to get little in return is a much better deal than giving billions for little in return.

With Kim, Trump demonstrated the art of he deal. With Iran, Obama gave us the fart of the deal-- it stunk.

But resistance.

I know, no criticism of The Obama shall be permitted. I suspect before I die an obelisk will be erected on the National Mall honoring the great and powerful Barack that dwarfs that puny spire dedicated to the evil slaver and racist bastard war-monger Washington.

Did you catch The Trumpster's bombshell at the G7 summit? He said he would drop all tariffs if the other members would agree to scrap theirs. Crickets. Apparently tariffs are only bad when the world's largest economy uses them. *

The boy is moving out next week. He has been here for just over a year. I hate to see him go, but I understand he needs his own place. He will take his dog with him. I will miss the dog too. I hate to see the mutt closed up in an apartment all day. The dog loves running around in our fenced-in back yard. The pup is also strangely devoted to my wife, who really does not like dogs at all. He has won her over though. She pets him and feeds him. If anyone gives him an extra treat it is sure to be my wife. I doubt I will convince her to get a puppy after the boy and his dog leave. I would even go for a cat, but that is even more of a non-starter with her than a dog.

Once the dog leaves I am going to have to worry about the rabbits eating the flowers again.

* I am more of a free trade sort. I also understand that US companies cannot compete against workers making pennies on the hour or government-subsidized industry. I've covered the cost of taxes and regulations to business in the past   If you missed it let me know in the comments and I'll provide the links.

June 11, 2018

How about a word game?

I know you do not read links.

You should really read this one.  Really. Go ahead.

Let us leave aside the obvious: how is this hate-filled hysterical person even allowed to teach college? Could a male even get a fair grade? What if a fellow sociology professor stated the same about his female colleagues and students? If this is indicative of the intellect, scholarship, and political philosophy of the faculty at Northeastern University I suggest you get your kid out of that institution forthwith.

What would you have if you substituted every instance where the author spits "male" and substituted the word "woman" or "black", or "Mexican", or "Jew", or any ethnicity or race you choose? What you would have is an example of some of the most egregious hate speech ever envisioned by your local KKK Grand Dragon, Nazi-wannabe, or militant race-baiter. This is evil stuff indeed.

Had the author spewed this kind of hate to a person of color, she would have been fired before the ink on her editorial was dry. WAPO would never have deigned to publish it. Since the diatribe was directed at men, with a subtle hint, hint, wink, wink towards white men, I suppose Walters gets a pass. This level of distaste, abhorrence, and execration is usually reserved for the most heinous of society. I guess now your average man is in this category.

Replacing the "P" in the patriarchy she believes exists with an "M" just shifts hate and bias in another direction.

I wonder if anyone bothered to explain to MS Walters that despite her fervent wishes otherwise, it took a man to create her.

Monday Monologue

A couple of baby bunnies are frolicking in the rain out by the big pine tree at the back corner of the yard. The boy's dog will go crazy if he sees them. It has rained on and off all weekend. We desperately needed the rain. Yards were late July brown. They have soaked up the rain like a sponge. I am sure more than one area farmer is offering prayers of thanks.

The kids, minus the one in Colorado, all went to dinner last night to celebrate my wife's birthday. She is never more content than when her kids and granddaughter are around.

That was the weekend. Rain kept us confined for the most part. I managed a walk Saturday morning. I read a lot. That is it.

Not the riveting prose and insightful commentary you were looking for, is it? You should be used to that disappointment by now.

June 9, 2018

Going to the dogs

Last night we went to a local burger joint. Since it was nice we sat outside. This place is in a suburban strip mall on one of the very busy east/west numbered streets that cuts across the north side. There are housing additions in the area, but none very close.

As has happened at this restaurant a couple of times recently a lady brought her dog to dinner. This was a big brute every bit of 100 pounds. She didn't walk it and decide to take a beer  break. I watched her drag the brute out of her SUV. The dog promptly plopped down next to a chair of a guy sitting at the next table. Why? There was no need to bring her dog to dinner. This was no service dog situation. This was a hey look at me bring my pet to a restaurant moment. It is not necessary.

Worse was the wait staff who fondled the dog then continued to wait tables. And no they did not wash after petting he mutt. I'm glad I had my food. As we left I noticed they had brought the dog a bowl of water In usual salad bowls. Somehow I don't think the Board of Health would like this humanitarian gesture.

If your dog is overheating because you brought him to a restaurant and it is hot out,  maybe you should have left him at home.

I have no doubt some of you will not like this post. You will tell me how good your dog is. You will tell me it is better behaved than most kids. How many kids eat cat turds and roll in their own shit out in the back yard?

A restaurant isn't a dog park. If you can't bear to leave Rover at home alone you should consider take out.

As always, your rebuttal is welcome in the comments.

June 8, 2018

Soporific Tedium

I contemplated having my coffee and Internet time out on the patio this morning. I even carried out my cup of java. The cushions were wet from a random squall over night. Instead I'm blogging from the office; chair tipped back and feet on my desk.

It looks like the President is digging in on tariffs. My neighbor sells machine tools and he said his company got billed for a steel shipment that arrived last week. He has no choice but to pass it on to his customers. The problem is not all steel is the same. There is limited steel capacity in this country, especially for specialty steel, and the tariff makes no distinction between grades of material.

If the next round of proposed tariffs goes into effect I will be out of a job. Our major selling tool is price and a double digit increase will make us beyond uncompetitive, it will put us out of business.

It is Friday. It is my fair spouse's birthday. I'm alive. I will worry about that other stuff another day.

Enjoy your weekend.

June 6, 2018

Juno, Gold, Utah, Omaha, Sword

"Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen of the Allied Expeditionary Force! You are about to embark upon a great crusade, toward which we have striven these many months. The eyes of the world are upon you. The hopes and prayers of liberty loving people everywhere march with you. In company with our brave Allies and brothers in arms on other fronts, you will bring about the destruction of the German war machine, the elimination of Nazi tyranny over the oppressed peoples of Europe, and security for ourselves in a free world.
Your task will not be an easy one. Your enemy is well trained, well equipped and battle hardened, he will fight savagely.
But this is the year 1944! Much has happened since the Nazi triumphs of 1940-41. The United Nations have inflicted upon the Germans great defeats, in open battle, man to man. Our air offensive has seriously reduced their strength in the air and their capacity to wage war on the ground. Our home fronts have given us an overwhelming superiority in weapons and munitions of war, and placed at our disposal great reserves of trained fighting men. The tide has turned! The free men of the world are marching together to victory!
I have full confidence in your courage, devotion to duty and skill in battle. We will accept nothing less than full victory!
Good Luck! And let us all beseech the blessings of Almighty God upon this great and noble undertaking."
-- Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower

June 5, 2018

Typical Tuesday Twaddle

Yesterday was a gorgeous day here in the heart of flyover country. It looked like it from my office window anyway. Temperatures were in the upper seventies with a little breeze.

I made a nice salad topped with grilled chicken for supper. I baked some boxed blueberry muffins for accompaniment. It was a perfect summer meal.

Last week I detailed how I was reading real books. I'm on the third of the Sharpe books from Bernard Cornwell. (I read number four on my Kindle to start this re-reading of the series). I found the purchase receipt from the current paperback crammed deep between the pages. It was folded for use as a book mark. I bought the book at long-defunct Waldenbooks in 2005.  The current electronic versions on Amazon cost nearly double the price I paid for the paperback 13 years ago. That, my friends, is ridiculous. I understand that goods are priced at what the market will bear. Hah, there is a reason the publisher allowed one of the books go for a buck or so last week. It got me motivated to read the rest of the series. Just not the way they intended.

June 4, 2018


Woke  up early. Have a toothache. Mowed, did yard work yesterday. Allergies are kicking my butt as a result. The boss is back from vacation today, so I am sure I will be hounded later today. It will be a major failure that I was unable to get prospects to call me back during a short holiday week.

I could go on. I think neither of us wants that.

June 3, 2018

It is real, not a video game

I was watching the Cubs vs. the Mets last night while the wife did whatever she does on her iPad. The announcers were droning away in that obnoxious way the national telecast guys do (this one was on Fox). John Smoltz mentioned recent discussions for rule changes in baseball and he was for most of them. I think those he mentioned would make the game unrecognizable and pointless. In fact, some of these proposals make the odious designated hitter rule look like a good idea. And yes, I know it is only a matter of time before the DH becomes standard in both leagues. Spit.

Smoltz is all for the girls softball rule where you put runners on base to start extra innings. He see no point in long extra inning games. Except maybe the fans enjoy them. Me, I think it is great when managers back themselves in a corner, using up pitchers. I like to see the backup catcher take the mound. Besides, baseball managers and front office types are always reminding fans that it is a long season and one or two games can be meaningless. Unless they lose one extra inning game because they used a pitcher to pitch to two batters back in the seventh. I ain't buying it. John Smoltz was a great pitcher but he has no idea what a fan thinks, clearly. His position is all from a player point of view. We don't like playing 12 or 14 innings, whah. 

Can you imagine Game 7 of the 2016 Cubs/Indians World Series with the "put free runners on base" notion? There would be no drama, no tension, no sport. Indians fans might joke at they would have liked to see a batter with a better average than .160 or so take the final at-bat, but that is how the game is played. It is sport, not a video game where you get to have your favorite player bat all of the time.

Worse was the idea of letting teams hit any batter if they are behind in the ninth or in extra inning games, regardless of the batting order. Jeez, why not just have a super DH that does all of the batting all of the time? Just think what Ruth or Hank or Mantle could have done had they batted 27 times each game. Ted Williams, Ty Cobb or Pete Rose would have each had millions of hits.

Disgusted, I finally went to bed and listened to the regular Cubs radio broadcasters describe a glorious 14 inning game, filling the downtime with stats, anecdotes, and nonsense as baseball should be presented. The game followed the rules pretty much as first encoded almost a century and a half ago. There was no rule change that would have made the game more enjoyable. It was perfect as played.

Either you enjoy baseball or you don't. Changing the rules will not make a non-fan suddenly start watching. It might drive away those who love the game though.

June 1, 2018

Help me Rhonda

Tomorrow is the March of Dimes event in Indy. We will be walking and raising money. My grandson passed away from birth defects in November.

Skip that store-bought coffee today and send a Lincoln to your local March of Dimes organization.

I don’t do the beg for money thing here. I don’t have a tip jar or an Amazon link. I do not have ads.*.

I am asking you to help on this one. Let me know if you want to direct your gift.

Five bucks for a good cause. If you wanted to do more, that is great. Even a dollar is a generous gift in my book.

Thanks in advance.

* that is certainly not a comment on those who do use their blogs to make money.

May 30, 2018

it was a timebomb from day one

Roseanne is a pig of a human being. She always has been. No one should be surprised she went over the top with a racist tweet. Does gingerbread ring any bells?

Should ABC cancel her show? That is a business decision.

For those outraged beyond measure by her comments, try watching any episode of SNL with an open mind and you will see comments and skits equally as course and disgusting as Roseanne’s tweet directed at President Trump and his supporters.

Today’s politics are anything but civil.

May 29, 2018

making the old new again

I did something last weekend I have not done in years. I read a book.

I’ve read more books than I can count in the past several years, but not real, physical books.

I guess the last “real” book I read might have been in 2012 or so. I had already mostly switched to the Kindle after I got my first one in 2009. I read about 50% paper books and the balance electronic books in those days.

As my vision started going, I needed brighter light to read so newspapers disappeared first from my daily reads. Then magazines. Finally things got to the point where I needed the backlight and larger print the Kindle afforded. I sold and donated a huge collection of books when we moved in 2013, thinking my “book” days were behind me. I kept only a few favorite series: the Sharpe books, the Aubrey/Maturin books, and select rare history tomes. My dad took my WEB Griffin and entire Louis L’Amour collection.

Long time readers may remember I had cornea transplant surgery in 2016. My vision is now a pretty good corrected 20/30.

Habit and convenience kept the Kindle as my sole reader. A few weeks ago I scored an ebook volume of Bernard Cornwell’s Sharpe books for free or practically free. I forgot how much I liked the series. Unfortunately, the rest of the books in the series are ridiculously expensive on Amazon for electronic books 15 20 years old. I dug out my box o’books and found the physical copies. Yes! I could read the print without trouble. So I guess I’m going to read some real books in the coming weeks.

It will be hard to forego the convenience and light weight of the e-reader. Who knows, maybe I’ll like it?

May 28, 2018

On this day

It is not all about the BBQ or the beer or even mattress sales. Remember those who gave their lives for our freedom.

May 27, 2018

Vroom, splash, pop

Happy Sunday to you. If you like motor sports , today is your day. F1, NASCAR, and Indy are all revving their engines. It will be hot and humid for the Indy 500. I suspect lots of beer headaches by mid afternoon out at the Speedway. I won’t be there. I’ve been there and done that. The race is fun and the cars are faster than you can imagine if you have only seen the race on TV. The traffic to and fro the track is unbelievable. The start of the Indy race will make your heart flutter and the hair prickle on the back of your neck. The raw power of those cars is almost visceral. The end of the race is almost always thrilling. The rest is just watching the cars whiz by for a couple of hours.

We are heading off to hang with friends. Lounging in the pool, sipping cold beer, and smooth burning stogies are on tap. Yet another reason you wish you were me.

My new Chicago Cubs chapeau arrived yesterday ahead of schedule. This negates my complaints detailed in an earlier post. So it goes. I can’t even get my bitching right.

My son-in-law’s family had a tree planted at Butler University in honor of my grandson. Both my daughter and SIL are graduates of Butler. They met there. It is somehow appropriate that a memorial to their lost son be planted in Holcomb Gardens at the university. We met there yesterday for an unofficial dedication. Both families, his and ours,  then enjoyed a nice luncheon afterwards. It was a nice and bittersweet event.

Enjoy your day.

May 25, 2018

And yet again

Another school shooting this morning. This time a few miles from my abode.

No one reportedly dead.

Details will come out in due time.

The local news needs to really stop interviewing bystanders with no knowledge of the situation. Rumor, innuendo, and supposition, even from a parent, serves no purpose beyond filling the airwaves in a rush to be “first”. It is cheap sensational reporting and at worst, it is irresponsible.

i see leaves of green

Wednesday evening the wife wanted to run by the mall to do whatever she does at the mall. It was a warm and gorgeous night. As we walked up to the main entrance there was a group of six or seven teens talking near the entrance to one of the “outside” stores. They were not blocking the store, nor the sidewalk.  They were not loud nor boisterous. It was just a group of teen boys who happened to be black. I thought nothing of it at all.

Just as we got past the group a security guard came out of the mall and started telling the kids to leave. A second guard came hurrying out the mall doors as we went in; backup to a non-situation.

All I could think was those kids were being harassed for being black.

Now I don’t know what went before. Had the boys been up to no good a few minutes before and asked to vacate? Were they the remnants of a fight still discussing the affair? Had one or more opted for a five finger discount in the nearby store? I don’t know and none of it was my business.

This mall has had some issues: shootings, fights, mini riots, mass theft. The owners have every right to make the property safe and attractive to shoppers. It is a retail space, not a rec center for bored teens.

Still, if I came in from the cold with a hood on my head would a security guard tell me it is mall policy that all hoods have to be lowered? I suspect fifty-something white me would get a hoodie pass where 18 year-old African Americans don’t.

I’m disturbed by that. I do not accept that I have been given any “privilege” or special advantages based on my skin color, but I’m not so stupid to believe there is no discrimination faced by others.

May 24, 2018

There is never a test and you don’t have to write a blue book essay

I ordered a new Cubs hat because I wanted to. I have several. All different styles. I was notified that it shipped last night. It is coming from a suburb of Columbus, OH. According to tracking it should arrive at my house on Tuesday by eight PM.  That’s no big deal. I paid for the 3-5 day shipping. I just find it interesting that it will take as much as 6 days* to go 170 miles.

According to my iPad maps app, I can walk from Groveport, OH to my home in 2 days and 13 hours. Theoretically, I could have walked over there, picked up my Cubs hat, and walked back home in the same time frame it will take FedEx to deliver it. I could drive it in 3 hours. I know because I have done it hundreds of times.

The Pony Express bragged they could deliver mail from St. Joseph. MO to Sacramento, CA in ten days, a distance of 1,996 miles. if I use my fingers and toes to calculate I think that comes to about 200 miles a day. My new Cubs chapeau will travel at a rate of about 28 miles per day. Where is Buffalo Bill when you need him?

On the other hand, It cost $1 to ship a 1/2 oz. letter by Pony Express in a time when an average laborer was making about $25 a month. My shipping costs in proportion are significantly less.

I’m sure you do not care about my hat. But look at the cool stuff you learned in this post. We discussed geography, history, economics, and math. Coming here is almost like going to school, only a lot more fun. And it is free!

* I know there is a weekend and holiday involved. If it shipped on Monday and got here Wednesday I wouldn’t have anything to post about and you wouldn’t have a chance to read about the Pony Express. Sheesh. 

May 23, 2018

This post has been done for 13 minutes and is waiting on a good title to come to me...

I sat on the patio last evening. It was warm and nice. I smoked a little cigar and listened to my blog friend Jean’s Indians rout my Cubbies. As one of my coaches used to tell me, there is no defense for a walk. There is none for a three-run homer either.

The wife was at the store getting important stuff like toilet paper. The boy’s dog romped in the grass. I could only see the lawn needs mowed, the flower beds need weeding, the shrubs want trimmed. I need a truckload of mulch.

 I need a gardener.

I also need patio furniture. Mine is pushing 20 years old and looks it. The chairs are shot. We did not pay all that much for it to start with and now it is just worn out. A couple of the sling back chairs are ripping, others are sprung. The cushioned chairs have the supporting rubber slings are broken. The whole thing is an embarrassment. Unfortunately, a new set is just not in the budget right now.

I’m reading a book about the legendary Dakota Apartments in New York. It was published in the late 1970’s, before John Lennon was murdered on the sidewalk in front of the building. The tome is mildly interesting from a historical perspective, but the subtle condescension and racism is a little off-putting.

There is a whole chapter about how the building went down hill after they started letting in “the homosexuals “ and how Roberta Flack, repeatedly noted as “the first black resident”, had no appreciation for the historical architecture of her apartment, looking to gut it and make it modern. That would be the apartment that Flack owned. Apparently, Lauren Bacall and “the John Lennons” were not the highbrow denizens of the past the author so admires either.

The author laments the passing of the days when Central Park was the playground of the rich, and the common people knew their betters and appreciated them. You can tell he just wants to type “damn hippies” every sentence.  Rosemary’s Baby was born at the Dakota. The book was free. It is pretty good for the price.  I’m shocked to find there are at least ten books about Tne Dakota listed on Amazon.

Do you think anyone will write a book about life at the Catalpa Apartments on Green Street? I was one of the original renters.

I don’t think so either.

May 21, 2018

Easy apple turnovers

Yesterday passed with sunny skies and warm and humid temperatures. The forecasted rain never materialized. I got the Barbie Jeep assembled with no issues and the wife did the decal work. It is ready for a test drive today if the weather cooperates.

I got the bathroom sink fixed. It took less than a half an hour.

Amazingly, I assembled the car and fixed the sink without uttering a single curse word! Oh, I was tempted. I came close. I growled a “ come on you mother” at a fitting that did not want to thread on the drainpipe, but left the universal adjective off the end of the sentence.

I made a grilled chicken salad for our dinner. Light fare for a warm day. I should have cut the grass and worked on the yard. Oh well, that chore will still be there today or tomorrow or whenever I have time. The work that actually pays the bills comes first on this Monday morning.

Here is a recap of the weekend political news: because Trump. Oh, and there was a wedding. I’m surprised the media did not find a way to claim the nuptials went off without a hitch because a Trump wasn’t involved. Maybe they did. I didn’t watch even one second of the coverage.

Here is a recap of SNL: Trump bad. We have to say a Trump bad in every skit, even if that means foregoing humor.

Enjoy your Monday. I’m sure Trump will do something that will make Watergate, the Teapot Dome scandal and the entire Grant administration look good in comparison, at least according to the media.

May 20, 2018

How I spent my Saturday

Hold on...

OK, I’m back. My coffee mug was empty. Let us see, yesterday was a busy day. I watched some TV in the morning. I got a haircut. I went and bought the supplies to do a minor plumbing repair that needs doing (duh, I wouldn’t by supplies for a job that isn’t needed). I didn’t actually do the work, mind you, but I bought the stuff.

After thinking about it for a week and significant vacillation, we splurged and bought the granddaughter a Power Wheels Barbie Jeep. We didn’t really have the money, but what the heck. I can get me a new grill another day. It was on sale at Target. I will have to assemble it today. If I drag it out long enough I might avoid fixing the sink.

We went to see my parents. Mom is doing OK, considering. She looked tired. She sent a box of stuff home. Again. Every time I go there she gives me another box of stuff. But she gave me a couple of pies. My mom makes incredible pies. She has won awards at the fair for her pies.

We went to hang with some friends. We all went for a catfish dinner. I ate entirely too much. We played cards afterward.

That was my Saturday. To summarize: I got a haircut.

I’m not sure why you would care about any of this. There is no life lesson to glean from the minutiae of my day. There is no inherent political message. No moral underpinnings to exploit. What you get here is a boring recitation of a boring Saturday. If you thought there was something of interest or import here you are sadly mistaken. The title actually represented the content, though. That doesn’t happen all of the time.

I did skip describing the weather. So there.

May 19, 2018

Is it over yet?

What is the fascination with so-called royalty and their activities? We fought two wars to rid ourselves of the plague of British monarchy. Now they have been sucking air time from news reports at a prodigious rate. Time that could be devoted to Russia, Russia, Russia. For some reason I cannot fathom, the local news has even sent a team to London to cover the “wedding”. The Saxe-Coburgs serve no purpose beyond sucking the wealth from the British taxpayers. I sure do not care about the wedding of number five or six in line for the throne. It s clear Elizabeth intends to live long enough to make sure Chuck never becomes king.

May 18, 2018

This one is for you Big Dick, wherever you are

The other night we went to a pizza joint*.  Long bench seats are on one side of tables and chairs the other. I was seated so I had a perfect view of an older woman. She was probably in her fifties and she was...well, it is hard to be charitable...she was fat. She was also ugly. And the swath of tattoos did not help. My opinion was also affected by her posture. She sat with one pudgy leg propped sideways on the bench seat, the other limb on the floor. Did I mention she was wearing a short dress? She had on pink undies. It is not like I was looking. It was just...there, right in my view. Her pink wrapped snatch area was staring right at me. Very large and in charge. There it was, a thick cellulite hambone of thigh and bulging pink...shudder.  I spent my meal staring down at my plate, afraid to even look up to take a drink. It was the exact opposite of sexy. It was the kind of sight that would turn a young man gay; turn him off women forever. The “What not to Wear” folks would have had a stroke on the spot. It almost put me off my feed. I told my wife when we got home she should throw away any pink panties she owned. I never want to see pink undies again.

I SO wish this was a post of fiction.

*This one

May 17, 2018

Participating in the Lightning Round

i made a quick trip to the Windy City yesterday. Up and back with a visit to the Home Office for my annual review sandwiched between the drives. I should rephrase. I made a quick trip up to the Northwest ‘burbs. It was a much slower return. That happens when you hit the road in the Greater Chicago area a little after 4 in the afternoon. The total trip north took me right at four hours in the morning. It took 2-1/2 hours just to reach Indiana in the afternoon.

I listened to the History on Fire podcast for much of the trip. I’m still way behind, I’m just getting through the Aztec episodes. I switched over to the Cubs -Braves game when it came on.

Nothing interesting happened unless you count the evil rental car trying to kill me. I stopped for a quick pee break at the middle-of-nowhere rest stop near Remington. As I climbed back into the car a gust of wind pushed the door shut on my arm, leaving ripped skin and a bloody gash on my left forearm. What is up with my old man paper skin these days?

Yesterday was a 13 plus hour day. Not so hard when you consider more than nine hours was windshield time. I was glad to get some minor on the road hours. Still, I can’t help but think a conference call or Skype review would have been a better use of everyone’s time and money.

May 16, 2018

A break from my normal fare

Last night the wife and I went to a decent restaurant to celebrate Tuesday. Plus, I know the executive chef. The food was great. I had cedar planked salmon, the wife had a steak. The decor was nice and cozy. The food is scratch-made, so if you are looking to dine and dash, you probably should choose a chain eatery. It wasn’t cheap, but it was delicious.

If you live on the Indy north side I would recommend Stompin’ Barley located at the corner of Carmel, Fishers, and  Noblesville at 146th and River Road.

May 15, 2018

It just takes time

The wife and I stopped by the cemetery Saturday evening. It was beautiful and warm. The jerks that run the place finally got grandson Sawyer's headstone set (sorta). It still needs the concrete foundation. My SIL had to get nasty to even get it out there. We could understand the issues with pouring concrete and setting the stone during the winter, but it has been warm for a while now. Anyway, it is finally up.

The setting is nice, as far as a grave goes. Right on the edge of a tree line, a small stream or ditch is in the distance. There are birds and squirrels and even deer. I saw tracks all winter and one ate the buds off some flowers on the grave. It was exactly the kind of spot I would choose to spend eternity. I can't help thinking that is fine for an old guy, heartbreaking for the resting place of a little baby.

I still have a tough time when I visit him. I don't know how his mom and dad manage.

In other news, MRIs indicate my mom has no permanent damage from her Sunday morning stroke. She passed cognition, memory, and balance tests yesterday afternoon and is scheduled to be released today. That is good news.

The next several paragraphs of complaints and general whining has been eliminated.

You are welcome.

Everyone has problems.  You don't need to suffer through a recitation of mine.

May 14, 2018

Mother's Day recap

The weather was beautiful yesterday for Mother's Day. We went to a nice Italian place with my daughter and her family.

The rest of tne day was not so great. My mother had a stroke yesterday morning. Happy Mother's Day indeed. She was admitted into the hospital over her objections Saturday with issues breathing, tiredness, and extremely high blood pressure. Apparently she suffered a minor stroke in the morning Sunday. Currently she has no paralysis, that passed, but is struggling to get the right words out. That pisses her off. Her frustration was evident.

My mom is 78. She is tough. She just retired one year ago this month. Seriously.

In the past year both my parents' health has deteriated. Dad is just recovering from having a large tumor removed from his neck in January and subsequent radiation treatments. For the first time ever he looks his eighty years. Before, you would have sworn he was 20 years younger. Mom has worried so much about dad, I think it has sapped her health. 

It is bright and sunny this morning. It just doesn't seem so to me.

May 13, 2018

A post for you

I wish the happiest of Mother's Day to all of you moms out there.

May 11, 2018

Unimaginative insipid tedium

It is a glorious Friday here at the old homestead. The sun is bright, but there is a chance for rain later. That is spring in these parts. A bunny was hopping around the flower beds out by the fence when I limped down to make my coffee and swallow my morning handful of meds. That dang rabbit is probably going to chew my lillies off at the ground.  I need to get some rabbit repellent at the big box hardware store.

I'm back. I bet you didn't even know I stepped away. I'm sneaky like that. I threw some Doughboy orange rolls into the oven for the girls (wife and granddaughter) and me. I have about 15 minutes to wrap this up, unless you don't mind another interruption while I feed my face.

I stayed up way too long reading last night. I'm sorta dragging this morning. Sugary pastries should perk me up.

Enjoy your Friday.

May 10, 2018

Yadda yadda

I imagine (imagine being the operative word) you are concerned about my sporadic postings of late. After nearly six thousand posts I may have finally talked myself out.

I'm sick of politics. My daily life is more boring than you can imagine. You don't care about my weather. Sports are not compelling. Do you really want to read about the dog shedding all over the house or the chipmunk on the front porch? Do you care what I ate for supper? I'm bored with those topics before I even type the thought.

My life is so boring right now, I cannot stand it. My efforts here are a reflection of that.

I did manage to sneak in a post though. Take that judgementalists.

May 8, 2018

Just like a slave, only not at all like it

I read where the mother of a Duke basketball player claims her son was just like a slave because he did not get paid for his basketball skills. She starred at Ole Miss and thinks she was enslaved by the NCAA too.

Both went to college for free, including tuition, room, board, and books. I suspect my three kids, each of which has monthly student loan payments equal to a mortgage payment would like to argue with her. Carter was paid sixty thousand dollars a year in kind for his efforts on the court. In addition, he got a college education. Slave? I think not. What slave gets $60K a year in compensation, including room and board, and can cease his labor at will? No one is forced to play ball. No one is forced to stay in school. You cannot be bought or sold to a school n Iowa or Utah. It is all voluntary. Slave? No, it is called a job, an opportunity to learn your craft and get compensated for it.

How about this, a prospective college athlete can choose an atheletic scholorship to pay for his education or get paid for playing. Players can choose minimum wage for official practice time, $15 or $20 an hour for game time and pay their own room and board. If they want the education, they take out loans like the rest of the student body to pay the tuition. The players who choose to get paid are just like the rest of us, if you do not work you do not get paid. I hope that knee holds up. You better get you some insurance.

Sorry student athletes, many students have commitments outside of class. All three of my kids worked while attending school.



Quit crying. All of us who work for the man make money for others. Do you think I was paid even 1% of the sales when I had a $35 million dollar territory? No. Not even close. Grow up students.

May 7, 2018

I will take collusion for $1000, Alex

For those desperately seeking evidence of collusion with a foreign government against the US*, look no further than reports that John Kerry has been meeting with foreign governments to find a way to keep Trump from dumping the Iran Nuclear agreement. Kerry has no official position. This is like you or I trying to negotiate outside of the government. This is a clear violation of the oft-cited but never enforced Logan Act.

This is not the first time citizen Kerry has deigned to negotiate on behalf of America. He tried to intervene in the negotiations surrounding he Vietnam War back in the seventies. Yes, he is a self-important jackanapes.

I wonder at the level of outrage had Trump tried to negotiate with say, the NOKs, had Hillary won the Oval Office. I suspect liberal heads would explode live on CNN.

I would give up beer and cigars for a month if Trump had Kerry arrested and perp walked. He doesn't even have to follow through with arraignment, just let me see on thelevision the figurative "knock it off, jerk" slap upside the head Kerry so richly deserves.

* there is no law against "collusion". Trump could have consulted Putin every single day during the 2016 campaign and broken nary a law.

May 6, 2018

I'm not sure I have ever seen a huckleberry

It seems I'm far more interested in reading, watching TV, diddling my navel, staring out the window, listening to music, or taking a nap than writing today.

That is either a good thing or disappointing news, depending on your point of view in this moment in time.

May 5, 2018

The electronic graveyard

I found my old Palm Tungsten E yesterday. I plugged it in and it surprisingly came back to life. The old data was gone. It has sat dormant for close to 15 years. I'm not surprised the memory is cleared.

This model was in a long list of Palm products I owned and used all of the time. I started with the venerable Palm Pilot sometime in the late 1990's. I grabbed the Palm IIIC when it came out with a color version and internal rechargeable battery. Then came the Tungsten. I bought a Palm Treo smart phone when it hit the market, combining my PDA and my mobile phone. My employer was pushing Blackberries, but I showed how all of my data and contacts was already on the Palm platform and how my phone had features the Blackberry could not match.  The computer guy eventually ditched his Blackberry for a Treo too.

Then the iPhone hit the market. I did not get the first generation model, the company was not that advanced. I did buy an iPod touch, though. Based on my Treo recommendation the boss was ready to let me experiment with the iPhone 3G. I have never looked back. I'm on my fourth or fifth iPhone. I could upgrade from my 6S, but it still works great. More importantly, it is paid for. My old iPhone 3G still works. I, or rather my Granddaughter, uses it as an iPod touch, playing music and taking pictures.

The old Palm Tungsten was pretty cool to find. They are going for $5 to $100 on EBay. I see several for sale. I'm not sure there are buyers.

It is amazing where tech has gone over the years.

May 4, 2018

I see trees of green...

I cannot believe how green it has gotten in the past week. Last Sunday when I was working in the yard most of the trees were still bare, just budding. Since temperatures have finally reached normal May levels the trees are in full leaf, the hostas are four inches tall,  and the lilies have grown remarkably. Everything is a deep emerald green. Tulips are blooming. What a difference a week makes! Best yet, I'm sporting shorts and a T-shirt instead of jeans and a fleece.

Don't worry, it won't be long before I'm complaining about the heat. Complaining is what I do best. And sarcasm. But rest assured, neither attribute makes an appearance in today's bloggity effort.

So far.

No, I think I will stop here before the snark rears its ugly head.

I hope you have a great Friday.

May 3, 2018

Nerd Alert

I was a semi-nerd in high school. I thought I was cool, but the fact I was not included in the parties and gatherings of the in-crowd was probably a hint. I wasn't picked on or bullied either. I wasn't part of the hoodlum crowd either. I was a kid who played sports and did band ( it was an easy "A"). I got good grades. In short, if such a vote had been held I would have been voted "most forgettable" of my high school class -- except no one would have remembered to vote for me. Instoner words,I was just like a lot of high school kids.

One thing pushed me to the nerd category: I was a Boy Scout. The local paper featured me a couple of times in the United Way write ups. Even in the Seventies being Joey Boy Scout wasn't a ticket to nekkid co-ed swim parties with the hot popular chicks. An Eagle Scout badge never made a teen girl swoon. Ever.

I enjoyed Scouts, especially the camping. After college I started out merit badge counseling for a local troop and eventually serving as a very young Ass't Scoutmaster. Kids and new jobs and a move ended that and I did not don a uniform again until my oldest boy jumped into Cub Scouts. I helped out and ended up being Weblos leader and finally Cub Master until he moved on and decided to be a Scout no more, eschewing Boy Scouts altogether. The youngest had no interest at all. He was into sports and I was OK with both boys' decisions.

Still, it pains me to see The Scouts succumb to pressure and go co-ed. Changing the name from Boy Scouts is even more pathetic. I get it. We talked about political pressure and declining Scout enrollment here when the decision was made to accept girls into the Boy Scouts. I suppose now critics cannot ridicule girls in the ranks by muttering "it is the BOY Scouts, fer cripes sake". Now the organization will just be "Scouts BSA".

Still, it just seems a little like combining the army and marines and calling that branch "military".

Oh well, I've been done with the BSA for a long time. No one asked me, and I'm sure they don't care for my opinion.

May 2, 2018

Tap, tap...tap,tap


Is this thing on...on...on?

May 1, 2018

Flogging my brain with a dozen lashes of the cat

It just occurred to me I failed to post anything today.

Oh well.

Remedied through strict interpretation of blogging rules 13.7.42c.

April 30, 2018

...can't trust that day

Happy Monday Blog Buddies. Here we are at the onset of the work week and I'm tired as heck. I spent the weekend doing yard work: cleaning out flower beds, picking up six metric tons of sticks, mowing, trimming. I spread some seed over bare patches in the lawn and covered them with a thin layer of dirt. I'm not even close to being done.

I have a serious jones for some donuts this morning. Further blogging will be on a brief hiatus while I head to the local cruller purveyor to get my fix.

April 28, 2018

That figures

It is Saturday. Of course I wake up at 4:12. I tossed and turned for almost an hour before giving up and padding downstairs for my morning coffee and handful of meds: four pills of various names to combat my recalcitrant pancreas and a steroid drop in each eye to keep my body from rejecting the stranger's corneas that allow me to see.

You are listed as an organ donor, right?

It appears the boy's dog has been lounging in my blog room recliner. Donning a black T-shirt this morning was a mistake. It is now covered in white dog hair.

The Alexa is playing classic rock in the background. My coffee cup needs refilled. It is just another Saturday.

I hope yours is a good one.

April 27, 2018

Nary a trace of rancor

Happy Friday, readers.

I hope this spring day finds you well. Me? I'm great. It is seasonably warm and sunny. I'm inside working. So it goes.

I called a service to treat my yard. It needs fertilizer and weed control. I priced the stuff myself and the service is cheaper and hopefully will apply more evenly than I can do it. I live on a cul-de-sac, so I have neighbors' yards on three sides. None treat their weeds, so battling against a solid carpet of yellow dandelions in the neighbor's yard is a never-ending battle.

I have a ton of sticks to pick up, so I know how my weekend will be spent. I need to mow in the back.  I love my giant willow, but boy, does it make a mess.

Looking around last evening as I burned a cheap stogie in the mild evening air, it appears the boy's dog is wearing a path into the yard as he races from the back door to the far corner of the yard every time he goes out. I don't know how to get him to run another direction. 

Have a great Friday.

April 26, 2018

Leftists killed millions in the last century, what is one more little boy?

Alfie Evans is sick. He is going to die. The British NHS has determined this is so. They have pulled him off the ventilator. Stopped feeding him.

In case you do not know the story, plenty of articles are out there. Read several, I don't want to bias your research. You will have a hard time finding any that make Great Britain look good. In a nutshell doctors cannot identify the brain disorder affecting little Alfie and have stopped treatment. The parents object. The British courts have sided with the doctors, just like they did on the Charlie Gard situation last year.

An Italian hospital thinks they can treat 2year-old Alfie. There is a plane waiting to fly him to Rome. Alfie has been granted Italian citizenship to smooth the paperwork. The treatment will cost the NHS nothing.

The hospital and courts will not let the parents take Alfie for treatment. I don't get it.

I can say this, my grandson lived 21 hours. I would have taken just one more minute, hour, day. I know his parents would too, even knowing the outcome. Every one of those 1,260 minutes Sawyer lived was precious. If another hospital could have given him 60 or 90 or 1,000 more minutes I would have sold my soul to get them.

Read about Alfie then tell me the wonders of single payer healthcare. Tell me about the joys of socialized medicine.  Explain again how death panels are a figment of the fertile imagination of the former governor of Alaska.

Read about Alfie today. Tomorrow read about Venezuela. Then let me know in the comments why anyone would vote for the Berniecrats in the next election. Alfie is what the Democrats want for your kids and grandkids.  Don't fool yourselves. Read their words, listen to their speeches.

April 25, 2018

It's time for lunch

For most of my life I have not dreamed, or I cannot remember them after I wake. For the past few weeks my nights have been filled with rapid-fire vignettes, like a permanent sketch comedy show playing in my skull.

Last night I dreamt I was back in school. I did not dream I was late for class, that I missed the big test, that I was naked and unable to open my locker. No, I dreamed I got mugged and missed lunch.

Psych majors all over the country will scratch their heads over that one.

April 24, 2018

Where have you gone Joe the Blogger-O?

It is clear I have lost what little blogging mojo I ever had.

Like Brenda said...

But the title is pretty clever, eh?  *

Well, at least compared to my usual efforts.

*try singing it

It is Tuesday and I ain't paying for that hamburger

Good morning fellow Earthlings. It looks to be a cool wet day here in Hoosierdom. April showers and such are on tap. I'm feeling better. Thanks for all of your cards and flowers.

In other news...yeah. I'm just burnt out on politics.

It seems those guys may have been loitering around in that Philly Starbucks for as much as 45 minutes without buying anything before being asked to beat it. Keep in mind the guys refused dto leave before the cops were called. They still refused to vacate even when the police asked. I smell a BLM stunt here.

What other restaurant would let people take up a table for 45 minutes and not order anything? It is not race, it is business.

Or maybe the Starbucks manager is a Grand Dragoon of the KKK. We will never know, because like everything in today's America it has to be political and racist and probably somehow Trump's fault.

The Cubs are back in The Mistake by the Lake for a rerun of the '16 Series tonight.

Have a great day.

PS to my Cleveland Indians fans -- I'm wearing my 2016 World Champion T-shirt today, well aware that we were one little rain delay from switching roles.

April 23, 2018

I would skip reading this post if I were you

It is possible this post will be less intelligent than usual.

I spent most of last night crapping my brains out.


12 hours of diarrhea can't be good. I think it is medicine related as opposed to food related. I ate nothing my wife did not also eat, plus there is no abdominal pain, just copious amounts of butt soup.

TMI? I venture the answer is a certain "YES".

Assuming I have not contracted a stray strain of cholera I will probably survive.

I'm afraid to fart though.

April 22, 2018

Gaia Goodness Glorified

Today is Earth Day.

I will celebrate by spraying chemicals on the weeds in my yard. It is an annual tradition.

April 21, 2018

Peeling back the layers of the onion

I write pretty much like I talk. Slowly. Hah! No seriously, my writing and speaking styles are similar. I think that is why I have always written posts and letters and even term papers fairly quickly.

Back in the day I would research term papers, read the sources, make notes of pertinent facts and quotes I wanted to use. Then I sat down and generally wrote the entire effort in one sitting. I could compose a ten or even twenty page paper in this fashion. I could often outpace my typist (my girlfriend / now wife would type for me).

I think this is one reason my pathetic attempts at fiction have been so lame. I can get a good start, but the mental challenge of writing an entire short story or novel in my head is too much. I'm just not that smart.

I'm always fascinated by the creative process. In honesty, most of my blog posts take anywhere from ten minutes to thirty to compose (I know, you can tell). A good chunk of that time  is deciding what to write about. I have discussed this with my musician son. What comes first for him, the melody or he lyrics? For him it is either, or, and both. Sometimes he will get a cord progression, or musical phrase. Other times it may be a lyric. Sometimes a bit of melody is the foundation.

Often my posts work a little better if I read them out loud. Yesterday's musings are a good example. I hear the Animal House cast chanting "Toga, Toga" when I read that. Take a slightly sarcastic tone coupled with a "south of 70" Hoosier accent* and slightly slow and even cadence and you could be me talking in my definitely not radio-ready voice. I guess you could call my style self-deprecating sarcasm covering an under-layer of indignant righteousness.  Long-time critic EOB labeled it as "smug". Yep.

I like to think of my musings as a conversation between us.  I started blogging because I worked alone in an office. There was no one to talk to. My boss and support was in Italy. I needed an outlet for my jokes, anecdotes, and political rants. I still work alone, now from a spare bedroom. I still need an outlet for my stories, jokes, and outraged rants.

I'm glad we have a chance to talk.

*that same accent can be found south of 70 in Ohio and Illinois too. It is strange I have it since I grew up in north central Indiana far from I-70. My brother and parents don't have it. Go figure. Linguists are right, we learn speech from our peers, not our home environment.

April 20, 2018

The conversation in my head

Yesterday was the first time I failed to mark the anniversary of the beginning of the Revolutionary War at the old blog.

OK, that may or not be true, the first time I failed to mention part, not the anniversary part. Frankly, I'm too lazy to go back through 37 years of archives to check the veracity of the statement. Let's just stipulate that it is true -- the first time omission part.

Are you as confused as I am right now?

I will comment that the sole purpose of the British incursion into the Massachusetts hinterlands was to seize a cache of arms. In other words, to confiscate guns. See how that worked out?

What? Look it up. Do you think the Lobsterbacks were just out for a stroll in the countryside? Have I ever led you astray?

That was a rhetorical question. I don't need your long lists of proof for every time I was wrong. Or even your short lists. My wife already keeps tabs. Not of blog wrongs, real wrongs. I admit to none. That is how I roll, to trot out a phrase that certifies me as an old geezer and out of touch. Whassup? Thirty-eight skeedoo. Like, far out, man. Groovy. Toga, toga.

I tell you now, I'm this far into this nonsense post and I have no title, nor any idea what the purpose of the post really is. The truth is I'm bored with the blog. I'm bored with my job. I'm bored with politics. I'm bored with life.

I probably just need some nooky.

This post is example 154 of why subscribing to this blog is worth every cent of the purchase price. No refunds. No exchanges. Do not spindle, fold, or mutilate your receipt. All items must retain original packaging or warranty is void.

Oh well, how about we all have a great Friday anyway?

April 19, 2018

Hangin' with Mr. Mitty

It occurs to me, and not for the first time, that my real life would make a for a great blog. The fiction that is here, well, no one's life is that mundane.

If only you knew...

April 18, 2018

I thought you was dead.

Not hardly. So says the Duke in my favorite western. Me neither. I'm not dead. I haven't abandoned the old blogeroo. I was not on vacation. I just did not post anything. I had nothing to say.

"But Joe", you say, "that never stopped you before".


I made quick business trip to Oh-hi-ya this week. Ah, life on the road. I stayed in a hotel motel straight out of 1978. The office was separate from the buildings that held the rooms. My room was on the second floor up an outside iron staircase and off an open walkway fronting he parking lot. The interior was dark and decorated in 1990s vintage motel furniture. The TV was new. The window heater was loud. The free continental breakfast was pre-packaged sweet rolls from Sam's Club. The room was exceptionally clean.

News has been going on. Weather happened.

I clearly had no blog fodder for today either.

Enjoy your Wednesday.

April 14, 2018

A bunch of words about nothing and I don't mean in a good Seinfeld way

The weather yesterday was glorious, albeit a little windy. I took the granddaughter down to a little park to climb and play. Afterward, we played ball, bubbles, and sidewalk chalk. She had the most fun whacking stuff with a stick she found lying on the ground.

We had two days in a row that topped 70 for the first time since last October. That was just what was needed to finally kickstart spring. Leaves are breaking out on the big willow and the maples. Today's rain will help, especially of it is steady and soaking. I will probably have to mow next week. I noticed a few dandelions popping out in yellow glory. Since my neighbors on both sides refuse to treat their lawns, I fight a summer-long battle against weeds.

Last year I chose to do stuff besides the heavy yard work on the weekends; namely hang out at our friend's pool. That  means the backyard needs serious work this year, including a dump truck of mulch, fence painting, pruning, planting, and general landscaping. All it takes is time, effort, and cash. On the other hand my buddy is probably going to open his heated pool in mid-May...

April 13, 2018


I don't usually subscribe to superstitions, other than always putting on left sock, left shoe, right sock, right shoe (and that is no superstition but rather a prudent policy). That said, the failure of my employer to deposit my pay as scheduled today is par for Friday the 13th and the notion that bad stuff happens on this day.


This post says it all.

No further editorial comment from me is needed.

April 12, 2018

Boy was 13 year-old me disappointed to discover that a pussy willow was just a tree

Real spring-like weather is xpected for the next day or two -- 70s and windy. Don't worry snow is back in the forecast for early next week.

I read a great line this morning. I can't remember which article, but it sums it up pretty well. I will paraphrase: the average progressive just cannot accept that half of America so hates progressive politics and policies that they were willing to vote for Donald Trump.


I think the left has finally found a President they hate more than Nixon. And like Nixon, Trump will probably provide not only tne ammunition to his downfall, but the weapon too; cocked and loaded. Trump is of the philosophy that any publicity is good publicity. He doesn't understand the concept of death by a thousand cuts.

And I clearly love mixed metaphors. But you get the point.

April 11, 2018

Sorry Dear

Not right now, I have a headache. A massive headache.

You will have to get your jollies elsewhere.

April 9, 2018

Reality sucks

Once again the grass and trees are covered in postcard-worthy snow. It is both beautiful and disgusting. It is April, for goodness sake. We have had more snow since spring officially arrived than all the months of winter combined.

Another boring weekend is past us and it is back to the grind.

News-wise I read the same old crap. The Trumpster has to go because he did something maybe that is probably worse than anything anyone could have done... evah. That is the Democrat/media position. Me, I think all this trade war talk and proposal is a sure way to put the brakes to a steaming economy.

Look, some of that overseas manufacturing left here a long time ago. There is not enough capacity here for many of those products. Tariffs mean steep price increases for you and me. Second, in some cases there isn't capacity at all.  For instance a TV hasn't been made in the States for years. One doesn't just open a new plant. You need experts: tool makers, engineers, maintenance guys. It would take three or four years to start up production form scratch.

Look, China doesn't need most of our manufactured goods. They can build it cheaper, and sorry to say it, as well or almost as well as we can do it ourselves. My last visit to a Chinese widget maker showed me a highly automated, state-of-the-art manufacturing plant more modern than anything I have visited here in the States. Yes, I know anecdote is not data.

We can make T-shirts in the US. Are you prepared to drop $30 or $40 for that cheap cotton polyester blend shirt at WalMart? As consumers we cannot have it both ways.

There is a significant and powerful manufacturing sector on this country. Ask anyone involved in manufacturing and they will tell you getting good and reliable workers is the challenge. Employers want employees who show up for work, who work hard, and can pass a drug test. Far too often those three attributes are difficult to find.

Trump claims we cannot loose in a trade war. We can lose if China dumps their massive load of T-bills onto the market.
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