December 31, 2022

The Big Year in Review Post

So long 2022, I’ve had far worse years, many better. 

If you go out tonight, let someone else drive if you are drinking. 

Happy New Year, friends.

December 30, 2022

He drink whiskey, Poncho drink the wine

It appears I am getting my blog funk early this year. I stare at the blank screen and realize I have nothing to say to you. My creativity is at an ebb. I suspect it is an ancient DNA trait urging me to hibernate. 

How about an oldie to entertain you? For some reason this funky tune was in my head this morning.

December 29, 2022

Sad Face Warning

i know you will be disappointed, but there will be no Theme Song Thursday this week. It’s not that I’m too busy, it’s that I don’t feel like putting in even the minimum work it takes to create the post. 

You are lucky you are getting letters and words at all.

Apparently there were lay-off at corporate yesterday. It appears I am safe. Keep your fingers crossed. Many of the other new employees are gone. Trust me, the economy is not as strong as they want you to believe. 

Temperatures continue to rise. We stayed above freezing last night and may get close to 60F by the NewYear. Last Friday the windchill was -40. Monday it will be 60, that is a 100 degree swing in the feel of the outside air.  Weather is crazy, and anyone who claims they can accurately forecast it more than a few days out is wrong. 

Anyone who claims they can predict it decades out is a fraud. 

I know, you are still sad about the theme song thing. You will be OK.

December 27, 2022

Boy, the Colts Suck

 It is the second “Monday” this week. I’m at my desk, ostensibly working, but my motivation level is pretty low. I have handled the emails from the extra long weekend, but other than that, I don’t have much. 

I need to put in some more work on my contract proposal for Really Big Customer before I present it to my boss. I would also like his input before I devote any more time and effort if he disagrees with my approach. So right now I am just staring at the spreadsheet. 

We are looking for a big warm up by the weekend. I can live with that. 

Have a great Tuesday.

December 26, 2022

Holiday hangover

What a glorious Christmas. 2/3 of my kids, their family and girlfriends as the case may be, came for gift exchange and dinner. We got to FaceTime the oldest boy in Colorado. I wish he could’ve been here. 

I started in cooking dinner early. We had turkey, noodles, mashed spuds, candied sweet potatoes (yuck), green bean casserole, deviled eggs, rolls, and I made a peanut butter pie. The daughter brought over appetizers and cranberry salad. What a feast! 

We dragged out the Christmas dishes and when all was done I had a mountain of dishes, pans, and serving bowls to wash since the holiday plates aren’t dishwasher safe. Despite my dishpan hands, it was worth it. For the first time in a while my foot was sore and swollen when I finally went to bed. I was on my feet all day and I probably should have put on shoes for a little support. So it goes.

I think everyone liked their gifts and the wife didn’t go overboard for once. 

It was a great holiday. 

 Hope yours was too. 

December 25, 2022

December 23, 2022

Like Bing says

The weather prognosticators were only partially right on the big winter storm here in the middle of God’s favorite state. We only got a couple inches of snow and less rain than expected, so while I’m sure the streets are slick, it could be worse. They got the hard wind and freezing temperatures right. Currently the actual air temperatures is -10F and the windchill is -36. Yikes. I have no reason to go out anyway. 

Ponder this, you could climb into your freezer and it would probably be warmer than it is outside. 

I don’t even want to think about my gas or electric bill next month. 

The wife spent the evening  wrapping the last presents, so we are set. One thing she ordered the youngest son didn’t arrive, and won’t until next week. She is stressed over that. I told her it is OK, he is 29 years old, he will understand. She is upset about it anyway. 

The wife has been hoping for a white Christmas. It looks like she will get it. Too bad she didn’t wish to win a lottery jackpot instead. So it goes.

Stay warm and safe out there.

From the greatest holiday movie ever.

December 22, 2022

The weather outside is frightful

 Like a good chunk of the country we are all set to get hammered by what can only be described as really crappy weather. Rain will fall this afternoon only to be interrupted by a tearing cold front bringing extreme temperature change. The rain will turn to snow and winds will whip the snow into blizzard conditions. Temperatures will go to near zero with windchills around -25 or so. We will look at a layer of ice covered with snow. It will be too cold for ice melt to work. I suspect most of you are looking at a similar  scenario if you are east of the Rockies. Even the Deep South is looking at frigid temperatures. 

We will have to look at conditions long and hard before we head north to the wife’s family gathering for Christmas Eve festivities Saturday. Depending on the severity of the drifting snow, I may have to go fetch the boy from Indy’s south side if he wants to come for Christmas Day. His tiny little car does not handle winter weather well. 

I have a half-day of work today and then I am off until a Tuesday. I need to wrap a couple of presents and help the wife clean before everyone comes over Sunday. In all, we are ready for everything the weekend promises. 

I guess the opening lines of this song might be appropriate for today:

December 21, 2022

‘Cause it is awesome

Edit:  I just noticed this is the 7,500th post I have published. 

I always have gone for quantity over quality. Like I often say, you get what you pay for around here. 

But you have to admit the stop action movie is awesome*. If you disagree then I’m afraid we will never be able to hang out, drink beer and smoke cigars. Sorry, I do have standards.

*except the little boy with a thirty-year old’s voice, or the blond Mary...

Further edit: I did some research. The voice of Aaron is actually performed by a kid, not an adult. Go figure.

December 20, 2022


Between Christmas and a predicted storm, the stores will be stripped bare by Thursday. Not only will the  genpop be panic stricken of the prospect of snow and cold, grabbing every loaf of bread and carton of eggs in sight, but the late shoppers will be scrounging for the fixins’ for a Christmas dinner. It I’ll be a perfect storm of desperation. I hope I have all I need. Cool Whip will be worth its weight in gold by Saturday morning. 

I think I have all the stuff I need, but you never know.

December 19, 2022

Once again as in olden days

It is a cold start to the week. Whatever, it is winter. The thermometer does this. I think we are about ready for Christmas. Yesterday I bought the rest of the groceries I need to fix Christmas dinner. I have to grab a few things to make a couple of dishes to take to the wife’s family potluck on Christmas Eve. 

I’m finding it hard to get motivated for work today. I have a bunch of data entry to do, and I just don’t want to. Oh well, they pay me to do the stuff I don’t want to do. That is how it works.

Happy Hanukkah for those who follow the Old Testament. 

For the Christmasy among you, how about a clip from Meet Me in St. Louis

Yeah, it is not really up for a vote.

December 18, 2022

Ding, dong ding, dong

A light dusting of snow covers the ground this chilly morning. I’ve already been out to pick up something from the store the wife forgot in her run last night. Today is cookie and candy day. The wife will be heading over to our daughters’s house to make holiday treats. The granddaughters will help with the fun. I am doing my part. After I brought home the milk chocolate chips this morning I loaded all of the ingredients for crock pot peanut clusters into the cooker. Three hours plus cooling time from now they will be done. 

We went to a birthday luncheon with the granddaughter yesterday. We all had a great time. After, the wife and I headed out for Christmas shopping. In truth, I drove and stayed out of the way while she shopped. I bought her a new pair of boots she desperately wanted. I will wrap them up for her. No surprise, but it is what she wants. 

We won’t speak of the football game. 

Enjoy your Sunday.

December 16, 2022

On a positive note

Today marks my oldest granddaughter’s birthday. She is eight. How crazy is that? It seems like her mom’s eighth birthday was only yesterday. I don’t feel so old until I look in the mirror or think about my little girl having her own little girls. Truth is written right there on my face. Then I realize I am getting old.

I’m not here to offer up a depressing post, it is a good day! 

I have today off work. That didn’t keep me from answering a few overnight emails this morning and I will desperately try to avoid my phone today. As I was reading emails last night, the wife pointed out the only time I have ever taken off completely from work was when we were on a cruise and phone and internet were unavailable. That revelation is admittably a problem.  

Dang it, every time I try to discuss something it skewers negative. If I want to be positive I clearly will steer clear of politics today. 

The weekend looks to be hectic as we procure the final Christmas gifts. I doubt I’ll be able to watch the football games, since the wife has made other plans for us. So it goes. I can record it and watch later if it is worth doing so. I managed to watch games at a later time during the time I spent in retail hell a year or two ago. Shiver. I don’t even want to think about those days.

Okay, I clearly cannot stay positive on this Friday. Here is what you came for:

December 15, 2022

it's been a long, cold, lonely winter

 We have had a very long spate - a couple of weeks - of very cloudy, gloomy weather. There is often fog and drizzle. It seems forever since I have seen the sun. I remarked to my neighbor when I was out fetching the mail yesterday that it felt like I was living in Michigan. * He said, yes but without the good breweries. Indeed. 

I am generally in a good mood, but lack of sun just depresses me. I can deal with the cold, snow, ice, and wind, but  I really need some sunshine to buoy my spirits. 

On the bright side several positive factors might come into play to mitigate my ennui. I have tomorrow off work; a use it or lose it personal day. Next week is a short week, I’m using another 1/2 day of personal time on Thursday with Friday a holiday. In addition, the long-range forecast hints at a chance for a white Christmas. What is bad about that? 

You would think that last revelation would be a hint for today’s Christmas song. You would be wrong. You might guess from the title of the post I am deviating from holiday tunes and going with Here Comes the Sun. Nope. This one is for You:

*Michigan, surrounded by the Great Lakes seems perpetually cloudy in the winter to me in my hundreds of visits there. Residents can confirm my perception.

December 14, 2022

Away in the Manger

Last night we went to see our youngest granddaughter in her pre-school Christmas program. Yes, it was a Christmas program, not a holiday show, since it was at a church. 

There is nothing that illustrates the meaning of Christmas more than a bunch of 2,3,and 4 year-olds singing Christmas songs. I have to imagine God was smiling. I know I was grinning the whole time. The sweetness factor was unbelievable. The kids were dressed in their finest and behaved magnificently. Some really got into the singing, some froze in unimaginable stage fright, staring straight at the crowd of several hundred parents, siblings, and grandparents, unmoving the whole time. It was a hoot. 

This is the stuff of Christmas memories.

December 13, 2022

Old guys at the doctor

Three elderly men are at the doctor’s office for a memory test.

The doctor asks the first man, “What is three times three?”

“274,” came the reply.

The doctor rolls his eyes and looks up at the ceiling, and says to the second man,

“It’s your turn. What is three times three?”

“Tuesday,” replies the second man.

The doctor shakes his head sadly, then asks the third man,

“Okay, your turn. What’s three times three?”

“Nine,” says the third man.

“That’s great!” says the doctor. “How did you get that?”

“Simple,” he says, “just subtract 274 from Tuesday.”

December 12, 2022

Getting spicy at the pepper mill

It was a lazy Sunday for me. The local football time was off yesterday. I watched snippets of a game or two, mostly I watched a couple of movies. I vacuumed everywhere, I put some stuff in the attic. Supper was as easy as can be; I dropped a chuck roast in the crock pot. A couple of hours before dinner I peeled a couple of spuds and added them.  I heated  a couple of frozen dinner rolls in the oven and a can of corn on the stove. That is about as no-effort as one could expect for a dinner. I dragged out the Christmas dishes, because why not? Those all had to be hand-washed but since so little effort went into what turned out to be a great meal, who cares? 

In all it was a borrrring Sunday. 

I hope your weekend was good, now back to work, it is Monday.

Mom and Dad had this album.

December 10, 2022

dressed in holiday style

We find ourselves staring at the little blinking cursor on this gloomy Saturday morning. In a stream of consciousness word salad, I wonder why the androgynous Me Me Mes like to refer to themselves as “they” instead of a more egocentric “we”? It would sure be easier to absorb grammatically. To be honest, I don’t see me addressing any singular person as “they”. If you think you are multiple people then you need help. Please note I used the “we” to start this paragraph as a sarcastic Royal “We”. I don’t normally refer to myself in the third person, yet it is still perfectly acceptable for you to call me Your Royal Highness. 

One of the downsides of working from home is that your work is always “there”. It is with great self-control that I don’t head up to the office and work today. I put in more than ten hours yesterday —completely destroying the stereotypical perception of how a sales guy spends a Friday afternoon. 

We are starting negotiations with Really Big Customer and there are numerous spreadsheets and number crunches and beaucoup analysis under construction. I hate to leave off in the middle, and that is especially true when a weekend intervenes. I’ve taken this highway many times in the past. I’ll bust my hump over the next few work days, putting in ten or twelve hours getting the analysis done well before the deadline. Then I’ll present it to my boss and other interested parties who will get back to me in their own good time. I can’t help myself. I have a bulldog mentality that keeps me focused on a project until it is finished. 

Sometimes that bulldog in me is good. I attack a problem and get things done. Occasionally, it is a detriment as I can’t let things go. You might have seen that aspect of my personality on occasion here at the old blog. I have worked to mitigate that trait over the years, ever since I overheard  a supervisor describe me as a bulldog to a high-up corporate type early in my career. The boss was highly flattering and critical in the same conversation. They didn’t know I was in the next cubicle, they thought I was at lunch. I skipped my break to work on a problem. I was customer service manager for a widget factory in a Fortune 500 company at the time. I was still less than thirty years old. 

That’s enough rambling about me, even though it is a fascinating subject. I’m pretty sure you stopped by for the Christmas music, didn’t you?

December 9, 2022

Ahhhh! We are all gonna die!

Recent headlines proclaimed we have only a handful of years (yet again) to adopt draconian climate control measures or life as we know is over. Climate experts flew in their private jets to Saudi Arabia to lecture us on our wastefulness. I am sure you saw the headlines.

Yesterday I read an article about the discovery of ancient DNA beneath the permafrost in Greenland. Part of the story contained this gem:

Previous paleoclimatic records show the ancient ecosystem was 10 to 17 degrees Celsius (18 to 31 degrees Fahrenheit) warmer than modern-day Greenland. The DNA evidence could provide researchers clues on how these life-forms survived under extreme temperatures.

Yet the climateers claim we have to be concerned over a potential 1.5 C increase in temperatures over the next century. Mastodons roamed Greenland near the Arctic Circle, but we are doomed? 

Has anyone noticed every single climate proposal results in transferring money to poor countries at the expense of more prosperous nations?

December 8, 2022

Original Oiled Onionskin Origami

 Since her new husband is so old, Jenny decides that after their wedding she and Roger should have separate bedrooms because she is concerned that her new but aged husband may over-exert himself if they spend the entire night together.

After the wedding festivities Jenny prepares herself for bed and the expected knock on the door.

Sure enough the knock comes, the door opens and there is Roger, her 85 year old groom, ready for action.

They unite as one.

All goes well, Roger takes leave of his bride, and she prepares to go to sleep.

After a few minutes, Jenny hears another knock on her bedroom door, and it’s Roger, Again he is ready for more ‘action’.

Somewhat surprised, Jenny consents for more coupling.

When the newlyweds are done, Roger kisses his bride, bids her a fond good night and leaves.

She is set to go to sleep again, but, aha, you guessed it – Roger is back again, rapping on the door and is as fresh as a 25-year-old, ready for more ‘action’.

And, once more they enjoy each other.

But as Roger gets set to leave again, his young bride says to him, I am thoroughly impressed that at your age you can perform so well and so often.

I have been with guys less than a third of your age who were only good once.

You are truly a great lover, Roger.’

Roger, somewhat embarrassed, turns to Jenny and says:

‘You mean I was here already?’

December 7, 2022


 Eighty one years ago Japan launched a sneak attack on Pearl Harbor launching us into WWII. 

Except for old people or history buffs like me, I am not sure the day lives on in infamy too much.

And that is sad. 

December 6, 2022

Just wash that shirt already

If I have learn d anything over the past year or so it is that I need to cast aside superstition. It seems the shirt I wear, or the smelly socks I pull on, or the hat on my head has nothing whatsoever to do with the final score of a given athletic contest.

Who would have thought?

December 5, 2022

The feel and precision of a chainsaw


More from the Sharper Image catalog.

Is “precision” what comes to mind when you think of a chainsaw? This seems more like an old SNL (back when it was funny) skit than a real product.

December 3, 2022

There'll be much mistltoeing

Whew! It is windy today; yesterday too.  One of he wreaths blew off a second story window so it will be back up the ladder when the strong winds die down. The wreath that blew down was one from the lighted window at the center of the house. On the upstairs left is my office. Those windows sport holiday wreaths too.

We motored down with my daughter’s family to see the Christmas Light spectacle at the State Fairgrounds last night. The grandgirls loved it. I dug it myself. 

The weather is expected to clear by early afternoon, but it will not climb out of the thirties. I could rake the heavy layer of leaves blanketing the backyard. I could stay inside where it is warm...too bad that privacy fence keeps those leaves from blowing away on blustery days like this. So it goes. Yes, there are a few leaves in front too. No need to point it out.

Have a great Saturday. Here is a little music to get you in the mood. You didn’t think I’d forget did you?

December 1, 2022

That ain’t no Hank Williams song

 A typical cattle drive lasted three to five months in the old west. A cowboy made around forty bucks for tedious and often dangerous work. One of the longest cattle drives ever was fraught with danger. Rustlers, corrupt townspeople, marauding Indians, and nasty weather plagued one big herd during its nearly eight year drive. 

The cattle drive was helmed by Gil Favor who kept his cows and his cowboys under a firm hand as trail boss. Young cowboy Rowdy Yates was often delegated to help handle trouble along the way. 

I am, of course, talking about the TV series Rawhide. Airing from 1959 to 1965 the series was the sixth longest running American western according to Wikipedia. The series made a star of young Clint Eastwood who portrayed Rowdy Yates. The series’ 217 episodes were all filmed in black and white.

The best part of the series was the theme song and obviously the reason I’m writing about Rawhide today.

Who can forget the great Blues Brothers cover:

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