Saturday, August 30, 2008

New Category...

or "You can die for this country, but don't expect to be voting"!

"Voter Registration Drives Barred from Vets Homes"

Just a snippet...

"The VA has since explained that its decision to evict Preminger was part of a Bush Administration policy that bars outside groups from registering voters who live in VA nursing homes, hospitals, and transitional housing for homeless veterans.

In an e-mailed response to questions for this story, VA press secretary Alison Aikele said that "designating a VA hospital as a voter registration site" would make it harder for the government to care for wounded veterans. It "would be disruptive to the quality care we provide our veterans," she said.

Veterans groups have expressed outrage over the policy, which they say is disenfranchising as many as 400,000 veterans who often do not know they need to re-register to vote when they move into a VA facility and it becomes their official, state-sanctioned address. The VA has even barred local elections officials from carrying out voter registration drives."


Growing up, I remember reading about Patrick Henry "Pappy" McMahon, a WW2 Machinist Mate aboard a PT boat in the South Pacific. When their "boat" was cut in two one dark night by a Japanese destroyer and sunk, McMahon, having been below decks, was badly burned. His lieutenant, despite having re-injured a pre-war back injury, spent 3 hours towing him to the floating remains of their craft, then, having seen a small island, led the 11 survivors to it. He towed McMahon using a life jacket...with the strap in his teeth! 15 hours in the water from the time of the collision...

4 days later they swam again to a slightly larger island as they found no food on the 1st one. Again, with the lieutenant towing "Pappy" in his life jacket with the strap in his teeth. This led to their finding natives and their eventual rescue.

The lieutenant was later awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Medal for his heroics. McMahon survived his injuries and went to work for the U.S. Postal Service.

In 1960 the lieutenant was seeking public office and McMahon and some his fellow survivors decided they wanted to thank him by campaigning for him. This led to his being told by his superiors that he wasn't allowed to because he was a government employee!

Later this decision was altered, as I recall by court order, to say that government employees couldn't campaign during work hours, or wearing their uniforms...

So once again, we've been here before! And once again, the Bush administration seems intent on forcing it's own interpretation of things!

I mean, who wants a bunch of veterans who have been denied care, made to jump through hoops to get what was promised them, and seen those they served with stonewalled in some cases to death to register to VOTE!

By the way, for those who might not know, that lieutenant I mentioned above?

His name was John F. Kennedy...

That link will take you to his naval record.

Forgive my rant...I just can't believe that some of the things being foisted on us right now!

May your weekends be kind!


Thursday, August 28, 2008

Not the post I had planned...

but the one I can't ignore!

I saw this at a friends and knew I had to put it up...

Thank you, Tara!

Dottie is off tomorrow, so I'll be around on Saturday unless someone decides I need to do something else, lol!

May the rest of your weeks be kind and the (for those who get one) holiday weekend fantastic!


Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Red letter day!

Or perhaps it should be called a black ink day...

I've spent my morning paying out the "buyout" money that finally showed up yesterday. I paid off one credit card with a balance enough to buy a new small car, a 2nd that was enough to buy a new Korean car, a Sears account that had enough on it to buy a nice used car and a furniture/electronics store account with a sizable balance that was still interest free if I paid it off before January.

I just freed up about $900/month in payments...

Of course, that's going to go towards the other ones now to "knock them down" and not into the "general fund"! (This said with the grandchildren's magazine drive, a grandchild's birthday and Christmas all coming up, along with both daughter-in-laws birthdays, and our own...)

We've been here before, but when we got here before I'd always get laid off again; this time things should stay on a more even keel! (I hope!!!)

The "five year plan" at this point is to ride out the real estate slump, then hopefully sell this place and move out of the city a bit...we'll see!

Off to open my first savings account in 28 years; they didn't withold state tax from this and I need to put it away now or I won't have it next year!

May the week be kind to each of you!


Monday, August 25, 2008

New week, new post, lol...

Talia had been promised she could spend a weekend, and she arrived before Dottie was home from work on Friday, homework done and ready!

"Lego Star Wars" on the PS2 was her entertainment choice while I finished the things I wasn't done with when she arrived. I had shopped, extra because my sister's family birthday party was on Saturday. Bill and Laura were coming for dinner as well Friday night...I did manage to get everything to work out for when Dottie was out of the shower and they arrived. Gorditas, soft and hard shell tacos...

Mom called at 10 something and said she had knocked a lens out of her glasses again and that the screw was missing. We got up early as Talia wanted to go see her, got her glasses fixed and got back in time to eat some lunch and gather the food and presents for Cindy's party and head west.

Though dinner was supposed to be around 5 we left at noon because my younger nephew's first scrimmage of the football season was Saturday and we needed to put things in Cindy's fridge before we went; as the overcast burnt off and it went from 80 to 94 while we were there I'm glad we did!

Dinner came off well, though trying to cook 16 steaks meant two rounds on the grill and playing musical chairs with them to get them done. I was eating as my sons and wife started doing the dishes...

We brought all 3 grandkids home with us as Dottie really wanted them to see "Journey to the Center of the Earth" in 3D. They saw the movie while they were in Colorado on vacation last month, but the theater wasn't set up for the 3D.

Even though they had seen the movie, the 3D worked it's magic. Caleb, the youngest, was in Dottie's lap within 15 minutes. Talia shrieked and grabbed my arm before the opening sequence was done. Dillon, older and "independent" would just "jump" in his seat. They absolutely loved it! We had seen it last week, and enjoyed it just as much this time.

Dottie called for pizza as we left the theater, and we picked it up on the way home; dinner and 3 showers later we had them home in time for bed at 8. We talked to John and Noel for a bit, then came home and I finally got the haircut I'd been begging for for a month.

Our "us" time for the weekend was "The Spiderwick Chronicles"; quite a tale and very well done! 4 thumbs up from us...

So this morning, she just left for work; I slept 'til almost the 8 hour mark and am off to make an eggwhite omelet for breakfast. Then I'm going downstairs as my weights have been gathering dust since Thursday and, although I'm down 28 pounds in two months, I need to keep going that direction!

May Monday and the week be kind to you all!


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

As the weeks slip by...

It's hard to believe it's been almost 2 months since I last went to work...

John came by to change the oil in his Neon Monday after he got home from work. He had all 3 grandkids with him, and since the youngest missed the cutoff date to start kindergarten by two weeks, and Dottie was off yesterday, he spent the night and went to see "Wall-E" with us. It was his 3rd time to see it, and he still was spellbound as I was. Dottie admitted afterwards that she enjoyed it much more than she had thought she would.

I heard a lot of commentary when it first came out that said it was "Chaplinesque". As someone who's seen not only a lot of Chaplin, but also Buster Keaton and Harold Lloyd, I thought it was a lot more Keatonesque...Buster was always fooling around with one thing or another, Chaplin dealt much more with people (my two cents, lol).

It was very nice to see something that worked on so many levels that it not only could charm the children but adults as well!


Monday I picked up a USA Today because I saw a story on the front page about mold in military barracks in Oklahoma. After all the promises that were made and the commissions that were held after the Walter Reed scandal, I (should have known better) expected more of the people entrusted with the care of our children.

Reading that this is yet another case of it being a place for care of the wounded returning from Iraq and Afghanistan irks me; reading this morning that they have now fired the patient advocate who reported the conditions to USA Today after they weren't resolved makes me think nothing has changed but the location.

NPR broke some stories about soldiers forced to accept less than honorable discharges after having been treated shamefully at a hospital in Fort Collins, and not given the medical care they should have been because they were deemed to have "discipline problems" instead of PTSD. It seems that behavior is also continuing.

Of course, I'm sure if someone drives off the road at 5AM trying to make a muster for PT while they are on psychotropics or sedatives (one of the stories in the link just above), it won't be the Army's fault...


It's time for the promises that are made to each person who enlists to be kept! That you will be taken care of properly, and if you are injured you will be cared for properly as long as necessary. Not abused and pushed to the point of reacting in a manner that allows someone to put you on the trash heap because it's cheaper!

This isn't someplace you can have beancounters draw a bottom-line...

This isn't the place to balance the budget...

These are our children; our brothers; our sisters; someone's parents...

They deserve better!

Garry Moore's closing to "I've Got a Secret" was always;

"Please be kind to each other"

which some of you know is where my wishing the week to be kind to you comes from.

I hope someone is kind to these poor veterans...


Monday, August 18, 2008

On the ball...


I'm still cleaning and sorting and pitching, even though it's been a month and a half since my last gainful employment. I've spent enough time downstairs with my weights that my back feels healthy enough to start working on crunches and other things, so I dug out my big purple exercise ball last night and sat on it through about half of "Beowulf". My back was noticably tired when I got up...a good sign!

This morning I got up earlier than I have these past few days, ate and was getting ready to call the vet to see about Frankie's follow-up shot to last months annuals when Dottie's youngest sister called from Vermont. It seems their 2002 Intrepid had just had it's oil changed and blew a head gasket on the way home...I'm hoping Dodge will cover it for them, she deserves some luck!

Got Frankie to the vet, came home and spent a 1/2 hour making peace with him (much faster than last month) and now I have to go run a few errands; a printer cartridge, an oil filter for Dottie Malibu, and a stop by Lowe's because among other things I need to get back to fixing the hot water side of my plumbing. A while back I changed the shut-off valve going out of the hot water tank; this time I'm going to change the line going in and put another shut-off in it, that way if I have to change the rest of the manifold in the basement I don't have to shut off the whole house.

Dottie is off tomorrow. If she'll forgive me I might try and talk her into going to see "Wall-E" as I missed "Iron Man" and she missed the "X-Files" movie...

See you all on Wednesday...may the week be kind!


Sunday, August 17, 2008

Another attempt at an update...

When I tried to do this yesterday, Blogger decided my words should be translated into Hindi. Earlier in the week as I was trying to figure out why comments appeared and disappeared, I had changed a setting I should have apparently left alone...

My last post I left up for a few days because I was rather proud of it; there really wasn't a lot going on here anyway until Friday, Dottie's day off. My only real accomplishment besides a few sessions in my "gym" downstairs and watching some of the Olympics was possibly tracking down a "brake band" for my old chainsaw so I don't have to replace it. It arrived yesterday, so in a bit I'll go take it apart and see if it's the right one.

Friday morning we went to see "The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor". Enjoyable with some unexpected turns; always a plus.

The 2nd movie was one I was looking forward to and afraid it might "get away" before I got to see it: "Swing Vote". I'd have sat through it a second time; damn good movie! I swear if I could I'd send you each a ticket...

Bill came for dinner that evening and we "caught up" and they watched "Stargate: Atlantis" while I slipped downstairs for a bit. Yesterday I started my day with a run to the hazardous waste drop to get rid of a half a car battery someone through in John's yard after a wreck at the corner below his house, then Wal-Mart and Costco before coming home to mow.

Netflix had their system up and running finally, after a few days downtime (and a credit to our account) They shipped us out 3 movies, the first of which we watched last night: "Big Trouble", a riot from 2002 that has so many name actors in it I don't know how I missed it when it was new, Tim Allen and Rene Russo being the leads, directed by Barry Sonnenfeld (director of "Men In Black").

So tonight when Dottie gets home it's either "Beowulf" or "Grace is Gone"...

Off to grab some breakfast and then go see if that chainsaw is smarter than I am!

May Sunday be kind to each of you!


Tuesday, August 12, 2008

For those who thought me longwinded yesterday...

I hope you'll forgive me for today's post!

This morning in my inbox I found an e-mail from the only friend I have who has been a friend for more than 20 years. He lives in what is generally considered "The West", having been smart enough to take a buyout from GM almost 25 years ago and go to school. He is an ICU nurse, a rancher, a hunter and fisherman. He gives 2nd Ammendment issues (right to bear arms for those of you overseas) as much weight as all the other issues; rightfully so because where he lives you need a firearm to protect yourself and your stock from predators both 4 and 2 legged. I was there once when the County Sheriff reminded him that if anything happens that it will take him at least 45 minutes to respond and an hour for the State Police to get there, if they can find the place...

He has had equipment stolen from his property while he was at work; gates left open and stock let out, though thankfully the horses were recovered, the chickens, geese and turkeys weren't. He has had horses killed by marauding dogs most likely dropped by "city folk"; dogs that had "packed together" to hunt. The last time we spoke he was trying to deal with a badger that was raiding his chicken coop.

He attached a YouTube clip of a right-wing rant against Obama's positions on the 2nd Ammendment (one that included not one word from Obama himself, only half-quotes) and asked me why he should "pull the lever for this guy, give me a reason".

My response:

"How can I answer your question...perhaps the following that greeted me on my news page this morning-

"GAO: Most U.S. Corps. Don't Pay Income Tax"

with a subheader:

"GAO: Trillions In Sales Untaxed For Years

I'm surprised the powers that be let that one get out right before McBush tries to continue the current course!

I was interested in all the blather going on around the clips you found on YouTube. Just like the ongoing flame wars between "Faux News" and MSNBC, for any clip you can find of one thing you can find it's opposite:

Interesting, because in all 3, despite the dates, he seems to be saying exactly the same thing. Is it the truth, is it how he truly feels in his heart? It really doesn't matter, because even if he wins; even if the Democrats manage to take over the House and the Senate with enough of a majority to actually accomplish something, it will be such a slim margin that the 20 or so "Blue Dog" Southern Democrats will always vote against any legislation that would register or ban firearms, negating anything but the enforcement of current laws already on the books. As they should be!

Even if Clarence Thomas takes driving lessons from Robert Novak, there's no chance of appointing enough justices to change the currently accepted views of the 2nd Ammendment. I don't expect there to be a litmus test in the appointment of judges that asks "Why do you support the overthrow of the 2nd Ammendment" as a precursor to their being appointed as there was under Bushco...the one that the Attorney General announced this morning will not be prosecuted...

Something has to be done to wrest the control of this country and our future from the "Skull and Bones" crowd. That they can write off their corporate profits and pay no taxes on it, tax shelter their personal income and pay less than you and I, leaving us to try and build the roads, teach the children, take care of the sick, buy the aircraft carriers and everything else is just too much for us to bear.

Ross Perot spoke of that "great sucking sound" of wealth being pulled overseas 20 years ago; an even greater divide is emerging between those who "pay for our government" and those who control it.

Will Rogers said 75 years ago that "We get all the government we can afford". Though I can't seem to find online evidence to back it, I seem to remember hearing that when FDR began the New Deal, if you made more than $125,000/year you were taxed at 90%, which was part of why so many of the "robber barons" of old started building museums and philantropic organizations during that period; if they couldn't have it they would give it away rather than have it go to the government. (Just fine by me, BTW!)

I did, however, run across this:

The last paragraph provides some evidence of what I was raving about above:

"Between 1950 and 1990, the percentage of Federal revenue from corporate and excise taxes dropped from 45 to just 12 percent. During that same period, the share of revenue from individual income and payroll taxes jumped from 51 to 83 percent, most of the increase falling on middle and low income taxpayers. That increased burden on low and middle income families is one of the reasons why so many of those families are struggling, in spite of the economic boom of the 90s. The wealthy, however, have done quite well. Between 1952 and 2000, the maximum tax rate on the highest incomes has dropped from 92 to 39.6 percent. The Bush tax cut of 2001 further lowers the top tax bracket to 35 percent."

If that's not reason enough to pull the lever you spoke of, I don't know what is..."

Pardon my rant...

May the rest of the week be kind!


5PM- I don't know what's going on with Blogger, but the comment line has disappeared for this post; I've turned it off and back on, reloaded the page, nothing seems to work...should anyone happen to read this, it wasn't me!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Sunny "inside" though it's cloudy out...

Having lost my maternal grandmother to colon cancer gives an added relief to my "passing grade" on Friday. Thank you to all who encouraged and visited and crossed their fingers and cared!

I was asked what dinner was...

My last shopping run last week I picked up a George Foreman grill; digital with removable plates so they run through the dishwasher. Dottie's sister Jane and her husband had one when we were in Vermont the last time, and I was impressed with it and the ability to cook different things at the same time, or the same thing with different seasonings. Though Dottie wasn't particularly happy with the idea of something else to find a place for in our kitchen, my having cooked on it some over the weekend has convinced her that it might be all right. I'm hoping that "Big George" can help me become "Little Al" again instead of "Fat Albert"...

So when we got home on Friday I dropped a couple of chicken breasts in the sink to thaw, then she had to go get her paycheck and I rode along. When we got back instead of mixing my favorite Italian marinade, I cheated and poured some Newman's Italian salad dressing on a plate, flipped them through it, and a few minutes later we were having chicken breasts. I chased mine with a yogurt...

Dinner was a half sirloin off the gas grill; I cooked 4, but most of the time of late, cut mine in half figuring to eat half later or the next day. Mashed potatoes and brown gravy with mushrooms alongside.

Even though I had slept late the day before and through the test, I still was exhausted and we slept in Saturday morning. Breakfast was oatmeal with a scoop of protein powder and then we went out to run some errands we hadn't planned on; Angel (our going on 13 year old dog) is starting to hobble more despite the MSM she's on, and refuses to lie on the padded carpet in our room if we aren't in there, so we went and picked up a new pet bed for her, and a very soft rug to put in another place she always lies. Of course, right now she's lying on the hardwood floor just out of reach of my foot.

(A year ago her leg acted up the first time after Dottie tried to bathe her in the washtub we had used since she was a pup; just like us, she's not as flexible as she used to be. A trip to the vet comfirmed nothing out of place, but just arthritis settling in her joints. After a week she was fine; the MSM he recommended took 5 or 6 years off her. She could outrun Bill around the yard again, etc..

She and Frankie have always had a thing about chasing each other around the house in play; she will be lying in the living room, most likely when we are watching something, and jump up and tear through the kitchen to "wind him up". The other night she did it and came back limping...she's not young anymore...

Now, two days later, she's better again, though still getting up slowly.)

When we got home Bill and Laura were here; she's back from DC and her internship to do her last semester at KU and so the leftover steaks from the day before became their dinner and Dottie and I ate the halves we had left from the day before. Baked potatoes and salads, with a cheescake sampler for dessert. We watched "27 Dresses" from my Netflix list. when we used to watch "Roswell" I knew Katherine Heigl had a wonderful sense of comedy (her Christmas Nazi episodes were priceless) and enjoyed getting to see her really show it! I fell in love with Judy Greer when she guested on "Earl" and "Two and Half Men" and once again she didn't disappoint. Good movie!

There had been a lot of things in the theater we had missed out on these last few months as events transpired against us; we made up for a bit of that Sunday as we made a 10AM showing of "Hancock" (I'll buy that one when it comes out; damn good movie!) then bought tickets and made the 12:30 showing of "Journey to the Center of the Earth" in 3D. John and Noel saw it in Colorado on their vacation with my sister and they were disappointed, saying the animated sequences looked unfinished or something, they were just "off". We went anyway, and in 3D with the new glasses (no more red and cyan, but polarized ones that fit over Dottie's regular glasses) it was impressive. We found out later that evening that the print John and Noel saw was NOT 3D because the theater wasn't set up for it, and the only thing I can figure is that someone didn't "re-register" the two prints to make the 2D one so that is why they thought it didn't look right. Hopefully the DVD will turn out well, as I did some research and at this time the only 3D that works for TV sets is the old one.

My last 3D movie was Andy Warhol's "Frankenstein" in the early 70's. I have fond memories of it, though they might have been influenced by the chemicals I had ingested before I rode my motorcycle there along with some other guys I was stationed with, or the alcohol we consumed while we were there. I would love to see it in 3D again just to refresh my memory!

There's no way I could ever get Dottie to go to that one though...


When we got home I called John and found out that their little dog Abby we kept while they were gone had slipped her collar that morning and disappeared. They had been out looking for her several times and finally decided when she got hungry she'd come home. Dottie and I ate our dinner, and started trying to watch "Children of Men" from my Netflix list. It had a divot in it that wiped out chapters 8 & 9 so we pulled it, got some other things ready to mail, and then drove to the mailbox. It was almost dark, and John had said he had driven to our house looking for Abby thinking she might have somehow tried to find her way there. I told Dottie I wanted to look for her, so we drove towards their house, wondering if she'd have ever found the bridge over the freeway, etc..

We cruised the ball fields in the park below their house, figuring if she heard the crowd she'd have been drawn there, slowly working our way towards their house. The parking lots, the streets below their house...

We pulled up to the stop sign below their house and it was almost dark. Instead of turning towards their house I turned left back towards the 4 lane street a block away. In the headlights of Dottie's Malibu there were a little boy and girl on their bicycles with a little brown furball trying to get them to pet her...

So we cranked down the windows and started calling her; we stopped just short of them and while I opened my door to get out and grab her, explaining to the kids and thanking them, Dottie opened her door and Abby jumped in her lap.

We took her home; the grandkids were ecstatic to have her back and John and Noel thanked us for finding her...

We came home and Dottie showered and then we watched "The Myth", a Jackie Chan movie never released here until last fall on DVD. He had it for sale on his website for a while before that, and you could tell he was proud of it; I understand why now!

Not bad for what started out as a screwed up weekend!

So now that I've prattled on until my coffee is cold, I'll stop now and hope that Monday and the rest of the week are kind to each of you!


Saturday, August 09, 2008

Clean bill of health...

and come back in 8 years...

Back "on my feed" and feeling better; Dottie and I have a movie and dinner planned for tomorrow!

See you all Monday!


Thursday, August 07, 2008

A few days off...

I started my liquid diet this morning and shortly have to begin the rest of the prep for my colonoscopy tomorrow. I'm not counting on feeling too good until sometime late Saturday or Sunday (one reason I avoided doing this while I was working). So, hoping you'll all forgive me, I probably won't pop up again 'til sometime Monday as Dottie worked last Sunday so she could have tomorrow off (you can't drive yourself home after) and has the weekend off.

So, I shall hope that Friday and the weeekend are wonderful for each of you!


Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Things I don't want to know...

Dottie was so used to staying up until I called at midnight on my break that although I've been trying to make it to bed by midnight and get up around 8, she isn't ever ready to lie down before 12:30 or 1. We've spent the last few night catching up with the "Terminator" series that ran last fall as she and both boys were big fans of the movie and it was one she wanted to watch. Well written, well acted to this point; we're about 6 episodes in at this point.

Last night she talked me into watching a 3rd hour at a few minutes after midnight. Things had run late because when John got in his '98 Neon to go to work yesterday it would move about a foot in either direction and then "bind up"; he told me it was like the transmission was slipping. He took their van to work and called me at noontime, I told him to check his fluid levels, etc.. He called when he got home, 4-ish and was telling me this and that; it really sounded like the transmission was "gone". I told him call my nephew, the one that graduated Wyoming Tech last spring and pick his brain. Brett said it sounded like a bound caliper, and that is common in front wheel drive things.

So I took stands over, put in in neutral and tried to roll it backwards. A big "groan" came from the right rear. John came out of the house we jacked it up and I spun that wheel with my foot; it was bound but freed up- the left didn't.

I've never had any luck getting the rear drums off this car; I helped John do front brakes on it, and my other son with fronts on his 2003 Neon. I've checked Dottie's fronts and tried to slip the rear drums off her Malibu, which the manuals say all 3 cars should do; no "give".

Another call to Brett, and he said get a big sledge and beat the drum all the way around the edge and it will come off...

I did that once 25 years ago to an early 70's Impala I had, and yes, the drum came pieces...

I told Brett that and he said not to worry, it won't break, but I'd best figure on putting some arm into it with a 3 pound sledge.

The left one took about 15 minutes of a steadily increasing beating. It still had friction material on both shoes, but the adjuster wasn't exactly "free" to turn.

The right rear I started out at the intensity that took the left one loose, and about 10 swings later it was off.

The friction material from the front shoe had popped loose and slid around, jamming into the rear shoe and locking that wheel after a half turn in either direction.

John went and picked up shoes last night and we'll put it back together when he gets off work tonight...

So dinner was late as I grilled when I got home from his house after 8 last night; she had put the trash out when she got home at 7 and hit the shower while I cooked. We watched the beginning of an episode then I went through the shower around 9:30.

We finished the 3rd episode a bit after 1; she was up at 8 to get ready for work; I set my clock for 9:30 and when it went off told her goodbye, then said "screw this" and reset it for 10. At 10 I turned on the kettle and set it for 10 more minutes.

10:05; the phone rings. Thinking something must have happened on her way to work, I don't even try to grab glasses to read the caller ID, I just answer it.

Heavy breathing...then click...

Get up, turn the clock off, more than a bit pissed off that my last few minutes of snooze was ruined. Get my reading glasses, check the caller ID...

It was my mother.

I didn't call her back...there have been a lot of issues I've never written about here and suffice to say there are reasons that Dottie is usually the one to talk to her. I could spend years talking to someone about things that have occured just in the last 25 years and never get to the ones from my childhood...

I just started to write some of them out, but I just can't bring myself to do it! My stomach is doing slow rolls and my heart is pounding...


Usually I manage to choke it all back and deal with her in a family setting; there are reasons I never go see her alone, and avoid talking to her on the phone.

If it were truly something important she'd have called back or the nursing home would call; I'm grateful I don't have to worry about that aspect of things!

Dottie was going to go by on her way home from work and see her as I'll be working on John's car anyway tonight, and then pick up barbecue from one of our favorite places that's 2 blocks from Mom's nursing home, so she'll try to figure out what's going on.

Sadly, it was all bothering me so badly that I told Dottie most of what I couldn't write above; she's not any happier about things than I am, but deals with it so I don't have to.

So now I'm going to go take my frustrations out on my lawn. I mowed and shopped on Friday last week, but this week I get to go have a colonoscopy on Friday; it's going to rain a bunch the next few days, and if I don't get ahead of it by the time I feel like mowing again it will be knee high. Tomorrow I run the weekly errands, and Thursday I get to start preparing for my "exam"...

May the week be kind to each of you!


A couple of hours later...came in to cool off before I finish the lawn, and to "lose" the little neighbor boy who wants to help so badly. I was bloghopping a bit and went to type my name and typoed; not uncommon for me, and all kinds of variations on my name have come from my fingers before, but this one was new:

alian...damned if I don't feel like one sometimes!


Monday, August 04, 2008

Twists and turns...

After the events of last week, I wonder where and what and how to pick things up again. One of many reasons I was glad to retire last month was that I wouldn't have to go to work anymore to find the face of someone I knew taped to the front doors of the plant with the time of their services listed. Some weeks there would be several, never more than a couple of weeks without one. Sometimes active, sometimes retired, usually older than I, though some not by much; some were younger. The union newsletter always lists the union members they are notified of who died that month; it always seems none of them got long enough to enjoy things.

So with those thoughts in mind, a renewed vow to take it all a bit less seriously and enjoy things a bit more!

Having two extra dogs here for the last week was insane! My yard isn't fenced anymore, as a 5 foot high retainer wall collapsed some years back and without some serious (read bobcat) landscaping there isn't really a way to fence the upper side of it. Angel goes out the back door on a 30 foot piece of aircraft cable anchored just outside the door; when she comes in it lies underneath and hangs there 'til next time.

Everytime one dog went outside last week, all 3 had to go. So every two hours while home and awake, there was a half hour rotation of the critters. Their German Shepard is a "runner" and John has spent countless hours through the last couple of years trying to chase her down when she gets out and decides it's time to gallavant; having her do that in a strange neighborhood didn't enthuse me, so we used "kiddy gates" and doors to make sure only the one we were putting out could get to the door.
Their little one is prone to accidents in the house (we didn't have a one) so one gate stayed up to keep her off the carpet in our was a long week of moving gates and such as neither of us can just step over them like we did 30 years ago.

Late afternoon meant putting their little one in her kennel to keep her from mischief and driving to feed their cats, put their mail in and water plants. Come home, rotate the dogs outside again and start dinner.

So waking up this morning to our one dog and one cat was a treat!

Yesterday I managed to move my computer desk, unwire the tower and take it out to the living room to clean the inside of it and change it's battery. The howling noise at start-up is a power supply fan that I'll be changing sometime soon. Of late, whenever I shut it down during a storm if it was off more than 12 hours I had to designate "BIOS" and all that when it started; now it should be fine for another 5 years. After putting it back together and vacuuming my way out of that room, it was past lunch.

Then I tried to vacuum up all the dog hair and my day was done, it was time to start dinner again!

Off to grab a bite to eat and then go surprise my wife by meeting her for lunch break...

For those who might wonder about Kansas in the summer:

11:00AM- 91 Farenheit- heat index 100- humidity 56%

May the week be kind to each of you!