Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Those were the daze!

El Capitan has posted this music meme and dared, nay by its very publication, goaded me into doing the same. Go to Music Outfitters. Type the year you graduated from high school into the search box at the top of the left sidebar and search, then select the link that says “Top 100 Hits of 19XX.” Instead of gasping in shock, I was very pleasantly surprised to find that a lot of these songs are wonderful reminders of those stoned halcyon days of yore. Go through the list and decide which songs sucked, which ones were groovy, far-out and outtasite, and your absolute favorite.

Publish the list up on your blog with your opinions. Sucky songs get strikethroughs, good songs get boldfaced *and* boldface and underline your one most favorite song. If you have no opinion just leave it as plain text.

From the looks of this list, this "child of the 60s" had some real favorites going!

Top 100 Hits of 1968 / Top 100 Songs of 1968

1. Hey Jude, The Beatles
2. Honey, Bobby Goldsboro
3. Love Is Blue, Paul Mauriat
4. (Sittin' On) The Dock Of The Bay, Otis Redding
5. People Got To Be Free, Rascals
6. Sunshine Of Your Love, Cream
7. This Guy's In Love With You, Herb Alpert
8. Stoned Soul Picnic, Fifth Dimension
9. Mrs. Robinson, Simon and Garfunkel
10. Tighten Up, Archie Bell and The Drells
11. The Good, The Bad And The Ugly, Hugo Montenegro
12. Little Green Apples, O.C. Smith
13. Mony, Mony, Tommy James and The Shondells
14. Hello, I Love You, The Doors
15. Young Girl, Gary Puckett and The Union Gap
16. Cry Like A Baby, Box Tops
17. Harper Valley P.T.A., Jeannie C. Riley
18. Grazing In The Grass, Hugh Masekela
19. Midnight Confessions, The Grass Roots
20. Dance To The Music, Sly and The Family Stone
21. The Horse, Cliff Nobles and Co.
22. I Wish It Would Rain, Temptations
23. La-La Means I Love You, Delfonics
24. Turn Around, Look At Me, Vogues
25. Judy In Disguise (With Glasses), John Fred and His Playboy Band
26. Spooky, Classics IV
27. Love Child, Diana Ross and The Supremes
28. Angel Of The Morning, Merrilee Rush
29. The Ballad Of Bonnie And Clyde, Georgie Fame
30. Those Were The Days, Mary Hopkin
31. Born To Be Wild, Steppenwolf
32. Cowboys To Girls, Intruders
33. Simon Says, 1910 Fruitgum Company
34. Lady Willpower, Gary Puckett and The Union Gap
35. A Beautiful Morning, Rascals
36. The Look Of Love, Sergio Mendes and Brasil '66
37. Hold Me Tight, Johnny Nash
38. Yummy, Yummy, Yummy, Ohio Express
39. Fire , Crazy World Of Arthur Brown
40. Love Is All Around, Troggs
41. Playboy, Gene and Debbe
42. (Theme From) Valley Of The Dolls, Dionne Warwick
43. Classical Gas, Mason Williams
44. Slip Away, Clarence Carter
45. Girl Watcher, O'Kaysions
46. (Sweet Sweet Baby) Since You've Been Gone, Aretha Franklin
47. Green Tambourine, Lemon Pipers
48. 1, 2, 3, Red Light, 1910 Fruitgum Company
49. Reach Out Of The Darkness, Friend and Lover
50. Jumpin' Jack Flash, The Rolling Stones
51. MacArthur Park, Richard Harris
52. Light My Fire, Jose Feliciano
53. I Love You, People
54. Take Time To Know Her, Percy Sledge
55. Pictures Of Matchstick Men, Status Quo
56. Summertime Blues, Blue Cheer
57. Ain't Nothing Like The Real Thing, Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell
58. I Got The Feelin', James Brown and The Famous Flames
59. I've Gotta Get A Message To You, Bee Gees
60. Lady Madonna, The Beatles
61. Hurdy Gurdy Man, Donovan
62. Magic Carpet Ride, Steppenwolf
63. Bottle Of Wine, Fireballs
64. Stay In My Corner, Dells
65. Soul Serenade, Willie Mitchell
66. Delilah, Tom Jones
67. Nobody But Me, Human Beinz
68. I Thank You, Sam and Dave
69. The Fool On The Hill, Sergio Mendes and Brasil '66
70. Sky Pilot, Eric Burdon and The Animals
71. Indian Lake, The Cowsills
72. I Wonder What She's Doing Tonight, Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart
73. Over You, Gary Puckett and The Union Gap
74. Goin' Out Of My Head / Can't Take My Eyes Off You, The Lettermen
75. Shoo-Bee-Doo-Be-Doo-Da-Day, Stevie Wonder
76. The Unicorn, The Irish Rovers
77. (You Keep Me) Hangin' On, Vanilla Fudge
78. Revolution, The Beatles
79. Woman, Woman, Gary Puckett and The Union Gap
80. Elenore, Turtles
81. Sweet Inspiration, Sweet Inspirations
82. The Mighty Quinn, Manfred Mann
83. Baby, Now That I've Found You, Foundations
84. White Room, Cream
85. If You Can Want, Smokey Robinson and The Miracles
86. Cab Driver, The Mills Brothers
87. Time Has Come Today, The Chambers Brothers
88. Do You Know The Way To San Jose, Dionne Warwick
89. Scarborough Fair / Canticle, Simon and Garfunkel
90. Think, Aretha Franklin
91. You're All I Need To Get By, Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell
92. Here Comes The Judge, Shorty Long
93. I Say A Little Prayer, Aretha Franklin
94. Say It Loud, I'm Black And I'm Proud
95. Sealed With A Kiss, Gary Lewis and The Playboys
96. Piece Of My Heart, Big Brother and The Holding Company
97. Suzie Q., Creedence Clearwater Revival
98. Bend Me Shape, American Breed
99. Hey, Western Union Man, Jerry Butler
100. Never Give You Up, Jerry Butler

The only group listed above, that still exists as a group, that I still follow and love is The Rolling Stones. Whoa! All-in-all, '68 was a good year. Those were the daze.

Engulfed

Earth Observatory provides these before and after photos of New Orleans.


In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, much of New Orleans is under water in the top satellite image, taken on August 30, 2005, at 11:45 a.m. CDT by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite. Early news reports say that as much as 80 percent of the city is flooded after levies (sic - dumbasses don't know the plural of levee is levees) failed to hold Katrina’s massive storm surge back. The flooding is getting worse as water slowly seeps into the city from Lake Pontchartrain and the Mississippi River.

On Saturday, August 27, 2005, New Orleans formed a tan and green grid sandwiched between the lake shore and the river in the lower image. Three days later, dark pools of water covered the eastern half of the city, and a large section of Lake Pontchartrain ballooned into the region immediately west of the city. Widespread flooding is visible elsewhere in the top image. Lake Pontchartrain and Lake Maurepas have nearly blended into a single body of water, separated only by a narrow strip of land. Dark smudges line the rivers flowing into both lakes, a sign that water covers the ground around them.

The images are shown in false color to make water visible against the land. Water is black or dark blue where it is colored with mud, vegetation is bright green, and clouds are light blue and white. The large images provided above provide a broader view of the region. They show flooding along the Mississippi and Louisiana coast, particularly around Mobile Bay and parts of coastal Mississippi. The large images are at MODIS’ maximum resolution, but are available from the MODIS Rapid Response Team in additional resolutions.

http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/gallery/?2005242-0830/Louisaiana.A2005242.1645.721.1km.jpg

NASA images courtesy Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Land Rapid Response Team at NASA GSFC


You may get a better perspective from this shot of downtown New Orleans:



You can see even better, more compelling photographs on television. The point I want to make is that we have this incredible technology that brings us high-resolution imagery from hundreds of miles in space, yet, Mother Nature's wrath cannot be soothed. Nor can a hurricane be dissuaded from making its way to death and destruction. Or can it? Couldn't we "seed" them, when they are first generated, with something (I don't know … dry ice perhaps) that would dissipate its energy source - the heat it thrives on from the waters of the Atlantic?

There are brilliant minds that can figure this out – after all, we have flying cars, don't we? All it takes is money. How much money will it cost to rebuild this wonderful city, if it even can be rebuilt. The lives are lost, the history of New Orleans submerged and hidden from view.

Is the Café du Monde still there? Jackson Square? The Cathedral? Margaritaville? Those wonderful bed and breakfast locations in the Vieux Carré? What about the street car named "Desire" over in the garden district on Rue St. Charles?

Man, I am really saddened. Dallas is now sheltering more than 1,000 souls from N'awlins and more are expected soon.

Last night, Stomps With Foot said that Venezuela has offered and sent aid – wait, isn't this the nation whose president that Grand Panjandrum Pat Robertson wants to have assassinated. The irony, the irony.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Lead turds in the Ponchatrain

I have been thinking about Dallas and N'awlins, and this came to mind. I think Dallas' mayor could use one of these. Maybe she should use the Skull Turd template. Click the image below, read all about it, and come on back for the rest of this missive.



It's a bright, sunny day here in Big D. Not so in N'awlins. Whether or not the sun is shining, I heard this morning that residents of the Big Easy are being told not to even think of returning home to what used to be their homes, until next week. Right. Many of those folks will be doing good to scrape up enough cash for the gasoline to return, much less motel/hotel money for the next seven days. A levee broke through and flooded even more of the city right after Katrina passed through. Sure, the Corps of Engineers has contingency plans for levee breakthroughs, but that will take time, a lot more time than a week.

I suggest we send donations to reputable charitable organizations. Wait, we should be receiving world-wide relief grants shouldn't we? After all, this was like the tsunami wasn't it? I am not holding my breath for that, but it does make one reflect on how it seems we are stuck in a one-way situation. If a disaster occurs somewhere else on the globe, we are the ones that "hop to it," to send relief, in whatever form. Where is the reciprocity? Ingrates.

Stomps With Foot asked me what the government would be doing for the Louisiana/Mississippi areas that were stricken. I said President Bush should ask his brother, Jeb, just what the government did for Florida after the many many hurricanes that damaged their state. How timely was it? Not very. How many folks who really needed the help got it in a hurry? Not many. How many are still hurting? Most of them.

Makes you wonder, especially since El Presidenté made an unprecedented plea for the residents of the area to evacuate and promised them all the moon.

Insurance adjustors will be descending in droves – probably starting at sunrise this morning. But who are they going to write a check to when there are no residents in their flooded homes, and all were told not to return for at least a week? Do you think the U.S. Postal Service will deliver those checks? Do you think many mailboxes withstood the hurricane? Do you think folks even thought about filing a "Change of Address" form before they evacuated?

This is where the Red Cross, NGOs and the Salvation Army come in. They are there, on the ground, ready willing and able to assist the "refugees" from Hurricane Katrina. Refugees? sounds kind of inane, but that is what the mainstream media is calling them.

They might now better be tagged with the name, homeless. They stop coming to Dallas, because Mayor Laura Miller is proposing that folks who give money to "panhandlers" be ticketed – instead of the homeless panhandlers. As if she has any idea that her idea will sink like a lead turd in the Ponchatrain. Maybe she should use the Spaghetti Turd template to feed them, after all, charity begins at home.

Just thinking about how this all ties together. Now flush twice, we don't want any floaters in Dallas, there are plenty in N'awlins this week.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Mommy!



Ouch!

Vieux Carré - Dieu vous bénissent

French Quarter - God bless you. Quite a sad thing to think that the city may be wiped off the face of the earth by the Category 4 hurricane Katrina. I am saddened, there is so much history there, such fragile history, hanging in the balance between the seemingly random movement of the eye and the prayers of all who love her.

My family surprised me on my 50th birthday by all meeting in New Orleans for a celebration. The Café du Monde, Margaritaville, the French Market - all may by lost forever. The memories will always be with me, but the city may not. She is the closest you can get to Europe without going there.

The Big Easy. Stomps With Foot and I visited her often, but we fear we may have seen the last of her now. We were there in April, celebrating our 35th Anniversary and stayed at the Hotel Provincial, said to be one of the most haunted hotels in the French Quarter. Or, so they say. I am glad I got this photo of her.



Part of this hotel, located in the French Quarter at 1024 Chartres Street, was once a Confederate hospital. In that part of the building, maids have reported seeing confederate soldiers and surgeons of the era. There are also reports of blood stains appearing and disappearing mysteriously on bedding in some rooms. There's even a report that once, as the elevator door opened onto the second floor, the entire hospital was in view.


Whatever the truth may be, it was only a quick walk to Margaritaville.

Being 10-30 feet under water will make this bowl of a city, with levees to keep out the Mississipi on one side and Lake Ponchatrain on the other, a mass of flotsam and jetsam. The storm surge and wind will do their damage to the 300-year-old landmarks and historical places because there is no way for it to drain away. Bourbon Street will be flowing with more water than bourbon for some time, I fear.

God bless New Orleans and all her glory. Never underestimate the resiliency of her inhabitants.



I pray she will return quickly and take root in the cracks left by the storm, much like this fern that I took this photograph of growing in a wall of the courtyard at the Hotel Provencial.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Mutiny on the Bounty!

El Capitan made me do this … I was shootin' fer John Wayne, but this'll do.

Clark Gable
You scored 47% Tough, 9% Roguish, 9% Friendly, and 33% Charming!
You're a helluva guy, a real split personality and a bit of an enigma. On the one hand, you're a man's man, tough talking and ready for anything. But on the other hand, you soften your rough and tumble core with a disarmingly smooth exterior, and you make the ladies swoon. You're equally admired by both men and women alike, drinking other men under the table all the while charming the socks off half a dozen lovelies. You're a commanding presence, and you know how to get what - and who - you want when you want it. You're drawn to women who, like you, are savvy enough to deal with the world on their own terms. You work well with spitfires. Leading ladies include Joan Crawford, Myrna Loy, and Jean Harlow. No damsels in distress for you.

The Classic Leading Man Test written by gidgetgoes on Ok Cupid

Friday, August 26, 2005

The Jackbooted thugs of the NFL



The first down Dallas Cowboy fans will see this season is a pat down: a full-body search before entering Texas Stadium for the game. The NFL says they hope the extra measure will make fans feel safer. There were no specific incidents or threats that prompted the new policy for this season, only a desire to make sure people are safe, league officials said. If they are hoping that the searches groping will make fans feel more comfortable, they are out of touch with reality. People don't like their personal space violated; much less having some dyke grope their wives. I wonder if they went to the TSAs school for screening groping? In fact, I seriously doubt there is any training for the pat-downers gropers.

How about it, Paul Taglianazi, feel like instantly decreasing the attendance at NFL games? With your latest directive to all NFL teams to "pat-down" all the fans before they enter the stadium, you are doing just that. Can you think of nothing better than emulating TSAs inept attempts at security groping the females and males that enter your nationwide arenas? I wonder what a real patriot would, not to mention a real Patriot fan. This fan will avoid the pat-downs altogether by boycotting the games.

Oh, by the way, all fans will now have the privilege of being able to enter the stadiums from two- to three-hours before kickoff. What fun, especially during the 102-degree heat in Dallas when the seats have been soaking up heat all day. Field temperatures in excess of 120-degrees – I am sure the concessions will sell out of beer before they sell out of water. The radiant heat from a day in the Texas sun will be at least 95-degrees until the third quarter and that is for a night game. Maybe it will be better when the stadia are frozen solid and the fans get to freeze their asses off before/during/after kickoff … but I somehow doubt many will opt-in for that privilege.

Tickets for two: $120
Beer/water for two for up to six hours just to stay hydrated: $90
Hot dogs Sphincters, eyelids and lips - with mustard on a bun: $25
Boycotting the game to avoid the jackbooted groping-thugs at the gate: Priceless

No sir, Mr. Nazi-abue won't be seeing this football fan.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Succumbing to eye-ball hits

Well, it finally happened. Many of the blog sites I visit on a regular basis have a picture of some hottie in a t-shirt. You know the ones, the ones that have a picture on t-shirt of a peace sign and the words, Peace Through Superior Firepower, or some other catchphrase that beckons me to "Annoy a Liberal," click and visit buy their stuff. So I did, and learned something today.



“Molon Labe: A Response to Tyranny”
“Go and tell the Spartans, stranger passing by,
That here, obedient to their laws, we lie.

"In 480 B.C. the forces of the Persian Empire under King Xerxes, numbering according to Herodotus two million men, bridged the Hellespont and marched in their myriads to invade and enslave Greece.

"In a desperate delaying action, a picked force of three hundred Spartans was dispatched to the pass of Thermopylae, where the confines between mountains and sea were so narrow that the Persian multitudes and their cavalry would be at least partially neutralized. Here, it was hoped, an elite force willing to sacrifice their lives could keep back, at least for a few days, the invading millions.

"Three hundred Spartans and their allies held off the invaders for seven days, until, their weapons smashed and broken from the slaughter, they fought 'with bare hands and teeth' (as recorded by Herodotus) before being at last overwhelmed.

"The Spartans and their Thespian allies died to the last man, but the standard of valor they set by their sacrifice inspired the Greeks to rally and, in that fall and spring, defeat the Persians at Salamis and Plataea and preserve the beginnings of Western democracy and freedom from perishing in the cradle.

"Two memorials remain today at Thermopylae. Upon the modern one, called the Leonidas Monument in honor of the Spartan king who fell there, is engraved his response to Xerxes' demand that the Spartans lay down their arms. Leonidas' reply was two words, Molon labe: 'Come and get them. "

From Gates of Fire by Steven Pressfield

A story we should all remember when faced with seemingly impossible odds as politicians attempt to disarm honest people who have done no wrong.

Molon Labe!


It's pronounced mo-lone lah-veh

This is now on my offical "wish list."

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

A space oddity …



What an age we live in to be able to see Earth's day/night boundary. On the right is Fwanth (among others), still partially left in the Dark Ages. Yet on the left is Britain, the enlightened island nation. Man, space is so cool.

Just sayin …


Click the link for the latest Kinky News.

Monday, August 15, 2005

An invitation from Willie Nelson

Hi Folks! I'd like to invite you out to my ranch and country club for a private lunch, round of golf and music with me and my friends Kinky Friedman and Jesse Ventura in September.

I am hosting this small gathering at my golf course and ranch just outside Austin on September 24th for my friend Kinky Friedman. As you may know, Kinky is in a tough race to be the next Governor of Texas, running against several well financed candidates. I've known Kinky for many years and consider him to be one of my closest friends. Texas law makes it tough for an independent to get on the ballot. Kinky needs all the support we can give him for a campaign that's based on the merit of good ideas instead of special interest money.

I am opening my home with the hope of raising funds for Kinky and his noble cause to reclaim the capitol for us all. Tickets for this event will be on sale to the general public soon, but first we wanted to offer all of you who visit Kinky's website a chance to sign up in advance. I would personally appreciate it if you will join us for an intimate day of golf, lunch and music.

Kinky's got my endorsement, my vote and my full support and I hope we can count on yours too! It's a cause worth showing up for and a day we will all remember.

See ya on the putting green!

Sincerely,

Willie Nelson

Hot Hot Hot


It's August 24th, and it's that time, during our solar orbit, that Dallas is only a block away from the sun. Here is what my Weather Widget says our forecast is for the next six days. (Yes, I use a real computer with a kick-ass operating system, don't you?)

Mr. Sun has been blasting away at us for a week or so with 100℉+ weather and there is no relief in sight. Rain? I forgot what that is. I vaguely remember something wet falling from the sky a few weeks ago. Funny thing is that when there is a heat wave in Europe, all kinds of people perish from the heat. Here in Dallas, and across the Southwestern United States, we have a nifty invention called air conditioning.

Now, I know my ancestors who braved the wilderness in the 1700s and 1800s, even in the 1900s didn't have air conditioning. Man, how did they do it? I mean, surviving cross-country wagon trains without an air conditioner makes me very thankful that I live in America, where smart people make smart things.

I think I need another boat drink. Since today is my sister's birthday, I think I will have two.

Land Ho!

If she were aboard, she'd be a Sea-Ho! LMFAO!

Stow the wench belowdecks, afore we get underway, ye scalawags!

There be something fascinating 'bout pin-up girls. Whether they be painted on the noses of B-52s or serve as an advertisement for Coca-Cola® they are wonderful reminders of simpler days, if there ever was such a thing as simpler days.

Methinks that throughout the ages, those generations that succeed their predecessors, believe they have had it easier than those who preceeded them.

No lenghty diatribe here, just a peek into the past, which I hope will be a continuing part of this here blog.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

I love the ambiguities of the English



Desdemona, my partner in Art Department crime, sent me this. I snorted audibly when I read it, especially number one and number six and number eight..

Eight Words With Two Meanings

1. THINGY (thing-ee) n.
Female… Any part under a car's hood.
Male… The strap fastener on a woman's bra.

2. VULNERABLE (vul-ne-ra-bel) adj.
Female… Fully opening up one's self emotionally to another.
Male… Playing football without a cup.

3. COMMUNICATION (ko-myoo-ni-kay-shon) n.
Female… The open sharing of thoughts and feelings with one's partner.
Male… Leaving a note before taking off on a fishing trip with the boys.

4. COMMITMENT (ko-mit-ment) n.
Female… A desire to get married and raise a family.
Male… Trying not to hit on other women while out with this one.

5. ENTERTAINMENT (en-ter-tayn-ment) n.
Female.... A good movie, concert, play or book.
Male...... Anything that can be done while drinking beer.

6. FLATULENCE (flach-u-lens) n.
Female… An embarrassing byproduct of digestion.
Male… A source of entertainment, self-expression, male bonding.

7. MAKING LOVE (may-king luv) n.
Female… The greatest expression of intimacy a couple can achieve.
Male… Call it whatever you want, just as long as we do it.

8. REMOTE CONTROL (ri-moht kon-trohl) n.
Female… A device for changing from one TV channel to another.
Male… A device for scanning through all 375 channels every five minutes.

But wait! There's more ambiguous humor … and I liberated it from KurtP.



Yar!

Monday, August 22, 2005

This just in …

You may be interested to know that global warming, earthquakes, hurricanes, and other natural disasters are a direct effect of the shrinking numbers of Pirates since the 1800s. For your interest, I have included a graph of the approximate number of pirates versus the average global temperature over the last 200 years. As you can see, there is a statistically significant inverse relationship between pirates and global temperature. Source: courtesy of venganza.org



Click the graph to be redirected to El Capitan's recent post, you won't be disappointed.

Uh huh. I had to wonder, didn't I?



Recently, I was wondering where all the war protest singers and their songs of the '60s had gone. I continue to read the MSMs and the blogosphere's take on Cindy Sheehan versus President Bush down in Crawford, Texas.

Well, I found this link) just now and it answered that question.

You see, way back during the Viet Nam war, Joan Baez had the corner on war protest songs. She's baaaaaack. Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water …

Come on, Joan, what the fuck were are you still smoking?

Ignorance is bliss … Marlboro Manslaughter



I forgot where I found this ad. I clipped it out of some periodical about four-years-ago. While rooting around in my overhead storage, I rediscovered it this morning, next to my 3D glasses.

When I first saw it, I was dumbstruck. I have been a smoker since I was 14-years-old. Sheesh, that's 41 years of poisoning myself with nicotine and tar and whatever other polysyllabic chemical additives are in those portable nicotine-delivery devices. I smoked Marlboro Reds for about 30 years and then had to face the decision of being able to breathe or smoking that particular brand. I opted for Marlboro Lights, then (and now) Marlboro Ultralights. As if any nomenclature is better for you than another.

I spend $35-$40 a carton every week. Shit, just shit. "Just do the math, you dumbass," I say to myself. $40 x 52 weeks a year is $2,080 annually and who knows how much closer to death this terribly addictive habit is bringing me.

Stomps With Foot wants to quit. So do I. I should just freaking do it, and be done with it. But I find it very difficult to even ponder the question of stopping. I have feelings of abject terror whenever I find myself running low (2 packs left). There has to be a way to do this, I just have to have the will to do it.

And finding this public service ad, with the Marlboro Man (who by the way, died of lung cancer, just click this link for proof) has hit home once again. Will I ignore it again? My granddaddy died from emphysema, as did my mother's sister, my dear Aunt Mary. Granddaddy quit smoking 20 years before he died. I vividly remember talking to him about smoking and remember to this day, his final words on the subject, "You know, I still want a cigarette, even after 20 years."

I don't smoke around the grandchildren, I go outside. And Stomps With Foot asked me if I would go outside to smoke when she quits. Hard-headed, selfish me said, "Ummmm … No." Does this give you an idea of what I am facing? Of course, I will go outside to smoke (except for that first one in the morning, in the bathroom). Exceptions are ironic, and stupid.

Give me strength, Oh Lord.

The age of happiness



On August 4th, Stomps With Foot had been officially "retired" for one year - after 15 years with Brinker. You know them, they own Chili's, Macaronni Grill, and other restaurants.

It has been truly wonderful that she has retired from working for a living. Now she spends her time taking care of her dad, who has Alzheimer's Disease, dealing with the nursing home, taking care of her brother's needs and generally doing the needful. The most wonderful part, however, is that she is happy.

Happiness is all I ever wanted for her/us. And we have truly been blessed. If you think about it, being married to my bride of 35 years is a fantastic achievement for both of us. We have three wonderful children and two granddaughters. Wow. A grandson is also on his way - due in November.

And so the wheel of life goes round and round.

What got me thinking about this was an AARP invitation. Sheesh. I have been getting their mail pieces since I turned 50 back in '99. To imagine myself as "retired" just doesn't work. In 10 years I will be 65. Will I retire at 65? I doubt it. But it is something to ponder, since it inevitably will occur.

Just hanging around the poop deck, fixin' boat drinks and listening to island songs. Ah … paradise … playing Ghost Recon in my spare time - which would be all the time!

Sweet.

Oh, and I was right twice yesterday, within 60-seconds of each event. I think that is a record. SWF agreed it was.

Friday, August 19, 2005

Like a thief in the night …



… only it was broad daylight and there were plenty of people hanging around. I was on the back porch area of our office building this morning. Toasting a portable nicotine-delivery device and jawing with fellow "bad children" who have to go outside to smoke. We were talking about how damn hot and humid it is; making derogatory remarks about how it felt a lot like Houston - where I was born and raised - also known as "Sauna-bath City." Yup. Seemed like a Houston weather kind of day.

Then, it happened. A woman whom I have had the utmost respect for, walked up and stood by the newspaper vending machine which is to the side of the mail boxes, just outside the back door. She put her purse on top, and opened it, and proceeded to dig out two quarters. She deftly slipped them into the machine and opened it - taking out two newspapers. Not only the one she paid for, but two. Stealing right in front of everyone, and placing the newspapers under her arm (as if nothing out of the ordinary just occurred) and gathering up her purse, she entered the building and disappeared around the corner.

This is where it gets even weirder. No one seemed to notice! Wait. Wait. I make eye contact with three people who witnessed the purloined papers demonstration and the person who took them. With a look of dismay on my face I looked back at the vending machine, then back at them. They are oblivious to what just occurred before their eyes.

So I dug two quarters out of my pants pocket, inserted them into the machine and opened and closed it without taking a paper. The folks I was visiting with dropped their jaws and one even said, "Hey, why'd you do that, I would've loved for you to buy me a paper?"

I looked at him like he had twelve heads and said, "I did it because she stole a paper. Her immortal soul may only be worth 50¢ to her, but the guy that works the paper rack shouldn't have to suffer because of it."

I have absolutely no respect for this woman. It was gone in the time it took for her to steal the paper. I have even less respect for the numbnuts that thought I was crazy for not taking a paper.

They just don't get it; and I doubt they ever will. Man's inhumanity to man.

Sheesh. Idiots. Shame on them all.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Scurvy dog is a shoo-in!

We be havin a contest at work this week. We be post'n pictures of our'n pets and compete for various categories: Cutest, Best Dressed, Most Ferocious, et cetera. I Posted three - One fer each category, although two are totally not my pets. Methinks it fitting that Fabio be the Most Ferocious, don't ye agree?

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Vote fer me or ye'll be keelhauled at first light! Yar!

What kind of pirate am I? You decide!
You can also view a breakdown of results or put one of these on your own page!
Brought to you by Rum and Monkey



With a hat tip to Kurt!

Back at it!

Many, many things have kept me away from posting for far, far too long. I think about you every day, really! I wish I had more time, really! So I will ease back into the habit of blogging with this:

Cats …? No sir, got no use for cats.



Now all you cat bloggers can just line up behind this ferocious monster!

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Made from beer

You have got to see this!

You can trust the security … just watch it!