Sunday, May 31, 2009

Zac And The Zoo

  • He could say bison fine but, pronounced buffalo,"rubbalo."
  • Said,"turtle!" as soon as he saw the African leopard tortoise.
  • "Are they sleeping?" when he saw the African porcupines in their den.
  • A lot of things were,"dogs" in his initial assessment.
  • Including a Syrian brown bear.
  • After telling him a red kangaroo was a kangaroo in a gentle but, slightly condescending tone he corrected me-"sheep".
  • Called out,"goat!" when he saw the aoudad sheep.
  • That one was pretty good I thought.
  • Called the cottontail rabbits,"puppies".
  • When he saw the train said,"bus".
  • Spotted birds throughout wherever they were before me and called out,"wook- birds!"
  • Right now he's carrying his little potty around which is full of golfballs saying,"Mine! mine!"
  • And I'm ready to fall over dead.
  • Got to shower him and then we'll both collapse and dream of our first zoo trip.

With Some Friends

Saturday, May 30, 2009

At The Bakery

I knew she could bake a mean pie I didn't know how she had learned.
Taken in El Paso actual store unknown.

Friday, May 29, 2009

In The News

Not a good sign when the lead paragraph starts off something like this. "A Dallas Independent School District hall monitor is accused of waving a gun and threatening a woman in a road-rage incident Thursday morning. Bobby Strogen, 47, is being held on suspicion of aggravated assault in the Dallas County jail. " dmn

Friday's Dispatch

  • There's a movie being released in June- Dead Snow. Basically some Norwegian snowboarders somehow awaken an army of Nazi Zombies.

  • A movie could be great if it had zombies or Nazis.

  • But, Nazi Zombies?

  • Epic.

  • My family is in one of those places- haven't had a lot of deaths until fairly recently, the old folks are well, getting older and of the younger ones we haven't had a lot of untimely deaths. Until recently, it was years since the last funeral I attended.

  • That has changed and for a while I believe I better keep a fresh suit ready.

  • It's interesting to see people at another persons funeral you had no idea we knew in common.

  • Two folks mentioned my sister in law who was recently killed in a car wreck.

  • Seven years after her heart transplant.

  • She was still in her 30s.

  • Independently, they had looked at the contacts on their phones at some point and saw her name- yes, there were tears.

  • If you lose someone have a video made set to music with pictures from their life and make a bunch of copies to hand out. They are really easy to make and make all the difference in the world. Most computers will be preloaded with software to make them, you won't even have to buy anything. Also, every funeral home these days is set up to play them- if not use a laptop.

A Favorite Pic

of my children's great grandmother.
So much good natured, joyous life caught in that moment in time on that day.

Fridays Dispatch

  • Above pic was taken outside a Jamie Oliver Italian restaraunt in Brighton UK.
  • How did such a crazy, extremist group ever become the accepted voice for a movement?
  • A local women's political organization is named something like Bush Legacy Republican Women, the following is their mission statement:
  • Increase the effectiveness of our members in the cause of good government.
    Facilitate cooperation among the members & promote the welfare of BLRWW.
    Inform the public through political education & activity.
    Foster loyalty to the Republican Party.
    Promote the principles of the Republican Party.
    Support the objectives and policies of the Republican National Committee.
    Perform any lawful activity not inconsistent with the foregoing.
  • Well and good, just a thought though- may want to look up the word legacy
  • My baby son expects to be able to get a treat out of my backpack after work every night. Simple pleasure for both of us that reminds me of his older brother. He would expect the same from my lunchbox when I was doing construction work. To be able to eat whatever it was I was carrying I would pack an extra in the morning for him to find in the evening.
  • He's 15 now.
  • May be on to something big for a private military contracting job. It's just a thought really, an offer by a contracting firm owner I met to keep me in mind and me telling him I'd be open to hearing an offer but, it got me pumped, wanting to get back in the game and motivated to get prepared.
  • I'll figure out a way to get myself killed yet.
  • When I say I need to get back in shape people sometimes think I'm fishing for compliments.
  • I could enjoy myself equally at a performance of Swan Lake at The Bass Hall or a roller derby match.
  • Not sure if that makes me more of a renaissance man or schizophrenic.
  • Since I've started working nights I often put a movie in or a show on hulu to unwind by and ultimately fall asleep. I've becomed so conditioned to this when I try to watch something when I'm not even tired and with friends or family I crash within minutes- can't help it.
  • Pavlov would be proud.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

My Childrens Great Grandmother

December 29, 1924-May 26, 2009


Blah blah link blah. I can link big boy now.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Wednesday's Bonus Digressions With Yesterday's Weather And Traffic Report

  • Drove about 40 miles to relatives to prepare for great grandmothers funeral- in a hailstorm.

  • Honestly

  • Caught maybe a 5 minute break at one point.

  • Then sat in the car for 10-15 minutes to keep from getting killed.

  • Oh, we passed the Weatherford TX car chase, my first thought when I saw it coming a mile away was a police officers funeral.

  • The dude passed right by us, he was cool looking as a cucumber.

  • Tires shredded, smoking- one of the rear ones was layed over nearly flat.

  • There were 8 units behind him from 3 different agencies.

  • There was one coming up to him with the officer riding shotgun climbing over into the back seat as they passed and closed with the guy.

  • Presumably with a shotgun.

  • My thought as they went by?

  • If I was in my one ton truck and by myself- I'd stop that dude.

  • He went a couple of more miles then put 3 people in the hospital.

1000 Posts Many, Many More Miscellanious Missives

  • Have accomplished most of what I wanted with this blog- general creative expression, recounted some war stories from Iraq and my nursing, my son and a few others have used it to understand me better (might be assuming a lot on that one), teaching myself to organize my thoughts better, I've had something positive to keep me busy so I stay out of trouble (more important than you'd guess- if you knew me even).

  • However, meant to use it to learn more about the computer which I have but, still don't know how to put a link up in the text of a sentence without a 97 character URL showing or post video without same and a picture of the video showing. I've tried and looked at some blogger tutorials but- no luck.

  • I was very reluctant to open the comments up because people close to me read it but, it has been overwhelmingly positive.

  • I think I might be weird because I genuinely care about other peoples opinions.

  • I would feel rude if I didn't respond to a comment- where it would be useful/appropriate.

  • Was offered money to build up a blog for a business person I know who loved mine- never thought that would happen.

  • Did a skeleton with an outline and sort of a mission statement and some sample posts. They loved it but, that's as far as I got. Need to get back to that, had some good ideas and it really came together quickly and fully for what they needed.

  • Find the comments on here flattering and educational to me in more ways than one- although I don't go out of my way to be controversial here- I do speak my mind so it's affirming to see the positive comments related to my posts and how they are presented.

  • Have at least one post per week scheduled out to Feb 2013.Won't tell you my goal though.

  • But, can say some of the posts I've liked the best are scheduled that far out- so, Stay Tuned- The Same Bat Channel- The Same Bat Time- Here On blogadelphia!

Wednesday's Digressions

More on this pic another time. It's great for many reasons but, the one I'm keying on is- not everything is at seems.

  • “It is so public. It’s one of the things we did not envision when we started our show,” Gosselin said.

  • That's Kate of Jon And Kate Plus 8 fame after tabloid reports circulated of her husband having sex with another woman while she was on a book signing tour.

  • She also said she was ,"Hesitant to believe he'd been unfaithful."

  • I laughed out loud when I read those lines and I don't know why.

  • I was speaking on the phone with someone recently and she mentioned the death of her daughters childhood friend. I was sitting at the computer so I googled her name and town- nothing. Nothing about her life or way too early death.

  • Seemed sad.

  • Watched an interview with the face transplant lady. I usually don't get too worked up over these human interest stories- I don't know- the kind of inspiration I need doesn't normally come from sources such as this? And anyway, what are they going to do? They will either die or survive in these kinds of horrific situations. If they die they are dead. And if they live and make an effort to thrive they are suddenly an inspiration because they wash their own back with a sponge tied to a stick or whatever?

  • I felt like an ass after watching her interview.

  • I said to someone the other day,"I don't trust." and was kind of surprised at the thought myself. I hadn't said it or even thought about it I don't guess before that conversation. When I thought about it though, I realised it's true- when someone says they have or will do something or feel or think a certain way I don't necesarrily believe it and act on it as if any of it may or may not be true.

  • Tell me you love me, will be faithful, have been faithful, I'm your best friend, the checks in the mail whatever- that's OK but, I will never even worry whether you're being truthful or not but, I will also not invest anything in your word I can't afford to lose.

  • People lie.

  • Oddly, to me often they lie when the truth would fit better- very hard for a person who nearly can't lie.

  • I gave my daughter money for the book fair at her school. She brought me back a book: Star Wars Clone Wars: Operation Huttlett. Maybe I need to quit being so cynical.

  • "Warning: Do not use in horses intended for food'

  • Warning label from wormer for sons show pig.

  • I don't understand peoples fascination with eating horses and I understand even less peoples histrionic reaction to other folks wanting to eat them.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tuesday's Tidings

  • Iran condemned North Korea's nuke test.

  • Really.

  • There's a psychological term for when a distasteful person (or regime) thinks something is evil- and that makes whoever the subject of the focus seem that much worse and get more attention than they deserve but, I don't recall.

  • For instance, the largest aggressor of WWI and a big proponent of machinegun technology- the Germans petitioned to have the US use of shotguns in the trenches made illegal as being barbaric.

  • You may read a lot about the US and others use of white phosphorous in combat and understand it is illegal according to the various laws and and treatise of warfare- it's not.

  • Mike Tyson's daughter is on life support from a strangulation incident. She is four years old.

  • Horrible

  • Worked on a single mothers riding mower yesterday and had to tell her the motor is seized. (probably 1000 dollars or more)

  • A beating would have been easier to take.

  • Another neighbor wants me to work on hers tonight before her husband gets home.

  • Wait, that didn't come out right did it?

  • Anyway, certainly the most well educated lawnmower man in my town.

  • Mom would be proud.

Monday, May 25, 2009

A Hero Who Made It Home

By Lisa Burgess, Stars and StripesHeroes, Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Col. James Coffman Jr. stands tall after being awarded the Distinguished Service Cross during a Baghdad ceremony.
Col.James Coffman Jr.Unit: American adviser to the 1st Iraqi Special Police Commando BrigadeMedal: Distinguished Service CrossEarned: Nov. 14, 2005, Mosul, Iraq

More profiles from the 2006 edition of this Stars and Stripes special section:
Capt. Marlon James
Spc. Kurt-Alexander Kaahui
Petty Officer 3rd Class Robert Maldonado
Capt. Chad T. Martin
Maj. Lauralee McGunagle and Maj. Kathryn Van Auken
Chief Warrant Officer 3 Brian Mucci
Staff Sgt. Timothy Nein, Sgt. Leigh Ann Hester and Spc. Jason Mike
Staff Sgt. Jason Pepper
Petty Officer 2nd Class Juan Rubio
Master Sgt. Suran Sar
Staff Sgt. Anthony Viggiani
Staff Sgt. Matt Blaskowski and Staff Sgt. Christopher Choay
1st Lt. Stephen Boada
Sgt. Keith Camardo
Sgt. 1st Class Makonen Campbell
Col. James Coffman Jr.
Petty Officer 2nd Class Alan Dementer
Capt. Steven Victor Engberg
Petty Officer 3rd Class Clayton Garcia
Lance Cpl. Ben Gonzalez
Sgt. Justin Hormann
Lt. Cmdr. Richard Jadick
Visit Heroes 2006 for more

Standing in the blood of his Iraqi counterparts, back to the wall with just four bullets and a “folding flip knife” to defend against onrushing insurgents, Col. James Coffman Jr. had just one thought going through his head.
“I was not going to be on TV with them cutting my damn head off,” the Special Forces officer said. “I would eat a grenade first. I was going to go down fighting.”
Coffman, 51, fought, but he didn’t go down.
Instead, Army Lt. Gen. David Petraeus, commander of Iraq’s Multi-National Security Transition Command and Coffman’s boss at the time, personally awarded him the Distinguished Service Cross for his actions on Nov. 14, 2005.
The Great Barrington, Mass., native spent most of his 32-year Special Forces career in psychological operations.
When Petraeus, the 101st Airborne Division commander, was tapped to lead the training and equipping of the army and police in May 2004, he asked Coffman to be “his eyes and ears out on the ground,” Coffman said.
Eventually, Coffman became the sole American adviser to the 1st Iraqi Special Police Commando Brigade, a group of highly trained forces that belong to Iraq’s Ministry of the Interior.
In mid-November 2005, the minister of the interior called the commando unit to Mosul to help gain control of the city, which was being overrun by insurgents. Most of the local police had abandoned their posts in fear for their lives.
At 10:30 on Nov. 14, Coffman’s commandos received an emergency call for help from the only police station in the city that was still staffed. It turned out to be an ambush.
The insurgents pinned down the commandos until Coffman and his men were trapped with the police station to their backs, and a small retaining wall, about 8 feet high, in front of them.
Then they hit hard, with “very intense small arms fire and rocket-propelled grenades,” Coffman said.
Casualties were heavy and immediate.
All but one of the Iraqi officers were killed or incapacitated within half an hour of the attack.
“The ground was literally running with blood,” Coffman said. “I always thought that was just a figure of speech.”
With their leaders down, the remaining commandos “were in a fairly excited state,” Coffman said.
So Coffman took over, using hand signals to mime what he wanted the commandos to do when his fragmented Arabic failed him.
Coffman kept fighting even after a bullet smashed through the palm of his left, dominant hand and into the stock of his M-4 rifle, blowing the gun apart.
He dropped the useless weapon, picked up an AK-47 from a dead commando, and began to fire with his right hand.
“I could feel the bones crunching around” in his hand, Coffman said, but there was surprisingly little pain — “it was adrenaline kicking in.”
The commandos fought on, repelling two charges by the insurgents.
Finally, about 3 p.m., “it was just myself and one police commando that were ‘unwounded,’” Coffman said, dismissing his shattered hand as “a minor problem.”
“I was down to four rounds of ammunition,” he said.
“The insurgents were getting ready to rush us for the third time — a half dozen, dozen of them — literally, they were about 20 meters away from us.”
He had vision of being captured, paraded on television and beheaded, like so many other Western hostages.
He made up his mind: “I was going to go down fighting.”
Just at that moment, “the cavalry arrived”: soldiers in Stryker wheeled combat vehicles from the 4th Infantry Division.
The quick response team quickly subdued the insurgents and, four hours after it began, the firefight at the Mosul police station was over.
Out of the 120 Iraqi commandos who had responded to the call for help, 48 were wounded and 13 were killed, including one wounded major who was taken to a local hospital, kidnapped by insurgents and later beheaded, Coffman said.
On the enemy side, “23 bodies showed up at local hospitals, and another 24 were wounded,” Coffman said. “We probably hit them pretty hard.”
When Coffman learned that Petraeus had personally submitted him for the Distinguished Service Cross — the Army’s second highest award for valor, below only the Medal of Honor — “I was completely floored,” he said.
“I would say I was able to keep some training and composure,” he said. “But I was no Audie Murphy.” Stars And Stripes

More Memorial and Miscellanious Missives

  • "I think he needs a tom-tom on that thing he's been criss-crossing the state for at least 7 or 8 years."

  • Comment on Liberally Lean regarding the man who pushes the wheeled cross around the state (world?)

  • Made me laugh.

  • I slept from 9 o'clock last night to 10 this morning. I'm not even sure how many hours that is without calculating it- I've rarely had to relate that feat in my life.

  • Crazy dreams all night: a shotgun that converts to different calibers and gauges... and an umbrella, a walking stick and I don't know what else in a fancy case.

  • Plus 250,000 dollars cash that different criminal gangs and individuals felt entitled to.

  • One gang was Amazonian lesbians.

  • Me in the middle of all this nonsense.

  • With an old, dead best friend (who was starting to decompose) driving me around in an old, giant Oldsmobile to help me escape.

  • Me at one point sticking a knife in one temple and holding a pistol to the other of some dude.

  • Oh, and Corey Feldman in a trailer house hanging out with me.

  • I'm more worn out than when I laid down last night.

  • It seems more people genuinely get Memorial Day than Christmas.

  • Maybe?

  • There is nothing better than a nap in a recliner with a little baby on your chest.

  • A couple of people whose clarity of thought and writing ability I'm envious of love this blog and some hold it in some esteem.

  • For some reason.

  • I rarely dream about war- mine or others. A common Iraq war dream: I'm riding gun (machinegunner on top of truck) and it's dark I can smell the mixture of good/ bad smells I think you could find only in Iraq and at least- only in war. Burning trash, burning pavement, burning jet fuel, burning ______, dirty bodies, gunpowder. Then the fresh smell of the lake as wind blows across it, same through crop fields and orchards, the muddy but, somehow clean smell after the rare rain, the smell of deodorant when the squad leader down below adjusts his body armor, the smell of Copenhagen when Blake the driver takes a dip of snuff.

  • Yes, we were just as likely to use first names as rank and last name.

  • We are dead tired after a 6 hour patrol and manning a checkpoint for at least 2 hours. This is when it's the most dangerous- just dark, tired, anxious to be home, hungry, lonely, driving on literally the most dangerous stretch of road in the world (the insurgents don't bother digging new holes- they place the bombs in the old ones).

  • The tension is palpable.

  • As we pass the last checkpoint and know we are probably going to live another day.

  • I drop down into the crew compartment ands say in my cheeriest, most nonchalant tone, " So, this blond walks into a bar..."

  • Before I can finish everyone busts out into raucous laughter and slaps me on the knees and side and say,"Kev, you alright man- what would we do without you?"

French Military History From Albinoblacksheap Blog

- Gallic Wars- Lost. In a war whose ending foreshadows the next 2000 years of French history, France is conquered by of all things, an Italian. [Or at ths time in history, a Roman -ed.

Hundred Years War- Mostly lost, saved at last by female schizophrenic who inadvertently creates The First Rule of French Warfare; "France's armies are victorious only when not led by a Frenchman." Sainted.

- Italian Wars- Lost. France becomes the first and only country to ever lose two wars when fighting Italians.

- Wars of Religion- France goes 0-5-4 against the Huguenots

- Thirty Years War- France is technically not a participant, but manages to get invaded anyway. Claims a tie on the basis that eventually the other participants started ignoring her.

- War of Revolution- Tied. Frenchmen take to wearing red flowerpots as chapeaux.

- The Dutch War- Tied- War of the Augsburg League/King William's War/French and Indian War- Lost, but claimed as a tie. Three ties in a row induces deluded Frogophiles the world over to label the period as the height of French military power.

- War of the Spanish Succession- Lost. The War also gave the French their first taste of a Marlborough, which they have loved every since.

- American Revolution- In a move that will become quite familiar to future Americans, France claims a win even though the English colonists saw far more action. This is later known as "de Gaulle Syndrome", and leads to the Second Rule of French Warfare; "France only wins when America does most of the fighting."

- French Revolution- Won, primarily due the fact that the opponent was also French.

- The Napoleonic Wars- Lost. Temporary victories (remember the First Rule!) due to leadership of a Corsican, who ended up being no match for a British footwear designer.

- The Franco-Prussian War- Lost. Germany first plays the role of drunk Frat boy to France's ugly girl home alone on a Saturday night.

- World War I- Tied and on the way to losing, France is saved by the United States [Entering the war late -ed.]. Thousands of French women find out what it's like to not only sleep with a winner, but one who doesn't call her "Fraulein." Sadly, widespread use of condoms by American forces forestalls any improvement in the French bloodline.

- World War II- Lost. Conquered French liberated by the United States and Britain just as they finish learning the Horst Wessel Song.

- War in Indochina- Lost. French forces plead sickness; take to bed with the Dien Bien Flu

- Algerian Rebellion- Lost. Loss marks the first defeat of a western army by a Non-Turkic Muslim force since the Crusades, and produces the First Rule of Muslim Warfare; "We can always beat the French." This rule is identical to the First Rules of the Italians, Russians, Germans, English, Dutch, Spanish, Vietnamese and Esquimaux.

- War on Terrorism- France, keeping in mind its recent history, surrenders to Germans and Muslims just to be safe. Attempts to surrender to Vietnamese ambassador fail after he takes refuge in a McDonald's.The question for any country silly enough to count on the French should not be "Can we count on the French?", but rather "How long until France collapses?""Going to war without France is like going deer hunting without an accordion. All you do is leave behind a lot of noisy baggage."Or, better still, the quote from last week's Wall Street Journal: "They're there when they need you."

With only an hour and a half of research, Jonathan Duczkowski provided the following losses:
Norse invasions, 841-911.After having their way with the French for 70 years, the Norse are bribed by a French King named Charles the Simple (really!) who gave them Normandy in return for peace. Normans proceed to become just about the only positive military bonus in France's [favour] for next 500 years.

Andrew Ouellette posts this in response:
1066 A.D. William The Conquerer Duke and Ruler of France Launches the Largest Invasion in the history of the world no other was as large until the same trip was taken in reverse on June 6th 1944 William Fights Harold for the Throne of England Which old king Edward rightfully left to William but Harold Usurped the throne Will fights the Saxons (English)wins and the French Rule England for the Next 80 Years. then the French start the largest building and economic infrastructure since the fall of the Roman Empire the Norman Economy skyrockets and the Normans inadvertantly start England to become a major world Power Vive La France-

Matt Davis posts this in response to Andrew Ouellette above:
Oh dear. We seem to have overlooked some basic facts. Firstly, Philip the First (1060 - 1108) was King of France at the time of the Norman invasion of 1066 - William was Duke of Normandy and, incidentally, directly descended from the Vikings. William was, therefore, as alien to France as the experience of victory. Since Philip did not invade England, the victory at Hastings was Norman - not French. Normandy may be a part of France now but it most certainly wasn't in 1066. Therefore, William's coronation as King of England had nothing whatsoever to do with the French. As usual, they were nowhere near the place when the fighting was going on. The mistaken belief that 1066 was a French victory leads to the Third Rule of French Warfare; "When incapable of any victory whatsoever - claim someone else's".
Mexico, 1863-1864.France attempts to take advantage of Mexico's weakness following its thorough thrashing by the U.S. 20 years earlier ("Halls of Montezuma"). Not surprisingly, the only unit to distinguish itself is the French Foreign Legion (consisting of, by definition, non-Frenchmen). Booted out of the country a little over a year after arrival.
Panama jungles 1881-1890.No one but nature to fight, France still loses; canal is eventually built by the U.S. 1904-1914.
Napoleonic Wars.Should be noted that the Grand Armee was largely (~%50) composed of non-Frenchmen after 1804 or so. Mainly disgruntled minorities and anti-monarchists. Not surprisingly, these performed better than the French on many occasions.
Haiti, 1791-1804.French defeated by rebellion after sacrificing 4,000 Poles to yellow fever. Shows another rule of French warfare; when in doubt, send an ally.
India, 1673-1813.British were far more charming than French, ended up victors. Therefore the British are well known for their tea, and the French for their whine (er, wine...). Ensures 200 years of bad teeth in England.
Barbary Wars, middle ages-1830.Pirates in North Africa continually harass European shipping in Meditteranean. France's solution: pay them to leave us alone. America's solution: kick their asses ("the Shores of Tripoli"). [America's] first overseas victories, won 1801-1815.
1798-1801, Quasi-War with U.S.French privateers (semi-legal pirates) attack U.S. shipping. U.S. fights France at sea for 3 years; French eventually cave; sets precedent for next 200 years of Franco-American relations.
Moors in Spain, late 700s-early 800s.Even with Charlemagne leading them against an enemy living in a hostile land, French are unable to make much progress. Hide behind Pyrennes until the modern day.
French-on-French losses (probably should be counted as victories too, just to be fair):
1208: Albigenses Crusade, French massacared by French.When asked how to differentiate a heretic from the faithful, response was "Kill them all. God will know His own." Lesson: French are badasses when fighting unarmed men, women and children.
St. Bartholomew Day Massacre, August 24, 1572.Once again, French-on-French slaughter.
Third Crusade.Philip Augustus of France throws hissy-fit, leaves Crusade for Richard the Lion Heart to finish.
Seventh Crusade.St. Louis of France leads Crusade to Egypt. Resoundingly crushed.
[Eighth] Crusade.St. Louis back in action, this time in Tunis. See Seventh Crusade.
Also should be noted that France attempted to hide behind the Maginot line, sticking their head in the sand and pretending that the Germans would enter France that way. By doing so, the Germans would have been breaking with their traditional route of invading France, entering through Belgium (Napoleonic Wars, Franco-Prussian War, World War I, etc.). French ignored this though, and put all their effort into these defenses.
Thomas Whiteley has submitted this addition to me:
Seven year War 1756-1763Lost: after getting hammered by Frederick the Great of Prussia (yep, the Germans again) at Rossbach, the French were held off for the remainder of the War by Frederick of Brunswick and a hodge-podge army including some Brits. War also saw France kicked out of Canada (Wolfe at Quebec) and India (Clive at Plassey).

Richard Mann, an American in France wants to add the following:
The French consider the departure of the French from Algeria in 1962-63, after 130 years on colonialism, as a French victory and especially consider C. de Gaulle as a hero for 'leading' said victory over the unwilling French public who were very much against the departure. This ended their colonialism. About 2 million ungrateful Algerians lost their lives in this shoddy affair.

Mondays Missives

Poor boy exhausted himself trying to meet a deadline. Don't worry kid- it's all downhill from here.
  • May have mentioned this before but, it's important to me that my house smells good. Friends of my children that have moved and we later get back in touch with and nieces and nephews when they get older have all said,"I loved coming to your house when I was younger- it always smelled so good!" I have no idea though why it's so important but, it's been true as long as I can remember.
  • I've heard women comment on the fact that smells are more important to guys generally. I smell nearly everything I pick up- again I have no idea why. I don't remember seeing my dad or other males doing same when I was a child.
  • I don't use the word kid in reference to children very often. I say child or children.
  • My mom could make a peanut butter cookie that was soooo good your tongue would would slap your brains out trying to get at them when one came near your mouth. They were so good they'd make you want to slap your mama.
  • Yeah, she made a pretty good cookie.
  • Also chocolate cake with sour cream icing.
  • Another blog this morning reminded me of a goofy old friend story: one of my college buds when we got to know each other well enough said,"Come here I've got something I want to show you." Inside his den, bedroom and and garage where containers of coins. 5 gallon buckets of quarters, coffee cans full of dimes, giant vases full of pennies- you just can not imagine. I said to him,"Dave, you need to get this out of here, and I mean like now. There must be 15,000 dollars worth of change here- I'm not walking around the knowledge of this waiting for someone to bonk you on the head for it and have me be one of the people the police come to." He said,"Yeah, some other people have said basically the same thing." This gave the situation a whole new urgency- he'd told a few others about it after dragging it all out of his storage a couple of days before. When we loaded it up the next morning it made the tires on his Toyota truck drag the underside of the bed. It took the bank two days to count it all using as I recall either two or three tellers. It took three trips to get it all to the bank. There was 16,500 dollars worth of change, he was 32 and had not spent a single penny of change since he was 8.
  • That guy was an interesting character in a lot of ways. When he was 8 he decided he would be a millionaire by the time he was 30- (part of the reason for the change hoarding) and he bought his first rental property at the age of 12. He owned 37 rent houses when I met him after selling several off. The year he reached 30 he was worth a very cash flush nearly 2 million dollars. That same year his wife left him making realize how meaningless money can be without the things that really matter. I was a finance major at the time and honestly think hearing his take on life played an early role in why I'm a nurse now and not in banking or real estate etc. I haven't seen or heard from him in nearly 20 years even after trying to look him up a time or two.
  • Maybe that moment in time was all we needed from each other.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

War never slays a bad man but, the good ones always- Sophocles

Another One

"Laura Youngblood, widow of U.S. Navy Petty Officer Travis L. Youngblood, touches his gravestone in Section 60 of Arlington National Cemetery during the Memorial Day weekend in Arlington, Va., on Sunday, May 24. Youngblood died of wounds received in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in July of 2005 in Iraq." msnbc
"Petty Officer 3rd Class Travis L. Youngblood, 26, of Surrency, Georgia, died July 21, 2005, of wounds received July 15, 2005, from an improvised explosive device during combat operations in Hit, Iraq. Youngblood was a hospital corpsman assigned to Naval Hospital Great Lakes, Great Lakes, Illinois, and deployed with the II Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward). " Arlington Cemetery page
The report further stated he died from shrapnel wounds to the legs and throat.
He also left behind a four month old son.
His picture never left his widows side.
Even as she delivered their baby girl- two months after his death.
She was named Emma

Always A Great Memorial Day Reminder

In Flanders Fields" By Lt. John McCrae of the Canadian Army, 1872-1918

In Flanders Fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead.Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep,
though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

"The poppies referred to in the poem grew in profusion in Flanders where war casualties were buried and thus became a symbol of Remembrance Day. The poem is part of Remembrance Day solemnities in Allied countries which contributed troops to World War I, particularly in countries of the British Empire that did so.
The poem "In Flanders Fields" was written after John McCrae witnessed the death, and presided over the funeral, of a friend, Lieut. Alexis Helmer. By most accounts it was written in his notebook and later rejected by McCrae. Ripped out of his notebook, it was rescued by a fellow officer and later published in Punch magazine."

A physician by profession, during the war Ltc. McCrae was made a field surgeon to an artillery unit. "From June 1, 1915 McCrae was ordered away from the artillery to set up No. 3 Canadian General Hospital at Dannes-Camiers near Boulogne-sur-Mer, northern France. C.L.C. Allinson reported that McCrae "most unmilitarily told [me] what he thought of being transferred to the medicals and being pulled away from his beloved guns. His last words to me were: 'Allinson, all the goddam doctors in the world will not win this bloody war: what we need is more and more fighting men.'"wikipedia

LTC McCrae himself would die of pneumonia during the war.

American R. W. Lillard made this response after the release of the poem in the US which was considering entering the war.
("...Fear not that you have died for naught, / The torch ye threw to us we caught...").

A Memorial On MSNBC

that really touched me.

"Staff Sargeant[sic] John L. Hartman Staff Sargeant John L. Hartman was killed November 6th in Baghdad, Iraq. He was a son, father, brother and best friend. He went to Iraq on his third tour in place of another soldier whose wife had just given birth. At John's memorial...that soldier drove almost 20 hours to be there to give John's mother the flag. " msnbc

Succinctly Sunday

Because some days you're the lion- on top of the world and the food chain, other days you're the hippo having your guts ripped out and about to become lunch.

  • I just heard Drivin N Cryin doing the song Fly Me Courageous- still great (look it up on the youtubes)- it came out in 1991. It will always remind me of my mom, the first time she heard it she said,"Good grief- what is that junk?"
  • It will also always remind me of an old friend who somehow got involved with a married woman which became a murder for hire plot with the murderee being his wife and the hirer the woman he was involved with. In an odd, loose association I actually met her before he did, I worked on the house she owned. I remember her bawling the painter out because," That's- the- wrong- shade- of- Periwinkle, see look,that will never do!" as she placed a paint chip on the wall. I was looking over her shoulder waiting to talk to her on something regarding our part of the construction and get my fair share of abuse and I honestly could not tell the difference- the chip she held against the wall literally disappeared the match was so perfect. She's in prison right now, I bet she wishes she would have learned to be happy with the Periwinkle paint life gave her even if it wasn't exactly what she pictured.

There Simply

aren't words to describe how happy I could be living on an island like this.

Friday, May 22, 2009

A Milestone (Millstone?)

1,000 Posts, last published on May 22, 2009

Pink Pantied Patriot Post Update

Remember this fella and his friends? Well, noticed this update on MSNBC.Com. Oddly and unbelievably, there have been some people critical of him but, most of course are very supportive and found his action to be the brave, inspiring response it was. I'll also offer a suggestion that may apply here: when you see or read anything in the news and in comments sections especially that are critical of a western military- especially when they just don't seem to fit and just seem gratuitously critical: there are thousands of people worldwide who will do or say anything to make them look bad to further their cause.

"WASHINGTON - Defense Secretary Robert Gates says American soldiers have more than their military might and training on their side in the war in Afghanistan. Some have pink underwear.
Gates told an audience in New York about Specialist Zachary Boyd, routed from sleep by enemy fire on his post in eastern Afghanistan.
"He immediately grabbed his rifle and rushed into a defensive position clad in his helmet, body armor, and pink boxer shorts that said 'I Love New York,'" Gates said Thursday night.

"Unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on your perspective, an AP photographer was there for a candid shot," Gates continued.
The photograph by David Guttenfelder ran on the front page of the New York Times and is featured in the slide show on this story.
Gates said Boyd, from Forth Worth, Texas, later told his parents he might get fired. Gates assured his audience at the Intrepid museum, and Boyd, that his job is safe.
"Any soldier who goes into battle against the Taliban in pink boxers and flip-flops has a special kind of courage," Gates said, adding that Boyd may have hit on a new kind of psychological warfare. "I can only wonder about the impact on the Taliban.

Just imagine seeing that — a guy in pink boxers and flip-flops has you in his crosshairs."
At least initially, the soldiers were worried the photo would make them look bad, Guttenfelder said. But Firebase Restrepo, on a steep mountainside where soldiers are on constant lookout for Taliban fighters, isn’t a place for formality: Uniforms have holes in them, and some men wear flea collars because of bugs in their beds, he said.

Boyd called his parents at 12:30 a.m., Fort Worth time, to warn them about the photo. He was legitimately worried about losing his job, said his mother, Sheree Boyd.
Her husband, Tommy, immediately got on the computer to find the photo and roared with laughter, she said. The boxers were emblazoned with “I Love NY.”

“We thought it was such a funny picture but so typical of him,” Sheree Boyd said of her son, who turned 20 on Sunday. “He’s always liked boxers, the wilder the better. But we’d never seen him wear pink before.”

The photo drew a wide response on the Internet. A handful of commentators found it an undignified representation of America’s fighting forces but most supported Boyd. “I think this is great,” a woman named Melissa wrote on a TV station message board. “I wish I had an address for him. I’d send him some that say ‘Don’t mess with Texas.”’

Guttenfelder said Boyd was one of the bravest soldiers he’d seen in Afghanistan. The photographer believes that most people recognize what he saw in the situation. “When the Taliban starts shooting, whatever you’re doing, whatever you’re wearing, you run to your station,” he said.

Sheree Boyd said she and her husband had heard from many people expressing admiration for their son. She’s eating that up, as any mom would, but said she appreciates how the photo reminds Americans that it’s the “kid next door” fighting the war.

She said she hopes to see her son back home by the Fourth of July. Would he be wearing pink boxers in any Independence Day parades?

“Don’t challenge him,” she said, laughing. “He just may do it.”

Meth Mouth

is a term I used here earlier that gets a lot of use, everyone kind of understands what it is but, may not know exactly why.

  • Chronic Methamphetamine users often have a fairly distinctive type of oral disease- the following are some of the causes: 1) As a person devolves into a dependent state they care less and take less care of everything. 2) The drug cause chronic grinding of the teeth and jaw clenching which destroys the protective enamel forming tiny cracks throughout. I think this leads to the distinctive decay as much as anything. 3) They don't eat well. 4) The drug causes less saliva to form which impairs blood flow to gums causing gingivitis and other diseases. 5) Interestingly, studies and anecdotal evidence have suggested that chronic users are more likely to use sweet, carbonated drinks more often than the average person. 6) The chemicals used in meth. are very corrosive and will even burn the skin when used as directed. After a person snorts or smokes the drug it comes into the mouth and contacts the teeth causing decay. This can be demonstrated to be true by the fact IV users have less trouble with dental problems or conversely take longer to get to the same level of decay.

  • Two things I've personally noted among male and female users: a female user if she blames anything besides the drug for her tooth loss and/or decay it will be the carrying and/or nursing of babies. For a male, the loss will always involve a fight against normally multiple males and being smashed in the mouth with a chair. Both of these may sound weird to take note of I know- but, I honestly cannot tell you how many times I've heard both of these stories.

Fridays Dispatch

google streetview blakeley georgia,"Hey, what is this here thangy?"

  • Left my crazy person journal at a nursing home I was contracted to recently. It's still there and I'll pick it up tonight as I took the patient on again.
  • What's a crazy person journal? It's my notebook I use for everything- to dos, patient reports to my relief, cases to bill, landscape designs, thoughts for this blog etc. Especially the thoughts for here look like well, a crazy homeless persons ranting journal that might be found in their grubby pocket when they freeze to death in a doorway some winter night in a big city. The jots in mine aren't meant for public consumption and are just a bunch of messy looking scratches to remind me what I'm thinking- specifically to not have to rewrite the whole thing a second time.
  • Man, I'm going to hate facing people I know have seen my inner madness at work.
  • Took care of a local man last night. Didn't know him and we could not have been more different people but, it always means a lot to care for someone local to me and I don't know why.
  • Funny skeleton that came out from the oldest daughter: " I remember because Paw paw and Googie had a big fight that day." Family laughter all around then someone said,"I knew they never got along but, they had a fist fight?" "Not exactly." came the response and after a brief pause- "Googie came after Paw paw with a 2x4 and hit Paw paw in the head and Paw paw stabbed him a couple of times with his pocket knife. If Pauly wasn't there to break it up they would have killed each other." which was of course followed by family laughter all around again.
  • Paw paw and Googie were the families grand father and step great grandfather respectively. One was 65 and the other 72 at the time.
  • A kind of pretty CNA was flirting with me recently at a facility. She used her well practiced butt swing walk when she walked away from me, took her hair band out to toss around her really pretty long blond hair while she pretended to need to adjust the hair band, would laugh and touch my arm letting her fingers run down it as she pulled her hand back to herself- all the classics. I thought she was kind of holding her mouth funny and when I made her laugh out loud and smile big found out why. Every tooth in her head was black with rotted holes all the way through the front two uppers. It looked like she hadn't brushed them since she had them.
  • Meth mouth.
  • The Jon And Kate Plus 8 thing is getting a lot of attention. Supposedly, it's been discovered he cheated with another woman while she was on a book signing tour.
  • Jon And Kate Plus 9
  • Then, supposedly it's come out she'd been having sex with the bodyguard.
  • Plus 10
  • Then there might be another, another woman.
  • I get lost when I run out of fingers.
  • The odd thing? People who've watched the show would go on and on about their commitment, their love, their devotion etc. When I watched it I thought, Here's two people who if they had the energy to care would hate each others guts. And wondered if I really was watching the show I kept hearing about.
  • I wore Spongebob Squarepants boxers to sleep in every night I was in Iraq.
  • Never washed them.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Burning Man Festival- Texas Edition

My imbecility knows no bounds I'm occasionally reminded. I work nights so I rarely see daylight in general much less with time to get enough sun to tan so the other day when it was bright enough (although cloudy) and I felt well rested enough I decided to sit in the backyard and catch some rays. Being the genius I am I put some Skin So Soft on me to protect my delicate skin.

Well, I must have slept through whatever science class (refraction?) that would have taught me what a cloudy (but, bright) and cool day can do with the combination of oil on fair skin.

After about 30 min. I was impressed thinking I was noticeably darker. I went in after only 40 min. and was alarmed to see darker was actually redder when out of the suns glare.

I had to work that first night shivering with a severe headache, nauseated and with a temp. over 100 degrees- essentially radiation poisoning.

Presently, skin is falling off my upper body, head and nose in patches large enough for skin graft donation if in fact- I wasn't a burn victim myself.

Believe me, it isn't easy being retarded.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Gotta Love The US Soldier

"Soldiers from the U.S. Army First Battalion, 26th Infantry take defensive positions at Camp Restrepo after receiving fire from Taliban positions in the Korengal Valley on May 11. Spc. Zachery Boyd of Fort Worth, Texas, far left was wearing 'I love NY' boxer shorts after rushing from his sleeping quarters to join his fellow platoon members. From far right is Spc. Cecil Montgomery of Many, La., and Jordan Custer of Spokane, Wa., center."

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

To Benefit Jackie Murphree

Be there or be square!
Begins and ends at Veterans Memorial Park

Monday, May 18, 2009

Mondays Missives

  • I have been offered money to help set up a blog and small website for a business.
  • No, they have been in business for quite awhile and are very successful.
  • No, actually they seem quite intelligent.
  • I hardly ever use the fireplace but, a house without one would be a deal breaker, not only are fires nice to have just for grins but, well they can keep you warm when the power goes out.
  • The favorite memory of my life: My teenage son lying on the floor reading, my six year old playing with a toy nearby and me half dozing in my awesome leather recliner holding the baby with a fire roaring in the fireplace. A person who has learned whats important in life hundreds of years ago or hundreds of years in the future would understand that moment in time I think.
  • My next house will not have a square inch of carpet. A few rugs for comfort and to cut down on noise and that will be it. I've spent at least 8000.00 dollars on carpet not including maintenance in my life and the air quality issues involved.
  • Even in town in generations past they believed in having cellars (there were at least 4 within blocks of my house growing up) I wonder, were they more for food storage? If they were for storm safety foremost- how did we get away from them? With building densities it would seem more important to have them today than ever before.
  • If I could travel back in time I would waste a trip observing Cro Magnon Man, Nenaderthal man et al early mans lives.
  • Napolean Dynamite- pure comedic genius.
  • If ever there really were a conspiracy theory I would have to wonder how many were actually spun by the government or other agencies with something to hide to have groups chasing their own tales and looking too crazy to be taken seriously by the public.
  • Unless something has dramatically changed the JFK assassination is the most written about subject in the world next to the Bible with something like 3000 titles and I don't recall how many books printed.
  • Gajillions I'm sure.
  • The new neighbors haven't gotten in the spirit of the neighborhood and won't wave back when we pass.
  • That's OK, I have a secret way to get to the bottom of that and at least talk to them for a minute.
  • Their voters registration card came to my mailbox.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

As I Write This

my two oldest are going at it with wooden battle axes and swords while the youngest watches with his mouth open in amazement, a string of drool going from his sippy cup to his lower lip.

Can't Wait

The cool thing? Although there is plenty of CGI creatures in the movie apparent by the trailer, the Sleestak are portrayed basically by guys in rubber suits.
I wonder if Jefferson Collie Davis III will play a part in the big screen adaptation? He was the old Confederate artilleryman who would fight the Sleestak and others with his cannon using homemade gunpowder. He said of the Sleestak,"They taste a whole lot like lobster. But then again, not like lobster, if you know what I mean." One of those minor characters that run through a story that really carry it when they are brought out. Land Of The Lost will be in theaters June 5 2009.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Fridays Dispatch

Streetwalkers you may say- heroines of the planet doing their part to save the world by walking those streets instead of driving them I say. God bless all the little streetwalkers each and every one. From google streetview

  • Essentially, everything the average citizen believes about illicit drugs in the US from steroids and other performance enhancers to heroin is based on bad science (or simple lack thereof), and the use of fear or outright lies for power.

  • Don't care whether you believe they ought to all be legalized or anyone who uses them should be locked up and the key thrown away.

  • Loving driving the turd bomb. I rarely lock it up, leave the keys in it half the time and parking lot dings? Whatever.

  • "At 5:30 A.M. it was time for timmy to wake up. His Mom went into his room to find out that he had been killed. She found his head in his closet. She tried calling the police but the line didn't connect. Seconds later the murderer came out and killed the Mother too. If you don't send this to 10 different videos, the same thing will happen to you. Sorry, Don't Wanna Die " From a youtubes comments section.

  • Recently invested money I really couldn't afford to spend in a business start-up founded by a girl who has been having trouble finding a job and whose husband was also recently laid off.

  • You may call me an imbecile.

  • Venture Capitalist I say

  • Or, if you prefer- Titan Of Industry

  • I gave my patient a really good, warm bath and shave this morning then put a nice cologne on him and brushed his teeth. I put a really great, loud, flowery button down shirt on him and lay him back on his nice, freshly fluffed up pillow. He took two big breaths blowing the last one out long and slowly and that was it- he was gone.
  • It was 6:23 and 30 seconds AM.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Jackie Murphree Is Home

from China and the following is an update to her myspace page by her mom Kurrie. If you are not familiar with the story Jackie was a college student who was struck be a drunk driver near Decatur TX. Recently she went to China for stem cell treatment to repair some of the damage.

"Wednesday 05/13/09 9:56pm WE ARE HOME!!!! I did not update yesterday because I decided on a whim to fly to California and meet Jax and Patrick at the gate so I could help Patrick with that last flight. I did not let Patrick know I was coming so he was surprised that I asked him which gate he was at when he called me to let me know they had made it through customs. The flights both went as well as they did on the way there. She did not sleep on the 12 hr flight so by the time I saw her she was pretty tired. But when I walked up and said Hi to Jackie she let out a holler and was visibly excited and then she smiled with very twinkling eyes. There was no doubt she knew who I was and both Patrick and I were just happy to all be together. When we arrived at DFW we were greeted by Aunt Lynn, Uncle Jeff, Aunt Pam, cousin Brady, good friend Cathy Summers and Jim Douglas with Channel 8 and his camera guy. We may be on tonight at 10:00...Jackie smiled and looked happy to see everyone even though she was so tired. She fell asleep very fast when we started the drive from the airport and when we got home David was waiting for us. He says he sees a difference. Jamie brought us flowers and Lori came to say hi. Aunt Weise and Uncle Robert brought dinner and Granny stopped by just as Jackie fell into a very deep sleep for about an hour. We are so tired but so happy to be home. We have a busy week planned...tomorrow will be unpacking and resting then we are off to A&M for Travis's graduation on Friday and Saturday is David's Sr prom so it will be a fun week. Thank you as always for the prayers that were answered once again. I will be letting Patrick take over the updates now that he is back in town and we will be watching really close and praying really hard in the next few months for improvements. Memorial weekend is coming quick and the Race to Recovery is that Saturday (23rd). Hope everyone can come out and join or just say hi. There is a group that has been working really hard to make it a fun day for all. Love to all and thank you for expecting miracles. Kurrie "

I went to school with both of Jackie's parents- very decent, kind and smart people. This was one of those situations that really reminded me how this could happen to anyone- me, you , your child or anyone we know and care about. The account information for donations:

Legend Bank/ Attn: Jackie Murphree Benefit Account/ P.O. Box 1001/ Decatur, TX 76234.

Monday, May 11, 2009

My New Fave Streetview Pic

Antlered UK man comforts less fortunate mate as he recycles his ale into a pint glass. If not pricless- certainly worth several quid!

Mondays Movie Missives

  • Professor Hobby: Tell me, what is love?
  • Secretary: Love is first widening my eyes a little bit and quickening my breathing a little and warming my skin and touching...
  • Professor Hobby: ...and so on. Exactly so. Thank you, Sheila.
  • A.I. a movie that created a lot of buzz and spawned a lot of ethical debate is now nearly ten years old. I know a lot of younger movie loving people who haven't seen it but, I remember it as one of those movies you simply could not escape hearing about- the debate about the ethics of human esqe robotics was as pervasive as was the question whether A.I. was the best or worst movie ever made. I remember Mark Davis talking about it for his entire show one day after seeing it and speaking of it often for days later.
  • The Big Fish and American Beauty: excuse me if I say these are two movies you simply cannot begin to fully appreciate unless you are at least a late 30s to early 40s male.
  • The English Patient: the best most misunderstood movie ever made.
  • I don't think I breathed for the first 20 minutes of Saving Private Ryan and still get misty when I see it- OK I admit it, I bawl like a baby.
  • Still impressed with how good animated movies can be today while being smart enough for grown ups to enjoy and safe for little ones. I think Lion king started that concept off with traditional type animation and Toy Story with computer animation.
  • How can Lonesome Dove be one of the best westerns ever made and all the others based on books by the author using same writers etc. be among the worst?
  • Tombstone- the best western ever made.
  • High Noon still blows me away every time I see it- you can almost feel the knots in Gary Coopers characters stomach as he goes out to face certain death but, he faces it.
  • The Wild Bunch: the good guys don't always win, the bad guys aren't always all bad, hero's can die like dogs face down in a dirty street, when people die violently it's often with blood everywhere their guts hanging out begging for mercy not spinning around, saying,"They got me Johnny tell Mary Sue I love her..." and holy smokes it was made in 1969! John Wayne hated Sam Peckinpah for this film saying publicly it, "destroyed the myth of the Old West".
  • A favorite John Wayne story: "The evening before a shoot he was trying to get some sleep in a Las Vegas hotel. The suite directly below his was that of Frank Sinatra (never a good friend of Wayne), who was having a party. The noise kept Wayne awake, and each time he made a complaining phone call it quieted temporarily but each time eventually grew louder. Wayne at last appeared at Sinatra's door and told Frank to stop the noise. A Sinatra bodyguard of Wayne's size approached saying, "Nobody talks to Mr. Sinatra that way." Wayne looked at the man, turned as though to leave, then backhanded the bodyguard, who fell to the floor, where Wayne knocked him out by crashing a chair on top of him. The party noise stopped."
  • Lifeboat was made in 1944 and is the story of 9 people in same after their ship is sunk by a U boat. The Uboat was also sunk during the engagement and the captain of it is picked up by them. Two hours or whatever of people in a B/W movie in a small boat in an empty ocean and it's riveting. Tallulah Bankhead practically carried the movie.
  • She was known for a feud with Bette Davis leading to this cute quote, "Don't think I don't know who's been spreading gossip about me . . . After all the nice things I've said about that hag [Bette Davis]. When I get hold of her, I'll tear out every hair of her mustache." Regarding sex,"I've tried several varieties of sex, all of which I hate. The conventional position makes me claustrophobic; the others give me a stiff neck and/or lockjaw." About men and booze, "My father warned me about men and booze, but he never mentioned a word about women and cocaine". Education," I read Shakespeare and the Bible, and I can shoot dice. That's what I call a liberal education ." On any potential husband, "No man worth his salt, no man of spirit and spine, no man for whom I could have any respect, could rejoice in the identification of Tallulah's husband. It's tough enough to be bogged down in a legend. It would be even tougher to marry."
  • She died in December 1968, her last words were ,"Codeine... Bourbon"
  • Supposedly Red dawn is going to be remade with the flashpoint being Eastern Europe instead of the US. I hope that won't be like when Tom Skerritt disgraced er, I mean remade High Noon.
  • Zombie movies: can't get enough of them, good or bad- for that matter, the worse they are the better I enjoy them.
  • Any scary movie that effectively combines humor with fright factors is always way scarier than straight up slasher movies.
  • If I had the means Casablanca would play in a loop on a monitor mounted on the wall like a picture frame in my house.
  • I tend to like movies and call them favorites if at first I thought it would be a stinker but, turned out to be a good movie, I'm unsure if this is psychological.
  • It doesn't bother me at all to go to a movie alone.
  • My nephew auditioned for a Clint Eastwood movie.
  • My dad was actually in a coffee commercial with a bunch of folks from my hometown of Decatur TX. I think the premise was they would do anything for a cup of that coffee and they were shown in the country making an epic walk toward town. There were giant planters, benches and some other props I don't recall left behind that were there for years on the square afterward. I think the brand was Kava or something like that.
  • I have been on television news either 3 or 4 times.
  • No, none involved high speed chases.
  • Once for Boy Scouts, once at a job and a couple of other times I don't recall.
  • My friends know I can predict with approximately 90% accuracy whether a movie will stink or not by the trailer and/or cover summary.
  • It's like a superpower that I must use for good and not evil.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Sunday Afternoon Missives

  • Slept all day.

  • Feel great.

  • Had the most vivid dream about a friend. I was at an old asylum type hospital that had predictably quirky doctors and nurses. It was also predictably in the country with a wrap around porch, overlooking a lake with forests and mountains in the background.

  • An old, best friend was there- doing the catering. Recently we got back in touch for a while then lost touch again. We talked often for hours at a stretch, then nothing.
  • Why do we do that?

  • Sometimes you need those situations though to learn how important you were to people.

  • Here's what I mean. He was older, tough, smart, funny with a decent streak in a sea of thugs. He taught me how to drive after my dad died. I really looked up to him. When I look back at those days it's easy to shudder and think of all the wasted time. During one of our makeup conversations he said,"Kev, look dude you were so much smarter than the rest of us and had so much more common sense- if it weren't for you some of us would be dead now."

  • I'm buying a motorcycle this summer and going up to see him. I think I'd like to ride up north where he's from, see where SRV died (he lived about 2 miles from there when it happened) and just see what people are like up there. Ride the bike through Phillie, Boston and New York.

  • How does that sound?

  • Trouble.

  • He is disabled by a kidney disease.

  • Neither one of us could believe it when after not speaking for 15+ years I blurted out," I'll get tested for compatibility so you can you can have one of mine. Just tell me when and where."

  • I meant it- he knew it.

  • It's Mothers Day- man, I miss her in a way I can't even describe but, the words that come to mind are empty and alone.

  • My present patient will die tonight.

  • His family has told me I'm "like family" and asked me to come to the funeral and dinner afterwards.

  • There are lines to not be crossed no matter how much we may have become entwined in each others lives I believe.

  • Is there anything that it's proper to put ketchup on- besides fries?
  • A toilet paper roll holder got dropped down the toilet clogging everything up so we had to pull it to remove said holder. My oldest son did most of the work pulling the toilet out. He's in there now chipping up all the old ceramic tile so we can lay new down next weekend.
  • How many 15 year olds could/would do all that?

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Best Of Craigslist

> san diego > Free 1998 BMW M3 Originally Posted: Tue, 23 Dec 19:41 PST
Free 1998 BMW M3
Date: 2008-12-23, 7:41PM PST

"Should buff out however if you aren't the buffing type, probably best to bring a flatbed."
This one is epic! I know this one got a laugh. Have a good weekend. Engage someone new in conversation. Heck, break out and take someone to dinner- even if it's a husband or wife. Just remember, if they're someone elses- it's a lot more fun if you don't get caught!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Fridays Dispatch: The Early Edition!

  • I've just started an episode of Wonder Woman on Amazing- not only did we watch that show in prime time it was an hour long show! What simpletons we were.
  • Glad to see we're so much more sophisticated in our tastes.
  • But, holy smokes- the woman who played her was beautiful.
  • The assistant to Dr. Lightman on Lie To Me looks quite a bit like her I think.
  • "Champagne for everyone!" Vivian Vance who played Ethel Mertz was quoted as saying when she learned while dining in a Restaurant William Frawley who played Fred had died.
  • I went out on the front porch last night, it was covered in June bugs.
  • Dumb bugs- it's only May.
  • What to watch for if you or a friend are bitten by a person suspected of being a Zombie: "The symptoms occur in the following order. The timeline may be several hours off, depending on the number and location of the bites, and the size and resilience of the victim.
    Hour 1- Pain and discoloration of the infected area. Immediate clotting of the wound.
    Hour 5- Fever between 99 °F. and 103 °F. Chills, slight dementia, vomiting, and acute pain in the joints.
    Hour 8- Numbing of extremities and infected area, increased fever from 103 °F to 106 °F. Increased dementia and loss of muscular coordination.
    Hour 11- Paralysis in the lower body, overall numbness, and slowed heart rate.
    Hour 16- Coma.
    Hour 20- Cardiac arrest and cessation of brain activity.
    Hour 23- Reanimation" from max brooks (son of mel) zombie survival guide complete protection from the living dead.

  • "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." -Ferris Bueller.
  • Just started a new show hadn't heard of before today that looks really good- Green Wing.
  • "From the multi-award winning team that produced Smack The Pony comes Green Wing - a hospital comedy like no other. Part soap, part documentary, part neither, this is comedy drama at its most surreal and entertaining. Devised and produced by Victoria Pile."
  • I knew it was British by the expression on the actors faces in their pic for the intro.
  • Man, English people get excited about all the shows we bloody yanks steal from them!
  • Oh, and forget about comparing it to Scrubs.
  • Why?
  • The English people writing reviews of this show say so.

Cuckoo For Cocoa Puffs

"ELKHART, Ind. - In a town with one of the highest unemployment rates in the nation, being on strike is not going to get you much sympathy. And staying on strike for three years is going to earn you even less.
“People don’t respect us. They look at us like, ‘You are stupid because you’re on strike when you could have a good job,’” said David Kish, 62, who spent 40 years making trumpets, trombones and other musical instruments at Elkhart’s Vincent Bach plant before he and 230 fellow union members walked off their jobs April 1, 2006. About 130 workers remain on strike. "

That statement deserves an encore performance: “People don’t respect us. They look at us like, ‘You are stupid because you’re on strike when you could have a good job,’” said David Kish, 62"

You said it brother- not me.

Two thoughts come to mind. We are our own worst enemy and I weep for the species.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Number 1 Of The 5 Worst

government responses to swine flu issue according to Discover Magazine.

"1. Wait, an Epidemic Started Here? Should We Do Something? It's been over two weeks since the first victim died in Mexico, and the Mexican government's initial response hovers just above chaotic. For one, the authorities still haven’t provided the families of the dead—i.e., those most likely to have been exposed to the virus—with medicine. Nor has the government pinpointed where the outbreak began, or how it spread. And while officials are urging anyone who feels sick to go to hospitals, the AP reports that sick individuals are complaining that ambulance workers refuse to pick them up.
The Mexican health agency's utter lack of organization or mobilization—despite a more than $5 billion annual budget—is understandably causing a crisis of faith among Mexican citizens, according to the AP:
"'Nobody believes the government anymore,' said Edgar Rocha, a 28-year-old office messenger. He said the lack of information is sowing distrust: 'You haven't seen a single interview with the sick!'"
For his part, Mexican health secretary Jose Angel Cordova argued that the outbreak is unlike any in the past, and that personnel shortages kept his agency from distributing the medicine faster. Still, his responses to questions from the press are less than comforting:
"Cordova said he couldn't provide information on the victims for reasons of confidentiality, but promised to eventually release a statistical breakdown. He said he couldn't provide that data now 'because it's being processed.' Asked whether he could at least say how many of the 20 confirmed victims were men and how many were women, he said: 'I don't have that information.'"discovermagazine

Wednesdays Digressions

  • If I was in charge of America address The World I would make an announcement something like this regarding the Somali pirate being held on US soil after his conviction (also, the associated sentence of which would be very reasonable)- say 3-5 years. While the US retains the right to defend her ships with deadly force and prosecute future cases to the fullest extent of the law due to the low rank of this pirate, young age, lack of death and serious wounds the crew of MAERSK Alabama he will be held in a federal facility and if he avails himself of educational opportunities, shows remorse and a willingness to become a productive member of society while serving his sentence following completion he will be allowed to stay in the US- if he so desires...

  • No, I know a politician wouldn't touch that with a ten foot pole but, if you knew something of how the minds of people beside the redneck sitting next to you (specifically a Somali whom I will assure you is also a Muslim) you'd know it's hard to buy the kind of goodwill that gesture would purchase- cheaply.

  • It would practically guarantee better treatment and release of future hostages and disarm the pirates and other US haters propagandistic use of the guy, whether he rotted in a US prison or was freed to his home country after prison.

  • Almost any cover of an old song these days is easily as good and usually better than the original.

  • Missed a call from my office to care for an infant hospice patient- may have sang a different tune after taking it but, I'm very sorry I missed it.

  • So far youngest patient is 42 oldest 100.

  • Was surprised recently while talking to an official who is strongly pro death penalty to find he didn't know the answer to a simple question about how it was carried out. In fact I knew more about it the entire procedure than he did.

  • Bad toupees freak me out a little. Mostly because there are such good quality ones available and shaved heads are so accepted and look good as long the guy has a well shaped head. I had a friend once that it was a year before I knew he wore a hairpiece. We were working out with big weights and since he didn't have me spot him, when he got in trouble he had to let a barbell go behind the spots the weights sit on the bench and fall to the floor. The barbell rubbed his hairpiece off revealing a big open area- he looked like he had been scalped. He had been shot in the head a few years before.

  • I know a lot of people who've been shot.

  • Have rediscovered the show Brisco County Jr. starring Bruce Campbell. The episode I watched was very good however as I recall that show jumped the shark very quickly over some kind of quest for a "mysterious orb" which totally ruined an otherwise good show. If you want to check it look it up on

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

In The Headlines: Face Off

This is Connie Culp the lady who is the first person in the US to undergo a face transplant. Her face was destroyed by a shotgun blast. The next sentence is one that really stood out to me in the AP article on her ordeal. "Culp’s husband, Thomas, shot her in 2004, then turned the gun on himself. He went to prison for seven years." I don't even know where to start: seven years for doing this to another human being?

Number 2 Of The 5 Worst

government responses to swine flu issue according to Discover Magazine.

"2. Slaughtering Every Pig in Your Country Second place goes to Egypt, whose government decided that since the virus originated from pigs, the best way to keep it out is to kill every pig in your borders. So that's what they did. This week, Health Ministry workers began slaughtering the roughly 300,000 pigs unfortunate enough to reside there—a number that would have been far higher were Egypt not a predominantly Muslim country.
Unfortunately for the government—and the pigs, and their farmers, and the Egyptian citizens who will gain nothing from this pointless massacre—killing pigs has absolutely no effect on the transmission of the virus. "The crisis today is in transmission from human to human. It has nothing to do with pigs," U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization Chief Veterinary Officer Joseph Domenech told the AP. Though it's certainly a good week to buy pork chops in Cairo."discovermagazine