Several people have decided to not post today because of the Virginia Tech massacre. I am going to do what I think those those 30 (+) students and teachers would do. I am going to Rant and Rail about the system that saw the shooter in trouble and did nothing. (or at least not enough). We have been working on being political correct so hard that we are afraid of offending people that sometimes need offended, incarcerated or put in the nut house because they are just crazy.
For the record, I own no slaves, my family owned no slaves and at the end of the Civil War all blacks were offered a free trip back to Africa. When they, like my relatives decided to stay, they became Americans. Not African Americans, just Americans. No one offered reparations for those of my family that came here as indentured servants, they offered the chance to live in a Country where we are all free to make choices. Get Over Yourself! For those that complain about the US and aren't citizens, Go Home! Change your countries and live there.
For all of those that are trying to kill Free Speech, Fuck You! Up to the point where I say something illegal, I have the right to tell you in any language that I disagree. If you want to stand up and say we need nice speech, polite speech and don't forget Free Speech, I'll stand behind you and shout with you. The minute you want to shut me up and stop my right to free speech I will be there standing toe to toe and shouting in your face.
Don't think for a moment that we need more gun control laws. Enforce the ones we have. If the Mental Health Clinic had reported the treatment and the State Law Enforcement Bureau got that report he wouldn't have been allowed to buy the guns from the Gun Shop. From the Legislature down to the University there were people that were guilty of not doing their job and we have a system of laws that don't work. To those that are in Charge, "Lead Follow or get out of the way!"
For those that are mad because I wasn't quiet today, think about those kids and teachers and decide for yourself. I for one think they would do what young people have done for years and yelled at the top of their lungs and tilted windmills until they pumped the water out of our soggy system or knocked the mills down. Passion about their cause is not a moment of silence, it is a full blown rant against the things that allowed it to happen!


OH NO! I'm a Fascist

I have been telling people that what we need is a good President to bring this nation together and while on line today I Googled the term Fascist.
The encyclopedia said "Fascism is an authoritarian political ideology (generally tied to a mass movement) that considers individual and other societal interests inferior to the needs of the state, and seeks to forge a type of national unity, usually based on ethnic, religious, cultural, or racial attributes." Crap, I am a fascist!
Ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country! Sound familiar?
MUD! Heil! Dennis...

"MUD Needs"

This morning I was reading my "normal" group of abnormal blogs and my niece told me that I needed to type "MUD Needs" and to Google that phrase. Well, for better or worse here is the results:
  • White Mud Needs to get planning again. It seems there is a Jazz group out there named White Mud and they need to get it rolling again. Whew, I thought there was a need for a White Mud supremacy group out there. You know, a group of old white guys on recumbent bikes looking for a bathroom.
  • Mud needs Sloppas. Some kind of a mat to put your dirty boots on in the MUD room I guess. Sounds like something I would get at a Mexican restaurant and use about 20 napkins eating them. Wait a minute, that is my normal count for taco's.
  • Kansas Dirt. How did it know that just this morning Barb and I talked about needing a load of dirt to put behind our retaining wall, I am going to build?
  • MUD Mat to solve an access problem. I wonder if it will help my memory or just put down something so I can drive in the mud at the bottom of the hill?
  • Needs help with a plug-in. Either it has figured out the erectile dysfunction problem or it is some other new fangled gadget that I won't understand that I need for my computer.
  • "Aristox and MUD needs to be destroyed! Sure hope this is just some computer game and I can avoid being hunted down and de-constructed.
  • Mudd needs Coders. Hell, I need de-coders to make sense out of a lot of things. I can do the Sunday STICKDOKU problems if I get to use my computers and they print the answers on the bottom of the page. They can't fool me by printing it upside down, I can stand on my head and read them anyway.
  • Need to find a good MUD? Whoa boys and girls I thought I was so dull and boring that there was no way there could be a better MUD than yours truly. Oh well, I can still lust in my heart. That's probably the only thing Jimmy Carter and I have in common. No wait, I like peanuts.
So you can see what I am capable of when Barbara says to take the day off and someone else comes up with an idea to totally waste an hour or so. Either way, have a great day and enjoy.


Whew, What a Week!

Just when I thought I might get to take a few extra naps, the substitute system calls and puts me to work. This week it was two fourth grade classes and a special education day. This morning just when I thought I would only go to work at noon I got a call at 7:25 AM telling me to report at 7:20 at the middle school. Inside of 15 minutes I was there and beat the kids to school.
For the most part, these gigs just put money in the son's College fund. I will work until the end of the year and I think Barb and I will retire from the world of teaching. She has been the professional and I am just the amateur.
Today I got beat by a forth grader. I almost lost it over the antics of a little guy that probably just needed a hug. I know I did by the end of the day. He tried my patience worse than any little guy so far. I have had some tough nuts but this guy just pushed my buttons big time. I know what I did wrong and it won't happen again. I guess if you can learn from your mistakes things will be better in the long run. I sat down at the end of the day and only blamed myself because I know he did the best he could.
Tonight Barb and I drove over to Lawrence to have dinner at the Salty Iguana. Three big old blue corn taco's, some black beans and a little rice just mellowed me out. That Barbara sure knows how to treat a beat up old guy at the end of the day. We both retired to our separate TV's and I'll bet we both sneaked in a nap some of that time. Love her.
I will take a little time off this weekend and get in some time on the mower and on the bike. You all be good to yourself. MUD


Why we need Family

This weekend we had most of the family over for one afternoon or the next. It was Mom's 85th Birthday and I wanted to do something to honor that great lifetime. There is just no group of people that Mom cares for more than our family. I just couldn't find one time/day to get them all together so I opened the weekend on two days to visit, laugh and share our love. I think the smaller group each day got to have a better visit with Mom and each other. I know that there were some that would have liked to visit with the entire group but all in all if they didn't have a great time with the ones they were with it was their own fault. I could feel the love all weekend.
I have been thinking about the weekend and have done a great deal of thinking about why we need our family. For the most part it has to be more than who has the nicest anything. It has to be more than who is now sober and who is still smoking. It has to be more than just a comparison of our medicines and illnesses. It has to be that family can be a group of people that can come together and hold a group hug for each other. It behooves us all to understand that our lives all started from the same place and we are all a part of each other. Heck, even our daughter-in-law and her friend (our adopted adult daughter) Melissa, fit right in with the group.
I hope you all out there have a family of some sort that you can go to to get a hug when you need one. It isn't money, clothes, cars or any of that, it is just that love you feel when you get a hug. I don't know how long we will have my mother to get hugs from and to give hugs to but I'll bet we all will remember her long after she is gone. Have a great day, week, month, year and life. MUD

One More Picture from Weekend

These two women have been friends and sister-in-laws for a long time. My Aunt Mattie Jean Petty is on the left and my mother Virginia Dene (Lee, Petty) Schawo is on the right. They have been an inspiration to us all and especially to the young women. PS, I stole this picture off my Niece Kim's blogsite and did only minor edits.


Mom's 85th Birthday

This my mother and the reason we all got together. She has a smile on her face and in her heart almost all of the time. I feel blessed to have such a great influence on my life.
The picture of Dave, his wife Barb and Mom was removed. Barb said her friend Mel laugher at her. I would never let her be posted in any way but the best. We love her a lot!

This is my father's brother, Warren Petty, from
Arvada, CO. I looked high and low in my photo's to find a picture of his wife Mattie Jean. I think she hid every time I picked up the camera. They were great guests and we had some wonderful long talks. Even if he is a Liberal.

This group of girls is Becky, Melissa, Kristen and Kristy. What a great group of people I would love to have as my daughters but I'll just love Dave and his wife.

This is again Becky and her daughter Kristen. The other daughter stayed in Tulsa for a Prom. We missed her.

Someone left the front door open and this old Cowboy "wannabe" showed up. Obviously he has ridden many miles and forgets to shave. Yes, This is your host Mean Uncle Denny (MUD)

This wonderful person is the other love of my life and was the hostess for the party. Do you know how lucky it is to have a wife that loves you, a mother that loves you and for them to like each other? This was one of the few moments she got to sit down over the weekend.

This is Jennifer, a coach for the KC Rowing Team and my niece. She is the inspiration for hundreds of young girls in Kansas City. We love her and respect the great influence she has on the future of our country.

This is one of the races being held this weekend at Lake Shawnee. Jenn's teams were rowing against College teams and while they didn't win the gold in many races but, they were there and rowed hard. Jennifer says, " Athletes Row, everyone else plays games."

This is my brother Rick and the father of two lovely young women, Beck and Kristy. I envy his wonderful daughters.

This is again Warren Petty and my sister Myrna and her husband Ray Ikenberry. We were so pleased that Myrna felt well enough to get over. She is having some work done this AM. We wish her well.

This is Janet and Sue. Janet was my first niece and probably set the stage for me to envy all the wonderful girls in the family. We missed Janet's sister Carrie who was off with her son's playing soccer somewhere near Chicago.

This wonderful group is the family of my sister Carol. Starting from the left is Austin, Alan, Kim, Carol, Bob, AJ and Jennifer.

I want to thank my wonderful family for making this a special weekend for my Mother. 85 years of being the best mom, grandmother and person she could be. She is now Virginia Schawo but is known as Gramdma Petty to most all of us. I also want to say Happy Birthday to Rick, Ray, Becky and Bob. I hope you all have many more years of happiness. MUD


Thursday in the Heartland

With a bunch of people headed here over the weekend I am busy un-dusting the dust bunnies that have accumulated over the last month or two. Lots of things to do and it is a good thing I don't mind. Better get busy. MUD



I guess the events in Blacksburg, VA will open the discussion about freedom again. I am totally amazed that more people don't do something really stupid like that more often. We live in a society where we pay more attention to freedom that anywhere in the world. Our soldiers are willing to put their lives on the line to defend the rights of people that say no more war. How confusing is that? We live in a society that can say, " I disagree", with anyone, including the President. The only thing I ask of others is to remember that it is only the personal respect we give to others rights that keep us able to live open and free.
I would ask for you all to reconsider the transfer of those rights to those that haven't earned them. If you are not a citizen, you haven't earned those rights. Break the Felony laws and you will lose them. Vote, pay taxes and live within the norms of others and we'll all do OK here.
BTW, one time right after I returned from Vietnam, I was in the Campus Activity Center at Wichita State University. One of the students yelled to all of us there to come outside and watch as a demonstration was held to burn the flag. I calmly told him that he didn't want me there. I just might take offense to someone burning my flag. Fly it upside down or say bad things about it but unless it is worn out I just don't think a flag should be burned. I told him that I had a proud record as an American Soldier and I would be proud to have assault and battery on my record if he pushed the issue. He left and I didn't. MUD

Laughs about being old!

In the middle of the night, the little nagging alert that wakes you up and causes you to go to the bathroom is the "Bladder Warning Light". It goes Pee, Pee, Pee....
In the cartoons today there was a dark house in two panels and the third has the bathroom light on and a comment that the middle of the night should not be called the wee hours but the pee hours.
As a young parent, I was often annoyed when our son needed to go to the restroom about once an hour. I could drive for hours and stop only for meals and gas. By the time he was five, our needs to stop were about the same. it kind of worked its self out to be about two hours. Now, after about one hour and it is time to find a stop. On Regular routes, I know all the restroom stops. Seems like my dad also knew every stop between Wichita and Rogers, Arkansas.
I hope you will excuse the bathroom humor because it is more true than not. Have a great week.

Black Day in Blaksburg

What can I say that probably hasn't been said about the tragedy on the Virginia Tech Campus? Over thirty young people were killed and I feel bad for their families. This random act was just a senseless case of murder and I have valid doubts that there will be anything we will be able to take away from this that won't lead to more laws we can't enforce.
If the killer is truly a student here on a Visa there was just no way he could legally buy a gun let alone two. We know the College Campus was a gun free zone and he broke the law by taking his guns there. I'll bet he had extended round magazines and broke the law there also.
You can bet you paycheck that this will start another round of gun control laws and build into a new bunch of laws we won't or can't enforce.
A bunch of well meaning people will want another law to help them feel safe. They will want us to do things with weapons that won't help stop this in the future.
It is my opinion that if guns are outlawed, only outlaws and the Government will have guns.


Yea! It is Spring Again!

Yesterday I got to fire up the grill and cook some chicken and steaks. That is always the first sign of the weather turning off for the good. Building in the country in the middle of a hickory grove didn't hurt us either. I have a great supply of some of God's gift to the griller. Our Hickory trees give me a great addition to the smell and taste of meats..
This AM I went out to get the paper and it is already in the 40's with the 60's predicted for this afternoon. I'll spend today and tomorrow subbing for one of the teachers at Barb's school. I love the little kids and will work us both equally hard. Better get my act together. Have a great week.


Don't pick on Barb!

This morning I made a "stupid Dennis type" remark to Barb and she almost cried. Cried hell, she got almost angry. (You know, when your teacher talked very slowly, precise and long) As you know she has announced her retirement from teaching and she is busy trying to get everything done in the last few weeks of school. She reminds me of an aircraft carried right before dark trying to land as many aircraft as possible while it is still daylight. It is not the difficulty of the work that is the tough part, it is the quantity of work and short time remaining. She can see the light at the end of the tunnel but it is a passing train and she just can't get out of the way. She does know the tracks are empty as far as she can see after that. You would have thought that after all these years I would have learned.
We went to the "Designer's Showcase" house yesterday. Each year one of the Charities take a home and offer it up to the local decorators and contractors to make it pretty and then have a showcase house they sell tickets for people to tour. There were a lot of really nice things done and it always gets our juices flowing to re-do some things here at Rabbit-Run. Our house is 17 years old and starting to show its age. (Kind of like me) I know Barb will spend some time this summer making plans and budgets and spend most of next year re-working the things we want to do. She will consider all the factors of time, space, money and required expertise. There will be a few things we might have to contract out but mostly it will be a labor of love (She loves to do things and have me help) .
Taxes are done here and the State refund has even been sent back to us. It is almost exactly what we paid in Federal taxes so that was a wash. Nice to have one hand wash the other though. Next year we will have a really nice intersection on our taxes. My Federal retirements aren't taxable at the State level and her State retirement isn't taxable at the federal level. I'm sure they will want some of it back so I'll have to monitor that starting in September.
Have a great week out there as the weather man is predicting good things by the end of the week. MUD


The door is opening

As many of you know, the National Guard decided that at the tender age of 50 I needed to retire. I'm sure that my abrasive personality was just more that the idiot in charge could stand and he needed to rid them of me. I went through a couple of careers since and semi-retirement. All this time my life mate continued to work. We both continued to work towards the time we would retire and contribute to retirement funds.
Barb loved the teaching so much that she encouraged me to get certified and substitute teach this year. I have done everything from Pre-School to High school. Yes, I have sung the song, "Head, shoulders knees and toes, knees and toes. This Friday I feel that I verified my versatility by subbing in four different classes. I taught a computer class, an Algebra class, a history of food class and a photography class all in one day. I will admit that the last class all I did was show a video but I also didn't get a plan period like the other teachers did.
Now back to where I started to go. I think Barb is going to call it quits this year and we will open the door to having us both home semi full time. The finances look good because of all our planning and saving. Now I hope we can really stand being together that much. Will we have more things to do than we can afford? can we travel as much as we want? Will she be able to abide me 24/7? All these questions face us and about Memorial Day we will begin to know the answers. Wish us well in that endeavor. We have everything we need, most of what we want and WalMart nearby. MUD


A note to Al Gore

Hey AL, what were you thinking? According to the Farmer's Almanac, 15 April is the last day it will ever frost in Kansas. Guess what, tomorrow on the 14th of April we will get 3-5 inches of the new stuff. We did have one day of 80 a couple of weeks ago but it hasn't been even nice but one day since. I prefer to think of us going to hell in our own time and for our own reasons not your global warming hand basket. It is going to have to warm up a lot and fast to have 2007 be a warmer year here in the heartland. Brrrrrrrrr!



The following terms are random thoughts about terms created by people with more time than things to do. Kind of like Bloggers who write about things no one else cares about:
  • Virtual Reality. Does reality so suck, that we don't want to use our god given talent to visualize something? Are we getting so weak minded that the concept or ability of thinking and trying to picture things in our minds is slipping away. Do you remember when a kaleidoscope was the most visual stimulating thing in our world?
  • Military Intelligence. If you go out in the most difficult environment, gather information about your enemy and come back and try to decide what to do based on what you think the other guy will do, you have summed up military intelligence. There is a list of factors called terrain, time, weather, equipment that you add to this and I call it "guesstimation" or making things up. Take this guess and make a plan that doesn't last beyond the first shot and then you have the entire cycle of what most military staffs perform. Hell, they have a College at Fort Leavenworth that takes this to the maximum extreme possible. Yes, boys and girls I am a graduate of that institution.
  • Political Correctness. How can anything using the word "Political" be anything but what people want to hear. Not reality, but what some one thinks should be said. Short people become "Vertically Challenged". Fat becomes "horizontally challenged". People with an abundance of dark pigment in their skin become "African Americans". People entering the country from Mexico become "Illegal Aliens" (yes, I know this term is being reworked because it offends some of them.
  • No Child Left Behind (or as I call it test them until they bleed) I would like for someone to sit down and build a list of the things kids "really"need to know at each grade level, take it out on the road and see if it is truly what society wants them to know and than help build plans to teach it to our children. Prior to about the age of 7 most kids are learning to read. Somewhere about 8 (or so) the switch flips over to reading to learn. I see a lot of things in schools preparing for the "standardized" tests that just measure how well the kids can remember things that make no other sense. Slogans are goals, not concrete barriers that must be met. Teachers will teach what ever the hell we tell them to teach and do a good job of that. It is who is in charge of what we teach that I question. MUD


Raccoon Encounter

Today, the dogs were just barking their heads off. I went out and saw a big male raccoon about five feet from the dog pen and not leaving. I went in and got my gun and went back out to see if I could chase him off. He was in no mood to leave and according to everything I have read, raccoons that are bold and seen in the daytime are often in the early stages of rabies. I hated to shoot him but even after firing my pistol he didn't leave. As cute as they are, they are fierce fighters and a sick one is nothing to mess with. I buried him in woods. Be careful out there. MUD

People we Love

This picture is Barb and Dave with Barb's nephews. Austen and Kyler are a pair of guys with a great attitude in spite of circumstances that are tough. Their mother is in a nursing home recovering from brain damage after a cardiac event. We are all hoping that she continues to recover and gets to come home to be with these two guys. They are very loving and happy and we just have a great time with them. Can you tell from this picture how much Barb loves them? Dave plays with the guys and they wear him out.
This is the horsey game they played and the laughter was so nice to hear. They got Easter baskets and had dinner with us. Typical boys in that they didn't eat the same thing but enjoyed it no matter what it was. I think Kyler said he ate 5 rolls but when we took a count he really only ate three.
I hope you all are safe and well and can be thankful for the blessings in your life. We are all just a step away from needing medical help.

Political Correctness

Are you PC in both your thoughts and your speech? Not me, I hate several words that cross my mind from time to time and have to watch what I say. After 30 years in the Military an many years in a mostly male environment, I have to be careful. By the same notion, guys like Don Imus who makes a living as a "Shock Jock" uses such words and as much as I hate the words, he has every right to use them. Free Speech isn't free speech unless you allow things to be said that you hate at your core. (or for my Marine buddies CORPS) Vote with your feet. If you don't like it, leave, follow or get the hell out of the way. I just laugh that people blame the FOX network. It was Don Imus people! Have you ever listened to Howard Stern? His use of naked ladies and handicapped people offends me at all levels. Do you turn off Comedy Central when they bring on comedians that use offensive words? Where do you hide if you hate everything?
I'm sure there are a lot of you out there that feel that words do hurt and there are words/ names that shouldn't be used in polite or impolite society. The number one word on my list is WAR! Horrible thing, used as a last resort and often leads to the death of a lot of innocent people. But, in the interest of all things good, it is often the only way to correct things that are said/done. As an old soldier, I know how much it takes to personally put your life on the line for what your country orders you to do. While I have never personally loved a soldier, I love them all like brothers.
The Kansas Legislature in their conservative way, passed a bill a couple of years ago that banned same sex marriage. Now, the City of Lawrence is moving forward with a register of unions and the people that think the KS bill made sense are against the register. Now, boys and girls, play fair. It should be fair for people that live together be able to make medical decisions, file joint returns, have family medical plans and inherit as a couple. Notice I didn't say married. Leave that word alone and play fair. Both sides! If you don't want homosexual marriages, don't get one! So There!
Now, on the other side, there is no such thing as fair in our lives. If you do what you did, you will get what you got! If you want more money, work hard to get a better job. If you feel stupid, study hard and be smarter, not complain more.
I just heard on the radio that this is the year that the red-eyed cicada return on its 17 year cycle. The last time they came here the Berlin Wall fell. They drive me crazy too. My yard looks like someone was out there with a .45 cal pistol shooting holes. They buzz, mate, lay eggs and die. They shed their exoskeleton at least once and the dogs and cats will get sick eating their dead bodies. They are like the white fuzz from the cotton wood trees. They don't do much but you know they are here. Kind of like the Kansas Legislature.
My fifth grade poem of the day;
  • You can pick your friends.
  • You can pick your nose.
  • But you can't pick your friends nose.
That's my story and I'm sticking to it!


Easter Leftovers

This weekend we had the kids over on Friday night and again on Sunday. On Friday night Barb brought her nephews Austin and Kyler. They are two of the most fun guys you could ever spend time with. What is the biggest thing after the weekend? Leftovers. We have potatoes, ham, sliced fruit and several bowls of things I haven't looked at yet. Tonight I will look at the contents and see if there isn't a soup or stew that I can make. I did eat a couple of pieces of the ham this AM for breakfast but there is still a lot of ham to eat.
Being the family cook and chief blogger I seem to always have leftovers to blog and cook. Here are a few tidbits:
  • I want to stress that I believe in freedom of religion not "from" religion. You have the right to celebrate or participate in your religion/church/community activities. I have the right to celebrate or not as I so choose. I know my freedoms end where yours begin. Just don't ring my doorbell at 0800 on Saturday or Sunday to give me "tracts" about your religion. If I am awake and had my second cup of coffee I will smile and listen to you as you share what you think but don't be surprised if I listen politely and move on smartly.
  • The more I am around students and teachers, the more I think education is such an important thing in our society. I think the Goals of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) are wonderful but they are goals not rules and our enforcement is extreme. For example, if a child starts behind in Kindergarten and only progresses at a rate of 75% of the other children will this kid be on grade level? No, but given his/her ability is the progression forward what we really want? I think so and lets not punish the teachers for the ability/disability of the students. There are people that want to put in the teachers file the test scores of the students. Without some baseline on the kids, the teachers could be looked at with scorn for a class that just had more of the lower performing students. Measure the kids from where they were and compare it to where they are and display the difference. Don't judge them all by some standard and know that no matter how hard we work there will be some that just don't measure up.
  • Why do the Democrats listen to the Green people and want us to pay $4.00 for a gallon of gas? Why would we not be a true Democracy and free market economic system and let the oil companies drill for oil where it is available. Are they supporting the Muslim oil cartels for some reason we don't know about? Why isn't the Republican leadership kicking sand in their face and making this an issue. OK, if you don't want to drill for oil in the north or the Gulf, find me some way to drive my car in peace.
  • The latest dramatic thing in this controversy is people are now starting to complain about the higher prices for food because of the use of soybeans and corn for bio-fuels instead of feed. Wouldn't it just make sense that the farmers profit from this and not OPEC? I bought a ham this weekend for about $13.00 that fed 5 and had lots leftover. It would have cost us over $75.00 to eat at a restaurant Counting aluminum foil (for a depleted stock) and ice the total dinner didn't cost $50.00.
  • I am going in today to replace Barb so she can go to the Doctor's office and pick up her new glasses. I am going in a little early to let her Para have a little time off for an appointment. Better run. Peace be with you and war unto your enemies. As Johnny Carson would say - May the fleas of a thousand camels infest their armpits.
  • One Joke from Kyler - Why did the cow cross the road? to get to the MOO-vies.
That is my story and I'm sticking to it. MUD


Short Easter Post

- The Editor of the Local paper wrote that he had a column all written for Jan 2008 to celebrate his 20 years without smoking. He ran the article a few months early because that cough he had caused him to go to the Doctor and he has small cell carcinoma of the lung. That's right, Lung Cancer from Smoking. Yes, I am a reformed smoker and drinker. I am just a drunk though, I don't have to go to those meetings to maintain my sobriety. I also had a bout with cancer this last year and have a regular biopsy of my right cheek (inside) because of the pipe smoke damage. The message I want to pass on is. If you smoke, quit, it will kill you. The only question is when. I'll bet that Pete Goering would give about anything to have back his health and the prospect of a long life. I could write a long list of names of my friends that died of smoking. Art, Pete, Jerry, and the list goes on... Most of these guys smoked Camel unfiltered. All cigarettes and pipes are all bad and these guys died.
- The paper this AM also ran an article about weddings in June. If you were planing on a wedding on 7/7/07, and don't have it booked, forget it. Everyone is booked because of the lucky numbers of that date. I hadn't even considered the number angle but know that June is a month for the young loves to tie the knot. Speaking of that, Dave and his wife Barb are going to renew their vows on the first of June at the Hilton in Las Vegas. They are going to celebrate this by getting re-married by a Klingon. It is so like them to take something as important and make it something to enjoy and perhaps have a good laugh at. After all, 39 years ago Barbara and I got married at the "Chapel of the Bells" in Vegas and who would have thought it would last this long?
- I would like to share something with all the sports fans out there. Get over it! Your team at any level is just a team playing a sport. Enjoy it, revel in the wins, be happy for the young athletes as they go on but it is only a sport. There are a bunch of people that play the lottery and hope to win but are mad when the Roy William's and Bob Huggins' of the world leave to go coach at their Alma Matter. Don't you all realize that coaches have hopes and dreams too? Burning cars and tearing things up because your team wins is stupid, stupid and more stupid.
- I got a remote controlled tarantula in my Easter basket. Must be something about giving to others what you want. Barb knows I'll either take it to school of let her take it there to amaze and amuse the kids.
That's my story and I'm sticking to it! MUD


Where are We Going?

On Thursday, I went to a class with one of the students and the teacher was talking about banking. Near the end of the class she asked the students if they thought we could or would go "cashless"? It really started me thinking about where do we have cash that it would be difficult to do without? One of the places the kids were concerned about was the places like garage sales. After a few minutes of this I interjected that if there is a need out there someone will find a way to meet that need. Perhaps you will have to buy a credit card interface for your computer but, more and more people have computers and wireless nets. Why not an encoded device that reads the cards and transfers Debits, credits or whatever amount into your account. Heck, people are using Pay Pal now.
I know there are a bunch of you out there that are worried about the possibilities of theft and letting "Big Brother (read 1984 by Orwell) " know what we are doing. Think about how much more you might spend at the carnival if you could just zap with a card to buy more rides, hot dogs and pop corn. You can now buy tickets at the movies with your card. Heck, you can buy food at most fast food restaurants.
I do think it could put a crimp in the drug dealers out there and those that are doing cash deals to avoid taxes. I don't live in that world so I don't care. I want everyone to pay taxes and for the Government to reduce the TAX rate because everyone is paying a fair share. ]
Thats my story and I'm sticking by it! MUD

To the Readers of this Blog

My wife would like for you to post your comments on this blog site and not send e-mail messages to "our"mailbox. Yesterday two people I sent comments to, answered in an e-mail. She has about 300 messages in her in-box but doesn't want me clogging up her e-mail.
I know, petty things... But I love her. MUD


Tag, I Guess I'm it!

I was tagged as a thinking blogger. I am most thankful that I have spell checker built in on this computer as you would be amused to see how phonetically things can be spelled and still be wrong. The Tag as a "thinking Blogger" requires that I tell you of five other blogs that I read because of how they make me think. I am also going to tell you about them and how they make me feel.
  • The "confessions of a closet conservative" always makes me wish that I was as smart and could write as much about things in a more dispassionate manner. I just get my dander worked up and tend to rant rather to destroy with words the things I hate. Her prolific blogs always keep me on my toes and it is almost always new and good.
  • "The rants from sunnybrook farm" is from someone I love and tend to be more feeling than thinking but it is never dull.
  • "blazing Cat Fur" is always good to get my blood pressure up. We don't agree on everything but it is fun to read things from the other side
  • Speaking of the other side, "stranger in Suwon city - Daily" has told me more about life in Korea than anyone else. Eva is a young woman there teaching English and about Korea to me. She has discussed the people and the food and opened Korea to me in a way I had never thought about.
  • As an old (heavy emphasis on Old) white guy, I just don't know what the young people are doing but I read one blog to look into that world. "a day in the life" is a young Canadian woman and her activities in a young world. I don't always get it but I read it to try. I guess that's all that can be expected is "to Try".
That's my list, I have several regular blogs that I read and cross the spectrum of politics. I have some friends in Morocco and reimer ramblings keepos me in touch with the lives of the two little girls we love, a lot. I don't just read the one's that I agree with. There is one called "Funny Political" that just isn't funny but it is political and it makes me think about what the other side is writing and thinking. I hate two or three of the blogs out there and don't know why my computer keeps linking to the sites that want me to correspond to young women that are sitting there in their bra and panties. I have to clean all the cookies out and kill the history on my blog or my computer keeps going to the same sites each time. I go to the blogs I want and then I want to see something different. MUD By the way, that means Mean Uncle Denny not anything about my sexual orientation.

Note to the Democrats - Take the High Road!

I am not sure if the two party system is any longer alive and well in Washington. The Democrats have an ever so slight lead in the numbers and have declared they had a mandate to change everything in Washington. Don't they realize that the voters wanted change (a little) but not the bath water thrown out with the baby.
What we all want is leadership in Washington and for both parties to take the high road. What we want is for the Executive Branch to hold a conference with the major players and work out a way to have all the countries help Iraq and Iran be highly functioning parties on the world stage. We don't want the President to muddle along without a "win it or get out plan". And we sure as hell don't want Nancy Pelosi over there playing Secretary of State "Wannabe". This timetable legislation offered on the funding is so full of Pork Barrel spending that has no business in any bill. It stinks that they just won't say, "Win or get out by this date". The current funding plan just makes both parties look like fools and the US look worse. No one thinks an ambush is leadership. Lead, follow or get the hell out of the way.
Lets look at the facts in the strong light of day. The conservatives are less than half of the 25% of the population voting Republican. The Liberals are about the same percentage of the Democrats. That leaves about 50% of the voters wondering what the hell is going on and why there is so much hatred. Don't both parties realize there is another half of the country out there just waiting for a leader to show up on the stage and lead? Just how hard is it to get the voters to really get involved? It takes only a minority of the majority out there to tip the scales to your side.
How do you think an actor got to be President? Ronald Regan acted like a leader. He hired strong speech writers and delivered those speeches like he was always an Eagle Scout on parade. He strapped on the guns of his office like a gunslinger and strode out there and told Gorbachev to tear down that wall. We all knew he wasn't the old ranger from "Death Valley Days" but we couldn't help but support that leader in charge. If you looked into JFK, he did a lot of things that just didn't make sense but he strode out on the platform and made us believe he was a leader. Lyndon Johnson cold get more done in Congress than anyone else but, showing us his scars and holding the beagles up by the ears just wasn't a leader's style. Just once I would like to have a Stormin' Norman Schwartzkopf type individual stand up there and tell people what the hell is really going on. If you are going to step on some toes, stomp those suckers and make people wake up that we all have a lot to be thankful for and little need to apologize for how screwed up the rest of the world is. America and Democracy may not be the best but it is so far ahead of anything else out there that we stand out like a diamond in a coal mine.
So, out there in two years we need someone to stand up and show leadership in a way that helps us all (or at least 51% of the voters) support our selves, out States, our party and especially our Nation. The Democrats have an open road to the highest National Office but they need to take the high road and not be the ambush party.


Special Needs Kids

This AM the phone rang and it was the middle school needing a substitute for the Para Program in the Special Needs class. I had no idea what I was getting in to or how much work it was. There are about 8 severely handicapped students in the Middle School and most of the time it is pretty much one on one work with them. Both the higher functioning girls are autistic and they just won't talk to men. There is one little girl that didn't talk to anyone.
We had a field trip to McDonalds for lunch and it was a hoot to get the whole bunch on the bus. One has a wheel chair and we had to take the lift bus. I worked the wheel chair on and off the lift and in and out of the restaurant. I now know why there is a lot more room in the handicapped stalls. With the chair, me and the little guy there wasn't room to turn around.
I think that all afternoon I kept thinking, "There but by the Grace of God go I". We just don't know how lucky we are to be well and healthy.
In the 2nd grade room yesterday, I had a great time. There was one little girl that just assumed all the power she could. In the early afternoon the intercom beeped and said, "Miss Tice". The at little miss bossy said,"She's not here today" The secretary said to send little Mary to the office and my junior assistant said, "She'll be there". I think they could have run the place without me but everyone would have a mark or two at the end of the day.
I think it could snow today. It was 80 Monday. Kansas - Don't like the weather, wait a day.


I got what I expected

There is no lump in my throat this morning. The phone rang and I'm off to teach Second Grade. It was pointed out to me that Obscure people don't ride recumbents. So, I'll ride off into the sunset and get to travel without attending meetings every other Monday for two years. I'll ride on my bent, made by the best custom bike builder in Idaho.


Its Official

It appears that District B, Position 2 will be represented by Trey Burton. He won 1023 to 724. Not bad for a run when I did nothing more than put up a couple of signs. Oh well, I guess I'll just slip off into obscurity. That is my story and I'm sticking to it. MUD

What a Great Day

Yesterday was one of those days that just inspires you to be outside. It did start a little cool but soon was glorious with 80 degrees and a nice breeze. I got in a nice ride on the recumbent and then mowed for a couple of hours. I was going to do some cleaning inside but just couldn't bring myself back inside.
Today started about 5:30 with a loud boom right outside the house. A storm cell blew through and for about 30 minutes rained and stormed hard. It was the leading edge of a cold front that has caused the temperature to drop 15 degrees in the last hour. The weatherman says it will only be in the 50's today but it will be sunny.
Today is election day and I'll soon get out and go vote. Will have to take the signs of the truck but today is the last day they could be of any value.
So far no calls so it looks like I might have the day off again. Oh well, that's my story and I'm sticking to it.


Three's coming at'ch ya'

I stole this from my niece Rebecca. Becky is one cool person and I would dearly have loved to have her or any of my nieces as my daughter. We had Dave but it just isn't the same, but his wife Barb will just have to do. I know that we all love her.


Three Things That Scare Me:
That I am not afraid of very many things. I might just push the envelope too much and that could cause my demise.
Really bad weather. I am a sky watcher and listen to the TV when it gets really bad.
The thought that my family could be hurt and I couldn't stop that from happening.

Three People Who Make Me Laugh:
My Mother
My son
My wife (but she can make me cry)

Three Things I Love to Do:
Ride my recumbent bike
help others
Win (at anything)

Three Things I Hate:
Impolite people (especially teens)
People who will look you in the face and lie to you. (not that a good story told with a laugh is a lie)
People who forget that their rights end where mine begin.

Three Things I Don't Understand:
The rush to change technology.
Man's need for religion and the differences in "god".

Three Things On My Desk:
An empty coffee glass (you didn't think a cup would properly caffeinate me did you?)
A"fancy dancy" notebook computer
The monitor for the "old Dog" computer that I haven't found a new home for

Three Things I'm Doing Right Now:
Blogging (duh)
Thinking about the "what if''s" in my life. (like did I win the lottery and how long would it take me to spend the 30 million?
Contemplating the school board election Tuesday.

Three Things I Want To Do Before I Die:
There aren't a lot of things on this list. I have most of what I need, a lot of what I want and a Walmart nearby.
Ride the KATY trail on my bike
Attend Dave's Graduation from Washburn and hold his first born child.

Three Things I Can Do:
Speak without fear in front of a lot of people
Wing my way through most subjects in front of a class. At least I can prepare quickly. And admit it when I know nothing and get away with it.
Love a lot of people and enjoy a crowd.

Three Things I Can't Do:
Not much on this list but I have forgotten how to program a computer.
Reprogram Mom's remotes if the booklet is gone.
Win that damn lottery. Power Ball be damned!

Three Things I Think You Should Listen To:
That little voice that says, "don't do it". when it screams at you. You should stop and say," What's the worse thing that can happen?" If die is on that list, don't do it.
Talk radio but remember they are commentators not the people that make history/government.
NPR news to off set the bull you hear listening to talk radio.

Three Things You Should Never Listen To:
The urge to buy something you don't need. A new car once in your life but newer twice.
Rap music. I object to the terms "Niggers and HO's". Blasting caps on the pigs is illegal guys.
People that lie without calling them on it.

Three Things I'd Like To Learn (but won't):
How to write a really good book. I will write one but what you will see is what you will get.
"Ground truth about women" I love them but will never understand them.
Why the need to accumulate things always equals the space to store them. Can't just once in my life the garage be empty?

Three Favourite Foods:
Almost anything that is meat and grilled. I will eat vegs's that are cooked on the grill but they aren't as good as a great steak.
Hamburgers. I have had some bad one's but not very many. Add mustard, pickles, lettuce and a tomato slice (a'la Sonic) and you have perfection. Hold the mayo on my burger please.

Three Shows I Watched As A Kid: ( I was seven or eight when we got our first TV)
Amos and Andy (radio)
Gunsmoke (Radio)
The Shadow (radio)
Rin Tin Tin, Lassie was a wimp and Rin Tin Tin could tear off his leg and beat him with it. (TV)
Our Gang Comedies (The Little Rascal Club on local TV)
Friday Night Fights sponsored by Gillette. Dad loved his and I would watch with him. (We only had one TV and you can bet he won that argument.
Here's a fourth - Whirllybirds on Sunday night. It was just past my bedtime and I would sneak in to the kitchen and watch without getting caught. (most of the time)


Storms in the Heartland

Every year as the weather turns from winter into spring we are subjected to the collision of warm fronts and cold fronts across the heartland. The larger the difference between the temperatures along that line determines the severity. The warm air carries a lot of moisture and the cold air knocks the moisture out of the air. The movement of the air as the fronts collide can set off spinning motions and tornado's form. The normal time of the day for tornado's is later on in the day when the sun is out warming the clouds. Moisture from the ground is sucked up and the intensity builds. As the clouds reach higher altitudes, the moisture sometimes starts to slip out and can be dropped and then blown up several times and often hail forms within the clouds until the hail is so big it cannot continue to yo-yo and falls to the ground. Blown by the winds and varied by size, the hail can fall as small pea sized hail and cover the ground or can be as big as golf balls and rip roof shingles to pieces. The larger the storm the more likely to have hail. The occurrence of hail often is linked to tornado activity.
This last few days, that collision of fronts occurred here and we went from a deficit of rainfall for the month to what I can only describe as a soggy mess. We start April about an inch and a half ahead in moisture for the year.
There is not an absolute "daytime only" time frame for tornado's. As the people in Udall, KS can report they can rip through towns about midnight and catch a lot of folks in bed. The traditional direction for the tornado travel is from southwest to northeast but many places the fronts formed tornadoes and then backed up. At least one town had the same tornado go through at least twice. Springtime is the most usual time for tornadoes but there has been a recorded tornado in every month.
We have been very fortunate here to have the severe weather pass us up and we received only rain. We feel blesses with the moisture and after fighting the insurance company glad to have the solid roof overhead a couple of years ago. They have some new formula that takes the deductible off and depreciates the roof so that our $6,500 new roof cost me more than it cost them. The good news is we had the money to put a new one on. I'm not sure that everyone could say that.
After losing a house to a tornado in 1983, I watch the sky and listen for warnings. I would not want to live in a house without a basement or a "fraidy hole". I love Kansas but would be glad to have that one weather related item go away. I know that everywhere there are tornadoes and there are just more here in the Heartland.