10/30/2014

They are All Guilty

I am amazed that politicians all over the place are taking credit (and avoiding blame) for things they were not responsible for.   A prime example is that when the Legislature cut funding to schools here in Kansas, the Courts stepped in and told them that they needed to establish a floor for funding and do it "Right Damn Quick."  Now our pointy haired Governor is trying to advertise that it was his plan all along to give more money to schools.  The Republicans are saying that in Kansas we don't want to be like Washington.  In fact, the Republicans can pass anything they damn well please and cut taxes to businesses and are in danger of going broke in a year or so because they cut the income stream so much.  The only thing that will save them is a major turn around in the economy.  late this year or early next.  Lets see, it is the end of October so this year is pretty much done unless everyone goes overboard for Christmas. 

I am really getting tired of people throwing the issue of Abortion in my face.  I personally think that abortion is the wrong thing to do and not personally approve.  By the same token, I thought that politicians took an oath when they take office that they will support and defend the constitution and the laws as they stand.   Right now, without some major action, Roe vs. Wade is the law and unless they can figure out how to overturn the Supreme Court, they need to quit riding that dead horse and get on with the important issues like how to make do with the funding they now have.  That has to be one of the major issues facing us right now and abortion and Marijuana are down the list at 24 or 25. 

What I really hate is that the Republicans are saying that Pat Roberts is the thing that will save their bacon in the Senate.   If it were in my power, I would throw all the rascals out and start over.  Do they think that I want to hear two (or more) years of the bickering coming out of Washington because they can't put on their big girl panties and deal.  

Am I suffering from Baseball fatigue?  Just as I got worked up over the first game 7 in 12 years, the Royals lost a close game and San Francisco won 3-2.    There are people that want a parade this weekend for the losers.   I say they should be allowed to go home and be with their families.  Haven't they given an extra month of baseball this year?   Who was it that said?  "Winning isn't everything, it is the only thing!"   Oh well, well played Royals. 

I have been doing some reconstruction at Dave's and I hurt.  I have to crawl up and down in the hole where his bathroom was and my knees and hips hurt.  As much as I want to blame it on the work, I know it is old age and wonder just how much more it would hurt the next time if I don't do something now.   I will admit that Naproxen Sodium (Aleve) helps but I do have to sit here and blog until it kicks in.   I hope you feel that it is a good thing that I have time to write. 

Speaking of writing, I have looked over my past blogs and don't have a clue what you want or expect to see here.  I have varied from story telling to ranting about injustices and the readership just continues to climb.  I am nearing 600,000 hits and will be there sometime next week.  At this rate I will be over 700,000 by Christmas.  Oh well, why worry about what I cannot control.

The only thing I hate right now is that yesterday I cut the end of a finger on some sharp tile and now I am truly down to using only one finger on my right hand to type.  About the end of each line I have to go back and correct all the extra letters I have inadvertently inserted.  Instead of hunt and peck, I am doing hunt and correct.  Dang I hate it when that happens.  What I really hate is when I type a word that is completely wrong and the spell checker doesn't thgink so.  ( I left that one in just to show you what I mean.)

MUD, aka the wounded typist

10/29/2014

Undoing

The owner of the house Dave is living in was a terrazzo floor layer.  He also did a lot of stucco work and what isn't terrazzo in Dave's house is coated with a cement stucco.  That means there is no matching a wall if it had to be cut open to dry   That means a lot of the bathroom will be gutted in the next week or so.   There were some details added by the old owner that were just decorative and not needed or desired in a simple arrangement.  I spent most of the morning removing a microwave enclosure that was through the wall and into a closet.  It completely made the closet unusable and it will return the closet to a much needed storage place.  This afternoon I took down a couple of six inch walls that made the washer and dryer area stick out in the flow of traffic in the bathroom.  I think it will all look much better when it is done.   Tomorrow it will be the small wall between the sink and where the stool is.   It made the stool look way off center and the four inch wall will not be missed.  That is pretty much the extent of my part of the renewal of the bathroom.  Dave and his wife Barbara have picked out some pretty tile, cabinets and paint for the bathroom.  I hope it meets their ideal as it sure looks nice from here.  The rebuilders said they would have to come in and completely strip the sheetrock from the walls and the ceiling.  Part of that is due to damage and part to eliminate the smell.  I really want to see how they close up the insulation in the floor. 

One tool I could not find in my tool bucket today was the box of band aids I normally have in there.  I cut a finger on a piece of broken tile and had to resort to my paper towel and masking tape trick to keep from bleeding all over the palace.  It looks rough but it works so I get an A for function and an F for pretty.     Have I mentioned that Barb and I have a pretty good deal in that area?   I do function and she does pretty.  I get to engineer things and specify general details.  She has the final say on pretty.  I will be the first to admit that I tend to do things in OD Green and black - a lot.

Today at noon, I saw that the Powerball jackpot for tonight is 328 Million.  I t5old Barb that I needed to buy a ticket.  Then I asked her what she would do if she won.  I told her that I would probably run away.   She told me that I was welcome to do that now.  I wonder just how she meant that?   Did she want to go away for a weekend or just want me to go away?   Oh well, if I miss a couple of days in the near future it is because I have run away. 

MUD aka Mean Uncle Denny

Halloween

Because we live so far off the road and back in the dark spooky woods, we don't get many Trick or Treaters.   When our friends the Reimers were in Town, we would go over to their house and visit.  They lived in a neighborhood where there were lots of kids and Gerald and I would go out with the girls and let the mother's stay home to visit and pass out candy.  What did you do as a child?

For the Baby Boomers, Halloween was mostly a time to go door to door in our neighborhood.  We would take a grocery sack and visit as many houses as we could.   For the most part, there was no violence and candy was given without any tricks play by or on us.  There was one guy that got up on his roof and he would pour water on the kids but we got even with him by soaping his windows and the air was let out of a couple of tires. 

One Halloween, several of us (mostly teenagers) were out on a stroll.  As we walked down one street, the sister of a friend of ours came driving down the street in her 56 Chevy.  I stood out in the road and flagged her down and the other kids took hands full of shaving cream and coated her windows.  Just as the deed was done, a big Mexican gentleman got out of the car and said, " What are you doing to my car."  I guess it wasn't our friends car after all.   Oops, Run home amigos. 

After hitting the houses on our block, several of us would go over to Forest Hills a richer neighborhood nearby and go from house to house.  In our neighborhood, you were lucky to get penny candy.  In that neighborhood, they would pass out real candy bars.  Baby Ruth's, Snickers, Mars Bars and one time Popcorn Balls.  I can remember one really cold night, there was one lady that gave out hot chocolate with marshmallows floating on top.  She was a hit.

For a few days after Halloween, we would sit at home and sort our loot and eat the favorite things first.  Lots of chocolate and nuts were consumed.  I can't remember the last things we ate but I am sure that it all got eaten.  We were poor greedy little urchins and nothing sweet went to waste. 

What were some of the things you liked as a child?   I remember one time that my mother hid a package of marshmallows in the top of the cupboard.  By the time I found them, they were hard, dry and crunchy.   For some reason they were right at the top of my list.  My wife said that with 5 brothers and sisters, there was no chance that a package of marshmallows would ever reach that age or consistency.  That I understand...

Oh well, just a few random thoughts as Halloween approaches.  

MUD,   

Oh No, It Did what I told it to do.

Yesterday I saw a quote by FDR and saw that for the most part He and I agreed.  When I posted it, I changed the color of the text and it printed black on a black page.   I changed it this AM and I apologize for the delay.   I hope it was just on my computer but in a was it was a blank page that contained a silent statement that there is little in today's world that I and the Democrats agree upon. 

I think the USA is wealthy enough to reach out and help our poor do better.   I am a little more on the side of helping them reach their goals tomorrow by hard work rather than feeding them a lot today.  I lived in an 8X38 ' trailer as I went to school.  I also lived in a one bedroom apartment for a while.  We lived not quite a Spartan existence but it wasn't lavish either.  We paid for our own education and are proud of our accomplishments.  I wonder what it would have been like if we had just borrowed our way there. 

Never mind, that wasn't the subject I wanted to write about today.  As I have said, Dave is staying here with his three cats.  While I have wanted to hear the pitter-patter of little feet, I never expected it to be the thumping of kitten feet at 7 AM.  Pixel wakes up full of kitten energy and goes on a wild chase with the female cat for at least an hour.  How much noise can a kitten make?  Not to the level of wild elephants, but enough...   I was just paid a visit by the female cat and now notice all the hair on my keyboard.  I am sure that there is a series of new ventilation holes on the chair where she jumped up to get attention. 

A lot of us in the Heartland  were thrilled to see the Royals do their magic last night and defeat San Francisco 10-0.  I for one would rather see them score only 5 runs then and another 5 tonight in game 7.  We'll see.  I was channel surfing early in the game and watching NCIS and missed the big 2nd inning.  At least I know a couple of my friends were at the game and I hope they enjoyed the game.  One of them was a secretary that I worked closely with.  Right after she retired, she went to the Doctor and had some major surgery done.  It was pretty much touch and go for a while and I am thrilled to see that she is now doing well.  Go Royals.   After all, there was a sign that said BBQ is greater than Rice-a-roni.   

 It got pretty close to freezing for the first this fall last night.  I saw that there are plants on the deck with a blanket on them.  Barb was sure that it wouldn't freeze but a frost was possible.  I did notice that a lot of the remaining tomatoes and a pepper or two got picked yesterday.    There are a few Asian Pears on the trees and There is at least a couple of bushels in the garage.  I will start feeding them to the deer in a week or two.  That and a little chopped corn never hurt any deer that I know. 

Better get running and see if there isn't a few disasters to mitigate. 

MUD,   aka, ORAG  Old Retired Army Guy

10/28/2014

Oh No, I agree with a Democrat

In the future days, which we seek to make secure, we look forward to a world founded upon four essential human freedoms.

The first is freedom of speech and expression -- everywhere in the world.

The second is freedom of every person to worship God in his own way -- everywhere in the world.

The third is freedom from want -- which, translated into world terms, means economic understandings which will secure to every nation a healthy peacetime life for its inhabitants -- everywhere in the world.  *

The fourth is freedom from fear -- which, translated into world terms, means a world-wide reduction of armaments to such a point and in such a thorough fashion that no nation will be in a position to commit an act of physical aggression against any neighbor-- anywhere in the world.  **


FDR

* If there is a point where I mildly disagree it is here.  I think the desire for more is fuel for people to do better and the thing that drives us all to do better.  I do think there needs to be a floor but not from want. 

** Countries should have enough to defend themselves but not so much they want to rush out and attack others.

Well, you didn't think I would agree with everything Did You?

MUD

Slow Start, Long Day

Seems like I couldn't get started yesterday but then once the work bug bit me, I over did.  By the time we got to our chorus practice, my knees were so worn out that I could hardly stand on the risers for a couple of hours.   I am in recovery this AM but will probably do too much later today.  We'll see.

Who do you look like?   My mother said I look a lot like my great grandpa Boggs but I never met the guy.  In fact, I never met either of my grandfathers as they both died during WWII and I was not born until 1947.   My maternal grandmother remarried and my step grandfather Curly (Richard Milton) Fruits was all I ever knew.  The one thing I am the most proud of is the musical talents I inherited from my family.  Now that I am singing with the Barbershop chorus again, I get to express that side of my talent.  I would love to sing baritone again but my best range is bass.  Right now there is a quartet that need a good baritone but I just am not ready to strain my voice and sing up there.

Dave got the approval from the Insurance Company for the repair of the damage to his house from the dryer fire.  It appears that the person doing the estimate really understands the cost of replacing the entire contents of a bathroom.  They are going to strip it down to the studs and start all over again.  The kids have picked out the cabinets and the tile and a paint color but the complete demolition has not yet started.  There are a few things I want to do but mostly it is Dave's call.

I have been watching the program called Overhaulin' on TV and am getting the bug to star work on the 57 again.  I want to put a new motor in it and upgrade the steering and brakes.  That, along with an A/C to make it a driver.  I don't care what it costs to insure, I will try to put it on the road again sometime in the next couple of years.  That, or I need to sell it so someone will benefit from having it. 


Is anyone else getting tired of having their phone ring with those pesky Robo calls?   Yesterday, we got a call and the caller ID said that we were calling ourselves.  This time it was a credit card company trying to get us to sign up for a cheaper Credit Card.  We have ours through a Credit Union and I don't see how anyone can beat their APR of 12%.   The other day I sat down and read one of the advertisements for a credit card we got in the mail and their cars was 18% unless we missed a payment.  I thought that was usury.  I am so fed up with all the political ads and calls that I will not vote for an incumbent this year.   NRA - Never Re-elect Anyone.  I will continue to do that until they have replaced that bunch of Tax and Spend people with people that understand the value of money out here in the real world.  I would never approve any money to study the sex lives of Frogs.  If they can't pay for it, they should do without...

Oh well, better get rolling again.  I have about recovered and the Naproxen has kicked in to cover the rest.

MUD    aka, the ROBO Call blocker.

10/27/2014

What to Do?

There are several projects that need done and no "get 'er done." Unlike the kitten visiting, I just don't have the get up and chase attitude today.  Not sure what that means, but I can pretty surely tell you it isn't Ebola.  Mostly just lack of a degree of "giveashit."  

This weekend I removed a bunch of wet leaves from the driveway and deck.  Yesterday I blew them off with the leaf blower and this morning they are back with a vengeance.  At least they are nice and dry this time and they can be removed in short order.  If they get removed at all.

Barbara has a Grand Niece that is attending Law School at UCLA.   They announced her engagement over the weekend and we are thrilled for her.  She is as smart as she is pretty and I am sure they will have beautiful children. 

Speaking of Children, a cousin of mine has her first grandchild and her daddy takes such cute pictures.   They call her June Bug and she is a lot more cuter than any June bug I have ever seen.  The pictures always catch her with a big smile on her cute little face and makes you want to kiss those chubby cheeks.  I think she looks like her mommy, my cousin and that side of the family.  I can see a little of the paternal grandmother in the eyes but the color is all right down the family line.

Tonight we are going to have a coach come in to help us get our two competition songs ready if we decide to go to the District Conference this next year.  Both are really good old songs that we can ring the chords of.  I don't think our chorus has gone to a conference and performed since I was with them 7 or 8 years back.  Our new director is really good and I hope we can be driven to participate. 

Oh well, better get to doing something, even if it is wrong.

MUD, aka the great pretender with delusions of adequacy.

10/26/2014

Is It Really October?

Today it is Dave's Birthday and it is supposed to be 80 degrees+.   I can't remember it ever being this warm this late in the year.  There is a light breeze and it looks like a blizzard of leaves falling every time the wind stirs the branches.  Dave's cats are fascinated by the activity.  This especially applies to the 7 month old kitten.  In addition to the Attention deficit, he has the hyperactivity of a kitten.  he is prone to attack anything that moves and then rush off to something else.  The female cat has just started bopping him on the head when he attacks.  I am pretty sure that he is keeping his claws unused or there would be hell to pay. 

When we were teenagers, this weather would bring out the football games in most of us.  In spite of the lack of protective equipment, we played tackle football.  The funny thing is that I don't think we really kept score and our teams rotated players from side to side.  I kept the big lot next to the church mowed and we felt that it was fair for us to play football there.  It was a fairly wide and deep lot so it was pretty much like a football field.  We tried to keep away from the church on one side and a row of trees on the other.  Rather than using the rules of football, our rules were closer to the Marquis of Queensbury.  No fists or eye gouging, no kicking the other player unless he falls down, and piling on was a given.  I remember that when Kennedy was assonated, we had about three days off and we spend most of the time playing football.  I remember it was cooler and wet most of the days.  One day it was like water polo and the sweatshirts became extra weight with the water they soaked up and held. 

What was it you liked about your first car?   I drove a couple of cars my father owned and didn't really like either one all that much.  The first was a Hillman Californian.  It is the car that the detective Colombo drove in the TV series.  His was a convertible and ours was a sedan but basically it was a small underpowered car that served the transportation needs.   One time one of my friends had a lot of that clear red plastic plug wire that we all thought looked cool.  I replaced the old black rubber wires and the next week my sister drove the car to Arkansas.  On the way home, it overheated about 15 miles east of our house.  When she pulled up in the yard, you could hear the engine about to give up the ghost.  It had stopped steaming because there was no more water in the radiator.  I raised the hood and the engine was bright red.  My sister was sure that the plug wires had caused all the problem.  Dad asked her when she had checked the water or oil on the trip.  She hadn't.  Once the engine cooled down, dad went out and tried to see if it would turn over.  Nada, zilch, zip nothing.   He simply took the battery out of the car and sold it to the foreign car salvage in  Andover for scrap.  There were no motors for that year car in Kansas.  That was in the days before the Internet and what the local guys had was about it. 

The next car dad bought was a mini minor.   It had been in an accident and the passenger in that accident had died.  Dad bought it and brought it home.  He could take a couple bolts out and lift the body off the front drive wheels.  He made sure it was all straight and then started banging out the dents in the body.  Once he hit the fenders with a torch, lead spilled off the car.  It was probably 5 lbs. of lead where it had been fixed one time before.  Dad had no intention of ever really fixing the body back to look nice.  Had I not bought a can of spray paint, he probably would have just left the fenders with great chips of bare metal showing.  I didn't know anything about body filler then so it looked OK at a distance of 15 feet but pretty bad up close.  That car was a hoot to drive as it was more like a go cart than a real car.  It would go around the corners almost as fast as it would go in a straight line.  I came about as close to killing myself in that car as in any of the other cars I drove later on in life.  I was out east of Wichita and blasting down a dirt road and came to a rail road crossing.  The car leapt into the air and as I watched, I looked straight down at the ground.  All the weight was in the front end and it fell nose first, fast.  Just as the front bumper hit the ground, it just settled back down on the wheels.  I just knew I was going to turn into a 60 MPH Rolly Polly bug and go head over heels out into the field next to the road.  It didn't and I was saved from another adventure in the life of MUD.

For some reason, I have been thinking as lot about the elementary school I attended as a kid.   From Kindergarten to the 9th Grade, we attended Minneha Elementary on the east side of Wichita.  One of my "Girl" friends lost her husband this year and just went in to surgery for Breast cancer.  I put the word girl in quotes to make sure that everyone knew she was a girl and a friend but not a kissy-hold hands girl friend.   Later on when I went into the service she told me that she worked for my Dad at Beech Aircraft.  I didn't know any of that until years later.  I don't know why I am having flash backs in my idle time except that I guess old people start to remember things from their childhood better than where they left their keys.  Oh well.

Yesterday I got the leaf blower out and cleaned the deck on the east side of the house because it had about 6 inches of leaves on it.  This morning when I went out to fetch the paper, it has 3 inches of new leaves on it.   I guess it is fortuitous that I left he leaf blower out there by the deck. 

Better go blow some leaves around.

MUD, aka the leaf blower and Bwana the mouse killer.  8 of those little rodents have been dispatched this year.  My defense in depth is working. 

10/23/2014

What a Day

Yesterday I had a furnace company come in to Dave's house to replace the furnace.  It was a mess to find the floor almost rotted out and we had to build a floor under the furnace.  About the time we finished that, the repairman said I probably would want to replace the sheetrock wall and I did.   The guys left and will be back Friday.  It was a good thing that this is being done as the duct work was rusted out and was leaking air under and not into the home.  It is all good now and I'm sure that things will be for the better. 

I am a fair weather baseball fan and the sun shined last night.  I skipped back and forth between other programs and the game for the first 4 innings.  Then I finally turned the game on and saw the Royals go on a tear.  It was great to see the Angels use up their bullpen trying to stop the scoring.  Then it was time for the royals bullpen to step in and shut them down.  It was a great time to watch a great game. 

We are having a heat wave for October.  It has been about 10 degrees warmer than normal so far this month.  It finally did rain last night and it will be a beautiful end to the Fall season.  The leaves are turning and it inspired Barb to get out her watercolors and do her best to replicate the beauty of  a few leaves.  She is almost as good with the watercolors as she is with the camera.  Anyone that has seen her pictures knows that she has a great eye for photos.  Did I tell you she is sneaky?  She used a long lens at family gatherings and takes a lot of candid shots.  Fun stuff.

Twice this week, I have slightly injured one of my hands and bled lit no tomorrow.  I guess it is time to cut back on the aspiring for a while.  I have had a sore back and the extra aspirin has seemed to help.  A little goes a long ways I guess.  Did I tell you that I hate to get old?  I guess when you consider the alternative, old isn't all that bad. 

I am not sure what it means, but this year I have seen several snakes when one or two is a normal year.  I won't go into detail, only to say that with my eyesight not getting any better, it takes me longer to recognize good from bad snakes.  I also found a snakeskin in Dave's shed that was at least five feet long.  That had to be a black snake and they are good to keep the mice at bay.  We have one we call Jake that lives under our front porch and he is one that my motto of live and let live applies.

Today one of the friends I have on Facebook posted her Meyers Briggs profile.  I am an Extrovert that is thinking, sensing, and Judgmental.  I think that I can discern the facts about people and have a lot of good experiences to figure things out and believe in do the crime, do the time - not mercy.   Give me a juicy problem and I will generally work with a group of people to find the answer.  I hope that people like to be in this process but I am sure that some don't. 

I am not sure what I will do today but it won't be as hard as yesterday.  Whatever it turns out to be, better get rolling.

MUD, Closet Baseball fan.  I only come out when the Royals win.

10/21/2014

Taking a Day Off


With a lot of things going on right now, I decided to take a down day and just see if some of those naps I missed can be made up.   I guess that is really beyond the scope of naps but not an impossibility.  I really am just fooling myself, as there are always things on the too do list it is a matter of when to get them done. 

It might not be pretty but it works for me.
Yesterday was a singing day.  We started at the Topeka Library and sang for at least 1/2 hour in the front rotunda.  It is just one of those places where there is not a sharp edge and the sound just rings.  It is a little different as it is kind of hard to hear the tenors from the far side of the formation.  The people that listened to us really seemed to appreciate our efforts.   I know that we all performed a lot better because of the feedback.

One of the songs the chorus sang years back is called Friends.  Most of the guys just know that song down pat and I have never seen the music or listened to a learning CD.  A couple of weeks back, I went in to our small music storage room and I found a lot of the CD's from the past 5 or 6 years.  I also now know where the old sheet music is stored.  I now have what I need.  Now to figure out how to get it all loaded in Roxio so I can put it on and find it on one CD. 

I am on the E-Mail list from the Adjutant General's notification list.  I get a notice when any of the Guys I served with pass on.  I say Guys because most of the women I served with are much younger than the guys and they haven't started to pass on as often.  I think the women also took better care of themselves.  Smoking and drinking were habits that a lot of the guys had that have led to shorter lives.  It does make me wonder what I really want in my obituary.  Have you ever sat down and written one for yourself.  I have and am not sure where it resides on my computers.  I have the desk top size and a lap top size and the documents are stored in there.  Yes, this seems morbid to some of you, but that's how I roll.    I hope to complete over 3000 blogs with a million visitors before I stop writing this silliness. 

Today is the first game of the World Series and last night someone said to not be surprised to see the Royal's lose their first home game.  After 8 straight wins in post season it just might be a shock to the KC Fans.  What will be the really big shocker is how much of the team doesn't get traded off for the big bucks after the season ends.   I think they know how hard it is to build a winning team but the lure of making money off the players is hard for management to not take advantage of.  Our Center Fielder Cain is just one of those spectacular player that I can see in Pin Stripes with a NY logo on his hat.  The pitching staff is just spectacular.  If you don't take a lead into the 6th inning, you just can't beat the Royals short reliever staff. 

The weather here in the Heartland is just spectacular right now.  They are talking about the warm trend going into November.  The leaves are turning right now and it is great to see the vibrant reds and yellows everywhere.  I do see them as potential work as I have to do the raking but it is not really that big a job.  I have a big compost pile and will have it pretty full by the end of the season.  Good compost by next spring.  That will put a smile on the Master gardener's face.  (Like where else would you expect one to be?)

A couple weeks ago, we had some friends over and their oldest child used my computer to play a game or two.  He put his password on a sticky note and it is still here on the front of my computer.  I have mine all on sticky notes and in a notebook here on my desk.  There are so many codes, passwords account numbers I use that there is just no way I can remember them without an aid or two.   One job I had had a training system that required passwords and I rotated between the kind of cars I owned.  At that time we had the 57 Chevy, the 53 Pickup and a 50 Ford.  I didn't realize that the students were watching me as I entered them and one day I was locked out a program and one of them said did you try 57chevy?   I DID AND IT WORKED....

Well, I had better get on with the day.  You have a great one.

MUD, aka Bwana Petty the mouse killer.  it is cats 3 Bwana 7.