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.

Ba-boomp

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".

Indeed.

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

Triskaidekaphobia

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.

Complicit

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.

Yep.

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.

April 8, 2018

At least the coffee is hot

All things considered, I would rather be someplace tropical, cold beer or Mai tai in hand, gazing at a pool or beach.

April 6, 2018

Your Governmental Overlords Know Best

So,  Deerfield, IL has decided to ban so-called assault rifles. They have demanded owners turn them in for confiscation or face a $1,000 per day fine.

Leaving the Second Amendment issues aside for now, how does the village plan to take private property from citizens without due compensation? Is this not a.violation of the Takings Clause? It appears the lawyers for the village are ignorant of both the Second and Fifth Amendments.

How will the jackbooted thugs tasked with carrying out the law know which citizen has these scary plastic guns anyway? Are the authorities planning house to house searches? That brings up a Fourth Amendment issue.

The Village might as well go all in. Why not station a policeman in every private house and then forbid citizens from speaking out in protest? Then they can violate five amendments in one fell swoop.

I remember reading about an April day in our past when the civil authorities set out to confiscate some guns. It was April 18, 1775. That event was the key catalyst for including he Second Amendment in the Bill of Rights.

No matter where you stand on the issue of guns you have to see this as a vast governmental overreach.  I am glad Deerfield Village is a fairly affluent suburb, I have driven through it many times, because the taxpayers are going to wrack up some serious legal bills as this is fought all the way to the Supreme Court over the next several years.

April 5, 2018

My WTH Wednesday

My wife looked at my rapidly graying hair last night and told me that I'm sure looking old. How is that for a confidence booster?

I lost at Candyland to a 3 year old yesterday.

Later, an old lady yelled at me at Kroger. Really. I walked in the front doors to the little " lobby" or vestibule area where they keep carts, small displays, gum machines, and the like. There was an abandoned cart sitting here that someone had left as they exited the store. I started to push it in the doors when an old lady grabbed me from behind and shouted that was her cart. Ok. I bit my tongue and walked two feet to where the carts were pushed together and grabbed another one.  It is bad enough she freaked out, but she actually...touched me. I'm getting old. A decade ago if someone grabbed me from behind, I would have turned with a flying elbow and asked questions later. I'm glad I didn't take out a seventy year old lady over a shopping cart. I'm shocked anyone would grab you because you touched the cart they wanted.

I did have beef and noodles with mashed spuds for supper. That is my favorite meal, so the day wasn't a total loss.

Did I mention I lost at Candyland to a three year old? Sigh.



April 4, 2018

Snide and Sarcastic Snark for beginners

Monday's heavy snow and Tuesday's heavy rain have been replaced by strong gusty winds. I guess these weather extremes indicate we are all going to die due to Weather! Climate Change! Even though it has been warmer and colder before.

The "unprecedented" melting of the Arctic last summer uncovered an old fishing settlement hundreds of years old. The huts were built centuries before Karl Benz or Elwood Haynes slapped a gas engine into a carriage. Humans were drying fish on racks near the ice-free Arctic Circle more than a half a millenia before the Industrial Revolution. Draw your own conclusion.

In other news a crazed shooter shot up YouTube. It is imperative we ban something and restrict access to more stuff in the name of safety. This murderous woman broke eleventy-seven laws, both state and federal, so only by adding more laws could she have been stopped.

My coffee mug is nearly empty. My reservoir of snark is not. For both our sake, I think I will address the coffee situation and save the snide opinion for another day.

You are welcome.

April 3, 2018

I think the intern over at Ma Nature, Inc. is running stuff this week

Yesterday morning we woke to 3 inches or so of snow. The granddaughter and my wife went out and built a snowman.

In the wee hours of this morning either a pervert was taking flash photos through my blinds or else thunderstorms and lightning rumbled through the neighborhood.  There is a threat of tornado activity this afternoon.

Don't worry, more snow is in the forecast for Wednesday.

My blog may be boring and my life devoid of thrills, but there is always the weather to provide something to write about. Aren't you thrilled?

April 2, 2018

Entertaining the troops for twenty-seven years

Several inches of heavy wet snow covers the ground. The trees look like something out of a winter postcard; a Hollywood version of snow covered trees. The bright spot is that the drive and sidewalk remain snow-free. Still, it is April. Come on Ma Nature!

Easter dinner came out pretty good. The boy had to cut the ham, I did not want to touch any food with my nasty hands. We have a bunch of ham left. I kept some in te fridge and froze two other packages. I don't know what I will do with it, but I have it when I need it. If I was nice, I would make the wife ham and beans,

I loathe ham and beans. I won't eat them. I dislike beans in general.

I have a week of work to get to. Enjoy your Monday.

April 1, 2018

And not one canned post the whole time

So last week I spent a bunch of hotel points and took my wife to a nice Hilton resort down in the Sunshine State. I used up some gas points too, so we got a week's vacation for a few hundred bucks. We did nothing beyond relax in the sun poolside. We ate out for dinner. I finished one book that I started before we left and finished two more. I am halfway through yet another. So, yeah, sitting poolside, in the sun, sipping beer, surreptitiously looking at the young moms in bikinis, while reading a good book, made for a perfect relaxing vacation.

I managed to get a decent tan base without a sunburn.

I also got...something. About Tuesday I noticed a few bumps popping up on the back of my hand. By Wednesday the hives were on both hands. Thursday saw both hands and my lower arms covered in itchy hives. If I didn't know better, I would swear I was rubbed by poison oak or something. The back of my hands look like one of those nasty bumpy gourds you see in the fall. I've always been prone to allergic reactions. Hives are nothing new, but I have never been afflicted for so long and that makes me think I have some kind of rash instead of an allergic reaction. I just don't know where I got it or why the wife wasn't afflicted too.

At this point I don't think it is an allergic reaction.  Hives do not last this long.

If it is not better by tomorrow, and I have no reason to think it will be since the bumps are not going down and the itching has not ceased or abated even a little (despite generous amounts of cortisone cream), I will have to saunter off to the doctor.

He has Risen

Happy Easter. Take a minute, if you are the Christian faith, to remember the day is not just about egg hunts or bunnies.

Two thirds of the kids and their families ( the oldest lives in Colorado) are coming over for dinner. Nothing says celebration for the world's most famous Jew than cooking a ham.

As an April Fools prank we are expecting snow this evening. Touché, Mother Nature.
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