26 September 2010


You all know that I must have too much time on my hands and that I wonder about the oddest things. Well, distance is a great thing that attracts me. And distances within Texas have always attracted me, ... have you ever driven across it? 

So .... Some Texas Facts that I have collected:

        If it were a country, Texas would be the 40th largest behind Chile and Zambia.
       Total area:  268,820 sq mi
       Width:             773 miles
       Length             790 miles 

To put this is perspective, you must understand that Great Britain (the whole island … England, Scotland, and Wales) is only 84,600 sq miles (less than a 1/3 the size of Texas) and the greatest distance (from Land’s End, Cornwall to John O’Groats, Caithness) is only 601.5 miles. Better yet … it is only 529 miles from Paris, France to Prague, Czech Republic.

Last weekend of September

Saturday Morning 25 September ... I saw my 1st Christmas decorations for sale in a store yesterday and it's still 3 months out. Give me a break, the first day of Autumn was two days ago.

I am checking out the news, both national and local, on the computer and listening to TexasExileRadio (and sometimes switching to RadioFreeTexas.org).  I have heard some Jimmy Buffet, Midwezt, and some Deadstring Brothers in the last few minutes, plus a cut from Bob Dylan's Nashville Skyline album.

Two headlines in my "Seriously, who gives a shit" category this AM ... Lindsey Lohan freed from LA jail (AGAIN) after posting bail and Pictures (a slideshow in court, no less) show the last months of Anna Nicole Smith. Is this NEWS ??? If Lohan was a "normal" person, she'd already have served a year and would probably have a year still to do. And as to the late Ms Smith, she was an artificially enhanced Trailer Trash slut with no class, who would do anything for money and her 15 minutes of fame.

By WEATHER UNDERGROUND, For The Associated Press
     The forecast for noon, Saturday, Sept. 25, 2010, shows a low pressure system skirts over the Great Lakes and pushes a front down the East Coast. Ample moisture from the Gulf of Mexico allows for scattered showers and thunderstorms to develop along the front. A cold front was expected to keep kicking up showers as it swept toward the East Coast. A low pressure system over the Great Lakes was forecast to continue moving eastward, and was expected to pull a cold front with it. The front was forecast to stretch from the Northeast over New England and into the Southeast. 
You people really have weather. According to the National Weather Service:

The forecast for Tucson is:
Sunny ... at 9:02 am it's 81°F / Feels Like 80°F. For today it's High: 102°F / Low:  73°F / Humidity:  32%  (that's high for us

The Forecast for Baltimore [cousin Dean] is:
Partly Cloudy ... at 9:42 am it's 87°F / Feels Like 89°F. For today it's High: 85°F (but .. it's 87 already?) / Low:  57°F / Humidity:  44% They're calling for rain on Monday.

The Forecast for Ft Worth [Mickey/Valdez] is: 
Rain ... at 9:02 am it's 71°F / Feels Like 73°F Today - High 86°F / Low 65°F 

The Forecast for Apple Valley, Mn [Sheryl] is:
Cloudy ... 9:42 am it's 50°F / Feels Like 55°F. For today it's High: 58°F / Low:  37°F / Humidity:  87%  

The Forecast for Rocky Mount, NC [Jean and Les] is:
Sunny ... at 10:02 am it's 92°F / Feels Like 95°F. Today it's High: 92°F (and there already, I think it'll get hotter) / Low:  62°F Humidity:  39%   They look like Arizona numbers, but they're calling for rain the next two days.

Political leanings are much the same, the First Lady did call on non-profit organizations to utilize our nation's veterans' expertise. I think that they would rather have real jobs, I mean they ALREADY volunteered.

No new jokes have come in that tickled my funny bone beyond a smirk. But got a cute VW commercial from Europe about a Muslim terrorist who tries to blow himself and car up at a sidewalk cafe, but the explosion is contained inside the VW ... small but tough is the tagline.

Today is our weekly Shuffleboard Tournament at American Legion Post 36 ... w/ Jack and Trudy (our #1 Brit), Gary and Gert, Howard and Joan, Wild Bill, McQ, Jo and whoever else shows. Commander Butch and Ms Marie are still in Waxahachie, TX until Tuesday. After shuffleboard, it's home for movies and each other. I have been really busy at the Post the last couple of days. Our printer went down and the cost of repair would have been more than the price of a new one. So, I purchased a new one, got it set up, and showed the secretary the ins and outs of the new one. I still have to go in in the next couple of days to do my Finance Officer stuff.

The UofA Wildcats play the Cal Golden Bears tonight at 1900 hrs in Tucson. My UofA Flag is hanging outside the apartment as usual. We're 3-0 going for 4-0.


Sunday AM ... the UofA is 4-0, but the offense played badly. Most of the fans had left the stadium when we marched 77 yards down the field for the game's ONLY TD and added an extra point to win 10-9. Getting ready for the NFL all day. Will the Cowboys lose to the Texans (gawd, I hope so) and go to 0-3? Yesterday's scores had a few surprises, but the biggest was Texas losing to (our PAC 10 member) UCLA. Also ... PAC 10 school Stanford beat the hated Irish of Notre Dame. Go PAC 10 ... next year's PAC 12!

My Picks for Today: upset of the week: Falcons over the Saints / Colts over the Broncos /49er's over the Chiefs / Ravens over the Browns / Texans over the Cowboys /... other winners - Giants, Dolphins, Patriots, Bengals, Tampa Bay, Vikings, Redskins, Eagles, Seahawks, and Bears (over Hilda's team, Green Bay). Check it out, I've been pretty good so far this year.

Well, must go GAMEDAY is on.

19 September 2010

Sunday Sept 19

   It is Sunday morning, and it's NFL, NFL, NFL ... apart from an American Legion District 2 meeting from 1400-1500 at Post 7 (they have TV's). Hilda is dressed and ready. I am, sort of (I have on one piece of apparel ... a t-shirt). I am on the computer and watching  ... what else, the NFL. Arizona's Cardinals are losing, Hilda's Packers are winning, Dean's Ravens are losing, and my (and Sheryl's) Vikings are losing, but playing pretty well.
   Well, must get dressed ... Mama says so. talk to you later.

                                                       Today's birthdays (I pick out the ones I like) include:
Actor, writer and host of 'Inside the Actors Studio', James Lipton in 1926 (age 84) ... One of my favorite interview shows ever

Baseball Hall of Fame member Duke Snider in 1926 (age 84) ... great player, Tucson trivia .. we have 2 guys in Post 36 called 'Duke' Snider. It was a really popular moniker in the 50's-60's.

Singer Brook Benton in 1931 ... one of my mom's favorite blues/pop singers, "It's Just a Matter of Time, Endlessly, and Rainy Night in Georgia".

Actor Adam West (TV's Batman) in 1928 (age 82) ... he got typecast as Batman and never did much else afterwards, but then agin, he wasn't much of an actor

Actor David McCallum in 1933 (age 77) ... he played the Russian heart throb in The Man from UNCLE. His wife Jill Ireland left him for Charles Bronson. He and his current wife Katherine McCallum are active with charitable organizations that support the United States Marine Corps: Katherine's father was a Marine who served in the Battle of Iwo Jima, and her brother lost his life in the Vietnam War

Singer/songwriter Paul Williams in 1940 (age 70) ... great songwriter, he wrote a number of hits for Three Dog Night (including "An Old Fashioned Love Song", "The Family of Man", and "Out in the Country"), Helen Reddy ("You and Me Against the World"), and The Carpenters, most notably "Rainy Days and Mondays," "I Won't Last a Day Without You", and "We've Only Just Begun", which was originally a song for a Crocker National Bank television commercial featuring newlyweds. Most people probably recognize him as "Little Enos Burdette" in Smokey and the Bandit

Singer Bill Medley of The Righteous Brothers in 1940 (age 70) ... I mean, really, is there anyone who doesn't know the Righteous Brothers? Or ... Bill Medley (he's the baritone, Bobby Hatfield was the tenor)

Singer Mama Cass Elliot in 1941 ... to my mind, one of the greatest voices during her era. If she had been as slim as Michelle ... she would have become a mega star.

Singer Freda Payne in 1942 (age 68) ... I really liked her song "Band of Gold", and I know that her younger sister  Scherrie Payne was a member of the Supremes.

Actor Randolph Mantooth in 1945 (age 65) ... probably best known as John Gage, a paramedic, on the show "Emergency!" in the 70's.

Model and ??actress?? Twiggy, whose real name is Lesley Hornby, in 1949 (age 61) ... that makes all of us who grew up in the 60's feel really old ... right??

Country singer Trisha Yearwood in 1964 (age 46) ... good singer, but probably best known as Garth Brooks' main squeeze.

Gotta' go Ms H is looking.

1745 MST: Bret Favre LOST, Hilda's Packers WON BIG TIME, brother Mickey's Cowboys LOST, Dean's Ravens LOST, Carolina Panthers LOST, Carol Stensby's Packers WON, the Arizona Cards lost BIG TIME, my Colts are playing (the Giants) in the "Brother Bowl" as I type ... Eli vs. Peyton. There is no joy in Mudville, unless (like me) you are anti-Cowboys.
    The day went reasonably well, the meeting was longer than it should have been, ... but that is the way meetings go. We are watching the NFL. But Ms Hilda wants to watch a movie in a bit. And (like Lola, whatever Hilda wants ... Hilda gets), you know that tune.
   Well, brother Peyton's team killed Eli and the Giants.

16 September 2010

Thursday 16 Sept

Today is Thursday, Sept. 16, the 259th day of 2010 with 106 to follow. The moon is waxing and so are my ears. The morning stars are Mercury, Uranus, Jupiter and Saturn. The evening stars are Neptune, Venus and Mars. The night time stars are too numerous to mention in this short note. Only 100 days until Christmas, and the stores are putting in Christmas stuff already ... that's over three months for Gawd Sakes!
    I have been hard at work on a Full Page Ad for District 2 for the Fall Conference and working up a letter for the District 2 Meeting (Sunday) begging for funds to buy the Veteran's Reps at SAVAHCS (the area Veteran's hospital here in Tucson) a new computer and printer. It's only $1400.00 and so if the other Posts help out at all, we can Git-er Done!
    Today is Mexico's Independence Day ... although their War of Independence didn't actually start for about 4 more days and it didn't end until August 24, 1821, when representatives of the Spanish crown and Colonel Agustín de Iturbide (more about this dear soul later) signed the Treaty of Córdoba, which recognized Mexican independence under the terms of the Plan of Iguala. Today is just the day that a priest ... Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla ... arrived at the conclusion that a revolt against the colonial government was needed because of the events of the Peninsular War (between France and the allied powers of Spain, the United Kingdom, and Portugal for control of the Iberian Peninsula during the Napoleonic Wars). I guess that he figured Spain would be occupied in Europe and easy pickings were to be had in old Mexico. (Father Hidalgo had already achieved some notoriety - he gambled, fornicated, had children out of wedlock and didn't believe in Hell. Most seriously, he encouraged his parishioners to illegally grow vines and olives. And yet he was a big hit with the Catholic Church ... go figure. Real cool dude.) And now, back to Colonel Iturbide. On the night of the May 18, 1822, a mass demonstration led by the Regiment of Celaya (which Iturbide had commanded during the war) and containing almost totally HIS supporters, marched through the streets and demanded that their commander-in-chief accept the throne. The following day, the congress declared Iturbide emperor of Mexico. On October 31 Iturbide dissolved Congress and replaced it with a sympathetic junta. The real beginnings of politics "south of the border style". While Iturbide’s reign lasted less than a year, it was the result of and further defined the struggle between republican and traditional ideals, not only in Mexico, but also in Europe. He was exiled to Europe, but returned To Mexico in 1824. The local legislature held a trial and sentenced Iturbide to death. He was executed by firing squad. Wish we could do that in this country. Well, that's your history lesson for today.
   Yesterday was the birthday of my dear cousin Jean in N.C. and my grandson Devin in Benson. Devin is now 15 years old (and Jean is NOT), he and his older brother make me feel very old indeed.
   Today's B-days include:
Department store founder James Cash Penney in 1875 ... J.C. Penney, Hilda's patron Saint

British car designer Walter Bentley in 1888 ... designer of the Bentley automobile and later an engineer with Aston Martin. Bentley placed his 2.6 L straight-6 engine under the bonnet of his Aston-Martin  DB2.

This durable DOHC engine would continue in use at Aston through 1959. Bentley remained as an engineer at Aston Martin for a time, moving to Armstrong Siddeley where he designed a twin overhead cam 3 litre engine before retiring.

Entertainer Allen Funt in 1914 ... Smile, 'You're on Candid Camera'

Lauren Bacall in 1924 (age 86) ... actress and wife of Humphrey Bogart

Blues musician B.B. King in 1925 (age 85) ... B.B., the Best

Actor Peter Falk in 1927 (age 83) ... always loved this guy in films and on TV

Actor Jack Kelly in 1927 ... best known, I guess, as the OTHER Maverick brother

    Not much else going on this week. I had a Legion meeting Tuesday night, a Parade Committee meeting Wednesday night and nothing on the agenda tonight. We may go get some Brats at the club, but don't know yet.

Thursday afternoon

I will certainly go to heaven. I went "out of my way" today to assist another person who lives in our complex. She had lost her keys and the complex charges an exorbitant amount to replace them. I got dressed, don't wear many clothes around the house, and took her to a locksmith to get duplicate keys made. Now this doesn't seem like much, but this lady is a die hard Obama fan, (she obviously thinks that he is the second coming), hard worker in the local Democratic party, she is left of left, and she thinks that everything that has gone bad during the Most Articulate Human Being's reign as Supreme Commander is the fault of Bush II and us far right, jingoistic, homophobic, racist, Republicans (spit when you say that word). So, I am certain that Saint Peter will let me slide on in ... no matter my past transgressions. I shall sleep better tonight.
Love from the desert

Missouri ... yea!!

All italics and emphasis colors were added by me.
                                         SO WHY IS EVERYBODY SO UPSET ABOUT ARIZONA ?
    Missouri, The "Show Me" state has once again showed us how it should be done.  They need more publication and exposure on this. In 2007, Missouri placed on the ballot a proposed constitutional amendment designating English as the Official language of MissouriNearly 90% voting in favor!  English became the official language for ALL governmental proceeding in Missouri.  It also means no individual has the right to demand government services in a language OTHER than English.
   In 2008 a measure was passed that requires the Highway Patrol and other law enforcement officials to verify the immigration status of any person arrested, and inform federal authorities if the person is found to be here illegally.  It allows Missouri law enforcement offices to receive training to enforce federal immigration laws.  The bill makes it clear that illegal immigrants will NOT have access to taxpayers benefits such as food stamps and health care through Missouri HealthNET.
   In 2009 a measure was passed that ensures Missouri's public institutions of higher education do NOT award financial aid to individuals who are here illegally.  The law also requires all post-secondary institutions of higher education to annually certify to the Missouri Dept. of Higher Education that they have NOT knowingly awarded financial aid to students who are unlawfully present in the United States .
   So while Arizona has made national news for its new law, it is important to remember Missouri has been proactive in addressing this growing problem. Missouri has sent a clear message that illegal immigrants are NOT welcome in their state and they are certainly NOT welcome to receive public benefits at the cost of Missouri taxpayers!

Article in "The Ozarks Sentinel" Editorial Opinion - Nita Jane Ayres, May 13, 2010
You can do a search......  ozarks sentinel may 13 2010 and you will find the article.

                                              Missouri Rocks !!!
                                        Love from the desert  ~ Antonio

A Great Man

   Hilda and I had the honor of attending a Memorial service on Monday for Nils Fredrik Nilsen, a Legionnaire from Post 36 here in Tucson . Now, let me preface this with the understanding that EVERY memorial service, for virtually anyone is all about the good he/she has done and how he/she walked on water and how he/she is irreplaceable.
   We knew this individual socially only slightly and we were casual social friends of his wife Lynn. I did, however, meet with him several times on matters when I needed advice and counsel on American Legion matters. This man was the epitome of a Legionnaire. He was a three time past Commander of our Post and had held every available post within our organization. He was also the Department (State) Commander in 1991-1992. He was a member of not only the Legion, but the VFW, Disabled American Veterans, AMVETS and the 40/8. He served as advisor to the Veteran's Administration, senators John McCain and John Kyl, and was appointed by our Governor to the Arizona Department of Veteran's Services Advisory Committee for 6 years. He was inducted into the Arizona Veteran's Hall of Fame in 2007. He, almost single handedly, organized and ran a Golf Tournament annually that benefited the SAVAHCS (the local/area Veteran's hospital) volunteer and veteran's services to the tune of over $70,000 in the last few years. He sponsored a boy to Boy's State out of his own pocket almost every year, he contributed heavily to almost every children's and/or veteran's program within the Legion. He ALWAYS had our nation's veterans in his mind and heart. In fact, one of the remarks that was made at the memorial was ...
"Nils had the American Legion in his blood, but he had our veterans in his heart". His memorial service was attended by the Department Commander, the Department Adjutant, 7 Past Department Commanders and many other members of the Legion family and the 40/8 from throughout the state.
   Nils died from complications from his diabetes and his last several years were rough ones for him, steadily losing a lot of his sight and a lot of his mobility. The last six months were especially bad, ... bed-ridden, a leg amputated, etc. But he never complained. In fact, while he was bed ridden, he gave a check for $11,ooo.00 to the Veteran's Hospital for veteran's services.
   Nils didn't walk on water, ... he was extremely opinionated, set in his ways and generally got his own way. But I must say that in hindsight, his way was usually best. I do know that in 3-4 short meetings with him ... he taught me more about the American Legion, it's mission and it's programs than I have learned from any other source (and I attended classes on the same with the Legion's Extension Institute). He changed my relationship with the Legion from one of "a member" to one of a "Legionnaire". He made me realize that my lack of monetary funds did not keep me from being a contributing member of a wonderful organization that has the great duty and will to support our veterans and our youth. Thank you Nils.
   I know that most of you never even met this gentleman (you've missed something), but I had to write something about him. We rarely meet someone of his ilk and I know that the entire plethora of veteran associated organizations shall really feel a void with his passing.
   Farewell Comrade !!


Political Commentary

I agree with Adam on this, although he and I have had our differences in the past. It's not a long read, but it may make you form or re-form opinions that you have or thought you had.

Opinion by Adam Bitely:  the Editor-in-Chief of NetRightDaily.com 
   After the Revolutionary War, the Founding Fathers were nervous about a strong executive. This can be seen in the way that they wrote the Constitution. Our nation's founders decided to create a stronger legislative branch than that of the executive branch as established in Article II. The Founders intended the legislative branch to check the powers of the President as well as be a voice of all the people.
   By design, the legislative branch is weak in the sense that there is no one person holding all of the power. The legislative branch is composed of the House of Representatives and the Senate, which together form Congress. Each state elects two senators and a number of members to the House of Representatives depending on the size of each particular states population.
   Even further, the legislative branch was given direct authority over several tasks. The Founders did this so that Congress and the people would know the limits of its powers. They broke Article 1 into 10 sections that explicitly grant Congress all of its authority.
   Section 1 of Article 1 grants all legislative powers to the Congress and creates both the House and the Senate. Sections 2 and 3 sets requirements for eligibility to serve in the House and Senate respectively. In Section 2, the power is given to the House to determine its Speaker and does not note that the Speaker has to be a member of the House. Theoretically, the Speaker can be any citizen that the members of the House elect, although no Speaker has ever not been an elected member of the House.
   Section 4 mandates that Congress must assemble at least once a year. It does not stipulate that Congress be a full time legislature. Further, section 4 says that the power to determine the elections of Senators and Representatives lies with the legislature in each state, but it allows Congress to alter the laws made by the state legislatures regarding the time and manner of such  elections.
   Sections 5 and 6 further set regulations on how Congress operates. But the real limits on Congress come in Sections 7 and 8. The powers granted to Congress in Article 1 are the extent of their powers. The Founders designed the Constitution as a limit on Federal power, not a starting point for power to be expanded  upon.
   Section 7 mandates that all bills for raising revenue shall come from the House of Representatives. The Senate does not have the power to tax, only the House. Further, section 7 also creates the procedure for a veto of a bill.
   Section 8 is arguably the most important section of Article 1. Inside of Section 8, the limits of Congressional power are established. Congress has the authority to collect taxes, borrow money, regulate commerce, to create money and punish those that fraudulently do, establish post offices and roads, promote the progress of science and arts and provide patents, to declare war as well as fund the army for a period of no more than two years, provide and maintain a navy, to provide for the Militia, to exercise exclusive Legislation over the federal seat of power in Washington D.C., and to make laws that are necessary in carrying out the listed powers and all those necessary as described by the Constitution.
  Missing in Section 8's listing of Congressional powers is the authority to provide Health Care, mandate the purchase of a specific product or service to all U.S. citizens, provide a retirement program for all U.S. citizens, regulate carbon emissions from U.S. businesses and citizens, and the authority to own companies. However, we find that out current Congress sees all of those unlisted powers as being "Constitutionally granted".   But a close reading of Article 1, Section 8 shows us that no such authority exists.
  The power that the legislative branch has today would cause our Founding Fathers to roll over in their graves. The authority Congress now holds is unprecedented in U.S. history. Further troubling is that there seems to be no one in the federal government checking this blatant overstep from our Congressional  leaders.
  As we are all aware, the nation is in trouble. The Founding Fathers left us with a great document that holds our government in check and at a sustainable size that protects individual liberty. The current congress has paid no heed to the law of the land and is instead making their own laws ignoring the authority they have as listed in the Constitution in Article 1. If we do not soon get back to the founding principles, we will surely find ourselves without a way to get out of the quagmire we are in.

Some favorite quotes:  

"It is only when the people become ignorant and corrupt, when they degenerate into a populace, that they are incapable of exercising the sovereignty. Usurpation is then an easy attainment, and an usurper soon found.  The people themselves become the willing instruments of their own debasement and ruin." 
James Monroe, First Inaugural Address, 1817   

To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical."
Thomas Jefferson

"Every child in America should be acquainted with his own country. He should read books that furnish him with ideas that will be useful to him in life and practice. As soon as he opens his lips, he should rehearse the history of his own country."
Noah Webster, On the Education of Youth in America, 1788

12 September 2010

Sunday thoughts

    Unlike most holidays (O.K., I know that 9-11 isn't a holiday) the memory of yesterday lingers on and will do so for probably a week at least. I talked to lots of people (at the Legion) yesterday and a recurring theme was "where were you?". It was the most commonly asked question yesterday.

    The ever-sweet Ms Hilda and I watched the football game on Thursday ... the NFL season is finally here. We rooted for different teams (nothing unusual there). I am watching the Bengals and the Patriots as I write this ... we cannot afford the NFL Ticket package on the cable, so we have to take whatever NBC, ABC, CBS, Fox and ESPN offers up. Today there is this game and the Panthers vs Giants, Cardinals at Rams, and Dallas and Washington. This game I am watching has 4 of the best receivers extant with Ocho Cinco (should actually be Ochenta cinco, as he is 85, not 8 - 5), T.O., Randy Moss and Wes Welker. The Pats moved 72 yards down the field for a score first possession. We are sticking close to home today,lack of funds, although I have to go to the Legion for a few minutes later today to get a document from the commander. I have to give his 'Post' presentation at the American Legion District 2 Meeting on the 19th, as he and his wife will be in Waxahachie, Texas visiting relatives. Hilda has to go to the Auxiliary District meeting because she is on the E-Board and is the historian, so it's no problem for me to go.

A T-shirt seen in an airport ... love it !

We have to do some minor grocery buying today, then a snack-type afternoon and some movies (after the Cardinal game). We'll have some breadsticks or some pizza or maybe a frozen Bertolli entree of some sort. We'll probably be watching the remainder of year two of Hamish MacBeth ... great British (BBC Scotland) TV series from the mid 90's. Really a cute show, only ran for three years. We watch a lot of BBC series', especially mysteries. They are so much more character driven and far less violent (usually) than US mysteries.
PEACE and LFTD (the BLOG title)


11 September 2010

From another BLOG

There are a couple of Blogs that I follow religiously ... see my links ... and if you guys don't check them out, you're missing something.

Here is a paste of an entry from one of them (http://o-mores.blogspot.com/ ) that is hillarious and true.

24 Things All Humans Have In Common

1. I think part of a best friend's job should be to immediately clear your computer history if you die.
2. Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong.
3. I totally take back all those times I didn't want to nap when I was younger.
4. There is great need for a sarcasm font.
5. How the hell are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet?
6. Was learning cursive really necessary?
7. Map Quest really needs to start their directions on # 5. I'm pretty sure I know how to get out of my neighborhood.
8. Obituaries would be a lot more interesting if they told you how the person died.
9. I can't remember the last time I wasn't at least kind of tired.
10. Bad decisions make good stories.
11. You never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment at work when you know that you just aren't going to do anything productive for the rest of the day.
12. Can we all just agree to ignore whatever comes after Blue Ray? I don't want to have to restart my collection...again.
13. I'm always slightly terrified when I exit out of Word and it asks me if I want to save any changes to my ten-page technical report that I swear I did not make any changes to.
14. I keep some people's phone numbers in my phone just so I know not to answer when they call.
15. I think the freezer deserves a light as well.
16. I disagree with Kay Jewelers. I would bet on any given Friday or Saturday night more kisses begin with Miller Lite than Kay.
17. I wish Google Maps had an "Avoid Ghetto" routing option.
18. I have a hard time deciphering the fine line between boredom and hunger.
19. How many times is it appropriate to say "What?" before you just nod and smile because you still didn't hear or understand a word they said?
20. I love the sense of camaraderie when an entire line of cars team up to prevent a jerk from cutting in at the front. Stay strong, brothers and sisters!
21. Shirts get dirty. Underwear gets dirty. Pants? Pants never get dirty, and you can wear them forever.
22. Sometimes I'll look down at my watch 3 consecutive times and still not know what time it is.
23. Even under ideal conditions people have trouble locating their car keys in a pocket, finding their cell phone and Pinning the Tail on the Donkey -But I'd bet everyone can find and push the snooze button from 3 feet away, in about 1.7 seconds, eyes closed, first time, every time!
24. The first testicular guard, the "Cup," was used in Hockey in 1874 and the first helmet was used in 1974.

That means it only took 100 years for men to realize that their brain is also important.


   You all know that this is 9-11. No year, no description, nothing else is needed to bring that to your mind. Three numbers and a dash describes an entire event. You all know where you were and what you were doing during that day in 2001, when Islamic terrorists attacked the United States, crashing two hijacked airliners into the twin towers at New York's World Trade Center and another into the Pentagon outside Washington. A fourth plane crashed in Pennsylvania, apparently en route to Washington, when passengers jumped their captors. A reported 2,974 people were killed, most of them in the trade center towers, which collapsed. I hope that you all take time to reflect on the seriousness of that tragedy and that this day NEVER becomes a holiday like Memorial Day, Independence Day or Veteran's Day when people are more occupied with cooking out, drinking beer and not working than with the meaning of the Event. BUT, as the curmudgeon and realist that I am ... I know that I shall see that transpire before I leave this small blue planet. 

   I (and the ever fetching Ms Hilda) shall be at the Legion today, starting at about 1000. Hopefully next year also. Today will be a day of remembrance ... not of mourning. We shall watch College kids play football, we shall probably have a beer or three, we shall see friends ... but the EVENT shall never be far from our minds, this year or any other. Life goes on after all.

On a lighter note, some people were actually born on this date, including:
American short story writer O. Henry (William Sydney Porter) in 1862 ... he was the man who gave us the Cisco Kid, born in Greensboro, N.C. but moved to Austin, Texas in his 20's. Often called 'The Father of the Short Story'
Author D.H. Lawrence in 1885 ... English author, poet, playwright, essayist and literary critic
Jimmie Davis, former Louisiana governor and songwriter ( You Are My Sunshine ) in 1899
Football Coaches Paul "Bear"Bryant (University of Alabama, among others) in 1913 and Tom Landry (The Dallas Cowboys) in 1924 (Pro Football Hall of Fame Coach)
Former Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos in 1917, ... he of the wife of many shoes
Filmmaker Brian De Palma in 1940 (age 70) ... Carrie, Dressed to Kill, Scarface, Carlito's Way, The Untouchables, and Mission: Impossible, to name a few.
Lola Falana in 1942 (age 68) ... singer, dancer, actress
Mickey Hart in 1943 (age 67) ... drummer for The Grateful Dead
Leo Kottke in 1945 (age 65) ...  one of the best acoustic guitarist of all time.
Amy Madigan in 1950 (age 60) ... actress who is known for her role as Annie Kinsella in the 1989 film Field of Dreams, but was also a singer with Danny Sheridan's Eli Radish Band replacing former Pure Prairie League vocalist Starr Smith. She was (with singers Fred Bliffert and Jesse Roe) one-third of the group Jelly.
Actress Virginia Madsen in 1961 (age 49)
Kristy McNichol in 1962 (age 48) ... Buddy in the television series Family (1976–80), Barbara Weston on the sitcom Empty Nest
Actor/singer Harry Connick Jr. in 1967 (age 43)

07 September 2010

After Labor Day

Well ... Labor Day is over. The dying throes of summer to most folks. The hoi polloi (used as it is used by most persons extant, not by it's true meaning. More about that later.) will disdain wearing white clothes / straw cowboy hats (Dallas mostly) and will occupy their minds with all things autumnal. Yet, we here in the desert will have summer temps for another month and will probably not don a jacket until Christmas. We had monsoonal clouds yesterday (on Labor Day) and I was greatly surprised when when didn't get rained upon. We (the ever lovely Ms Hilda and myself) spent the better part of the day at American Legion Post 36 with friends. Hilda baked a cake for the 'Pot Luck' there and was proud of herself, she hadn't baked in a while. We also went to Post 7 later in the day and visited with Abram and Georgina Lares (among others). We watched the first half of the Virginia Tech~Boise State football game there. I watched the rest at the house. It started out as a blow-out but turned into a good game. I hope that all of you had a great Labor day weekend and were surrounded by loved ones/friends and joy and laughter. I am now on a search for the "1st Signs of Christmas Retailing". It starts earlier every year. Please send me your first sightings, and I will pass them along (by state). K-Mart/Wal-Mart usually have the artificial trees up and for sale by mid/end of September.

   Oh, about that comment on Hoi Polloi ... most people of my acquaintance over the past many years use the term (incorrectly) as "the higher ups in society" ... "The Gentry" as it were. Actually it is from the Greek for The General Populace or The Masses. O.K., I'm off my podium.

   I have been assisting American Legion Post 7 (Tucson's oldest) with the planning for the Veteran's Day Parade downtown in November. Because of governmental cut-backs (Local/State/Federal/Military) and community apathy  ... we are going to have a rough go. We are going to have to appeal to some other Posts for assistance ... people wise and financial. Logistically it is going to be a nightmare. We have to have police there and we are obliged to pay them $44 per hour per cop plus other costs. Grandstands, blocking off the streets, water, transportation, trophies ... it really adds up.

Notable (by me) Labor Day (9-6) birthdays (this year):
The Marquis de Lafayette, French hero of the American Revolutionary War, in 1757
Financier-diplomat Joseph P. Kennedy in 1888 ... father of JFK, RFK and Fat Teddy
Comedienne Jo Anne Worley in 1937 (age 73) ... of Laugh-In fame
Singer-songwriter David Allen Coe in 1939 (age 71) ... weird guy, but a good song-writer and fairly decent singer
Actor Jane Curtin in 1947 (age 63) ... SNL, et al
Comedian Jeff Foxworthy in 1958 ... People think his redneck jokes are funny, I think that they are about people I knew when I was young, or family actually.

Birthdays for (9-7):
England's Queen Elizabeth I in 1533
Actor Peter Lawford in 1923 ... son-in-law of Joe Kennedy (see above)
Rock 'n' roll pioneer Buddy Holly in 1936.

As is the case with all of you, I receive many "FWD"'s in my in-box daily. Some I delete fairly quickly, some I put in Ms Hilda's in-box so that she may see them, and some I save (or portions thereof). I am putting a couple of them (actually three) in right here that I liked recently. Two are cute, one is thought provoking.

Iranian Air Defense Site: 'Unknown aircraft you are in Iranian airspace. Identify yourself.'
Aircraft: 'This is a United States aircraft. I am in Iraqi airspace.'
Air Defense Site: 'You are in Iranian airspace. If you do not depart our airspace we will launch interceptor aircraft!'
Aircraft: 'This is a United States Marine Corps FA-18 fighter.  Send 'em up, I'll wait!'
Air Defense Site: ( .... total silence) 

God bless our troops. There is something about a Marine that makes other countries listen to reason.

(#2)  The best photo-shopped pic of the year. To my mind anyway!
                                      Dancing With The Stars 2011 

(#3)  From the Calgary Herald in Canada last week.

05 September 2010

4 Sept 10

Hello again from the desert southwest. It is Saturday AM about O-Dark-Thirty as we said in the military. Everything is as close to being normal as things around here ever get. I will probably write this entry over a couple of days.
Picture of the week:

Today's Joke: Two guys are drinking in a bar. One says, "Did you know that elks have sex 10 to 15 times a night?"  "Aw crap..," says his friend, "and I just joined the American Legion!"

Medical updates: I am set up for an MRI on my shoulder on Monday AM at 0600 hrs. I worked for Perry for 4 days this week, 28 hours, which helped keep the proverbial wolf from our front entrance. Hilda is doing fine, they've got her on Prednizone to try and keep her antibodies from attaching to her insulin, we've cut down the dose and upped her insulin intake. So far ... no low blood sugars like before. We have not heard anything on her disability from the Federal Gov'ment as of yet.

Day to day stuff: I am listening to The Pine Valley Cosmonauts, Billy Joe Shavers, Robert Earl Keen, Kinky Friedman, et al on Texas Exile Radio and checking the news on the computer.

Today (Saturday) birthdays include:
Radio news commentator Paul Harvey in 1918, always liked him on the radio ... especially The Rest of the Story.

Actor Dick York in 1928, He is best known as the first actor to play Darrin Stephens in the 1960s sitcom Bewitched. The show was a huge success and York was nominated for an Emmy in 1968. He suffered a debilitating back injury on the set of They Came to Cordura caused him increasing pain, so in some of his final episodes on the show the script was written around his being in bed or on the couch for the entire episode. During the fifth season on the sitcom, he collapsed on the Bewitched set and was rushed to a hospital. From his hospital bed, he resigned from the show to devote himself to recovery. For the 1969-70 season, he was replaced in the TV series by actor Dick Sargent, who held the role until the series ended in 1972. Both "Dicks" were very similar in appearance as far as I remember.

Dancer/actor Mitzi Gaynor in 1931 (age 79), She sang, acted and danced in a number of film musicals, often paired with some of the biggest male musical stars. Best remembered for South Pacific (at least by me)

Two of my favorite golfers ... Raymond Floyd in 1942 (age 68) and Tom Watson in 1949 (age 61), both are in the Golf Hall of Fame I think.

Actor Judith Ivey in 1951 (age 59), Despite a long history of theater and film performances, she is often associated with her one-year run on Designing Women in its final season, playing the Texan B.J. Poteet. She replaced Julia Duffy's - Alison Sugarbaker, who was herself a replacement for Delta Burke's character Suzanne Sugarbaker. She also played a notable role on the television show Will & Grace where she portrayed the mother of Dr. Leo Markus.

More Day to day esoterica:
   Today is our Shuffleboard day at the Legion, good times with friends. Watch some college football on the big screen. Our of U of A Wildcats played last night and romped over Toledo big time. Good going CATS! They play The Citadel here in Tucson next Saturday. Cannot wait until basketball is here though, we're big U of A basketball fans.
   One of my older poems just received an award online, that was neat.

Lady of New Mexico

Lying beside you,
          all black hair and brown limbs.
Your language excites me
          as much as your body.
If there is a language of love,
          Spanish it is.
It flows from your tongue
          as rivulets of snow melt.
“Te quiero mucho” you murmer
          I love you in English.
But mas, mucho mas in Espanol.
Words, delicate as butterflies
         float in the air like dust motes.
Every phrase a poem,
         every thought a lyric.
Sweet, dark-eyed child of the llano estacado.
         soft wind
              from the harshness of the desert.
Couple with me,
         let us become one.
But whisper to me in Spanish.
         Mi amor,
             mi alma.

We have been watching a new series of movies (from the library) ... Foyle's War, which is about an English Police Inspector during WWII. Good series and well acted.
It is now Sunday morning, I'll have to get the ever lovely Ms Hilda up earlier than usual. She has a budget meeting at the Legion Auxiliary at 1000. This afternoon, we'll wash clothes and watch some TV. I hope to catch some football. Have to sleep early tonight, as I have to awake at 0430 to get to the VA for my MRI. I hope that everyone had/has a great Labor Day weekend.