Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The year is almost at an end

Here's hoping that all of you have a good new year's day, and that 2009 is a good year for you.

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I'll be glad when my shoulder gets better; hopefully I'll be able to get back to the gym on Friday or Monday, as long as I don't do much upper body stuff. At least my wife got over her dental problems before Christmas.
Christmas turned out well; nobody is rich, but we all did right by one another with stuff that counts. We also got a lot more snow the day after Christmas, but that is normal this time of year.

A shot of the house from the mailbox.




View to the west from the mailbox.



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Too bad the Middle East couldn't calm down for a while, but I don't think that will ever happen. I'm afraid I don't have much sympathy for Gaza; they keep lobbing bombs at Israel and then piss and moan when Israel tosses some back. Seems like too much of that part of the world will always be back in the dark ages; a bunch of ignorant barbarian tribes starting skirmishes with other tribes. If it weren't for oil in that area, they would still be living in tents and living like their ancestors did hundreds of years ago, in the days of Hārūn al-Rashīd when their culture and technology peaked and then ground to a halt. Time to join the modern world, guys.

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Tonight we're getting together with some friends from my wife's church, with everyone bringing food and drink. I'm not a member of her church (I'm not a member of any religion), but that doesn't really matter much to me or them; just some good friends getting together to welcome in the new year. I'll try to watch what I eat, since I haven't been getting as much exercise as usual since my shoulder started acting up, and I don't need to put on any more pounds. I may tip a few beers, but that's about it. I don't mind getting a mild buzz, but I don't care much for getting drunk; it makes you act like a fool, and you feel like hell the next day.

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So what will the new year bring? I think the economy will get worse before it gets better. We didn't get into this mess overnight, and we won't get out by someone waving a magic wand.
Politics should be interesting (and not necessarily in a good way). I'm not a fan of socialism or Big Brother, and I think both will be increasing their foothold over the next few years. I get nervous any time the President and the Congress are in the same party; that party tends to get arrogant and bossy, no matter which party they are. I'd rather see it spread out more even, so that they all have to get together and work something out before passing another law or tax. From what I can see at this point, "Hope and Change" is just another meaningless slogan; what we will probably get is more of the same stuff we have had for the past few years until people get pissed off and dump the current batch out. Politics, like a lot of other things, tends to run in cycles; it tends to alternate between Bullshit and More Bullshit.

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As usual, a lot of old stuff. Looks like this list has a lot of blues and older rock, with a smattering of country and classical.

"Hello Walls" by Willie Nelson
"Goin' Down Slow" by Howlin' Wolf
"Cat's in the Cradle" by Harry Chapin
"Baby Don't Do Me Wrong" by John Lee Hooker
"Beyond the Sea" by Bobby Darin
"Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way" by Waylon Jennings
"Air on the G string" by Bach and his time
"This Ain't the Summer of Love" by Blue Öyster Cult
"Maybellene" by Chuck Berry
"Crown of Creation" by Jefferson Airplane

When I pick out a playlist for the day, I tend to go down a list of stuff and just pick what I seem to be in the mood for until I get a couple dozen and then scramble them; it can sometimes change later in the day, that's when I sort through and pick out a new list. I guess the list sort of reflects my mood at the time, but I'll be damned if I can figure it out what it is today from my list.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Hope everyone has a great Christmas...

...or any other holiday you may be celebrating at this time. Whether Christian, Jewish, Pagan, agnostic, atheist, etc, I wish you the best.

I'm happy to say my wife(SandyG) is doing better; her pain is pretty well gone, and the swelling is hard to see if you are not looking for it. My tendinitis hasn't let up, but that doesn't matter to me as much.

This is a picture of our little tree we have been using the last few years; nothing special, but it works.



In case you're wondering about the funny looking star, it is homemade. Back when we
had only been married about a year, our top ornament broke. My wife cut out a star from a piece of cardboard, wrapped it in foil, and had me put it on top (that was back when we still got tall real trees.) It has become a tradition here after 30+ years, so we still use it.

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I'm not big on Christmas music, so my playlist is looking as usual.

"And The Grass Won't Pay No Mind" by Mark Lindsay
"Bella Linda" by The Grass Roots
"Wolverton Mountain" by Claude King
"Water music suite no 2 in D" by Handel
"Twilight Zone" by Golden Earring
"867-5309/Jenny" by Tommy Tutone
"Abracadabra" by Steve Miller Band
"I Left My Heart in San Francisco" by Tony Bennett
"Midnight" by Spyro Gyra
"Hungry Like the Wolf" by Duran Duran

Monday, December 22, 2008

Do we REALLY need a white Christmas?

More snow; at least it's warm. It was 36º this morning, that's double what it has been lately. This is a shot looking to the west again; notice the mountains are invisible.



What I don't want is a lot of snow. I managed to get tendinitis in my right shoulder and can't use my arm very well; the tendinitis is in my biceps, deltoids, and a bit in the pectorals. Lifting my humerus parallel to the ground is extremely painful, and I seem to have no strength in my arm, so shoveling snow is a problem if this stuff keeps coming down.
My wife is the one who has serious problems though. On Friday she had a cracked tooth removed which is a routine operation, but it decided to become infected. Saturday night saw us at the dentist's office just before midnight. The antibiotics are doing their job, but the whole left side of her face is greatly swollen, and her eye is almost swollen shut and discolored. It makes her look like someone punched her in the face several times and blacked her eye. The pain was really bad, so now she is taking percodan, which is managing the pain. Hopefully she will be doing ok by Christmas.

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This sounds a bit suspicious to me.

SANDY — Four men wearing ski masks broke into a home here Sunday night, tied up a woman and allegedly took tens of thousands of dollars in cash as well as a cache of weapons, according to police.

"They awakened the adult female and asked for money and guns," he said.

They took the woman to the living room where they forced her to show them where the safe was, then tied her up with a rope, Chapman said.

The robbers left the house with an estimated 49 handguns and an unknown number of rifles, he said. A man who also lives in the home, but was working at a Christmas Tree lot near 9000 South and State Street at the time, later told detectives there was an estimated $50,000 to $80,000 missing from his safe.


That much money and handguns in a safe, and the robbers knew about it. I have to wonder in what sort of business the owner was involved. Possibly he was a gun collector and just happened to have that much cash on hand for emergencies (neither one of these is illegal or evidence of a crime), but I tend to doubt it. And how did the robbers know all about them? Seems sort of fishy to me.


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I know someone has to be familiar with at least a couple of these.

"La Bamba" by Los Lobos
"Loving You's a Dirty Job But Somebody's Gotta Do It" by Bonnie Tyler
"Embryonic Journey" by Jefferson Airplane
"One Of The Living" by Tina Turner
"Spinning Wheel" by Blood, Sweat & Tears
"Janis" by Country Joe & the Fish
"Suds in the Bucket" by Sara Evans
"Hey Joe" by Jimi Hendrix
"Lost in a Lost World" by The Moody Blues
"John the Revelator" from Blues Brothers 2000 soundtrack

Here's one from the list:

"Embryonic Journey" is an instrumental, and one of my favorites from the Sixties.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

What a crock

New York Gov. David Paterson is fighting obesity and budget deficits in a proposal for an 18 percent tax on soda and other sugary drinks.

The idea is to discourage consumption of high-caloric beverages and to raise $404 million in fiscal year 2009-2010 toward the state's multibillion dollar budget gap.


What's next, a tax on potato chips? I call foul on it being for health reasons; I think it's just a phony excuse to slap another tax on people. If your going to rob someone by jacking up their taxes, at least admit that you're screwing them; don't make up a bunch of bullshit that you're doing it for their own good.

We hang the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to public office.
- Aesop


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Freezing air blanketed much of the nation Tuesday, making roads hazardous in Texas and slowing recovery from ice storm blackouts in New England, in the second day of a bitter cold wave.

Temperatures were 20 below zero and lower across the northern Plains, and a band of snow, freezing rain and sleet stretched from Kansas and Nebraska along the Ohio Valley to Maine.

Dozens of schools closed in Kentucky and Tennessee because of slippery roads and salt truck crews started working before dawn. Up to a half-foot of snow had fallen in parts of Kentucky.

"It's pretty treacherous," said Jodi Shacklette, a Kentucky State Police dispatcher in Elizabethtown. "We're working wrecks just left and right."

Authorities in Lincoln, Neb., blamed some 20 accidents on the weather.


Al Gore, your phone is ringing...

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Feeling sort of moody about music today. Some mellow, some not so much.

"Maggie May" by Rod Stewart
"Hungry Like the Wolf" by Duran Duran
"Saginaw, Michigan" by Lefty Frizzell
"A Fistful of Dollars" from the soundtrack
"The Four Seasons: Spring" by Vivaldi
"Let It Ride" by Bachman-Turner Overdrive
"Bullshitter's Lament" by Blues Traveler
"Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)" by Eurythmics
"Immigrant Song" by Led Zeppelin
"Hellraiser" by Lita Ford

Monday, December 15, 2008

That time of year

The time of the winter solstice is just about here; an old celebration in many cultures and places that is reflected in our culture as Christmas. Best wishes to all who celebrate a holiday at this time of year.
I have no religious beliefs of my own, but I like to respect the wishes and attitudes of those who do have faith; if a person is doing good and treating others with respect and compassion, who cares where they send their prayers?
It is almost time for a new year, whether for better or worse we will not know until it comes; all we can do is prepare for the worst and hope for the best.

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Not too bad around here so far this winter; it has only been getting down into the twenties on the thermometer, which isn't bad. I remember times when I was younger that would bring the mercury down to -15º F every night for a couple of weeks at a time. To those in the northern US and Canada that may not sound too bad, but when combined with the altitude it can cut to the bone. Much as I hate snow, we could use some more around here. We got some this weekend, but where we need it is in the higher elevations; rainfall around here is practically nonexistent in the summer, so all of our water is dependent on winter snowfall in mountains.

This is a picture of the Oquirrh Mountains a few minutes to the west of me that I took from my front yard; the higher parts are blocked by a snowstorm (I took this picture Sunday morning). It is not a high range; I think the highest point is only 10620 feet in elevation. The Wasatch Mountains on the east side of the valley are taller, and more rugged. They are the ones that store the water for summer use. I don't have a picture of them, because they are a little farther away and are blocked from view in my neighborhood.



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I'm not sure what the big deal is about Blagojevich; after all, he is a politician in Chicago; they have been electing crooks into office since the city was founded. During Prohibition it got even more corrupt when organized crime took over. Looking at the history of the last few governors, it is no surprise that this one is a crook also. I imagine there will be all sorts of shit flying around for a while yet; who knows who will get hit over the next few weeks. The media will be interesting to follow, they tend to edit the news according to their political beliefs, so if you want to know what is going on, you may wish to check several sources before believing anything. Personally, I don't trust a big percentage of the press.

"The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers."
-Thomas Jefferson

If that offends anyone from the Fourth Estate, too bad.


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I remember when I was a kid, Nikita Khrushchev taking off his shoe at a UN meeting and pounding on a table with it. At the time I thought it sounded like a little kid throwing a tantrum, or a barbarian that had no idea of civilized behavior. Over the weekend some journalist character throws a shoe at the president, and all sorts of people act like he's a hero. Personally, I don't care for Bush. That does not mean that I approve of assholes insulting the office of the president. What I would like to do is slam one of my shoes up the journalist's ass while it is attached to my foot, just on principle.
Just my opinion.

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The bailouts are getting more ridiculous all the time; we have a bunch of fools and crooks who put us in this state, and what happens? Everyone decides to let the same bunch of coprocephalics try to solve the problem by giving them more of our money to spend. Why the hell would you want someone of proven incompetence to solve a problem that they were instrumental in causing?

"Alexander Hamilton started the U.S. Treasury with nothing -- and that was the closest our country has ever been to being even."
-Will Rogers

"Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public."
-H. L. Mencken

“Washington is a stud farm for every jackass in the country.”
- Mark Twain


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Tried to put together a playlist that was a little more upbeat in word and/or structure; mostly a lot of older pieces.

"Hell in a Bucket" by Grateful Dead
"And The Grass Won't Pay No Mind" by Mark Lindsay
"Vacation" by The Go-Go's
"She Comes In Colors" by Arthur Lee
"Chelsea Morning" by Judy Collins
"Hot Rod Lincoln" by Commander Cody
"Sugar Town" by Nancy Sinatra
"Burnin' for You" by Blue Öyster Cult
"Brown Eyed Girl" by Van Morrison
"98.6" by Keith

Monday, December 08, 2008

A meme

This meme has been going around so much that I think I am one of the last three people on the Internet that has not done it yet. The ones in boldface are the ones I've done:

100 things I've done.

1. Started your own blog.
(Duh)
2. Slept under the stars. (Some of my happiest childhood memories)
3. Played in a band.
4. Visited Hawaii.
5. Watched a meteor shower.
6. Given more than you can afford to charity.
7. Been to Disneyland. (Back in the late fifties; it's changed since then.)
8. Climbed a mountain. (Hiked up to the top of a mountain, does that count?)
9. Held a praying mantis. (Lots of times; I think they are cool.)
10. Sang a solo.
11. Bungee jumped. (HELL NO!)
12. Visited Paris. (Only Paris I've been to is Paris, Idaho)
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea.
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch.
15. Adopted a child.
16. Had food poisoning.
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty.
18. Grown your own vegetables.

19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France.
20. Slept on an overnight train.
21. Had a pillow fight.
22. Hitch hiked.
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill. (Hasn't everyone?)
24. Built a snow fort.
25. Held a lamb.
26. Gone skinny dipping.
27. Run a Marathon. (Are you kidding?)
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice.
29. Seen a total eclipse. (Only of the moon.)
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset.
31. Hit a home run.
32. Been on a cruise.
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person.
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors.
35. Seen an Amish community. (Drove by one years ago in Ohio)
36. Taught yourself a new language. (Not fluently)
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied.
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person.
39. Gone rock climbing.
40. Seen Michelangelo's David.
41. Sung karaoke.
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt. (Several times)
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant.
44. Visited Africa.
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight. (But it wasn't an ocean beach)
46. Been transported in an ambulance. (At least the second time I was conscious)
47. Had your portrait painted.
48. Gone deep sea fishing.
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person.
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling.
52. Kissed in the rain.
53. Played in the mud.
54. Gone to a drive-in theater. (Been to more drive-in theaters than indoor ones)
55. Been in a movie.
56. Visited the Great Wall of China.
57. Started a business.
58. Taken a martial arts class.
59. Visited Russia.
60. Served at a soup kitchen.
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies.
62. Gone whale watching.
63. Got flowers for no reason.
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma.
65. Gone sky diving. (NO FREAKIN' WAY!)
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp.
67. Bounced a check.
68. Flown in a helicopter.
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy. (Up in my closet I still have a teddy bear from when I was two years old)
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial.
71. Eaten Caviar.
72. Pieced a quilt.
73. Stood in Times Square.
74. Toured the Everglades.
75. Been fired from a job. (I have been laid-off more than once, however)
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London.
77. Broken a bone. (Lots of them)
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle.
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person.
80. Published a book. (Helped write a repair manual once, but it was just at the place I worked.)
81. Visited the Vatican.
82. Bought a brand new car. (More than once)
83. Walked in Jerusalem.
84. Had your picture in the newspaper.
85. Read the entire Bible. (It was a long time ago.)
86. Visited the White House.
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating. (Lots of times)
88. Had chickenpox.
89. Saved someone’s life. (Three separate times, as a matter of fact)
90. Sat on a jury. (Federal court for a bank robbery.)
91. Met someone famous. (Meh.)
92. Joined a book club.
93. Lost a loved one. (You don't get to be my age without that happening a few times.)
94. Had a baby.
95. Seen the Alamo in person.
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake. (I've floated in it; it is too buoyant in which to to swim.)
97. Been involved in a law suit.
98. Owned a cell phone.
99. Been stung by a bee.
100. Read an entire book in one day. (More than once.)


As you can tell, I don't get out much.

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Playlist is sort of melancholy today; snowed this morning. Should be a few familiar ones in here to anyone who has ever had the blues.

"I Am a Rock" by Simon & Garfunkel
"With or Without You" by U2
"Sometimes in Winter" by Blood, Sweat & Tears
"Misery and the Blues" by Maria Muldaur
"It's Only Make Believe" by Conway Twitty
"The Thrill Is Gone" by B.B. King
"If You Could Read My Mind" by Gordon Lightfoot
"The Streets of Laredo" by Eddy Arnold
"Alone" by Heart
"Red, Red Wine" by Neil Diamond

Thursday, December 04, 2008

It's been a while

I was going to try and post more often, but you can see how that worked out. Seems like every time I think I might blog, something comes up; when I don't have anything to do, my mind goes blank or I don't feel up to it. It's amazing that some of my friends and readers still come here, considering how irregular my posting seems to be. For all of those who come here, thank you.

It's a little warmer than usual around here lately; we have been getting a wee bit of snow in the mountains, but no enough to do any good. Precipitation here in the valley has been almost nonexistent. It is getting too dry around here. Even with low temperatures, the lack of moisture could have deleterious effects on dormant vegetation. Hopefully we will get some rain soon, though I am not looking forward to snow. The air pressure has been acting like a yo-yo, so my joints have been very unhappy; some days I have to struggle to tie my shoes and walk to the mailbox, other days it just hurts without limiting me too much. Growing old really sucks.

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I can't say I'm impressed with the federal government and their handling of the financial crisis. They all vote to bail out a bunch of incompetents, and then start asking for more money. From what I can see, all they are doing is trying to see who will kiss their asses for some money, and how much they pucker up will determine how much they get. The auto manufacturers are the ones that really annoy me; they do a piss-poor job of designing and making cars, and then want the taxpayers to save their butts, without giving any reason to doubt they will go belly-up again. It seems to me if they are going to get some loot from the deal, they should have to do some major restructuring. And the auto workers are going to have to come down off the clouds and join the rest of the working class in this country. They are not without blame in this.

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I don't really understand India; they have a poorly trained police force (due to lack of funds, they say), but why is it they have enough money to have a nuclear weapons program? Seems to me if you want to protect your citizens, you start on the ground level. Of course, letting the people people protect themselves wouldn't hurt. Terrorists (who are cowards at heart, and don't try to convince me otherwise) look at places like Dombai the same way the crazies in this country look at schools and malls: as low-risk, target-rich environments.

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I see where the firearms industry is doing well for right now; a lot of people feel that there is going to be an offensive against their 2nd Amendment rights under the new administration; I think they're right. Expect the federal government to chip away at the 2nd Amendment, the same way they have been chipping away at the rest of the Bill of Rights. If you don't think the Bill of Rights is being eroded, you haven't been paying attention. Of course, the mainstream media paints a different picture; they manage to distort facts, hide stuff, and tell plain-vanilla lies.

"If you don't read the newspaper you are uninformed, if you do read the newspaper, you are misinformed."
-Mark Twain
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Mainly a lot of old stuff, from several different genres. There has to be at least one or two favorites in this bunch.

"Werewolves of London" by Warren Zevon
"Strange Days" by The Doors
"The Shadow of Your Smile" by Tony Bennett
"Homeward Bound" by Simon & Garfunkel
"Amarillo by Morning" by Terry Stafford
"Summertime" by Reneé Olstead
"In the Misty Moonlight" by Dean Martin
"Yesterday" by Marianne Faithfull
"Five Feet High and Rising" by Johnny Cash
"In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida" by Iron Butterfly (long version)

This version of a classic blues/jazz song being sung by Reneé Olstead is one of the newer ones. She is a singer-actress who has been around for a few years. At the time of the video below she was 17, but has been singing this type of music since her early teens. You may have seen her in movies and on TV in the past couple of years.


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Hello world

Anyone who has studied programming should recognize the title phrase from their first program. Nothing geeky here, just a way to break the ice. It's been so long since my muse left me and hit the road, I probably wouldn't recognize her if she did come back.

I've been meaning to post something before now, but just haven't really been up to it. The past few days have me feeling somewhat down; it was on the fifteenth of November three years ago that I lost my dad to cancer, and, though the pain has lessened somewhat, it never quite goes away.
The weather change has me feeling like someone took a club to me from my shoulder blades to the back of my knees; most of the time it just hurts, but now and then I get some really interesting muscle spasms in my back that tend to wake you up fast when they happen at about 400 in the morning. Sleeping has been a chore; I already sleep with a CPAP machine, but when you combine that with a charlie horse in the wee hours of the morning it tends to ruin your beauty sleep. Sleeping 3 to 5 hours a night has my head a little foggy, so excuse my whining and my meandering thought processes. Right now I feel about as friendly and cheerful as a bear with a sore tooth.

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This has me a little puzzled:

A Salt Lake City man is accused of slashing another man's face with a meat cleaver he was wearing as a necklace.

In charges filed Monday, police wrote that the man, 22, had called the victim's girlfriend "bad names" during a fight Nov. 10, and the victim threw his soda on the man.

The man allegedly took a meat cleaver he was wearing as a necklace and swung it at the victim, striking him in the face, arm and chest. The victim required 65 stitches, police wrote.

The 22-year-old was charged with second-degree felony aggravated assault.

Who the hell wears a meat cleaver on a necklace?

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I really don't understand all these problems with pirates; it used to be that if you had thugs on the high seas, you hunted them down and blew them out of the water. What the hell happened to that idea? The UN is always acting like they're useful; this would be a good time to prove it, rather than just bad-mouthing everyone else and sucking up money and bribes. Some types of people don't understand talking; with them you just have to get rough. Try executing a few of these sea-going assholes and maybe some of them would change vocations. Of course, the eunuchs at the UN have fits any time someone wants to actually get rough with criminals, and they start whining about arms and weapons and acting like bumping off murderers and thieves is a bad thing. Executing pirates is a public service, and should be treated as such.
Just my opinion.

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Mostly older stuff in the playlist today. Anyone old enough to remember some of these?

"There Ain't No Good Chain Gang" by Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings
"As Tears Go By" by The Rolling Stones
"Bridge over Troubled Water" by Simon & Garfunkel
"Never Comes the Day" by The Moody Blues
"Red, Red Wine" by Neil Diamond
"While My Guitar Gently Weeps" by The Beatles
"Two out of Three Ain't Bad" by Meat Loaf
"Both Sides Now" by Judy Collins
"With You There to Help Me" by Jethro Tull
"The Lonely Bull" by Herb Alpert

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

The weather is not cheering me up...

Not really fond of this white stuff falling from the sky; it means slippery roads, broken tree branches, and lots of arthritis pain. This is a shot to the west of me, from my front yard. The snow had let up for a few minutes.



Zoomed in here, to show the Oquirrh Mountains.



This is about thirty minutes later; notice you can't seen anything now with the snow coming down.



The trees in my front yard haven't dropped their leaves yet, so they're catching all the snow.



Not too cold yet, but that will be happening later tonight, I think.

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One of my favorite authors has died.

Best-selling author Michael Crichton has died in Los Angeles aged 66 after a "courageous and private battle against cancer", his family has said.


I'm really going to miss his books and movies.

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Any of these look familiar?


"Ride the Wild Surf" by Jan & Dean
"The Girl from Ipanema" by Eliane Elias
"Rebel Yell" by Billy Idol
"A View to a Kill" by Duran Duran
"The Wayward Wind" by Eddy Arnold
"Summertime" by Janis Joplin & Her Kozmic Blues Band
"March of Cambreadth" by Heather Alexander
"It Ain't Right" by John Mayall & Eric Clapton
"Different Drum" by Linda Ronstadt
"Your Cheatin' Heart" by Hank Williams

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Battle royal

Hopefully by the end of the night we will know who won the brass ring; no matter who gets the presidency, I think We the People will be the losers. Right now it is 1800 here where I am, so the local stuff will be done before too long. I voted early this morning, so I feel I did my part for the day. Right now it's trying to snow off-and-on, but I don't think we'll get much during the night. Just enough bad weather to make all the joints hurt.

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Feeling like a mix tonight; anyone like this bunch?

"It's My Life" by Bon Jovi and Sugarland
"Ride the Wild Surf" by Jan & Dean
"Baby Don't Do Me Wrong" by John Lee Hooker
"Wolverton Mountain" by Claude King
"Sometimes in Winter" by Blood, Sweat & Tears
"Bourree From Violin Partita No. 1, BWV 1002" by Andrés Segovia
"Honky Tonk Heroes" by Waylon Jennings
"More Than a Feeling" by Boston
"Maybellene" by Chuck Berry
"I Drink Alone" by George Thorogood

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Changing of the seasons

Yesterday it was warm, so we took a lunch and went up into the hills while the weather was still good.
Most of the leaves have fallen in the higher country; up where we went the main deciduous trees were quakies, with a few boxelders mixed in in places. The undergrowth has died back for the most part, so things were looking a bit bare.

These are some pictures in American Fork Canyon.








Following the road up American Fork, it goes over a summit and then takes you down into Provo Canyon, and the Sundance Institute. There was no snow there (both canyons had been getting rain just before we went up), so there is no skiing at Sundance as of yet.

Sundance Institute




An Oregon grape



It was a good day in all; didn't see much wildlife other than birds and squirrels, but it was good to get out of the city for a while.

Today we have cold rain, and snow on the mountains. Winter is coming.

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Plungergirl knows how to deliver a proper bitch slap to trolls who don't like her opinions.

So I close this dissertation by recommending that the offended do one of four things: (1) rent a tractor to yank those sticks out of your ass; (2) consider the possibility that constipation may be causing you to be unusually sensitive; (3) pick up a bottle of narcotics on your next trip across the border; or (4) close the browser and resist the urge to come back.

Rock on, lady.

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Judging by my playlist, my mood seems a bit dark today.

"Iron Butterfly Theme" by Iron Butterfly
"All Along The Watchtower" from Battlestar Galactica soundtrack
"I'm Eighteen" by Alice Cooper
"(Don't Fear) The Reaper" by Blue Öyster Cult
"The Battle of Evermore" by Led Zeppelin
"Paint It Black" by The Rolling Stones
"Gypsy" by The Moody Blues
"House of the Rising Sun" by The Animals
"Dust in the Wind" by Kansas
"Born Under a Bad Sign" by Cream

See any here you like?

Friday, October 31, 2008

Leadership...?

Time for another one of my rants. If you agree, tell someone, if you disagree, tell me. I believe anyone can disagree here, as long as they show some decent manners when commenting.

During the past few months that we have been afflicted with the presidential campaigns, I keep hearing a common note from both campaigns; they both claim to bring "leadership" to the American people.
A politician's job is not to be a leader, but to represent his constituents.
You want to know what a leader is for?
It is for these types here:



Just remember, the only reason a shepherd leads his sheep is to shear them on a regular basis, and cull them when they are of no more use.

Both The Coot and Golden Messiah-Boy claim they have what it takes to lead us.
Newsflash: I don't want to be led, because I'm not lost. I want someone who takes orders from the folks who pay him, namely WE THE PEOPLE.
If you want a representative, vote in the elections for someone to represent you; if all you want to do is play Follow-the-Leader, join a cult.

Just my opinion.

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Tamara sounds off about the candidates; she says it a lot better than I could.

One side is offering me politicians acting like politicians, which is to say power-hungry, callous, and scheming; the other side is trying to offer me politicians acting like missionaries, and that scares the crap out of me. Given a choice between the devil I know and the devil I don't, I'm going to stick with the one I know. Especially if the one I don't is offering me milk and cookies.

If you feel like she strikes a familiar note, read the whole thing.

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A motley mix of music today; the top ten shows it. Any favorites?

"Born to Be Blue" by Grant Green/Ike Quebec
"Only Daddy That'll Walk the Line" by Waylon Jennings
"Dizzy Fingers" by Benny Goodman
"Dancin' in the Ruins" by Blue Öyster Cult
"Baby, Won't You Come Out Tonight" by Buddy Holly
"All Over The World" by Electric Light Orchestra
"The Shadow of Your Smile" by Henry Mancini
"The Great Gate at Kiev" by Moussourgsky
"For Ladies Only" by Steppenwolf
"Moondance" by Van Morrison

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Bleh...

Just starting to feel like posting; I've been doing a bit of commenting, and exchanging email with my brother, but haven't really been up to much else.
I've spent the last week with some sort of miserable bug that has my sinuses packed up tight, my lungs coughing out nasty stuff (reminded me of walking pneumonia, but I don't have a fever), and every joint in my body hurting like hell. The doctor gave me some stuff for my nose, some steroids for my lungs, a bunch of antibiotics, and they are all finally starting to make me feel like something a little bit better than hammered dogshit. Hell, I haven't even shaved my face or head in a week now; my beard and what's left of my hair (I normally shave the sparse amount on my cranium) are all fuzzy now; they're mostly silver these days, so I look funny and shiny when the light shines on my head. If I get doing better, I may be able to post my random blitherings more often.

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I've pretty well quit reading anything about the elections, a person can only take in so much bullshit before choking, and there's no shortage of that in the news. Anything I watch on television I record on DVR these days, rather than watching live; that way I can zap all the phony-ass political lies, accusations, and mud-slinging that is so ubiquitous from both sides.

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This picture was one I took a few weeks ago at my niece's place. No real reason for posting it, other than I thought the (overweight)cat was sort of cool looking.

Click to enlarge.



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Felt like more mellow stuff today; not a real lot of bangin' and twangin' in this bunch.
Any favorites here? Anyone who recognizes more than half of them?

"In The Groove" by The String of Pearls Orchestra
"Eternity Road" by The Moody Blues
"Long Haired Country Boy" by The Charlie Daniels Band
"Cold, Cold Heart" by Norah Jones
"Friend of the Devil" by The Grateful Dead
"Stealing Rosemary" by The Bangles
"Fresh Garbage" by Spirit
"It's My Life" by Talk Talk
"Perfect" by Sara Evans
"Cruisin' With the Duece" by Quarterflash

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Just a few more weeks...

Excuse my rant.
Election day can't come too soon for me; I am getting real tired of the media bullshit. It doesn't help that the mainstream media seems to be taking sides. It used to be that journalists tried to just report the news, these days they are trying to shape the news. I guess journalism classes quit teaching the difference between objective and subjective, probably about the time they dropped the concept of ethics from their curriculum.
Personally, I don't really like either side, but I am getting real sick and tired of the left-wing trying to make everything about race. I keep hearing about "code words" that imply race. I have a suggestion for you: pull your heads out of your asses. This may come as a shock to some of you, but white people do not lie awake all night just trying to think up ways to mess with non-whites. Most of us don't care. It sounds more like there are too many people who are up late at night trying to find a hidden "racist" meaning in anything they hear that they don't like. Here is a revelation for you: I have better things to worry about than whether someone has a better suntan than I do. Seems like any time anyone disagrees with somebody, some dingbat jumps up and starts yelling "Racist!" That card is getting a bit worn and old.

"Why am I going to hate someone based solely on the color of their skin when if I get to know them I can find 1,000 other reasons to think they're an asshole?" -George Carlin

I've heard my share of "code words". Without leaving the continental US, I've been called a lot of things, some derogatory, some not so much. How many of you are familiar with all of these? I have had someone call me every one of these (among other things) at one time or another. So what?

Honkie, anglo, bilagáana, gringo, gije, cracker, whitey, yank, goy, damnyankee (yes, that is one word), gaijin, gentile, taibo, redneck, wingnut, hippy, nasrani, and kafir.


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Went out and visited my mom a few days ago; wanted to help her get some stuff squared away for winter. Did some pruning, hammered a few nails, did a bit of fixing.

This guy kept an eye on me.




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Looks like it is time to shut down the garden. Sunday we woke up to some snow.

My zucchini plant has looked better.



Still some snow on my vehicle at noon.



The Wasatch Mountains on the east side of the valley.



The Oquirrh Mountains on the west side of the valley.




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Top ten of a random pick; I don't seem to see any pattern here, really. Any favorites here?

"How the West Was Won" Movie Soundtrack
"Don't Walk Away" by Electric Light Orchestra
"C'est What" by Bud Shank
"Takin' Care of Business" by Bachman-Turner Overdrive
"Guinnevere" by Crosby, Stills and Nash
"No More Words" by Berlin
"I Only Want to Be With You" by Dusty Springfield
"Me and the Devil Blues" by Eric Clapton
"The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald" by Gordon Lightfoot
"Moon River" by Henry Mancini

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Debates...meh...

Skipped the VP debates. From what I have read since then, it turned out pretty much the way I thought it would. Whatever leaning a person had going in, they usually claimed their candidate won at the end.
It reminds me sort of like a dog show. The contestants (the dogs, of course) are trained and groomed to look good in front of the judges; someone trots them out and runs them through a few tricks, and then people judge which looked best. It has nothing to do with what the dog is like; the dignified-looking Irish Setter may have a problem with chewing everything in sight; the perky, smiling Yorkie may be a vicious little menace around small children. All we see is the face that their handlers want you to see.
I've seen people speak in public to good effect who I knew were unreliable jackasses. I've also seen others who didn't look so good, but were the ones to rely on during a crunch. As I've said before politicians lie. If I want to know whether to trust someone, I look to what they've done before they put on their dog-and-pony show, when they thought no one was watching them that close. No matter what any politician says, they are running for their benefit, not yours. The best you can hope for is that there is an overlap.

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With the bailout final, we now get to see just how much good it will do. Personally, I'm not too optimistic. We have the same bunch of people running things that contributed to this mess who are now handed more money and told to fix it. Sort of like the guy in Las Vegas who goes broke and asks for a loan to try and win it all back. Anybody want to pull their wallet out for him? I think what is more likely to happen is that a few companies will get their chestnuts pulled out of the fire, and a whole lot of politicians will funnel it into their favorite pork projects, and before long someone will be asking for more money to save the economy. Some of the politicians are trying to help, but there are a lot who look at it the same way as seeing someone fainting on the sidewalk. They'll stop and act like they're helping, but in actuality it's just a ruse to go through the person's pockets for loot.

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Been a wee bit chilly today, drizzle and cold rain since this morning. As soon as I woke up I could tell; every joint in my body was telling me not to get up. It won't be too long before we get a frost, I'm thinking. Hopefully the garden will be able to hold out a little longer; I miss fresh tomatoes during the winter.
We're supposed to get some snow in the hills this weekend, down to about 6000 feet. That may seem high to some parts of the country, but here where I live we're at about 4500 feet, so the snow is usually quite visible from here.
Maybe the weather and the effects on me is why I seem to have such a foul disposition today. Or maybe I'm just old enough to be cynical of anyone who says they're trying to help me by taking my money.

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Some of these may be familiar, depending on your age.

"Washington Square" by The Village Stompers
"Burnin' for You" by Blue Öyster Cult
"Greenfields" by The Brothers Four
"Glory Days" by Bruce Springsteen
"Ride the Wild Surf" by Jan & Dean
"Me and Bobby McGee" by Kris Kristofferson
"See You in September" by The Happenings
"Mojo" by Mindi Abair
"Lawyers, Guns and Money" by Warren Zevon
"More Than a Feeling" by Boston


Here is one of my favorite songs from one of my favorite groups. Always good to listen to when you want to feel mellow.




"The Actor"

The curtain rises on the scene
With someone shouting to be free
The play unfolds before my eyes
There stands the actor who is me

The sleeping hours takes this part
Through traffic, telephones and fear
Put out your problems with the cat
Escape until a bell you hear

Our reasons are the same
But there's no-one we can blame
For there's nowhere we need go
And the only truth we know comes so easily

The sound I have heard in your hello
Oh, oh, darling, you're almost part of me
Oh, oh, darling, you're all I'll ever see
Ah, ah, ah

It's such a rainy afternoon
No point in going anywhere
The sounds just drift across my room
I wish this feeling I could share

It's such a rainy afternoon
She sits and gazes from her window
Her mind tries to recall his face
The feeling deep inside her grows

Our reasons are the same
But there's no-one we can blame
For there's nowhere we need go
And the only truth we know comes so easily

The sound I have heard in your hello
Oh, oh, darling, you're almost part of me
Oh, oh, darling, you're all I'll ever see
The sound I have heard in your hello
Oh, oh, darling, you're all I'll ever see
Oh, oh, darling, you're almost part of me
Ah, ah, ah

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Am I the only one looking forward to the elections being over?

"On account of being a democracy and run by the people, we are the only nation in the world that has to keep a government four years, no matter what it does."
-Will Rogers

I have a confession to make; I haven't watched any of the debates, and I don't really plan on doing so. I'd rather look over the candidate's records to make any decisions.
The first thing to consider with anyone running for office is that politicians lie. What you have during a debate is the equivalent of two used-car salesman competing to see which one of them can sell you an overpriced clunker. No matter who you choose, it's still BOHICA time. As far as I'm concerned, those clowns can yammer all day, what counts is deeds, not bullshit. You want to know what those bullwinkles will do? Look at what they've been doing all along. Remember that both of them have been screwing over someone, it is part of the game. The only difference is who is getting it, and how hard are they getting it. Always check their past, and make sure to go to different sources. Some sources are more objective than others, so I like to try and find sources that lean in different directions, and compare.

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"Under democracy one party always devotes its chief energies to trying to prove that the other party is unfit to rule - and both commonly succeed, and are right."
-H. L. Mencken

Looks like the bailout may be settled, but the dust is still settling, so nothing is dead certain as of yet. No matter what they do, the citizens are going to be footing the bill. Seems that everyone in both parties screwed the pooch on this; and everyone is getting sprained fingers from pointing at the other guy. I still don't like the idea; it is essentially nationalizing the organizations, and that just digs you deeper into socialism. Socialism never ends well; either nations go broke, collapse from ennui, or turn into totalitarian regimes. Personally, I distrust all wealth redistribution programs unless they are completely voluntary, and taxes are NOT voluntary.

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I'm hoping to get up in the hills and do a little photography sometime soon; the leaves are changing and it is going to be full of snow in the higher elevations, so I'd like to get up there before the roads get closed.

I've been feeling a bit down and melancholy the last few days; I don't know if it is the weather, the news, my health, or what. It does seem to show in the playlist I'm currently listening to, however. Anyone familiar with this top ten from the list?

"It Was a Very Good Year" by Frank Sinatra
"Ain't Even Done With the Night" by John Mellencamp
"Never Comes the Day" by The Moody Blues
"American Pie" by Don McLean
"Misery and the Blues" by Maria Muldaur
"Sittin' On The Dock of the Bay" by Otis Redding
"Night Moves" by Bob Seger
"Cat's in the Cradle" by Harry Chapin
"Someday Never Comes" by Creedence Clearwater Revival
"If You Could Read My Mind" by Gordon Lightfoot

I remember when the first one in the list came out during the sixties; it was ok, but I wasn't really crazy about it. As I've gotten older, however, it seems to sound better and make more sense.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Whoops...

Last time I was here I said I was going to try to blog more often. Notice how well that worked.

I like taking this test from time to time to see if any of my outlook has changed much. It doesn't seem to vary a lot, other than I seem to be floating toward anarchy. I'm not sure if that is good or bad.

You are a

Social Liberal
(80% permissive)

and an...

Economic Conservative
(85% permissive)

You are best described as a:

Libertarian










Link: The Politics Test on Ok Cupid
Also : The OkCupid Dating Persona Test


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My brother sent this to me in an email for a good laugh. (Thanks, Rich.)

This video proves that stupidity knows no borders.



Even though Mexico send a lot of drugs up here, they must be keeping the best stuff at home. I have to wonder if these people are hitting the local mushrooms. Instead of village idiots they have some idiot villages.

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The presidential contests are getting into full swing now; the sniping, lying, shit-throwing, and name-calling is starting to get to really obnoxious levels; I don't think half of the idiots out there are even checking any of the facts they hear, they just pick the ones they like and take them on faith. The politics is getting to a level of slime that would scare a cockroach.

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Feeling like something a little different, this list has a lot of stuff other people don't listen to a lot. Anyone familiar with the top 10 on the list? The songs or the artists?

"Classical Gas" by Terrence Farrell
"The Fool on the Hill" by Sergio Mendes & Brazil 66
"Slaughter on 10th Avenue" by Rodgers & Hart
"On the Sunny Side of the Street" by Diana Krall
"Purple Haze" by Jimi Hendrix
"Hell Hound on My Trail" by Eric Clapton
"Someone to Watch over Me" by Reneé Olstead
"Yakety Axe" by Chet Atkins/Mark Knopfler
"More Than a Feeling" by Boston
"I'm Eighteen" by Alice Cooper

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Hello again, it's just me

I'm trying to blog more often; hopefully before the 3 or 4 people who visit give up on me.
The Greek Festival was a success; as usual they had tons of food and lots of visitors. Prices have gone up, but that is true anywhere you go these days. I quite enjoyed kalamaria, dolmathes, keftethes, souvlaki, spanakopita, loucomades, and various other dishes.
The Greek Orthodox Church of Salt Lake is a nice example of byzantine architecture. I got this photo from across the street; to the left is part of the building that housed the kitchens.



In one part of the festival they had Greek dancers demonstrating the various dances from Greece that have been passed down; some are mixed gender, but a lot are either women only or men only, as many dances are in that area of the Mediterranean.
In the other part of the festival there was a local Greek band. I got this picture of the singer/bouzouki player. If you want to hear an example of bouzouki music, there is a clip here.



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The presidential campaign is starting to warm up; the sniping is getting busier. I don't know why politicians can't act like adults and talk about issues. Instead, it's like watching a bunch of 13-year old schoolgirls getting all pissy and bitching about each other from behind. And some schoolgirls would be a lot better at it. I still wish one of our choices was "None of the above".

“Washington is a stud farm for every jackass in the country.”
- Mark Twain

"We hang the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to public office."
- Aesop

"Alexander Hamilton started the U.S. Treasury with nothing -- and that was the closest our country has ever been to being even."
-Will Rogers

"It is terrible to contemplate how few politicians are hanged."
-G.K. Chesterton

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More golden oldies.

"If You've Got the Money (I've Got the Time)" by Willie Nelson
"Gimme Shelter" by The Rolling Stones
"Perfect" by Sara Evans
"You Didn't Have to Be So Nice" by The Lovin' Spoonful
"Good Vibrations" by The Beach Boys
"The Fool on the Hill" by Sergio Mendes
"Promises in the Dark" by Pat Benatar
"No Fair at All" by The Association
"Valerie" by Quarterflash
"To Beat the Devil" by Kris Kristofferson

Thursday, September 04, 2008

It's bad enough that my muse ran away from home...

...but you'd think she could at least send me a postcard once in a while.

Not a lot in the news to blog about; the majority of the stuff out there is the presidential campaigns, and those seem to be revolving around two types of responses; orgasmic happiness on the right, and pant-soiling hysterics on the left, all concerning the vice presidential Republican runner, not the Republican presidential runner. Seems people are more concerned about Palin than they are about McCain. A question to the left: Why are you so concerned about comparing the Republican #2 to the Democratic #1? For a group of people who act so dismissive of her, they sure seem to be obsessed with going after her. While they're busy throwing all of their mud at her, McCain is skating along. Personally, I don't favor either party. To me the Democratic Party has morphed into socialists, and the Republican Party seems to favor an aristocracy. The only reason I am even considering voting is the fact that I have a mental block against socialism; I detest it as much as I do monarchies, and for the same reason, they are both totalitarian governments.
Just my opinion.

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One of my favorite events is happening this weekend, the Greek Festival. It is a charity event put on by the local Greek Orthodox Church, and is extremely popular around here. I grew up around a lot of Greek and Italian people in south Salt Lake, and this is a great place to get the sort of food I remember from friend's families while I was growing up. I'm really looking forward to some good food and a glass of retsina, followed by baklava and Greek coffee.

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Some old stuff in my playlist today; the more I hear of the stuff on the radio, the more I like the older stuff. Any day now I'll be on the porch yelling "Get off the lawn!"

"Werewolves of London" by Warren Zevon
"Substitute" by The Who
"You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" by The Righteous Brothers
"California Dreamin'" by The Mamas & the Papas
"Uncle John's Band" by The Grateful Dead
"Magical Mystery Tour" by The Beatles
"For Ladies Only" by Steppenwolf
"Black Magic Woman/Gypsy Queen" by Santana
"The Battle of Evermore" by Led Zeppelin
"Night on Bald Mountain" by Modest Mussorgsky

How many of these do you remember?

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Late posting, as usual

It's been a few days since last posting. I actually have an explanation for that, other than procrastination.
After getting back from vacation Monday, my wife came down with a sinus infection and mild bronchitis, I got an inner ear infection that I am just now getting over, with the aid of a buttcheek full of antibiotics and some pain pills and more antibiotics. My wife is still getting over her sinus problems, but is feeling better.

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Our trip went fairly well; the temperatures were reasonable, and we didn't get rained on.
We went down to south central Utah, basing ourselves in the small town of Torrey. It's a quiet place that has grown quite a bit during the past few years, but is still small. It sits at the base of the Aquarius Plateau, which feeds the rivers in all directions in that area of Utah, so in a few minutes you can drive up to an alpine environment, or wander around in the desert, depending on temperature, time of day, and mood.

Double-click on any picture for full size.

This is a picture of the area from about halfway near the top of the Aquarius Plateau.



We did a bit of hiking in the river canyons by Escalante, and spent quite a bit of time in Capitol Reef.





At Capitol Reef, they have parts of an old community. There are a lot of cottonwood trees around, which are ubiquitous to the desert areas. Some are quite big, and very old, as you can see from this photo.



There are also a lot of these guys, who tend to hang out in the old orchards there. Since there is no hunting allowed in the park, they tend to get very tolerant of tourists.









This is the cabin of Elijah Cutler Behunin, built in 1882, for his family of ten. A rising river wiped out their crops and they had to leave.



This school house was built on land donated by Behunin; it operated from 1896 to 1941. I managed to get a shot through a window; they have tried to keep it looking like it once did.





Here we have remains of older settlers; the Fremont Indians. The Fremont lived in the area from 600 - 1100 AD. It is thought that the Fremont were the ancestors of today's Utes and Southern Paiutes.





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Interesting political developments. I'm not really sure that Biden was a good choice for Golden Boy's campaign. Of course, I am fairly confident that The Coot will do just as badly at choosing a VP. If he doesn't, I'll be very surprised.

A few quotes on government; there are a lot of good ones out there, but we'd probably run out of room.

“Democracy is little more than the system by which 51 percent of the people can pee in the cornflakes of 49 percent of the people.”
-Jonah Goldberg

"It could probably be shown by facts and figures that there is no distinctly American criminal class except Congress."
-Mark Twain

"The difference between death and taxes is death doesn't get worse every time Congress meets."
- Will Rogers

"The budget should be balanced, the Treasury should be refilled, public debt should be reduced, the arrogance of officialdom should be tempered and controlled, and the assistance to foreign lands should be curtailed lest Rome become bankrupt. People must again learn to work, instead of living on public assistance.”
-Marcus Tullius Cicero

"We hang the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to public office."
- Aesop

"A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have."
-Thomas Jefferson

"It is terrible to contemplate how few politicians are hanged."
-G.K. Chesterton


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Have been listening to a lot of dusty old songs, a lot of these in the top ten are probably way before the time of most of you. Anyone familiar with all of them?

"Sukiyaki" by Kyu Sakamoto
"Wichita Lineman" by Glen Campbell
"It's Only Make Believe" by Conway Twitty
"(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay" by Otis Redding
"Understand Your Man" by Johnny Cash
"I Heard It Through the Grapevine" by Marvin Gaye
"Baby Don't Do Me Wrong" by John Lee Hooker
"It Doesn't Matter Anymore" by Buddy Holly
"I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry" by Hank Williams
"Both Sides Now" by Judy Collins

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

A break from cabin fever

Been getting things together to leave town for a few days; Friday morning we'll be leaving for south central Utah, and not coming back until sometime Monday. Hopefully I'll have a few interesting pictures for those who are interested. Right now I'm fighting with a bit of a head cold, hopefully I can shake it by the time we go. I may get a chance to post something before we go, but who knows?

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Monday is our anniversary; 35 years of marriage. Where does the time go? The years haven't been that good to me, but my wife, Sandy, is still just as beautiful as that day she walked down the aisle to me. With any luck, we'll have many more years to come.



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My playlist is all moldie-oldies today, I don't know how many will be recognized.

"Lightnin' Strikes" by Lou Christie
"Sunny" by Bobby Hebb
"Love Is Blue" by Paul Mauriat
"Walk Away Renee" by The Left Banke
"Come on Down to My Boat" by Every Mother's Son
"Sunday Will Never Be the Same" by Spanky & Our Gang
"Legend of a Mind" by The Moody Blues
"Lil' Red Riding Hood" by Sam the Sham & the Pharaohs
"White Rabbit" by Jefferson Airplane
"Happy Together" by The Turtles

That last one is just for you, Meleah

Sunday, August 10, 2008

I hate it when stuff like this happens

Wall Arch, one of the most accessible major arches in the Devils Garden area of Arches National Park, collapsed sometime Monday night.
"Not being a geologist, I can't get very technical but it just went kaboom," Chief Ranger Denny Ziemann said. "The middle of the arch just collapsed under its own weight. It just happens."
Wall Arch, located along the popular Devils Garden Trail, was 71 feet tall and 33 1/2 feet wide, ranking it 12th in size among the known arches inside the park. Lewis T. McKinney first reported and named Wall Arch in 1948.
No one reported observing the arch collapse and there were no visitor injuries,
Wall Arch is shown before and after it collapsed in Arches National Park. (Courtesy Arches National Park)
the National Park Service said.


That area has been a favorite of mine since the late sixties.

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Had an enoyable evening last night; a sort-of house warming party for some of my relatives. Much good food was in evidence.
For those who like interesting vehicles, scope out my brother-in-law's little item; he and his wife collect Pepsi stuff as a hobby, and this is one of their latest beauties.



There was a bit of rain, but not enough to really get anything wet. We were treated to this however:



You can't see it all, but it stretched completely across the sky; usually you just see half rainbows, but this one covered a full 180º.

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Anyone know all of these? Trying to decide my mood from the playlist I assembled this morning. Seems a bit down, doesn't it?

"Eve of Destruction" by Barry McGuire
"Red, Red Wine" by Neil Diamond
"Dark Night" by The Blasters
"Ain't No God in Mexico" by Waylon Jennings
"Independence Day" by Martina McBride
"She's Not There" by The Zombies
"Welcome to My Nightmare" by Alice Cooper
"Sole Survivor" by Asia
"Melancholy Man" by The Moody Blues
"Send in the Clowns" by Judy Collins


Here's one from The Blasters; it was part of the soundtrack of From Dusk Til Dawn. It's one of those tunes that is great when you're cruising down the highway at night with the top down.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Busy weekend

It was good to get out over the weekend, even though it was a bit tiring.
Saturday we spent time at the art festival in Park City. My wife found a couple of items she liked, and it killed a few hours walking around. The festival is on the main street, and several blocks long, going north and south. It is also on a hill, making it a bit of a walk going one way. Since the city is at about 7000 to 7100 feet in elevation, it is easy to get out of breath on the uphill.
The first picture is from above the festival, the second picture is taken from down in the midst of it, looking down one side of the street.

Click pictures to enlarge.





Lunch was fish and chips and some local brew at the Wasatch Brew Pub.



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Sunday we had a get-together with some of my relatives at a local park; an aunt and a bunch of cousins and their kids and grandkids, my brother and his wife. Most of the time was spent on chowing down and catching up on stuff. The park has changed a bit; I spent time in it when I was a kid, and my mom and her siblings spent time there when they were children. This gives you a bit of an idea of the place. The temperature was up around 100ºF, so we stayed in the shade a lot.






The husband of one of my cousins brought a car he has been restoring.



It may not be "green" or politically correct, but what the hell, it's good to see an old boat like that on the road now and then.

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The presidential campaigns are interesting. The Golden Boy warns everyone that the Old Coot will be running a racist campaign, then gets miffed when he is accused of waving the race card. Then he gets upset at being accused of running a "celebrity" campaign. Hell, all I've been seeing the past few months is how is claiming to be able to solve all the worlds problems, being treated like a finalist on American Idol, and people practically fainting in his presence. I wouldn't be surprised if they were throwing panties at him, too. It seems like he's good at attacking other people, but then yells foul when anyone attacks him. I've got news for you, Barry; in politics the fighting is two-sided. If you are going to piss and moan about people talking bad about you, maybe you should find another line of work. There's always going to be someone who dislikes you and has bad things to say.
Both of the candidates seem to be waffling for votes; I'm not sure now what they would be like; both of them say one thing, but their records show another. Just goes to prove that you can never completely trust a politician.

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Anybody familiar with more than half of these top ten in the shuffle?
"País Tropical" by Sergio Mendes
"Got Me Under Pressure" by ZZ Top
"Edge of Seventeen" by Stevie Nicks
"She's My Girl" by The Turtles
"Brown Sugar" by The Rolling Stones
"Georgia on My Mind" by Ray Charles
"Nickel Romeo" by The Bangles
"We Gotta Get Out of This Place" by Eric Burdon and The Animals
"If You Don't Like Hank Williams" by Kris Kristofferson
"The Great Gate at Kiev" by Moussourgsky



"If You Don't Like Hank Williams"

I dig Bobby Dylan and I dig Johnny Cash
And I think Waylon Jennings is a table thumpin' smash
And hearin' Joni Mitchell feels as good as smokin' grass
And if you don't like Hank Williams, honey, you can kiss my ass

Chorus:
'Cause I think what they've done is well worth doin'
And they're doin' it the best way that they can
You're the only one that you are screwin'
When you put down what you don't understand

I said, I dig Roger Miller, Merle Haggard; George Jones
Shotgun Willie Nelson and them rockin' Rollin' Stones
And Jerry Lee's still gotta be the coolest in the class
And if you don't like Hank Williams, honey, you can kiss my ass.

Chorus:
'Cause I think what they've done is well worth doin'
And they're doin' it the best way that they can
You're the only one that you are screwin'
When you put down what you don't understand