Friday, December 31, 2010

Getting tired of snow

It's been snowing for a couple of days now, and is coming down good as I write this.
These pictures are from yesterday morning; it snowed all day yesterday, last night, and is still coming down.  It's dropped a good eight inches since then, and I didn't feel like going out to take pictures today.

Picture 1: View from my mailbox to the west.  Can't even see the Oquirrh Mountains.
Picture 2:  Birdbath in my back yard.  The birds are out of luck.





























The snow does have its own kind of beauty though; the two shots below show that.




























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Another year is winding down, ready to end. Looking back, a lot happened from my viewpoint. The economy, a fire at my mom's place, my injury and the long recovery I'm working on, being diagnosed with diabetes, etc. Hopefully next year will be a lot better, at least for me.
I don't feel too hopeful for the economy; even if things pick up, it's going to take a while to get the momentum going.
The federal government? We changed one bunch of crooks for another, hopefully this bunch will have a little more sense of self-preservation and start listening to their constituents instead of just passing more pork and ignoring the public. I'm not holding my breath until it happens, however. As far as the the White House goes, I don't have much confidence in that bunch; a bunch of elitists who look down their noses as anyone not of their persuasion, and seem to think they can get by by blaming everything on the past administration. None of them seems to know a damn thing about business or economics, yet they keep coming up with more bullshit to fling out into the economy.

"The larger the mob, the harder the test. In small areas, before small electorates, a first-rate man occasionally fights his way through, carrying even the mob with him by force of personality. But when the field is nationwide, and the fight must be waged chiefly at second and third hand, and the force of personality cannot so readily make itself felt, then all the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre - the man who can most easily adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum.
The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”
-H.L. Mencken
Just my opinion.

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There should be some familiar tunes in this bunch.

"Lights" by Journey
"You're No Good" by Linda Ronstadt
"Edge of Seventeen" by Stevie Nicks
"Cold, Cold Heart" by Hank Williams
"Against the Wind" by Bob Seger
"Nickel Romeo" by The Bangles
"The Sound of Silence" by Simon and Garfunkel
"If I Were A Carpenter" by Bobby Darin
"The Lonely One" by Duane Eddy
"I Just Want To Make Love To You" by LMuddy Waters

A Bob Dylan tune done by the late Bobby Darin. Great version of a good song.



Duane Eddy had a distinctive style that makes him one of the classic guitarists of oldies rock.



Blues, from an old master.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Too long between posting, sorry about that.

I was looking at the international news, and noticed a strange thing happening over in Switzerland.
In most countries, the governments are always trying to disarm the populace; the sheep are easier to govern when they feel helpless. In Switzerland, however, we have the opposite thing happening; the government is trying to keep the population armed, and are urging the people not to disarm themselves. It would seem there is a group pushing for strict gun control, and locking up all the guns, which would completely negate the reserves and militia. WTF?

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Winter is in full swing, and has afforded a few opportunities for photos. I hope to get more later, as I'm now able to get out more.
These were taken out at my mom's place last week.   

Click pictures to enlarge.

Picture 1: Looking east toward the Oquirrh Mountains from the back yard.
Pictures 2 and 3 are a couple of trees.  These were taken in the afternoon, which goes to show how cold the air is out there.









































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There was a wreath ceremony at Arlington for the fallen. Our fallen soldiers don't get the recognition they deserve. For one of the best posts I've seen in a long time, drop over to Brigid's blog and read it. If you don't find that to be a moving article, your heart is in the wrong place. 

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December 15 is Bill of Rights Day, for those who didn't know. It wouldn't hurt to get out a copy (or pull one up off the Web) and look it over. It is one of the most amazing and ignored documents in the history of human rights.
Most paperwork associated with the formation of governments deals with the powers of the government, and what rights are "given" to the subjects, through the magnanimity of the rulers. The Bill of Rights is unique; it does not grant rights to the people (who are citizens, NOT subjects), but enumerates them as things that the government has no power to negate; only the people themselves have that right. The rest of the Constitution lists the powers of the government, but they are to take second place to the rights of the people themselves.
Sadly, over the last few decades the lines have been blurred by those in power; they talk of the "rights" of the government, and try to squeeze the boundaries of the rights of the citizens. It is time that people start looking at the what has been happening and taking stock of what has happened. When the government starts re-defining your rights, then you are no longer a citizen, you are a subject.


"It's not an endlessly expanding list of rights — the 'right' to education, the 'right' to health care, the 'right' to food and housing. That's not freedom, that's dependency. Those aren't rights, those are the rations of slavery — hay and a barn for human cattle."
- P.J. O'Rourke

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There must be a few people who have some favorites in this bunch.

"Bat Out of Hell" by Meat Loaf
"Crackerbox Palace" by George Harrison
"Bring Me Some Water" by Melissa Etheridge
"Question" by The Moody Blues
"That'll Be the Day" by Buddy Holly
"Beg, Borrow, and Steal" by Rare Breed
"Songs to Aging Children Come" by Joni Mitchell
"Sweet Cream Ladies, Forward March" by The Boxtops
"Over You" by Gary Puckett & The Union Gap
"As If" by Sara Evans


An under-appreciated group in the lat sixties, The Boxtops were good at rock, blues, and odd stuff. This one was banned in some areas when it came out, because of the subject matter. I though it was a hoot, myself.



Another group of the sixties, this one was fairly popular due to the lead singer.



One of the better female country singers (and easy to look at). This one is for Terri, who is a Sara Evans fan.

Monday, November 29, 2010

At least the holidays were good.

Thanksgiving Day at my in-laws was good; I watched what I ate, so my diabetes didn't give me any trouble. Cold day, but clear.
The following day we visited my mom; my brother and his wife were out there also.
The weather was also good that day, which is good since my mom lives an hour away from Salt Lake. We have to swing around the Great Salt Lake to and from, so I got a couple of photos on the way back.

Picture 1: the Oquirrh Mountains (Salt Lake is on the other side of them)
Picture2: another view of the Oquirrh Mountains, reflected in a bit of the lake



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Today's weather was a whole different story. Got over a foot last night, and the streets were nasty when I went to physical therapy.

Picture 1: Looking west from my driveway (those mountains in the back are the Oquirrh Mountains seen from this side)
Picture 2: my front yard
Picture 3: getting to my vehicle.  The snow was actually high enough to block the door; I had to brush snow away to open it.




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Everyone's excited about Wikileak; personally I think it might be a good thing to air out some dirty laundry and stir the pot.

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         "Promises in the Dark" by Pat Benatar
         "Ring of Fire" by Johnny Cash
         "2000 Light Years From Home" by The Rolling Stones
         "Poison" by Alice Cooper
         "Tube Steak Boogie" by ZZ Top
         "My Mirage" by Iron Butterfly
         "Sugar Town" by Nancy Sinatra
         "Sultans of Swing" by Dire Straits
         "Come As You Are" by Mindy Abair
         "I Think I Love You Too Much" by Jeff Healey

Who could forget Dire Straits?




For when you are in the mood for some light jazz.




The late Jeff Healey (you may remember him from the movie Roadhouse); cancer took his sight at eight months old, and ended his life when he was only 42. Great blues guitarist.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Global warming strikes again.

Nasty business with the weather; we got a foot of snow Saturday night. One big problem is that the temperatures haven't really been cold enough to drop all the leaves, so the snow is building up on trees, and I expect quite a few broken branches around the valley.

Picture 1 This is a tree in front of my house (you can see my mailbox in the lower left corner)
Picture 2 This is my driveway, as seen from the center of the street
Picture 3 The birds are out of luck
Picture 4 My neighborhood, looking to the west

Click to enlarge








This stuff would be of more use up in the mountains; down here it is just a PITA.

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I imagine everyone has heard quite a bit about dissatisfaction with TSA; it seems like they like hiring idiots, bullies, and goons.
If you want to really get pissed off, take look at this. Check me if I'm wrong, but when the TSA does stuff like that, shouldn't it be considered a health hazard? Seems to me that the asshole who checked the passenger should be fired for something like that; there is NO excuse for that sort of bullshit.

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Any favorites in this bunch of tunes?

"Free Fallin'" by Tom Petty
"A Hazy Shade of Winter" by Simon and Garfunkel
"Flight of the Bumblebee" by Al Hirt
"Shot of Poison" by Lita Ford
"For My Lady" by The Moody Blues
"Walk Away Renee" by The Left Banke
"Find Another Fool" by Quarterflash
"When God-Fearin' Women Get the Blues" by Martina McBride
"Lawyers, Guns, and Money" by Warren Zevon
"Alone" by Heart


This one always cracks me up



One of my favorite songwriters; the late great Warren Zevon



One of my favorite groups of the eighties.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

"Heroes are often the most ordinary of men." - Henry David Thoreau

Since it's Veterans Day, I'd like to take this time to pay tribute to America's veterans. 
At the south end of Salt Lake valley is the Camp Williams Memorial Park, a cemetery for American veterans.  My brother put this clip together, in honor of this country's veterans, and I'd like show it here.  At the end of the video there are three marker stones shown; the first one is my dad's brother (Korean War, Vietnam), the second is his brother-in-law (WWII), and the last is my dad's marker (WWII, Korea War).
Thank you to everyone who has worn our nation's uniform.




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I was finally able to drive myself a couple of days ago (I've been unable to drive since July 6); just about wore me out. My arm is getting stronger, but still has a long way to go.
I seem to be doing ok on controlling my diabetes; I check my blood sugar morning and evening, it seems to be running between 95 and 125 most of the time, which isn't too bad. Enough about me.

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For some reason, I feel more like oldies today; probably has a lot to do with the weather, cold and rainy. Anyone out there remember these? Any favorites?

My Way by Frank Sinatra
The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald by Gordon Lightfoot
No Milk Today by Herman's Hermits
Heart and Soul by Hoagy Carmichael
The Pusher by Steppenwolf
Gimme Shelter by The Rolling Stones
American Pie by Don McClean
The Ballad of Ira Hayes by Johnny Cash
Kentucky Rain by Elvis Presley
Tuxedo Junction by Glen Miller









Wednesday, November 03, 2010

"Feeling good about government is like looking on the bright side of any catastrophe. When you quit looking on the bright side, the catastrophe is still there." -P. J. O'Rourke

Rant of the day, if you're not in the mood, better skip it.

Well, the voting is over. It is now time to mop up the blood and carry out the trash. Over most of the country there was a change in the political political parties, the Republicans ousting out a lot of Democrats. The left wing looks at it as a failure of communication, the right wing sees it as a triumph of sorts. They are both wrong.
To those on the left: the failure wasn't in communication, we just didn't like the message you were sending, and the fact that you were ignoring all communication from your voters. When you were handed the keys to the city two years ago you had a chance to do something important. Instead, overnight you changed into the same kind of greedy, crooked, stupid assholes that you were voted in to replace.
To the right wing: don't go strutting around; you people are on probation, since we know what happened last time you were in charge. We can throw your asses out too, if you get out of line. The only reason you got voted in was because you were second choice, and regarded as the lesser of two evils.
Personally, I feel that gridlock is the best thing that can happen to the federal government; you get better government when your representatives have to talk things over to pass laws, rather than just rubber-stamping everything.

"Whenever you have an efficient government you have a dictatorship."
-Harry S Truman

“I vote for the candidate that I believe will paralyze the government the most. The last thing we need is a fully functional government looking for something to do.”
-Comment seen on a blog


This country is walking a fine line; it is in a position to crash if things go the wrong way. The only thing that can pull us back from the brink is the economy getting better, and this means more jobs, and more people working. Handing out money from the government does not help things get better; that is like taking money out of one pocket and putting it in the other and call it a profit. Governments do not produce revenue; all they do is move part of it around in the form of taxes. Only private business can generate wealth. If you want to help them, quit making it more difficult to run a business by coming up with new taxes and regulations that aren't always needed. Just giving a business a tax break will not get them to hire more help; anyone with any business savvy knows that you don't hire people unless you're already making money and need the help. Make it easier for a business to make money, and it encourages them to hire more people. When you tax a business, they pass on the tax to the buyer, and that can discourage buying. If the government wants to help the economy, quit hiring "czars" and creating bullshit agencies, and start talking to people who have run successful businesses and get some input from them.
Just my opinion.

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Some of the plants in my yard are changing, but others seem to have completely missed the fact that winter is coming.

Mums are doing fine.














My mulberry trees are ignoring the cold.














This tomato plant is six feet high, and doesn't seem to mind the cold.














Some vines are changing.














The vine still has berries; the birds usually get them all by now.







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Odd bunch in my playlist today; any favorites in the top ten of them? Any comments?

We're Not Gonna Take It by Twisted Sister
Long Tall Sally by Little Richard
Midnight Rider by The Allman Brothers Band
Runnin' Blue by The Doors
Hey Joe by The Leaves
Veteran of the Psychic Wars by Blue Öyster Cult
Against the Wind by Bob Segar
Sweet Lorraine by Benny Goodman
A Time for Everything by Jethro Tull
Piece of Wood and Steel by David Allan Coe


Nobody played a jazz clarinet like Goodman.




Any oldie from 1970; still one of my favorites.



Coe can write stuff that you can tell comes from the soul.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

I'm back already...

...and it's only been a week.
Got some bad stuff yesterday morning; I took this picture after getting back from physical therapy (I go from 6AM to 8AM Mondays and Wednesdays). Not very cheerful, is it?


Supposed to get colder and wetter, so my joints should be giving me interesting weather updates for a while. Something to go along with the sore throat and head cold I seem to have picked up.

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From the No-Shit-Sherlock department comes a study that almost half of high school students have had experience with bullies.

The survey findings are from the Ethics of American Youth Survey by the Josephson Institute of Ethics, a non-profit based in Los Angeles that has surveyed teens on conduct and behavior every two years since 1992.

It took them 18 years to figure that out? Hell, dealing with bullies is one of the things kids learn to deal with from the time they get around other kids. There have been, and always will be, some people that are going to try and pick on others, clear up into adulthood. It's not nice, it's not fair, but that's just the way it is. If you don't learn to deal with it when you're young, you are going to be in for just as rough ride as an adult. If you have kids, it's up to you to try and guide them through this, and also make certain they aren't bullies themselves.
Just my opinion.

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Election time is coming up, and the mud is flying in the media. The Republicans are running on the platform that they aren't Democrats, and the Democrats are still running on the platform that they aren't Bush.

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

"One man alone can be pretty dumb sometimes, but for real bona fide stupidity, there ain't nothin' can beat teamwork."
- Edward Abbey

"A little government and a little luck are necessary in life, but only a fool trusts either of them."
-P. J. O'Rourke

"Liberals are very broadminded: they are always willing to give careful consideration to both sides of the same side."
- Anonymous


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A lot of oldies, some newer ones.

"Pirates Of The Caribbean" movie soundtrack
"The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance" by Gene Pitney
"No Milk Today" by Herman's Hermits
"See Me, Feel Me" by The Who
"Hey Baby" by The Buckinghams
"Eli's Coming" by Three Dog Night
"Look What You've Done " by Pozo Seco Singers
"Jenny Take A Ride" by Mitch Ryder & The Detroit Wheels
"Kerosene" by Miranda Lambert
"I'm That Kind Of Girl" by Patty Loveless








Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Hi, remember me?

Still not feeling up to snuff. Have been getting about 3 to 4 hours sleep a night, so I tend to be a little rundown during the day, and have trouble doing any really focused thinking. Still working on my shoulder, but it is not responding as quickly as the therapist would like. I still can't raise my arm high enough to the front to even shake hands with people. Shoulder feels tight and throbs continuously due to the physical therapy, but it has gotten a little stronger in other areas. The holdup seems to be one head of my bicep. My bicep was torn off, and had to be re-attached, so it is responding slowly. So goes that battle.

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Looks like some nitwit decided to take potshots at the Pentagon, luckily no one was hurt. I imagine those on the far right will blame it on Muslims, and those on the far left will claim it was done by militia or tea party members. I'm betting it's just some dumbass with a rifle and no common sense.

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Both parties are getting ready for the voting in a couple of weeks. I expect the political ads to get even more heated the closer we get to elections. Both sides will be lying to the public, and the mainstream media will be right in there with them, depending on which side they are on at the time. I'm hoping there will be a few shakeups this year; some of the incumbents are getting too comfortable in their positions.

“The Democrats are the party that says government will make you smarter, taller, richer, and remove the crabgrass on your lawn.
The Republicans are the party that says government doesn't work and then they get elected and prove it. ”
-P.J. O'Rourke


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Any favorites or comments on this bunch?

"Spooky" by Classics IV
"Angel of the Morning" by Merrillee Rush
"With a Little Help from My Friends" by The Beatles
"I Won't Back Down" by Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers
"I Can't Help Falling In Love " by Elvis Presley
"The Girl From Ipanema" by Astrud Gilberto
"Goodnight My Love" by The Happenings
"Crying In the Rain" by A-ha
"Got My Mind Set On You" George Harrison
"California Dreaming" by Beach Boys



I like this version better than the old one by the Everly Brothers.




One of my favorite Beatles.




Good arrangement of an old classic; I like the instrumental selection a little better than the original.

Monday, October 04, 2010

“Stress is when you wake up screaming and you realize you haven't fallen asleep yet”. -Unknown

Was hoping to get back here before now, but shit happens. Between stuff going on, and not sleeping well, I don't seem to have as much time and energy sometimes. Hopefully my shoulder and back will get better over the next couple of months.



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Last Tuesday my brother and I went up in the hills again, found a few more interesting photo ops.

Click pictures to enlarge

Lambs ears

Wasp nest (luckily it was unoccupied)

Brown trout






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Saturday I had to go out to my mom's place; there had been a grass fire that had hit part of her home.  She was checked out and is physically fine, but it's not a good thing.  Evidently, a bird managed to blow a line on top of the power pole running to her trailer, and the sparks started the fire.

Click pictures to enlarge

The culprit

Area where fire hit the trailer





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A lot of old stuff here. Anything familiar, any comments?

"Misery and the Blues" by Maria Muldaur
"Hellhound on My Trail" by Robert Johnson
"Maggie May" by Rod Stewart
"Dream Weaver" by Gary Wright
"Blue Suede Shoes" by Carl Perkins
"Stardust" by Artie Shaw
"Gimme All Your Lovin'" by ZZ Top
" All Strung Out" by Nino Tempo and April Stevens
"Wild Summer Nights" by John Cafferty & the Beaver Brown Band
"Bridge over Troubled Water" by Simon & Garfunkel

You can certainly hear Phil Spector's hand in this one.



This one always makes me think of driving on a warm summer night with the top down on the Jeep.



I've always been fond of these guys; not only can Paul Simon play guitar, he writes lyrics as only a poet can.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

"It's just a flesh wound." - The Black Knight

I was hoping to be posting sooner, but I've been feeling run down. A physical therapy session a couple of times a week and exercises at home have made my shoulder a large, stiff, aching lump; on a good day it feels like a grizzly is gnawing on it. I'm getting a bit stronger, but it is going slow; I still can't work a stick in my vehicle, so I'm stuck at home a lot. Thank you for all the good wishes; they have been appreciated.

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My brother, who just retired a few months ago, picked me up Thursday and we spent part of the day up in some of the local canyons where some of the leaves are just starting to turn.

Hillside in American Fork Canyon



Down above Cascade Springs in American Fork Canyon



A conifer in which all the branches died and/or were broken off; it is sprouting new ones all over the trunk




I saw these on a maple; they look like wild hops.



Closeup of hop vine


Acorn on a Gambel oak


Ever present wild flowers















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We've been having grass fires here in the Salt Lake Valley, and the air is suffering. So far no one has been injured or killed, but some houses have been lost. My best wishes to those unfortunate people.

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Looks like Rahm Emanuel is trying to decide whether to leave the president to run for mayor of Chicago. I think he should do it.
Chicago is used to having corrupt, pompous bullies in local government, so he should fit right in.
Obama should be able to replace him easily; there are plenty of crooks and tax evaders available for him to draw from.

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Looking at the list I notice two by Clapton. Oh well, how can you have too much Clapton?


"It's In The Way That You Use It" by Eric Clapton
"Stardust" by Artie Shaw
"Gimme Shelter" by The Rolling Stones
"Edge of a Broken Heart" by Vixen
"Mirage" by Pentangle
"She's My Girl" by The Turtles
"Love Me Two Times" by The Doors
"Come A Little Bit Closer" by Jay And The Americans
"Layla (unplugged)" by Eric Clapton
"A Summer Song" by Chad & Jeremy

A classic from older days



I like the electric version, but this one is my favorite



It's getting that time of year, and these guys always sounded good

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

"You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club." - Jack London

It's been a couple of weeks since I last posted here; sometimes you just don't know what to say.
I was able to get off the oxygen tube a couple of weeks ago, that was a relief.  Went to the doctor today, and I don't have to wear the brace on my arm any more. Starting Thursday I will be doing physical therapy a couple of times a week to get my arm to something approaching normal in strength and mobility. Right now I can raise my arm to about 40º, which is higher than I could do before the operation. I still can't lift more than about a pound in weight, since my arm has atrophied somewhat since my injury. At least now I can work a mouse and type with my right arm as long as it is resting on the arm of my chair.

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Evidently some asshole religious leader is advocating a large-scale burning of copies of the Qur'an; I can't go along with that, I have to say. There are a lot of people in the Muslim religion that consider kafirs (non-Muslims)to be enemies, but that is no reason to be causing this sort of disrespect, any more than it would not be proper for them to do this sort of thing to the Talmud or the Bible. This country is partly based on the idea of freedom of religion, whether the other religion likes us or not. If you think I'm wrong, fine; it's how I feel.

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To my Jewish friends, I wish you a good Rosh Hashanah; may your new year be prosperous and happy.

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"Green-Eyed Lady" by Sugarloaf
"California Dreamin'" by The Mamas & the Papas
"With You There to Help Me" by Jethro Tull
"Walkin' After Midnight" by Patsy Cline
"Time for Livin'" by The Association
"Gingerbread Man" by Mindi Abair
"Ain't Even Done With the Night" by John Mellencamp
"Jessie's Girl" by Rick Springfield
"Wooly Bully" by Sam the Sham & the Pharaohs
"I Drink Alone" by George Thorogood

This first one is for Terri





Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Still hanging in there

I'm still on oxygen, but my blood sugar is looking better and I had my stitches out yesterday. Will be wearing this sling/brace for another three weeks,

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Thirty-seven years ago, today, I did the smartest thing in my life; I got married to my wife.
Happy anniversary, Sandy.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

I was hoping to be posting sooner, but there's been some unexpected developments.

I should start at the beginning...
Wed morning, went in for surgery. I in worse condition than was previously thought; when the doctor opened me up, it was to total carnage. My bicep was torn loose, and all the top tendons and muscles were flapping loose; there was nothing really holding my humerus in the socket other than the surrounding skin, so my whole shoulder had to be reconstructed. Got home 1530 that afternoon.
At 2200 that night, I lost my breath and was fighting for breath; my diaphram was not drawing air into my lungs, and I was struggling just to breathe. Went to emergency. My lungs were fine, they cat-scanned for blood clots in the lungs, checked my heart, could find nothing wrong; in the meantime I have an oxygen mask on, and I am struggling for every breath. Tests all night. Tests all next day (I've been awake for 30 odd hours by now, getting goofy).
Middle of the day, the pain starts shooting through my shoulder; there was an automatic pain killer pump connected to my arm (which is in a gigantic sling and spacer arrangement), and a couple of minutes later, I can breath. Turns out the pump had leaked some nerve deadener onto the nerve for my breathing, and the idiot emergency doctor had never bothered to mention the pump to the succeeding doctors, so they hadn't known about it until then. I can now breath, but my oxygen levels are not looking right, I have picked up a bit of pneumonia in one lung, so I have to stay on oxygen. Was able to get about an hour sleep after they gave me massive pain killers. Getting slowly better.
Get some news; during my testing they found out I have Type II Diabetes, so now I have more joy in my life.
By now it is Saturday, they decided to send me home with antibiotics, a machine for testing blood sugar, and some oxygen tanks.
So right now I have one working arm (my left), oxygen tubes dangling from my nose, and I am studying up on how to live life as a diabetic. The only reason I have made it is because of my amazing wife.
Typing is hard with one arm and the other complications, so I may not be posting for a couple more days, but I will be reading on the net. Thanks for all the support so far, and I hope to visit your blogs today and later.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

"I got better..."

...even though I wasn't turned into a newt. Hopefully anyone coming here knows the reference.
Through the miracle of modern science, and the local Walgreen's, my gout is almost gone; my toes are a bit sore, but the rest of my foot is pretty well healed up. Good thing; this weekend is the Park City Arts Festival, which we haven't missed in over twenty years. Arts and crafts, music, and lots of types of food. We usually have lunch at the Wasatch Brew Pub and Brewery; beer-battered fish and chips and a couple of local brews does a body well.

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Personally, I'm getting tired of the same-sex marriage fight; it's time to get this thing done and move onto other things.
I don't see why anyone should really care if gay people want to become legally married. Notice I say legally married; if a church or religion does not want to recognize it, that is their right, but the government does not legally have the power to keep couples from forming legal unions analogous to marriage. If your religious beliefs don't accept this, get over it.

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New justice for SCOTUS; not much experience as a lawyer, none as a judge, mainly worked as a clerk for Clinton. What did you expect? The POTUS wanted a rubber stamp, not a constitutional judge.

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         "The Poor Side of Town" by Johnny Rivers
         "It Doesn't Matter Anymore" by Buddy Holly
         "I Don't Know Where I Stand" by Joni Mitchell
         "Welcome to My Nightmare" by Alice Cooper
         "Gypsy" by Fleetwood Mac
         "Sweet Lorraine" by Benny Goodman
         "Dawning Is the Day" by The Moody Blues
         "Bluebird" by Buffalo Springfield
         "Ship of Fools" by Robert Plant
         "El Paso" by Marty Robbins








Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Just a short blog today, life is still using me for batting practice

Still getting by; I'll be glad when I can get this shoulder taken care of so I can start on the process of using my arm fully. Right now I can't even drive.
To make my happiness complete, Friday I woke up with a throbbing right foot; it seems like my body decided that this would be prime time to have a gout flare-up, so I also have the joy of hobbling about with my cane until my medication can bring it down to reasonable levels. For those that have never had gout, consider yourselves lucky. It feels like someone dropped an anvil on your foot and crushed it. The pain level is almost as intense and pleasurable as a well-placed, hard kick in the groin.
At least I have been getting a little more sleep than before; the doctor gave me some Percocet to dull the pain when I go to bed, so now I have been getting four to six hours of sleep, which is a definite improvement.
There are some mornings where, right after you get out of bed, you tend to duck, just on reflex.

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It's been hard to work in the garden; hoeing and weeding with one arm and a bit of the other has been slow, so my garden isn't as nice and neat as I would like, but we have been picking from it. Tomatoes, zucchinis, herbs, onions, garlic, horseradish, lettuce, chard, and sorrel have all been contributing.
As usual, click to enlarge.

Tennis ball sized tomatoes














The tomotillo patch is doing well















Cherry tomato, about five foot high.  Behind it is grapes, and to the left is a horseradish plant.














Japanese blood plums, starting to ripen














Found a homesteader in one of my grape vines; I'm careful not to disturb her or her nest.










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I can't say I'm in favor of the Ground Zero mosque. I first read about this a few months ago, and it seemed a bad idea then, and still seems like bad idea to me. In my opinion, it is about as tasteful as erecting a Japanese Cultural Center on the deck of the USS Arizona. If they do go through with construction, I worry that there may be some major protesting, and eruptions of violence. The events of 9-11 are too fresh in most people's minds, and I don't see why they are pushing for this so hard; there are plenty of places it could be built without shoving it in the faces of citizens who saw their city come under attack by people touting the same teachings as will be in the mosque.
Just my opinion.

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More old stuff.

"Chitlins con Carne" by Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble
"If Not for You" by Olivia Newton-John
"Never My Love" by The Association
"Tom Dooley" by The Kingston Trio
"Singing Winds, Crying Beasts" by Santana
"Sittin' On The Dock of the Bay" by Otis Redding
"Lili Marlene" by Dave Brubeck
"The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down" by Johnny Cash
"Me and Bobby McGee" by Kris Kristofferson
"Lady Willpower" by Gary Puckett & the Union Gap







"Lady Willpower" by Gary Puckett & the Union Gap

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

♫ Here I stand, pen in hand...♫

Metaphorically speaking, that is. About the only time I use a pen anymore is to sign my name to something.

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My shoulder quit improving a few days ago, now it just hurts worse. Went to the specialist today and got it checked out. It seems I have a bad rotator. From what we could see, not only is the cartilage bruised, I have several muscles that have torn loose from the rotator cup and are flapping away in there. Bottom line is that in a couple of weeks I have to go into surgery and get them re-attached. Oh joy. Following that, several months of physical therapy and awesome pain levels. I guess my summer is pretty well shot in the ass as far as doing much physical stuff. Oh, well, you have to do what you have to do.

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I don't know why everyone is so excited about the so-called "leaks" about the situation in Afghanistan; anyone with a lukewarm IQ has figured out all that info by now anyway.

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Trying to blog more often, but the pain in my shoulder has been interfering with my sleep; I'm lucky to get two or three hours a night, and that is broken up into an hour here, twenty minutes there, etc. When I go several weeks on little sleep I have trouble focusing on anything very long, so thanks for bearing with me.

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Since I am tired and somewhat ornery, I have been listening mainly to sixties stuff; it seems to cheer me a bit. These are all sixties or late fifties, so I don't know how many of you out there have even heard of most of them. Try to enjoy.

"Rhythm of the Rain" by The Cascades
"Monday, Monday" by The Mamas & the Papas
"Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" by The Beatles
"Strangers in the Night" by Frank Sinatra
"I Am a Rock" by Simon & Garfunkel
"Downtown" by Petula Clark
"White Bird" by It's a Beautiful Day
"Runaway" by Del Shannon
"Season Of The Witch" by Donovan
"Good Morning Starshine" by Oliver







From the rock musical Hair.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

No rantings on this post

This one is to wish a happy birthday to my wife.
She is the person who keeps me grounded, loves me in spite of my many faults, and takes care of me when I am down. She treats me better than I probably deserve, and doesn't give up when the going can get bad. To me, she is the most important person in my life, and I would be lost without her. I can't imagine what my life would have been like without her, and cannot imagine not loving her.
Happy birthday, Sandy.

For My Lady by The Moody Blues

Friday, July 09, 2010

I'm still here

Getting some movement in my right shoulder, finally. Right now I can move my arm almost a half foot in any direction. W00t! Should know in a few days if my shoulder is going to be alright, or will need surgery. Back is still complaining about the abuse, but the swelling in my jaw is almost gone, though it is still painful and has some large scabs on it. Seem to have a constant headache, also. I may have gotten a slight concussion, but since I didn't lose consciousness completely, I doubt it.
A word of advice: Don't get clubbed in the jaw, it hurts, and it's embarrassing to get your ass handed to you by a piece of wood.

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Looks like the nation's left wing has decided to copy the tea party movement that they have been complaining about for months. Seems to show a lack of imagination to me.

The groups involved represent the core of the first-time voters who backed President Obama -- including the National Council of La Raza, NAACP, AFL-CIO, SEIU and the United States Student Association.

Now there's bunch of thugs, crooks and losers; personally, I wouldn't trust any of that bunch. I expect that they'll be too busy with each group trying to hijack the party for their own agenda.

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Does anyone really care about a rich, spoiled, idiot who can't keep her shit together, no matter how many breaks she gets? I'm getting real tired of seeing her every time I try to read the news.

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Mostly old stuff here; some of you might remember it from when you were quite young.

"American Pie" by Don McLean
"Burnin' for You" by Blue Öyster Cult
"Alone" by Heart
"Time of the Season" by The Zombies
"Summer Nights" by Marianne Faithfull
"Songs to Aging Children Come" by Joni Mitchell
"At the Zoo" by Simon & Garfunkel
"Love of the Common People" by Waylon Jennings
"Let It Out (Let It All Hang Out)" by Hombres
"Those Lazy-Hazy-Crazy Days of Summer" by Nat King Cole

An old one of Waylon's from the late sixties. The lyrics are still valid in the modern world.



This one is here just because it was funny and quirky.



Not only did he have a beautiful voice, this song was one of my favorites from the early sixties because the lyrics draw such a good picture of summer fun.

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Running a computer with one hand is a pain in the ass

Especially when you're right-handed and that's the one you can't use.
Yesterday I got to take a trip to the hospital for some x-rays; I managed to to trash my jaw, my back, and my shoulder, so I am here with my arm in a sling.
I'm supposed to get the use of my arm back in a couple of days (my shoulder won't move at all, and is one big mass of throbbing pain), but if that doesn't happen I will need an MRI and possibly some surgery. Oh, well, shit happens and life goes on. If I don't do a lot of commenting over the next few days, you know why.

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Any favorites or comments on this bunch?

"Moondance" by Van Morrison
"If I Had a Hammer" by Trini Lopez
"Overture" by Trans-Siberian Orchestra
"Whipping Post" by The Allman Brothers Band
"Good Vibrations" by The Beach Boys
"Teacher" by Jethro Tull
"Touch the Sky" by Tim Weisberg
"Hell in a Bucket" by Grateful Dead
"You Know What I Mean" by The Turtles
"Handle With Care" by The Traveling Wilburys







Thursday, July 01, 2010

Happy Canada Day

Today is hundred and forty-third birthday of The Great White North.

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Looked in a bit at the confirmation hearings for the new Supreme Court justice.
What a joke. Not only is Kagan inexperienced, she can't even answer a question straight. She's even better at dodging questions and talking bullshit than the president who put her name out there.

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Another July 4 coming up; hope everyone is going to have a happy and safe weekend.
Seems like it isn't quite what it used to be, even when you take into account the rose-colored glasses that all children wear until they start seeing how the world works.
Fourth of July picnics were conducted a lot different than many do them today. Hamburgers and hot dogs that were grilled over charcoal, rather than the tasteless "healthy" hot dogs of today, that are cooked over propane. Homemade potato salad, pickled eggs, corn on the cob with real butter. People played games out in the yard, and then set off fireworks when it got dark.  These days the adults are watching TV, the youngsters are playing video games, and the teens have their iPods cranked up to the max and are busy ignoring everyone while texting like crazy to their friends at their own family get-togethers.

Picture of me (the taller kid) and the family over at my maternal grandmother's yard.  I was probably about 14 or 15 in this picture. Click to enlarge.













There also seemed to be more optimism back then; we had more confidence in our government and way of life, we waved the flag more, John Wayne was still making movies,  and people didn't complain as much about reciting the Pledge of Allegiance in school.
Like it or not, however, the world changes.  And for life to go on we have to work with those changes.  Much of that requires adaptation, we have to change or fall by the wayside.  But there are still a few things out there that don't need to change; people used to have more faith in their government, and were willing to do what was necessary to keep it.   There are some living here who hate this country, and are more interested in running it down than on making it great; they either sit around whining, or try to make it into a place that is not America, but some oppressive socialist state.  You expect this sort of behavior from the uneducated, but it is disturbing how much of our academics and politicians want to make us into a place where the government dictates how we live our lives, rather than leaving that to the individual.  The founders of this country would be up in arms again if they saw how things are at this point.
But enough ranting; as I said before, have a great and safe weekend, and at least try to squeeze in a little time to reflect on what a great country this is.

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Some old, some older. Any favorites in this batch?

"Yesterday" by The Beatles
"Blues' Theme" by Davie Allan & The Arrows
"For a Few Dollars More" by Soundtrack
"Good Times Bad Times" by Led Zeppelin
"Alabama Blues" by John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers
"Don't Walk Away" by Electric Light Orchestra
"Photograph" by Def Leppard
"Holy Water" by Bad Company
"Iron Butterfly Theme" by Iron Butterfly
"Behind Closed Doors" by Charlie Rich

One of their best, in my opinion.



I remember first hearing this in the late sixties; the first image that came to mind for me was a picture of the Winged Nazgûl of Lord of the Rings.



Does anyone else remember The Silver Fox?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Yep, it's me again

Finally got around to posting again; you'd think I could do it more often, but I tend to get writer's block a lot. When it comes to talking to people (even strangers) I have no problem at all, but give me a pen or a keyboard and I choke up. If any psychologists out there have any explanations or ideas why, please let me know.

If you don't like political rants, skip to the bottom.

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It appears that General McChrystal made some derogatory remarks (he has now apologized for the remarks) about some of the POTUS' appointees, and now Obama and his lackeys are acting all butthurt and whining about it. I guess he hurt their little feelings...
You know, that's the sort of reaction I'd expect from a twelve year old girl, not an adult. The civilian sector and the military sector are always going to bump heads, it's just the way things are. The politicians are always dumping on the military, but when one of them says anything bad about politicians, all hell breaks loose. Hey, personally I think most of those same people are a bunch of assholes, and I'll be damned if I'll apologize for feeling that way. How about we get some adults in office, for a change?
"Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it."
-Mark Twain

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"You never want a serious crisis to go to waste."
-Rahm Emanuel

Saw the president's speech the other day about the oil disaster down in the Gulf. I was not impressed.
Basically, he used it as a platform for his energy-climate bill; some how windmills and solar power are going to cut down on our use of petroleum. What a total crock of bullshit. Most of the power in this country comes from coal, oil has nothing to do with it. He is using the oil disaster to say that we need caps on carbon emissions, and a system for carbon permits. Oh, and by the way, it's all Bush's fault!
Damn, I'll be glad when this egotistical idiot and all his tax-evading buttmonkeys are out of a job.

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Some so-called watchdog group is suing McDonald's for putting toys in Happy Meals. Evidently this causes the children to uncontrollably buy them, and their health is ruined.

"Such a meal gives a child age 4 to 8 years old half a day's calories, two days' worth of saturated fat, two days' worth of sugar, and a large dose of salt."

Tell me, those of you who have children, how many of you let children in that age group decide everything they want to eat, and give them the money to spend on it? What ever happened to the idea that the parents decide what the kids will eat, and take responsibility for it? We have enough goofy do-gooders in the world who think it is their job to tell everyone else what to do "for their own good".

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"Pretty Ballerina" by The Left Banke
"In the Mood" by Glenn Miller
"Fire at Midnight" by Jethro Tull
"Maggie's Farm" by Bob Dylan
"This Diamond Ring" by Gary Lewis & the Playboys
"Moon River" by Andy Williams
"Ain't No God in Mexico" by Waylon Jennings
"Take on Me" by A-Ha
"Short Change Hero" by The Heavy
"Sun Is Still Shining" by The Moody Blues