Tuesday, December 23, 2008
We'll be silent here for a while, most likely. Therefore, be good to yourselves and have a Merry Christmas. Or, if you prefer, Happy Festivus, Kwanzhaa, Channukah, Solstice, Pot Luck Sup for the Flying Spaghetti Monster. We hope you have a wonderful holiday season, no matter what you do or don't believe in, on or about. Have a happy. I'll try to post from Maryland else it'll be after the new year.
Monday, December 22, 2008
Yep, still stuck in Maine. Up to my knees in snow after enduring 30-40 MPH winds driving 17" of the white stuff. It wasn't fit for a flea on a South-fleeing mule. Temps in the teens and the wind chill in the negative numbers.
I know how cold it was . I worked out in it for several hours trying to get ready to leave.
Everything takes four times as long as normal and exhausts me.
Anyway, still here. Still cold. Very, very broke.
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Nearly 260,000 eggs stolen in Maine
By The Associated Press
TURNER, Maine — Maine State Police asked authorities throughout New England to be on the lookout for an unmarked truck hauling eggs without the proper paperwork as they investigated the theft of nearly 260,000 eggs from a Maine egg farm.An estimated 259,200 eggs, stacked on 24 pallets and worth about $25,000, were stolen from the Quality Egg Farm of New England in two separate incidents...
Click the title to read the rest of the story.
Friday, December 05, 2008
Thursday, December 04, 2008
KerBLAM! One second I'm minding my own business and the next I am turning off into a woods road to get out of traffic. I was just thankful the fellow behind me didn't ram me - I had two 30 gallon propane tanks strapped in the rear of the Suburban I had just had filled. Would have been a spectacular blast, that's for sure. I'd have been naught but smithereens, too.
Anyway, went out and took an initial look. Dang it - busted lenses. Went back around to get a flashlight and I can hear thrashing just off the road in the woody verge. No gun. Of course. Look down the road. No one else has stopped. Guess the other car didn't think they hit the deer.
Examined the front end. Not only are the lenses busted, but the interior housing is probably cracked, the plastic interface between the grill and front bumper is shattered and the mounts for the bumper are now smushed. I suspect other components of the energy absorbing front end are probably requiring replacement, too.
More thrashing and bleeting from the woody verge.
Being the possessor of enlightened self-interest and self-preservation, I sat my ass back in my truck and considered what to do. Potential for repairs to exceed the $1000 threshhold for mandatory accident report about 70%. So I dial 9-1-1 and go through the whole song and dance. Dispatcher refuses to believe me when I specify the city police - she asks for details as to where I am. Finally convince her all I need is someone from Bangor P.D. to come by so I can file an accident report.
It'll be a while. Sit tight.
About 30 minutes later a car pulls off behind me, turns on some blue strobe lights and a face appears at my driver's side window, inquiring whether I am OK. After a short discussion, it is pretty obvious that said police officer wasn't dispatched to my site - he was just driving by. In point of fact, he isn't from Bangor P.D. at all -- just a nice young (oh my, how very young he is) Maine State Trooper.
Trooper Bean then inquires as to the extent of damage - I do my song and dance and we both go to the front of the vehicle and look it over. He doesn't think it'll top a grand, so he calls Bangor P.D. and cancels them, then goes into the woods (we could still hear the deer in there) and dispatches the injured animal with his service automatic.
Later, back at his cruiser, he inquires if I want the meat. No tarp in the 'Burb and fully carpeted, and no plans to leave any power on in the house when we head out to the South lands. So, the local homeless shelter will be the beneficiary of my misfortunate meeting with Herr Buck and Trooper Bean.
Pictures of the truck damage after daylight. Maybe. I didn't take any of the deer - too P.O.'d
Yes, I am just fine - merely annoyed and dreading dealing with the insurance company, body shops and all before being able to leave -- snow is forecast for Sunday, darn it. Next week looks to be poor for traveling, too.
And So It Goes...
Thursday, November 20, 2008
That's Dax Montana for the uninitiated. And his signature saying so applies doubly to the weather today. Awoke to the trailer rocking and a bitter 16° F. Sadly, the forecast low for tonight is in the single digits.
What in the name of the Flying Nun's Panties am I still doing in Maine at these temperatures?
I am having a horrible time getting out of town and the departure date keeps receding with the growth of the glacier in my driveway from running water 24/7 to keep from freezing pipes in the Airstream.
Monday, November 17, 2008
A classic case of the failure of the Christian Right to grasp the least inkling from history.
Yeah, I want a flaming, freaking cross on my lawn this year, for sure!
Where's my sheet?
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
WARNING: New Scam
I do not normally send around e-mails on issues like this....but be warned...
Over the last month I became a victim of a clever scam while out shopping. Simply dropping into Polo Park for a bit of shopping has turned out to be quite traumatic. Don't be naive enough to think it couldn't happen to you or your friends.
Here's how the scam works: Two seriously good-looking 20-21 year-old girls come over to your car as you are packing your bags into the trunk. They both start cleaning your windscreen. Their breasts almost falling out of their skimpy T-shirts. It's impossible not to look especially with all the rain we have been having.
When you thank them and offer them a tip, they'll say "No" and instead ask you for a lift to another store, in my case Canadian Tire on St. James. You agree and they get in the backseat. On the way, they start undressing. Then one of them climbs over into the front seat and starts crawling all over you, while the other one steals your wallet!
I had my wallet stolen Oct 4th, 9th, 10th, twice on the 15th, and again on the 17th. We are now into Nov and those little vixens fooled me again on the 1st, 4th, twice on the 6th, again last Saturday and very likely again this upcoming weekend.
So tell your friends to be careful.
P.S. Sears has wallets on sale for $2.99 each
Thursday, November 06, 2008
Congratulations to the Obama campaign. I do not envy him, and them, the task before them. Nor do I envy the brave men and women of the U.S. Secret Service who are charged with protecting President-elect Obama and his family. I suspect every hate-mongering wingnut in the country is preparing themselves for an assault upon the Obamas as I type this. The Secret Service knows that no protection detail is good enough to prevent an assassination by the truly determined.
I suspect we will get to experience the true meaning of the old Irish curse, "May you live in interesting times." In addition to racists, white-supremacists and other racially-motivated groups (including those who don't think Obama is 'black enough', by the way), there are the truly dangerous assassins to contemplate. Men and a few women, trained as sharpshooters by the military, extremely professional and practiced. They're all the stuff of a bodyguard's nightmares. For the new administration, I fear, they'll be a recurring dream.
Congratulations, too, to Senator John McCain who showed, too late to change the outcome, that he is a class act. Where in hell was that persona hiding, John? Why oh why did you allow the RNC and the neo-cons to hijack your campaign and foist Sarah Palin upon you? Have you been that exhausted, that weak, that distracted by other matters that you couldn't see the error of their advice? Too late now. What might have been shall never come to pass for you. Time to live out your days in your too many redoubts around the world (six? seven? Fuck it, who gives a flying fig these days, anyway?) Go imitate Barry Goldwater's post-presidential bid and fade into the woodwork.
To Sarah Palin, no congratulations but a hearty fare-thee-well in your icebound fortress up there in Wasilla. Good fishing; good fucking. Stay where you are welcome. Don't venture down here on another fool's errand again.
Ralph Nader, you arrogant ass - get lost. Likewise, Cynthia Ann McKinney, Jonathon Allen, Charles O. Baldwin, Robert L. Barr, Alan Keyes and the rest of the wingnuts - get lost as no one ever found you viable - not even the OB/GYN's that delivered you.
That's my election round-up. That and $5.00 might get you a cup of coffee inside the Beltway come this time next year...
Tuesday, November 04, 2008
Monday, November 03, 2008
As an arch-conservative Libertarian, there is no way I can bring myself to vote for Senator Obama. Simply put, he is far too liberal. Further, while he has shown good judgment in his choice of foreign policy advisers, those he has advising him on domestic policy, particularly economic policy, are so far to the left of center that most legislative initiatives, even if passed by a Democrat majority in Congress, will surely result in significant legal challenges that we, the people, can ill afford to wait out. Salvaging the economic situation will require a moderate solution, not a liberal one.
Sadly, the prospect of Governor Palin being only a heartbeat away from the presidency is too horrible to contemplate. Sorry, McCain Republicans, but you blew it with your arrogance and political greed by endorsing Governor Sarah Palin as your candidate for Vice-President. At least, when it comes to my vote it did.
I have no love nor even tolerance for Ralph Nader.
I know nothing about the Libertarian candidate this year but can say in my defense that usually they, as a class, are simply too liberal to be considered.
Communist Party of America? They haven't had an even remotely viable candidate since Gus Hall in the 60's. Not that I'd ever have voted for him. Still, it says something that they haven't posted a candidate worthy of consideration for over 40 years.
Oh well. I suppose it will once again be a write-in for "None Of The Above". Damn, that's been a popular choice for the past few years...
What a waste.
Friday, October 31, 2008
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Dear AOL Pictures User:
We are sorry to inform you that, as of December 31, 2008, AOL will no longer provide the AOL Pictures online photo service. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you.
The good news is that AOL has partnered with American Greetings® PhotoWorks® to enable continued access to your pictures through the PhotoWorks service. PhotoWorks provides unlimited free storage, just like AOL Pictures, as well as a variety of options for making creations and sharing your photos. You can access your images on PhotoWorks simply by providing your screen name and password to register for a free American Greetings PhotoWorks account. Register for PhotoWorks now.
While we recommend the American Greetings PhotoWorks option, you may also:
- Download your photos to your computer using a new tool that will enable you to quickly save multiple images and albums; or
- Purchase a DVD archive of your images. Please note there is a charge for the DVD archive based on the number of images you select.
It is important that you take action no later than December 31, 2008. After this date, you will no longer be able to access your images through AOL Pictures. You may choose from or combine any of the options listed above, based on your needs, as long as you do so by December 31.
Please go to AOL Pictures as soon as possible to register for American Greetings PhotoWorks for continued access to your pictures or to save your images on your computer or to DVD. Here, you will also find more information and step-by-step instructions on each of the available choices.
We sincerely appreciate your being an AOL Pictures user. It has been our pleasure to provide you with an enjoyable online photo experience.
The AOL Pictures Team
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Heavy raindrops plopping down upon the living room air conditioner outside my window. The "zzzippp..." sound the satellite receiver makes when the digital signal is deflected by those selfsame drops of rain. The "plop, plop, plink" of dripping water accumulating in the bucket on the stairs (no, I haven't even a tenth of the $20,000 it'll take to replace the leaky roof). High, wild winds are approaching. You can hear the pines east of the house moan in anticipation.
It is Autumn in Maine.
We, too, have lost all of the deciduous leaves and the Juniper needles have turned their sickly, pale yellow, so their drop en masse cannot be far away now. Snow flurries are in the forecast for tomorrow. It is time for this grasshopper to make provision for a return to a warmer clime. I have sworn off ever shoveling snow again...
And so it goes.
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Expect dirty tricks. No, the balloting is NOT postponed if it is raining, snowing or an earthquake has struck. Don't fall for that crap. And don't fall for the crap both parties and all of their special interest groups are shoveling with their robocalls. Make this your mantra and chant it as you listen to your answering machine... "It's all bullshit... It's all bullshit..."
Good luck. The field sucks and the choices are the same old same old. Neither of the primary party candidates offers anything new. The Congress will still control the budget process and the Senate will still control the foreign policy decisions, assuming the election isn't stolen (hijacked) by the existing administration placing us all under martial law.
Laugh if you want. Even paranoids have enemies...
Thursday, October 16, 2008
And for all those ladies who know just why they like 'Men In Kilts' we have this hirsute example:
Here, it was a miserable day for a kilt. Cold, clammy and rain all day. I actually put some heat on this morning when feeding Iggy the Landshark. Maybe next year...
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
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- Orbitfiles makes it easy to share files publicly or with friends
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- provides you a public landing page for all of your free (Creative Commons license) photos
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- you can sell files through Orbitfiles' interface (for only a 2% commission)
- Windows users also get a dedicated download client, Hercules, that makes the upload process much simpler for the novice or typical AOL user.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Monday, October 06, 2008
While suturing a cut on the hand of a 75 year old rancher, who's hand was caught in the gate while working cattle, the doctor struck up a conversation with the old man. Eventually the topic got around to Obama and his bid to be our president.
The old rancher said, "Well, ya know, Obama is a 'Post Turtle'".
Not being familiar with the term, the doctor asked him what a 'post turtle' was. The old rancher said, "When your driving down a country road on you come across a fence post with a turtle balanced on top, that's a 'post turtle".
The old rancher saw the puzzled look on the doctor's face so he continued to explain. "You know he didn't get up there by himself, he doesn't belong up there, and he doesn't know what to do while he's up there, and you just wonder what kind of dumb ass put him up there to begin with".
Or, if you prefer, there is the J-Walk blog's version:
While suturing a cut on the hand of a 75-year-old Texas rancher whose hand was caught in a gate while working cattle, the doctor struck up a conversation with the old man. Eventually the topic got around to Sarah Palin and her bid to be a heartbeat away from being President.
The old rancher said, 'Well, ya know, Palin is a post turtle.' Not being familiar with the term, the doctor asked him what a post turtle was. The old rancher said, 'When you're driving down a country road and you come across a fence post with a turtle balanced on top, that's a post turtle.'
The old rancher saw a puzzled look on the doctor's face, so he continued to explain. 'You know she didn't get up there by herself, she doesn't belong up there, she doesn't know what to do while she is up there, and you just wonder what kind of dumb ass put her up there to begin with.'
I prefer the latter. Which version works best for you?
Find LibraryThing a Maine employee, get $1,000 in books
Read all about it here.
* in books
And a dip of the old fedora to regular reader Robbie for the tip. Thanks!
A closer look at the life and career of John McCain reveals a disturbing record of recklessness and dishonesty
While I have been less than a stellar supporter of Barack Obama and Company, one shouldn't automatically assume I am a supporter of the McCain/Palin ticket.
No, that'd be a real stretch.
And if you must ask why, perhaps this Tim Dickinson, less-than-supportive look at the McCain record which appeared in The Rolling Stone in an article titled "Make-Believe Maverick" will give you a clue.
You can get a taste by reading the first page at the link above. Buy a copy or sign up as an online subscriber to see the whole article. Or, like me, visit the library to read through their copy.
Saturday, October 04, 2008
It's about time.
While I have never wished ill to those who remained at AOL with their "journals" I have watched this corporate pig founder, flopping and spraying blood on the carpet of the interdweebs for far too long.
Rather than reading the writing hemorrhaged upon the wall, AOL has blithely gone on for months, years, selling its customers short and destroying a once great marque. In a 'which came first, the chicken or the egg' manner, the megalith has lost so many paying customers and short-changed its advertisers that it is a mere shadow of its former corporate greatness. Like the present fiscal crisis, it all comes down to one thing. Greed.
Easy come, easy go. Whether in the boardroom at Lehman Brothers or AOL/Time Warner the end result remains the same. Disaster.
So, to the relatively few AOL Journalers suddenly thrust out (Happy Halloween, kiddies) into the cold, cruel vacuum of cyberspace by their callous AOL overlords I say, "Welcome! Glad to see you."
I do hope you find the pain of adjustment to a new blogging platform worth the reaming you've been taking all these years from those buggers at AOL...
Had my head up my nether regions, general spelunking again, I guess.
Sorry 'bout that, Chief!
And I'd found this great joke to commemorate the day, too:
So, this pirate walks into a bar with a steering wheel shoved down his pants.
The bartender looks at him and says…”You know you have a steering wheel in your pants?”
The pirate replies, “Yar! It’s drivin’ me nuts!”
Friday, October 03, 2008
On the other hand, I think that Senator Biden was too much the apologist for the Obama agenda without really achieving the goal of showing why we should make him one heartbeat away from the Presidency.
Overall, it was a waste of time...
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Kyle, you slimy blowhard. Drew a direct bead on me this morning, didn't you?
I zigged, I zagged, I cooled your jets.
Now you're withering, like the limp-dicked NASCAR driver of the same name.
So long, Kyle.
You're all bluster and pissing and moaning but when it comes down to hard realities, you AREN'T the real deal.
Just a crybaby, weeping your foot of condensate on my sopping life.
So long. Glad I missed the opportunity to meet you in person. So pleased you wimped out.
Thank goodness ... 'cause the creek, she did rise.
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Because, what Alex Steffan fails to point out, what the article only subtly hints at, is the release of massive amounts of methane will likely result, along with the melting of the ice caps, in the rapid onset of a major ice age sometime in the next 50 to 100 years.
The release of huge quantities of fresh water from the poles will likely result in a stagnation of the world's oceans currents, resulting in the loss of air currents, resulting in the rapid increase of clouds, resulting in sudden, radical temperature drops at the poles along with concomitant growth of glaciation across the Northern latitudes resulting in a true Ice Age of an extant not seen on this planet in 100,000 years.
What to do?
Sorry, nothing we can do at this time will reverse the current path we are on. You are merely a passenger on this ball of mud.
Monday, September 22, 2008
What!?! You didn't see anything of the sort?
I've lost track of the number of references to racism made journalists on both sides in the current presidential race. It boils down to this obvious trope:
A loss by Obama is due to racism by whites. A win by Obama is due to racism by blacks and liberals. A win by McCain is due to votes cast for "the lesser of two evils."
I have said it before publicly more than once and numerous times privately to friends and relatives. There is NO WAY that Barack Obama will be elected president. To think otherwise is pure ostrich behavior on behalf of wishful thinkers, many of whom are amongst the 62% who believe in angels.
Read my lips: Barack Obama is a black man in a white nation. Whitey is no more ready to elect a black man to the ultimate leadership role than it is ready to elect a female. Sorry Barack. Sorry Jesse (as if!). Sorry Hillary. You too, Liz (Dole). Forget it, Ms. Palin. You might become the vice-president, but I'll wager dollars to donuts that some misbegotten Aryan militia would take her out the moment an announcement is made of McCain's demise. If not sooner.
Cynical? Absolutely. Pessimistic. Yep.
Then again, most of you never thought we'd find ourselves in a prolonged depression at the hands of the Republicans and free-marketeers. Greed is as greed does and history does repeat itself when the population forgets its lessons.
You born-again Reagonites all thought it'd be a cold day in Hell before the Republicans would spend us into oblivion, didn't you? And I'll bet all you Democrats secretly thought it could never happen. Ever.
Pretty obvious to this curmudgeon -- after more than 30 years of dealing with the public and its stupidity. Too bad I didn't heed my own advice and prepare to survive. Then again, I got old without noticing when it actually happened...
Just goes to show there's no fool like an old fool.
I hope you survive the coming bad times. I don't expect to, but can hope others do.
And so it goes...
Seattle Post Intelligencer
Is Everyone A Little Bit Racist?
Town Hall, DC - 3 hours ago
In other words, they claimed that voter racism alone could cost Barack Obama the election. Certainly, the meme perfectly encapsulates elite views on the ...
Video: Poll: Race Steers Some Dems Away From Obama AssociatedPress
all 985 news articles »
Rush Limbaugh on Obama's Controversial Political Ad, McCain, Palin ...
FOXNews - 6 hours ago
What I mean by that is specifically that Obama is stoking racism himself via his campaign ads. Spanish-language-only ads in four states, including Florida, ...
Barack Obama plays the 'incognegro'
Mail & Guardian Online, South Africa - 12 hours ago
The question over the next two months is: will there be an Obama effect? And if so will it end like Wilder, in victory; or like Bradley, in defeat? ...
Thomas Elias: Obama and the Bradley factor Long Beach Press-Telegram
all 5 news articles »
Andy Martin calls Nicholas Kristof of the New York Times a bigot ...
PR-Inside.com (Pressemitteilung), Austria - 9 hours ago
BarnesandNoble.com URGENT APPEAL: The Committee of One Million to Defeat Barack Obama is raising money to fight Barack Obama. ...
“It’s not true that [we don’t] want to be associated with Muslims”
alt.muslim - 7 hours ago
Again, there is unfortunately still some racism. But there’sa lot less than it used to be. And I think the rise of Barack Obama is really the rise of a new ...
Was The AP Racism Poll Inspired By Karl Rove?
Black Star News, NY - Sep 20, 2008
McCain's phenomenal defeat in 2000 when the Bush team claimed he had fathered a Black daughter? You never know what nuggets congressional investigators will ...
Dueling Narratives of America
American Spectator - 13 hours ago
Or conversely, would his defeat mean that America has reverted to being a racist society? I DON'T THINK this is the main issue in the election. ...
Why This Election is So Close
Huffington Post, NY - Sep 19, 2008
Efforts to explain Gore's defeat and Obama's failure to break this race open, particularly among frustrated progressives-a group to which I also belong, ...
Democrats Panic, Blame Racism
RushLimbaugh.com (subscription), CA - Sep 17, 2008
TIME Magazine says the word "flashy" is code word for racist when you talk about Obama being flashy. CALLER: You know, one thing I want to go ahead and ...
Tapped, DC - Sep 19, 2008
Limbaugh complains now that it's a presidential election, but he had no problem "stoking racism" when he was trying to defeat the immigration bill. ...
Friday, September 19, 2008
"I get the urge for going
When the meadow grass is turning brown
Summertime is falling down and winter is closing in..."
by Joni Mitchell Copyright © 1966; Siquomb Publishing Company
This morning saw a dawn temperature of 31¤F. I had to leave water on at a drip in the Airstream to keep the line from freezing. Left a heater going in there last night, in anticipation of the frost. Scraped frost off the rear window of the car in passing as I walked the dogs.
That's the final 'warning shot across the bow' -- the next one will be in earnest. Do I winterize the trailer now (safest) or do I wait in anticipation of getting in a few weekends of leisure before hitting the road? Hmmm...
For hit the road I must. Kerosene is already at $4.499 and really has nowhere to go but up. The last time I heated for a full winter in Maine the same fuel started at $1.599 and finished at $1.999 and we spent nearly twenty-five hundred dollars to heat four rooms to 60¤ and the cellar to just above the freezing point (most of the time).
I know we aren't alone in confronting this issue. Approximately 48% of Mainers are contemplating heating costs in excess of $5000 with a median income of under $21,000 for a family of four, while staggering under the burden of the highest taxes in the nation (income, sales and use and property taxes combined). An awful lot of families will confront hard choices this winter.
Do I feed the kids or keep them from freezing to death, hungry and penniless?
Or, if you prefer, my choice... Do I heat my home or take insulin and the other $750 per month of drugs prescribed, all of which my doctor assures me I need to continue to live?
Well, in my case, I have an option that few in this country have. I can go South for the winter, work as a box boy at the local Wal-Mart to buy groceries, and return to Maine in Summer to avoid the $500 per month air conditioning bill in the South. Big expense is gasoline to haul my portable home behind me. It is still cheaper to spend $2000 on gas each way than it is to stay here this winter.
I hate to leave - but leave I must. The first snowflake isn't far away now. The leaves are turning, the Snow Geese have already flown through, as I saw them a week ago Sunday gleaning a neighbor's hay field. I guess they got the urge for going a little early this year. Bodes poorly for this winter, doesn't it?
So I have the urge for going today. Thinking about all that needs doing before I can leave. Hoping I can get out of here before serious cold commences to chilling the life right out of the region...
Friday, September 12, 2008
Track Ike here
Much like the first campaign slogan to lodge in my awareness, the hurricanes of my youth are etched forever in memory. Sadly, my family and friends in Texas and Louisiana are about to be visited by one of the nightmares of my youth as Hurricane Ike grows to be the largest, most powerful storm to strike the Texas/Louisiana coastline in living memory.
No shit. I predict the impacts of Ike will far exceed the damages and death toll of Katrina. This is a bad one, folks. If you are a rational, caring human, start making your contributions to the American Red Cross. If you are a misanthrope, as I tend to be, consider supporting the rescue efforts to save the animals by supporting either the ASPCA's Disaster Response Team or the Noah's Wish Disaster Response Fund, if you do not wish to support the political activities of the ASPCA (I don't).
If you are one of the misbegotten mired in religion, do pray to your deity of choice for the lives of all who find themselves in the path of Ike or it's spawn. Then show where your true faith lies and dig out your checkbook and help like a rational, caring human, simply because it is the right thing to do.
If you are in the affected area, turn off the computer and hunker down -- it's going to be a rough one.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
With a tip of the fedora in admiration of LawDog's mad story-telling skills (skilz):
And then the magnitude of the sheer depravity that local law enforcement was capable of hit Usual Suspect #3.
"... OhmyGawdohmyGawdohmyGawd," she gasped, bouncing up-and-down like a demented jack-in-the-box ...
"... Nonono,youdonunnerstand,nonono!" She took a deep breath, her expression one commonly seen upon the countenance of saints who have just beheld the vilest depths of the utter darkness of the human soul ...
Image for illustrative purposes only and is the property of Buy Costumes dot Com, a great source for all of your costume needs.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Make sure to bookmark the site -- it is worth visiting again and again. A real eye-opener for our children and grandchildren offering an unexpurgated view of our musical past in the first half of the Twentieth Century.
Monday, August 11, 2008
Thursday, August 07, 2008
28 days without a computer,.
The hard drive in the desktop took a fatal dive some time the night of 8 July, eating the file allocation table and essentially destroying all of the data on the drive. So-called "restore disks" were useless at restoring anything and also, to add insult to injury, unable to transfer Windoze onto the replacement hard drive.
Broke down, finally, and bought a new lap top. I figure that will be more useful while we're on the road than a desktop sitting at home.
Last thing I needed was to have to spend money on a new computer. But, I did. It's done.
So that is my explation as to why I haven't posted in a month. During that time, life has gone on. Weather here has been WET. Mildew and mold counts are "wicked high" as they say in the local parlance. Breath is a constant issue as a result. Definitely not swimming weather, that's for sure.
Finally fixed the phone line -- so, if you have been trying to call, no more busy signal. Yay!
The Mrs. has been having chest pains for a while now. Had a "cardiac catheterization" yesterday which reveals no blockages. Good news, indeed, but leaves the mystery of the cause of her chest pain unresolved.
I read a very interesting blog entry from a liberal experiencing the empowering strength that comes from singing the national anthem. Go over and give NZforme's thoughts a gander. I may not agree with her politics, but I have admired her writing for almost five years. I think you'll admire this entry, too.
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
Special thanks to Rudis Muiznieks, the author/creator of "Cectic - the user manual for your brain" comic strip and his use of the Creative Commons Copyright License
Friday, July 04, 2008
1. Holidays in the summer are _wonderful times to get together with friends_.
2. _Steaks___ are my favorite things to grill.
3. My thoughts are _swirling like a kaleidoscope_.
4. _Watermelon_ is what I'm most looking forward to this weekend!
5. My favorite book so far this summer is _yet to be determined_.
6. _Vigorous sex_ is the best way to begin a day.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to _sleep_, tomorrow my plans include _lawncare_ and Sunday, I want to _go kayaking_!
Thursday, July 03, 2008
The house was still here - mouldering away from massive roof leaks caused by the lack of heat all winter allowing ice to tear off the 30 year-old shingles all over the North side.
The lawn is no longer in evidence. Instead, a wild meadow of chest-high grasses and sedges hold sway over an understory of all the noxious weeds you can imagine.
The feral cat population was not in evidence, unless you count a gregarious tortoise shell yearling and an orange ghost that was the yearling's only kitten last fall. The other dozen either departed for warmer environs or met an automobile at an inopportune time. All of which concerned the new, gung-ho animal control officer who disturbed my Sunday nap no small amount.
The local electric monopoly refuses to provide power over to camp until a new pole is installed (+/- a grand) to replace the one snapped off at the base by winter winds. The lawn there is knee high, but so many limbs and leaves that mowing is presently impossible. The roof lost a tarp that was covering an area stripped of shingles (remember, we were going to be gone for two weeks with maybe an additional week in travel). Inside is a ruined ceiling and wall very reminiscent of the interior of many of the homes in New Orleans post-Katrina.
No job prospects. Fuel oil estimated to be over $4.00 a gallon this fall.
Heading South is looking better all the time...
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
Monday, June 09, 2008
Uncle had a mild MI on Friday and is in hospital as a result. Departure is delayed for the time being. Besides, it's bloody hot, mates. Wouldn't do to breakdown along the BOS-WASH corridor with temps hovering near 100 degrees F. I've had my fill of being blown off by trucks traveling at 70+ MPH on I-95 while I try to figure out what has failed this time. Sleeping in a junkyard inhabited by giant rats has lost all appeal. Fun once, but I'll pass on the repeat.
Stay cool if you can. It's 95 here, according to NOAA, and the forecast reads:
"This Afternoon: Mostly sunny and hot, with a high near 98. Heat index values as high as 103."
Thursday, June 05, 2008
Humph ... just because you don't post for a while they think you've rolled over to the grave or buffet or something.
"I'll be back" -- wasn't that the exit line from some toupee scandal on the Wide, Wide World of Sports in the '80's?
Currently in Maryland at the home of the Ancient Mariner. Expect to return to Maine about the time the forest fire threat returns to "Low" if the weather forecasts are accurate. Am busy installing electric motors on tricycles and seats in canoes. Iggy the annoying puppy is thriving and already tips the scales at over 10 pounds! He consumes most of my spare time.
Many things to relate but a lack of easy interweb access (all the wireless routers in the neighborhood are locked, damn it!) and canine-induced exhaustion results in no news from dull boys.
Suffice it to say, I may be slipping ever closer to the precipice of mortality. But I ain't tripped over the edge quite yet. Despite dodging killer tornados and aligators and land sharks with a predilection for shins and fingers.
By the way, I miss you all, too.
Wednesday, April 09, 2008
"Greetings! Here we are again, mind humping. Once again, I have no good theme, so we'll talk about movies."
1. What is the last movie you watched?
I watched The Seeker: The Dark Is Rising with some of the grandkids just the other night.
2. Give us a brief review and tell us how you liked it.
An American-made movie set in England and shot in Romainia, TS:TDIR is a formulaic kids film pitting good vs. evil, light vs. dark with the forces of good and light triumphing in the end. While it is eminently watchable, it is neither enlightening nor very entertaining. The writing is hackneyed and several of the performances are stilted. I'd give it a pass unless you are into things of this nature.
3. Which of the movie's actors or actresses do you like best?
Easiest on the eyes is Amelia Warner playing Maggie Barnes. Not many lines, but cute.
4. Tell us the name of a movie that you haven't seen, but really should.
I really should rent the 2006 drama thriller The Departed with Jack Nicholson and Leonardo DiCaprio.
"The Seeker" trailer on YouTube
Tuesday, April 08, 2008
1. What is your favorite band or artist whose name starts with the letter C?
2. What is your favorite song that starts with the letter C?
Closing Time by the aforementioned L.C. as seen on Youtube
3. What is your favorite album that starts with the letter C?
My, my, this one is tough. Conservatively, I have near to a thousand albums in my collection, most on vinyl. Nope, while many have accused me of being an asshole, few (except my wife) would ever accuse me of being anal. So no, the albums are neither cataloged nor indexed and they aren't arranged alphabetically, either. Hence the dilemma - I am hard-pressed at the moment, to name even one album beginning with the letter "c".
|Live album by Leonard Cohen|
|Leonard Cohen chronology|
Cohen Live is a live album by Leonard Cohen released in 1994.
The songs were recorded live in 1988 and 1993.
- "Dance Me to the End of Love" (Toronto, June 17, 1993)
- "Bird on the Wire" (Toronto, June 17, 1993)
- "Everybody Knows" (Vancouver, June 29, 1993)
- "Joan of Arc" (Toronto, June 17, 1993)
- "There Is a War" (Toronto, June 17, 1993)
- "Sisters of Mercy" (Toronto, June 18, 1993)
- "Hallelujah" (Austin, October 31, 1988)
- "I'm Your Man" (Toronto, June 17, 1993)
- "Who by Fire?" (Austin, October 31, 1988)
- "One of Us Cannot Be Wrong" (San Sebastian, May 20, 1988)
- "If It Be Your Will" (Austin, October 31, 1988)
- "Heart With No Companion" (Amsterdam, April 19, 1988)
- "Suzanne" (Vancouver, June 29, 1993)
Friday, April 04, 2008
Brain-damaged woman at center of Wal-Mart suit -
By Randi Kaye JACKSON, Missouri (CNN) -- Debbie Shank breaks down in tears every time she's told that her 18-year-old son, Jeremy, was killed in Iraq. ...
I got this in email from a very vocal opponent of the incursion of Wal-Mart into Canada so I was a wee bit skeptical. Here's what he sent me:
Hey,So, I went hunting for some background information and found this Wall Street Journal story from November, 2007 http://online.wsj.com/public/article/SB119551952474798582.html
I wanted to tell you about this story. I just wrote a note to the Shank family and to Wal-Mart -- please take a minute to do the same.
Debbie Shank used to stock shelves at night for Wal-Mart. Now she owes Wal-Mart almost $500,000.
The 52 year-old Missouri Wal-Mart employee was left “brain damaged, disabled and penniless” from a car accident seven years ago. But when the Shank family received a settlement from the driver at fault, Wal-Mart demanded reimbursement for every cent they had paid for Deborah’s medical bills – plus interest and legal fees.
On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear Debbie Shank’s case, leaving her family no choice but to pay Wal-Mart $470,000. Now her family doesn’t know how they’re going to be able to afford Debbie’s nursing home bills.
Wal-Mart’s lawyers may be following the law, but they certainly aren’t following their hearts. Tell Wal-Mart to make the moral choice and help Debbie Shank:
A few months ago, Wal-Mart Watch took up a collection fund to help the Shank family. But now that Wal-Mart is stripping Debbie Shank of her settlement, any funds we raise could end up in Wal-Mart’s hands.
The best way we can help Debbie Shank now is to make sure as many people as possible hear her story. For a company that relies on an image of happy employees, this is just the sort of story Wal-Mart wants to disappear.
As we’ve said before, the Shanks aren’t gold-diggers. They’re a family living most people’s worst nightmare – and Wal-Mart is only making it worse.
Debbie’s husband, Jim, told reporters:
"She's 52 and she's going to live a life in a nursing home. I just got a call today from the head nurse, and (Debbie) hasn't eaten in a couple days and she's talking about wanting to die," Shank said. "It makes the visits hard."
… "Be a human being; don't be a corporation," Shank said, "for the sake of one lady who is going to be miserable for the rest of her life. Take your victory. Let us pay some bills and get some quality of life."
Tell Wal-Mart that the Shank family has paid enough. Sign our petition – and forward it to your loved ones:
Thank you for helping Debbie Shank.
Now, I am confused. On the one hand, I empathize with Mrs. Skank and her family. On the other, I understand far better what the issues were for Wal-Mart and why they felt they had to pursue subrogation. So I guess we're left with little choice but to smear a corporate giant through blog articles like this one.
UPDATE: Wal-Mart has decided that Mrs. Shank is a public relations nightmare; reverses their previous demands for repayment under the subrogation clause...
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Little wonder I haven't found the time to update here lately. I need to have my head examined - there's barely enough room in this 25' aluminum tube for my wife and I and an occasional guest, let alone a hyperactive peeing and pooping machine.
Monday, March 10, 2008
My sincere apologies for the unexplained absence. I and my wife are fine, given our limitations and my advancing decrepitude...
My last post caused dissension in the ranks and resulted in some hurt feelings, so I've taken a blog vacation for six weeks or so. In that period, I made a trip to Maine to register the truck and get some new plates – Maine being one of the few places in the country that doesn't have a thriving business in “brokers” who do such things for you. Seems they want you to appear in person to accomplish such a task. Who'd a thunk it?
Tried to go for a camping trip down to Grand Isle, Louisiana, after I got back but had another blowout (other side) of the trailer. This time it was due to an object about an inch in diameter that blew the tire on I-310 outside New Orleans. That ate two days of beautiful weather getting new tires and having all of the wheel studs and wheel nuts replaced. Why? To restore some peace of mind and satisfy the powers that be at the Northern Maine AAA office who were making noises about dropping us due to the stripped wheel studs that were found when the local AAA wrecker came to swap out my blown tire for the spare. At least this time I managed to stop before the tire's tread turned into a strip of trailer-destroying rubber and steel mace. The camping trip was a dud due to gale force winds blowing in from the Gulf of Mexico the entire time we were there. While more-or-less temperate, beach walks were more like a walk through a sandblast booth at a shipyard. Cooking out on the grill would have resulted in Barbecued Steak Sandies... A shame, really, as it is a beautiful place and home to great surf fishing and bird watching, when they aren't being blown sideways across the beach; the birds, that is.
So, back to Baton Rouge we went and that's where I am writing from today. Hope to take off in a few days for parts East and/or South for a little camping before the return to the great frozen North. No sense in going back now when there is still about six weeks of serious winter to get through up there before Jack Frost releases his gnarly grip in favor of the sleet infested grayness we call Spring in Maine.
Oh, while I'm thinking about it, the “Eagle Cam” is back in operation for another season. Not much to see yet (as they just got 16 inches of snow and it's around zero tonight up there). That means the loon cam, also run by the same folks, shoul be going active as soon as the ice is out - say 4 to 5 weeks from now.
Other news will have to wait and there is a bit of news – there's been a new addition to our traveling band of snow bunnies. Details to follow later.
Sunday, February 17, 2008
Maine in winter sucks. This is my conclusion after a ten-day stint at home with no running water (frozen) desperately trying to satisfy the gnomes at the DMV that our paperwork was in order and that everything was legit. Took expensive days of sending forms back and forth via Fedex while I essentially counted the snowflakes in each exhalation at home, only to return the next day to discover a new requirement had popped up. To add more insults to the injuries administered my psyche by the good women at the counters and booths of my home away from home this trip, the elves and fairies at Delta Airlines decided it was going to cost five times the original cost of the round-trip ticket to change my reservation from last Saturday morning to this past Tuesday morning. "
"No way, Joselina. Just a cotton-picking minute," I blurted. She looked at me over her reading glasses, perched fetchingly on the wart at the end of her nose. Or was it a cold sore?
"Is there a problem, Sir?"
"Impending insolvency is the problem, m'dear. There's no way in Hell I can pay over a grand to change the date to a later one when the ticket only cost one fifth that amount in the first place. Please get me your supervisor."
After disappearing in back for a bit, the clerk returns with an older woman (my age) who asks me what the problem is? After explaining events that led to this point, I suggested she provide me with an override. She started to object when I asked her to punch in a 10 digit code. It was like night and day. All pretense at difficulties or non-cooperation was gone...
What really happened was I had to spend another 20 minutes arguing to get them to find me the lowest bump code fare possible. Which is how I found myself flying back to Louisiana on puddle jumpers on Valentine's day.
And that was where I left this entry - it was never finished. I'm not going to polish it up now, but thought you'd enjoy reading it.
Monday, January 28, 2008
Rfduck, chief Drake at this here 'Monday Music Mambo' pond, lets fly a cold, wet one, thusly:
1. They say every snowflake is unique. Name a musician who you think is unique and sounds like no one else.
Joe Cocker isn't going to EVER be mistaken for any one else when singing. There are some others that come close, but his unique combination of voice, inflection and phrasing makes a song his own.
2. Snowfall covers everything in sight. Tell us about a cover song you enjoy.
If you've read this blog any length of time, you should be able to predict these answers, ;) Make mine Suzanne, written by Leonard Cohen and covered by just about everybody at one time in their musical careers.
3. It snows a lot in Canada. Tell us your favorite Canadian musician.
My absolute favorite is the aforementioned Leonard Cohen, but Gordon Lightfoot and Joni Mitchell are tied for second place.
4. Watching the snow fall can be very peaceful. Name a song that brings you peace.
Lots of songs do, depending on my mood and blood pressure and glucose level...
How about Gordon Lightfoot's "Early Morning Rain"?
Speaking of rain, we've been having rainy weather here in Cajun Country, about 3" worth last week alone. The rivers, streams and bayous are all lush with moisture. There was a real toad-strangler on Saturday night that caused the horses to seek shelter next to the trailer in a little lean-to off the back of the shed where I park the "Busted Moose" at night. They were rather rambunctious in their enthusiasm to make life absolutely miserable for the usual occupant of the lean-to -- a big tom turkey the owner bought one year as a poult to fatten for Thanksgiving but then couldn't bear to kill. Seems his 60+ pound carcass was not appreciated underfoot by the horses, so they kicked at him and kicked until he lamely stood out in the rain. Poor old bird - he's all bruised up and was so bedraggled when I saw him Sunday...
I've been sick the past week with pinkeye and now what I suspect is strep throat. Damn snotty-nosed kids are walking Petri dishes and the cultures they're festering gore just love yours truly. I've been sicker since coming down here in November more than the past four years combined. To add insult to injury, the baby is over his pinkeye, while mine persists and we came down with it only a day apart.
There's been some cold weather, too, with snow falling over much of the northern half of Louisiana for a time last week. We had sleet one night here just as we were headed from the house to our trailer for the night. And we've been going through LP gas bottles at a steady clip. Fortunately, there's a good hardware store nearby that refills them.
My wife's work is decidedly unhappy that she needs more time to recover from what ails her and has put her on unpaid leave. Oh joy, we get to COBRA our health insurance for the next couple of months, to the tune of a couple of grand a month. Sadly, going without isn't an option, as I'd never be able to get full coverage insurance again, nor would she. Hell of a racket, the health industry and health insurance.
The repairs seem to be holding up, with a minor exception of a piece of trim that succumbed to the toe of my slipper the first night. Still too sick to pick up our stuff at the daughter's as her son had eye surgery in December and has a weakened immune system - so my approach with conjunctivitis onboard is a no-no. I'd really like to hit the road and see someplace that doesn't involve SNK's.* I'm tired of sitting in one place, dependent on family and subject to all these diseases.
Heard from the Pet Spa at home. The Cats are doing wonderfully, eating like the wee piglets they are and running up a tab that will require taking out a second mortgage when we get back. The phone at the house has gone berserk and is issuing a constant busy signal, but our neighbors assure us no one is at home.
Oh well, it still beats shoveling snow... Hope you enjoyed your snow, Russ.
SNK = Snotty-nosed kids