Dennis is a retired Colonel living with his wife, Barbara, in Tecumseh, KS. Some of these Posts are filtered through the memory of a "not so Young Man" and you might have to utilize your built in crap detector to filter truth from memory errors. Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum. If you wish for peace, prepare for War. Our current Congress is "Stupid with zeros on the end...
My list of 10 things!
The following is just 10 things, in no specific order, that cross my mind as I sit here trying to think of 10 stupid things to put on the site:
1. I think it is cold to help us appreciate the really nice weather in the spring and summer.
2. When are we going to wake up and realize that teachers should be the high paid people in our society not athletes?
3. In the long run, wouldn’t it make sense for Gates to give us the new operating system and charge for updates? Why would the average person change their operating system other than when they buy a new system?
4. When is someone going to come out with a magazine for us old car nuts that stresses how to build a 57 Chevy that gets 30 MPG not run a quarter mile in 12 seconds? Yes, I want a heater, a radio and an air conditioner in there also.
5. Why do we spend so much time teaching Algebra and no time teaching kids about real money? How to budget and save is very important. One piece of info I read told kids they should budget at least $100 per month for food. I asked most of them if they would eat out at lunch and most said yes. I asked them how much a typical lunch was and most agreed that $5.00 is about the average. They also agreed that they eat out around 20 days a month while working. Heck, that’s $100.00 right there and there are a whole lot more trips to Burger King and Pizza Hut during the evenings and weekends. Stupid books!
6. The number one equation in life needs to be, Income must be equal to or greater than Outgo. You can tip this upside down a little while but in the long run you must make more than you spend. Did I mention that you also need to save?
7. The other day one sports broadcaster said something about a loss bringing a moral victory or lesson to the loosing team. Is he nuts? we want wins not moral anything. Beat their butts like a rug on the close line. Sports are about winning and the joy of cheering when we win. Moral victories are like wetting your pants in a dark suit. It gives you a warm feeling and most of the time you hope no one else notices.
8. Anything your wife doesn’t see you eat doesn’t count while on a diet. If a man tells a story in a forest and no one hears, is he still wrong?
9. At the end of your life you aren’t likely to say, “Gee I wish I had spent more days at work.”
10. Thank god for Statins and blood pressure drugs. I might live long enough to have Barb retire and get in a little traveling.
OK, enough of this. “Breaks over, back on your head” Maybe next time I’ll tell you the joke not just the punch line.
Don't want to get started
The birds aren't making friends yet. They seem to eat the seeds and stuff I feed them and appreciate the fresh water each day (I think). They don't seem to want to do much but fly to the back of the cage when I come in the room. 1st thing in the AM they chirp like crazy.
I think I mentioned that I went to the inactivation ceremony of my old battalion last weekend. I am still kind of sad about that. It was nice to get to see all my old friends but I will miss the idea of being able to stop in Ottawa and visit my old unit. They replaced it with a Truck Company. I guess the Army needs a truck company and Kansas can always use the trucks in Natural Disasters. The Artillery was just so much fun it should have charged us to belong.
I worked all day yesterday in the pre-school program at south. It was a hoot. The little boys and girls work hard and seem to have a lot of fun. There was one little boy that didn't seem much aware of what was happening. He needed a lot of attention and one of the Para's gave him about a five minute hug when he needed one. I love to read books with the kids and watch them play. The girls were in the little play kitchen area and I asked for breakfast. Man could they whip up a great play meal. They have plastic food and I was given all sorts of great things including something that looked a lot like a McDonald's breakfast biscuit.
I guess I had better go get a few things done while I have the energy. Did any of you happen to see KU dismantle Nebraska on ESPN's Big Monday coverage? It was so bad that some of the third stringers go playing time in the first half. Normally they don't appear until the last couple of minutes in the 2nd half. Buckle up and watch them Hawks run up and down the floor. The season will be over all too soon.
Oh No, I said What?
Today was Chili and Cinnamon rolls at school. There is just something about the rolls that just makes your day. I thanked the kitchen ladies and one of them asked if I wanted to come in on the 15th of February and learn how she does it. Heck yes, with bells on. One of the schools is having some kind of an open house and they need 700 cinnamon rolls. I sure hope they are as good as they were today.
Oh well, the Hawks play on ESPN tonight at 8 PM. Rock Chalk, Jayhawk. Go KU! MUD
Just in Time
I would have pursued the war differently but "so what". I'm not in charge. If I were in charge, Hanoi Jane wouldn't have been allowed to re-connect to her US citizenship because she gave aid and comfort to our enemy. She would be a French citizen still and only one of a long list of French people that we have had to go over and save twice.
I think the country needs to have another Vietnam so the liberals can say I told you so. You remember, don't you? They got Tricky Dick to call off the war and have a political settlement. Then when the N.Viets attacked in violation of that peace treaty we watched and did nothing. Then everyone said the Military lost that war. BS. The military won every major battle and could have kicked the crap out of the N. Viets if we had been allowed to attack where they were in N. Vietnam. Yes, boys and girls, I know of what I speak here, I fought in that war.
If I had been in charge of the Iraq war, I would have made the Army of Iraq stay in place and surrender. The last thing I would have done is to let them go home with their weapons. I would have put the military in charge and would have told the highest ranking General he was in charge of keeping peace. I would have sent him to Guantanamo if he failed and given the job to the next guy. I would have kept going until some smart Major or Captain got the message that he was responsible for the mess and needed to keep peace. I am almost afraid to admit that it took someone as brutal as Saddam to keep control of the country. Had he not invaded Quiat he might still be in charge and raping the country of its oil dollars.
Where did all this rant come from this morning? I am going to Ottawa, KS today to fold the flag on the battalion I commander 1985-1987. They are inactivating the battalion today and I am sad for that. Oh well, I am too old to serve with them anyway so I guess I'll just go and watch and have a tear in the corner of my eye when I see the colors folded for the last time. MUD
BRRR! Who Left the Door Open
Well, Sports Fans, KU managed to embarrass the Colorado team in Lawrence today. IF it wasn't bad enough, the Hawks scored almost 100 points and their third string played most of the end of the game.
Have a great Sunday
Man am I beat!
I had one day this week where I was a sub for a class called "Galloping Gourmet". I swear we made funnel cakes and they were great. I know the class was a pretty special group and they worked hard. Monday morning I will be the sub for the Pre-School teacher who is listed for Jury Duty. (If she is called to appear)
My feet are tired, my body is tired and even my mind is tired. Now I can really appreciate those days Barb came home and just collapsed.
This is my dream vehicle for the great "Ride Across Kansas" bike event each year. You could have a group sit and visit while drinking cold beverages and pass the time in a physical and social setting. The only thing I don't see is the TV and the laptops with a wireless hook-up.. I'm sure you could fill all the seats with that and perhaps a Starbucks Coffee bar. If you look close you can see each patron has a set of pedals to help the team go.
I have a million things that need done and little energy to do them. Oh well, I'll be in the Laundry Chair starting about 12:45 when the KU game starts.
Damn Weight Watchers
The real reason I dislike WW is when I cook, I love the smooth taste of gravy or a butter sauce and fried pork chops. Not on that diet you don't. It is steamed vegs and broiled stuff mind you. Oh well, I can always make a little gravy for me on the side. Sure wish I could put a pat of butter on the vegs when they cook but not for now.
Oh well, the snow is finally here in Topeka and it is pretty (white) out there. We finally got about 4 inches and the roads cleared up pretty fast. There is still an inch of ice under most of it but the wet snow makes it almost stable.
I finally had the germ count exceed my preventive measures and have a sore throat today. I'm going back and give it to some of them this afternoon.
Deep Down Feelings
- Tall, articulate people get a pass in a lot of cases when the less articulate and equally smart people do not. President Bush (43) is the Commander-in-Chief of our Armed Services and the President. He is not the gifted speaker that Ronald Reagan was and "Slick Willy" could talk his way out of (or into) a box. Even if you don't agree with him, he is the President for now.
- I am for the "Death Penalty". I am against the length of time it takes for the legal system to do the will of the people. If you do something so bad and get caught, you should go to the head of the line.
- I am against gun control. If you are a bad guy and use a weapon, see the above paragraph.
- My problem with the Federal Government is the process. They start out with darn good ideas and then bloat the issues up with "Pork" that there is no way anyone can understand where or why the legislation is or was going. "No child left Behind" is a wonderful goal, it is just not the end state. Remember boys and girls, if you accept Federal $ you cannot complain about the rules you have to follow.
- I believe in the Constitution and that what is unstated should be left to lower level Governments. For example, It is the Federal Government's role to provide an Armed Force to protect us. It is not the Federal Governments job to tell us how, why, where or when to educate out children. Fewer dollars taken by higher levels of Government mean that the lower levels will have funds to work with. My example. If Kansas has the 38th economy in the Nation why should the Feds want us to spend more $ on education to move us up in the ranking. If the local voters want us to spend more, so be it. I think it is great if the state wants to make sure there is a floor to support the kids in small districts but they should not put a ceiling on what the rich districts get to spend if they so desire.
- There are a few freedoms I am willing to give up if the threat is great enough. I think a National or State Identification Card system is needed. Hell, I carried a Military ID card and Drivers License almost all of my adult life. There is no "bridge too far" if we decide to build a data base and enforce our immigration/visa laws. If you don't belong here, I'm willing to let our Government take/send you home. Show up on my radar at a Hospital, school, job site or welfare system without the necessary documentation and off you go.
- I believe that dang near all of us came here as the result of immigration. Even the Indians are descendents of people that came over from Europe/Asia via some form of a land bridge. I want our lives to be enriched by having new people come here and share their lives and cultures with us. I want an open immigration policy that is clear and easily understood. I think having workers come here from Mexico is a great idea. If they are only here to work and want to go back when they are finished we need a program to control it. Students that come here to go to school need a good system to allow that and make sure they go home when they are done. If they want to remain here let them apply from there.
- Abortion is an abomination. I hate it at my core. I would never advocate it as a method of ending the life of a child. There are a bunch of people out there that want children and can't make that happen. There is room in our world for more kids. On the other hand, I never want my Government to get in the business of telling a woman what to do when it is her and her Doctor's decision that is important. I no playa da game, I no maka da rules.
- I am truly for any program that helps people get more education at whatever cost they can afford. Anyone that witnessed what the GI Bill has done for our country truly feels like we need more money to help poor people go to schools. I would fund Teachers by giving them loans and writing part of the loans off every year they teach.
- I think some form of mandatory National Service is a good idea. There are needs for assistant teachers/role models in our schools. There are more jobs in hospitals than good candidates. I think some form of Basic Training is a good thing.
- I think there is a need for more involvement/input into our education system from the private sector. What does our economy need in the way of skills from our kids when they come out of school? Why don't we have ways to "add skills" for our workers to continually upgrade? What's the matter with having the best trained firefighters, Police, Nurses and Teachers in there world?
OK, that's enough for now. Thanks for reading. Dennis
School board Election
More Candidates emerge for local school boards
Hopefuls have until Tuesday to file for office with election officials.
By Barbara Hollingsworth firstname.lastname@example.org
The pool of candidates seeking election to area school boards seats is beginning to fill....
My worthy Opponent
- Trey Burton. Burton, 42, has made a habit of volunteering at the school of his three children and currently is the president of the Shawnee Heights School booster club. He also serves on the district advisory council. Important to the future, he said , will be seeing through the 2005 Bond issues and addressing the space needs in elementary schools. "I think I have a good foundation for understanding the issues that the schools deal with and that are currently going on and then probably an ability to listen well and communicate with others to see we continue to move in a good positive direction in the school district" said Burton, who works as a mid level manager for the Federal Government. (My note- Trey is a great guy and will be a good member of the board if he wins. )
- Petty, a retired Kansas National Guard Colonel, will face Burton in the Shawnee Heights board election but says it will hardly be a grudge match. Their wives both work at Tecumseh South Elementary. "I see this as a win-win either way." Petty said. Petty, 59 works as a substitute Teacher and Paraprofessional, a job he knows he will have to give up if elected to the school board. Still, he said, his experience working with special education students would help him in the role. If elected, Petty said he wouldn't shy away from making difficult decisions, such as re-drawing the school boundaries, a topic currently under discussion. "I'm not adverse to telling patrons of the district if we need to redistrict the schools at the risk of making someone unhappy. If it makes the schools better for the kids, that's what they need to do."
I have talked with my opponent, Trey and we both feel that the high road is the only to go in this case. The voters will be the deciding factor and their voice will be listened and either way we hope to remain friends. Trey is the previous owner of the bike that Barbara now rides. If Trey loses I may have to commission Kenny to build a recumbent frame for Trey. Very "tongue in cheek" Barbara said my slogan should be if in doubt, vote for the tall guy. But that wouldn't be nice so I'll not use it (much)
Dennis, candidate for Shawnee Heights School Board, District B, Position 2.
Who Won the Elections
The Missing Hissing Cockroach
Last week one of Barb's students listened to a conversation I had with Barb and wanted to know if I called them Pissing Cockroaches. No Brad, they are Hissing Cockroaches. As an assignment, he now has the responsibility of maintaining the cage. Unfortunately, they went missing so they are "Missing, Pissing & Hissing cockroaches". I'm sorry, but hanging out with kids has warped my sense of humor. (but I wash my hands a lot more often)
I worked as a Teacher Sub in the Resource Room, on Friday and didn't find it too much different from what I had been doing. I'm sure that if I had the responsibility to plan what was to be done for each student things would be different. There are some great Para-professionals in those rooms and they are a joy to work with. One of the teachers is a little more intense than I would like, but Barb has her good qualities also. (Joke, Joke, Joke) It is really one of the other teachers that comes on a little strong for me. Oh well, I am not there forever or full time.
I have been pretty slack about riding in the freezing weather. I need to find a way to ride and not freeze my butt off. I find that if I wear enough clothes to stay warm, the exercise causes me to sweat so much that I don't dare stop because wet and cold is a deadly combination. I guess I'll just have to work on that. My recumbent exercise bike didn't work out so I guess I could resurface that project and ride inside.
Yesterday was Basketball Central around here and today will probably be football. I did get the laundry done (with a little help from Barb late when my attitude about clean clothes flagged out)
I have been watching the weather in other family locations. It was a little warmer in Tulsa than here but they have a coating of ice. It was almost as cold in Barstow, CA and it will be 48 in the afternoon. The "cold hole" was Elko, NV where they had minus temps. It was colder in Idaho and not quite as warm. I think I'm going to add Brownsville, TX to my weather map and dream about being there in Jan, Feb & Mar. Barb has a friend that rents their house to a State Legislator when they come to town and they go south. Perhaps later when Barb makes up her mind what she is going to do about next year.
Hoops and Field Goals to you all. Stay warm and keep the snow out of your powder.
Character is BS,We Want Wins
We are having the perfect storm today. We have only a 1/4 inch of sleet on everything and it is ok if you drive carefully. Now if we can keep it that way. I hear that further south of here they have up to an inch of ice and north of us they have snow. Whew.
Did you ever have a discussion with someone and walk away with the idea that you invented (or designed) something that was a great idea. Barb had to drag me back to reality that half of the discussion was hers and the idea was "OURS". Crap, burst my bubble just when I was about to pop the buttons on my shirt. I guess every once in a while everyone needs drug back and slapped in the face with a big honking dose of reality. Mea Culpa.
Better go, the dryer is buzzing me and there is a pot of chicken and noodles on the stove that needs stirred. MUD
Full Time, Part Time
I hope I can get a steady group of kids and help them make good progress. That's the real job.
Chirp, Chirp, Chirp
Did I mention that they are messy little buggers? The floor crunches from all the seeds and hulls they discard.
Do you make a difference in this world?
I often wonder what the world would be like if I was not a part of it. I know the parable about if you think you are perfect, stick your finger in the ocean and if when you take your finger out the hole stays there, you were perfect. I am pretty sure that there is no "hole-y" water on my account. I have tried to live by the motto that doing my best is good enough. I, like all humans, have my shortcomings and I know that I exasperate some people. On the other hand, one of our closest friends had to ask about my religion. I try to live a life that is religious in character without the actual belief in God. I think the Bible is a good guide and the 10 commandments just simple truths in one place.
Now that planning, training and mobilizing for killing people is not an active part of my life I think I have probably over compensated.
I went over to visit my mom yesterday afternoon. She wears me out. "Denny, there are six bottles of green tea unopened in the fridge. " Her cleaning lady had been there for over an hour and could have easily done that for her. I think she saves work for me so I won't feel left out. I need to do some shopping for her this afternoon. Trip to Dillon's and a bag full of "over the counter" crap.
Ok Walmart haters, have you noticed that their prices are getting closer to everyone else? Now what are you going to do? If you hate them for low prices, will you love them for higher prices.
Just wait California, when your mandatory medical insurance hits, your costs will skyrocket. Who does Arnold think is going to pay the cost. The business owners. "Not bloody likely McGee. "
Kansas has hit a short cycle of higher revenues for the taxes collected. The legislature is working on building some kind of a trust fund out of those dollars to help future plans. How about giving some of that back to the people that paid it. Kansas has this simple plan that unless it is truly Capital building (roads, buildings or other things) outgo cannot exceed income. What a novel idea. Did you write that down? Outgo must be equal to or less than income. Works for me as that is what Barbara has enforced on us from the start. Add to that our desire to save as much as was possible in retirement accounts and you might understand why I feel like I have everything I need, most of what I want and a Walmart nearby.
Write if you get work. MUD
Those Damn Pissing Cockroaches
I am looking forward to seeing how his project is working.
Today I worked at the southernmost school in the district and worked with a really neat kid. The first time I saw him they were carrying him down the hall out of control. He could not have worked any harder for me today. He was absent yesterday and had two days worth of work to do. he hussled his litt butt off and got most of it done. I hope my smile and encouragement got him there but he did have to work hard. He also took the diagnostic reading test that could have stressed him out. It made a tough day go fast.
Do you know what the biggest bummer of the day was? As I came in the building this morning I smelled cinnamon rolls. Let there be no doubt that I can spot the wonderful smell of cinnamon at 100 yards. I finished at T. South at 11:45 and started at noon at Berryton. I went right into the testing with my little guy and missed lunch. What a rip. The best school meal of the day/week/month/school year and I was forced to miss it. I did get to eat an apple between schools but it just wasn't the same.
Tomorrow will be a work day in the garage with Dave. Sure hope we can get that grey car out of there and back on the street.
Write if you get work. MUD
Given free will and good results I would eat steak daily and have a bowl of ice cream each evening. I guess I'll just have to stay on the drugs and eat more chicken. Oh well, I take the good news.
Da Barbs have started with Weight Watchers for the new years. They both want to lose a few lbs and get in better shape. Don't let anyone tell you that teachers just sit and don't get enough exercise. Barb walks at least 10,000 steps each day. If she ties a rope to my butt and hers she would be dragging me by noon. (Oooh bondage, talk dirty to me momma make me write bad checks)
At least Baltimore put KC out of my misery today. The best team won and the poorer team went home for another year.
Write if you get work. MUD
Saturday in the Heartland
Aren't you glad I don't have anything really important to get excited about?
Ok boys and girls, I have been a pet lover for a lot of years. Why the fascination about birds? They eat, sleep, chirp and poop. They act like idiots and fly around the room crashing into windows if you let them out of their cage. I really don't get it. You can't pet them, and they will bite your lip if you try to kiss them. Cockatiels are the most messy thing since little boys started trying to hit the toilet standing up.. Why the fuss? Oh well...
I do hope my metaphor about Walmart hasn't missed you. "I have everything I need, most of what I want and a Walmart nearby." It is an old guy's update of the serenity prayer.
Should be some good games on TV this weekend. KC plays the Colts, KU plays someone, K-State will be on TV tonight and most of the games are televised. Might even get in some housework. "Some."
Things I Care About
I see people buying dogfood for $25.00 a bag. Don't they know how to read the bags? For about $12.00 you can buy a bag of Old Roy that is as good or better than all those fancy dancy dog foods. You can buy Old Roy canned dog food for about .38 cents a can. I have two Black Labs that eat nothing but Old Roy and they are in fine shape. Spend $25.00 a bag if you want but don't complain to me that Walmart has nothing but crap.
Why is it that some people can't just get into their car and drive. What is it with those damn cell phones that is so addictive. Hell, I have an answering machine so I sometimes don't have to talk on the phone. I don't have a pager or a cell phone because there are times I don't want to be found. Take the most inexperienced drivers (teenage Girls) and combine that with a cell phone and we are talking some dangerous stuff here. Add makeup or coffee and the results are tragic. Kind of like the time a driver was weaving in and out of our National Guard Covoy in the middle of Nebraska and bent down to get a beer out of the cooler on the passenger side. Did he think the truck was going to move over and get out of the way because he wasn't looking? When he saw how close he was to the back of our truck he swerved left, across the interstate into the path of a semi truck headed west. Not a pretty sight. My medics kept him alive until the paramedics got there. A combination of their IV, morphine and moving him just ended him there on the side of the road.
I saw a sign once that said if you are against gay marriage, don't get one. If you are against Walmart, don't shop there. There are enough of us to keep then as busy as they can be because they have the best prices in Town.
Sorry about the rant.
When I started to Substitute I wanted to give the kids a hug and take them all home. After a short 30 days, I'm damn glad to go home alone and feel like I need to wash my hands from being around those germy little dudes. Oh well, Education is still the best way to help our society progress. Don't complain about the cost of Education when a Basketball player can make 10 million a year.
Friday and I got a day off
This teaching stuff is a lot like work. I am seeing a lot of different ways to do things and I appreciate different ways the teachers approach the process. The focus is definitely on doing the things that are on the test. Not the material, the process. Reading, writing and arithmetic are the same, it is the way the kids are being taught that is fun to watch. There is a rocket math where the kids work on doing 39 problems in one minute. What do you bet that 39 is magic number to hit the grade level. They progress from subtraction to addition to the multiplication facts and eventually to the division facts. They get stickers and rewards for doing well. The kids that are slow are handed practice sheets to take home and to work with their parents. All the kids write in their journals and the teacher looks at their work daily. The mistakes one day become the daily edits for the next day. I am just blown away at some of the free and easy ideas that the teachers are responding to the new testing.
It was 60's here yesterday and only will be in the 40's today. Oh well, we aren't hip deep in snow. We have had a couple of nice rains and the ground is wet and decent weather is on hand.
Write if you get work. MUD
Football Game of the Century
Barb and I were going to make a run to KC this morning but she decided that we have too many other commitments. We are going over to have lunch with mother and take her in for a pro-time (blood test) They are worried that her blood is too thin or too thick. She takes what is a rat poison to keep her thin. (Warfarin)
Barb has breakfast on the table so I'd better get off here and go eat. I hope the rest of the bowl games are as much fun. There will also be basketball games aplenty. Does anyone know what the hell has happened to the Shockers of Wichita? They were so high and have fallen out of the top 25 after 4 straight losses.
My life has gone to the birds
New Years Day Rant
Does anyone else eat black eyed pea's on new Years Day? I am going to whip up a bog pot of beans and ham. Will have the peas on the side. May even make corn bread.
The weather here is finally acting like winter. It changed from Rain to snow about noon yesterday and by dark had just covered the ground. It will be 42 degrees today so that will be gone by noon.
Happy New Year to you all.