Where Are We?

What state sign makes MUD break out in song? OOOOOOOOOklahoma where old trucks go to die, Where nothing smell so sweet like digested wheat splattered near my feet.
We went to Bartlesville to visit my mom. Quite frankly, we think Rick has done a good job getting her in a nice place but are worried about her condition. Mom has always been as good a a story teller as I am and she seems to get her people confused a lot. She always told of her days in Independence at her grandparents house. For the first time she couldn't remember the address. I hope that any of you that were going to get details of her life have what you want/need.
Better get this circus on the road. Tomorrow bright and early we are going to go to the Konza Prairie and see the Prairie Chickens do their dance. I think I need a nap because we have to be there at 6 AM.


Kids Do the darnest Thing!

One of our friends just posted on face book that her 2 year son sprayed some fake tanning spray all over her family room. I wonder if the rug will turn brown and will it clean up?

One of my friends had her friend remind her of the time her daughter wanted someone to yip her yipper. Yepp'er, kids can make you cry or laugh.

One of the little neighborhood boys loved potato chips but it came out "Shader Shits."

One time Dave had disappeared into my mother's bathroom and came out powdered from top to bottom and announced, "Mel's Good." he had to be under two or he would have said, "Look mother, I smell good!"

Because Barb and I visit the Dentist regularly, there is always a good supply of dental floss. One day after an hour of quiet, Barb went in to Dave's room and he had made a spider web from one end of the room to the other with dental floss. Remember that the Star War's action figures held light sabers? That made them have a great way to hold on to the floss and slide for life on the floss.

I wasn't there, but I hear stories of a time when My niece Jennifer got up on the TV and knocked the mirror off the wall and as it fell, it broke the back of the picture tube on the TV off.

A really good friend of ours has a son that managed to set the highest standard of fun. One day when Mom went out to get the paper, he managed to lock the front door behind her. They hadn't finished the steps to the deck yet so it took a great deal of time and ingenuity to get back in the house. Later on, she heard a chair slide across the floor in the kitchen, She checked on the sound and found him peeing in the coffee pot. Not sure why, but I don't ask for coffee at her house.

Me, I never did any thing that funny, unless you count the........



Normally I have some idea of the direction I am going to head this blog when I start. I most generally pick an appropriate title and write on from there. Today, the best I could do is to use the date for a title and stumble on as I go.

The other day, my son was trying to tell Austen and Kyler why the Google Internet will be so much faster and just how fast "Fast" is. I have the AT&T high speed Internet connections and it is faster than I am. When you can probably only type about 20-25 WPM the dial up is fast enough. What I have is probably overkill but it is nice to have the system ready about 95% of the time when I am. I can remember in the good old days I would turn my office computer on and go get a cup of coffee. I would log in, check my in box, log in to the dial up carrier and somewhere about 15 minutes after I got to work I would have a connection. Yes, I also remember the days when an Underwood typewriter was the only office automation we had.

Just a note, Google has not yet selected Topeka for the High Speed, Fiber Optic supported test yet. My son who works at best Buy thinks the idea will be a real big deal to their business and he is really excited. he has applied for a out of the store job and will probably get the job of connecting people that don't sign up on the initial go round. Plus all the TV, DVD players and surround sound systems he can stand. Somewhere there is a customer service job just waiting for him. He is about the most cool guy I know and really cares what the customer wants.

Today, barb is going over to the County Extension Office and is going to plant tomato seeds for the kids to get to take home during one of the events. I think it is one at the Library because the World famous Topeka Zoo is in so much trouble they think the event there got cancelled. I always thought the $10.00 name on the 50 cent zoo was a bit much. This last year they par boiled a hippo and killed one of the cats when they gave it the wrong injection. No one is sure why but the leadership at the Zoo is in the change mode and the staff is just following orders. Morale is easy when things are expanding and taxes money flows. Slow down the flow a little and morale goes into the crapper.

Oh well, time to move on and get some real things done. Not sure what that is yet, but you can bet I'll find a way to spend time. Might even slip in a nap this afternoon.



Too Early

A week ago, the KU team went home from the NCAA Men's Basketball Championship when they lost. K-State or KSU and their Wildcats went on to play a game on Thursday that was a barn burner and everything any fan would want. Problem was, it took an extraordinary amount of energy to play at that level and yesterday they just didn't have any reserve in their tank. With about five minutes to play they staged a rally but at the end of that rally with about 4 minutes to play they had nothing left. I think they played well up to the last game and ended their season like the other 64 teams in the tournament did or will, with a loss. Remember the play-in game that made it 65 teams and only one winner? Basketball is only a game and these are only students. Celebrate what the do and who they are and move on. last time I looked, there is always a next year in College sports.

I had a weird dream last night. I spent the entire night disassembling the 57 Chevy. I worked as hard in my sleep as I did in reality a few years back. the difference was that when I woke up this morning I wasn't greasy and I was somewhat rested. I do have to go out and do some garage cleaning today and perhaps that was some kind of precursor to that activity.

The other day when we were cleaning, the Nikon fell off the couch with the telephoto lens attached. Later on,when I grabbed it to take pictures of the deer down the hill, it didn't work. Somehow the weight of the long lens pulled out some retaining screws and the ring the lens fits in was pulled half off. Being the resourceful kind of guy I am, I found my very small itsy bitsy screw drivers and screwed the lose screws back in. When I opened the battery case a very small metal clip fell out. It might have fallen out of the lose lens part but I'm not sure. It reminds me of many of my automotive fixes. Take things apart and put them back together and there is always an extra screw or bolt left over. Somewhere in the garage I have the worlds greatest collection of nuts bolts, screws and nails anyone would ever want. The only problem is that when I need something I can seldom find the correct one.

We are having out typical day here in the heartland. Seems like the sun is on vacation and the clouds are what Military guys call permanent party. I'm not sure where the party part comes from because I like parties and the grey days make me SAD.

Oh well, miles to go, houses to sell and a garage that is screaming out my name - Dennis, Clean Me!




This morning Barb and I had a discussion at the breakfast table. No, it did not end with shouting, crying or threats of leaving. She thought that it was interesting that Sarah Palen is defending McCain against attacks from the right. She wondered if Rush and Glen beck know that Sarah is now the designated spokesman for the conservatives. I had to laugh at that one.

I challenge everyone to think about what it is we want. I mean think with your big head and try to imagine where we want our country to go and grow into. If you were to get inside Barb's brain housing group and mine, the destination probably is within a couple of range probable errors of being exact. (That's the distance that an artillery round would land from a previous round fired with the same settings. That is also knows as two forks but that's a very small thing)

I want to tell you that I want to live in a country where we can say proudly that you can live up to your own potential and getting there is attitudinal. If you care enough to work hard and get an education, you can be anything you want to be. The problem is not everyone feels the same way. A while back, I broke the numbers down for the Presidential election and the numbers were that about 40% of the people eligible to vote didn't. When 80% of the kids that should graduate from an inner city high school don't, there is something wrong. I don't think they want to sell drugs because it is easy, they do it because they don't feel there is enough room out there for them to be their best.

Lets start with the young adults. Yes, they will be prone to think with their hearts first, and then their heads. Don't ask why, just accept that they are idealistic and will vote for a message. Just a note to the Tea parties, no matter how hard you try, Ronald Regan is dead and won't run for election during the next cycle. You will have to find someone that is articulate and caring and is worthy of our vote. Somewhere out there in the great silent majority there has to be a clear message of hope not change. Yes, ideals count. As much as I love John McCain, he is a proud veteran that served our nation well, he just could not inspire me to get out and encourage others to vote for him.

If you look at the policies that came out of Washington after Kennedy was assassinated and Lyndon took over, they were very liberal and tried to move our country to a place where we could afford guns and butter. More support to the poor in the way of housing and grants for schooling was a good try but the reality that we were fighting a war that cost us millions should have hit them right in the kisser. Sound familiar? Remember PAY GO? They don't.

Congress and the President need to think about the failures of the past and build on the positive things not do more of the same old stuff that got us in trouble. Instead of sending our youngsters off to war, lets send them into our cities to mentor the kids into doing their best. Instead of protecting the borders oversea's, lets start at home and build a place that the whole world want to come. It is our jobs leaving for overseas not our citizens. We can't afford Cap and Trade, more taxes and more jobs going oversea's. We need to start here at home and build jobs and houses and schools and make sure that every one that needs training gets a chance to train. We need to celebrate our greatness and build on the foundations of freedom that got us here. In short, spend my money in Washington only after you think!

End of Rant..... MUD

Another great team

Last night in Saint Joseph, MO the Emporia State ladies won the Div II Women's basketball Tournament. The game got picked up by one of the ESPN channels and was it ever a treasure to watch. Don't let anyone tell you that it ain't like real basketball. Those women hustled and fought for every point and both teams were filled with winners. How do I compare it to the Baylor game. Well, let me tell you that the Baylor game against St Mary's was like watching paint dry.

What will the basketball pundits say if Baylor and K-State match up in the Championship? They both are playing like they want to be there.

It is a wet cloudy day here in the heartland. Did our first grilling of the season yesterday and man does it taste great. I am a little disappointed with the Buffalo burgers but the chicken and steak was great.

Have a great weekend out there.



A Great Game

The Kansas State Wildcats played a great game last night and managed at the end of the second overtime to finally put an end to Xavier's hot three point shots. Anytime a team scored over 100 points, you know that it was a hotly contested game and it went from tip-off to the final buzzer. To have a combined total points near 200, it was more like an all star game than a basketball game. If you blinked, you missed a lot of points. If I were to say so now, KSU looks like a final 4 team to me.

When is it not cruelty to an animal to put it down? I have an old black lab female that is so skinny that she is just skin and bones. I feed her every day and she still seems to be on the way out. I need to get the shovel out and dig a hole sometime today and find her some peace. I will probably let her run free out of the pen today and have some time to visit the place one last time.

On the high side, we have had a lot of visitors to the Valley Brook house and barb is going to advertise it for an open house on Sunday. One of the houses I looked at a couple of blocks from the house sold early this week. It really wasn't a comparable for the house as it was a lot more modern but it was also about $30,000 more money. Sometime this weekend Barb and I will probably go over and do some yard work. We have some grass seed and a few things to haul off. Oh well.

It is spring and allergy season here in the heartland. I need to make a trip to Wally-World and pick up some medicine. If I wait until I am fully congested, I am in trouble. Dang Blood Pressure.



New Day, a New Way

Are you getting tired of all the people crying about how bad things are? Have you read all the comments about the Morons and uglies you can stand?

We live in the middle of the country that was founded on freedom and liberty and have more of it available than any where else. Go to Morocco and say bad things about the King and see how long you are allowed to live there.

Go to Europe or England and see how high your taxes are and how little you have left over for you own purposes. Look at them queueing up and tell me that things there are better. If you want to get freaked out, go to France and spend some time there amongst the unwashed and rude.

If you think things here need changed, get up off your butt and do something. Any fool can blog about how bad things are but can they really make a difference. What have you done to volunteer to help make our communities better? Instead of being critical of how many kids drop out, mentor one for a semester and see how much a difference you can make.

What is the difference between us being the greatest and just second run? Attitude is the difference. A kid that drops out of school does so because he doesn't think school makes a difference. Our problems aren't political, they are attitudinal. When 40% of the people don't even vote, it isn't the party that is wrong, it is the people that don't have a positive attitude. Why, because we send e-mails from people that have lost hope and are living in the lap of luxury. Yes, in spite of being retired, I still pay taxes. Are they too much? Hell no, I can still drive a pretty darn nice car, go out to eat and am the new 40 inch LCD viewer with HD TV.

I challenge you to start today to find a way to make this one positive place to live. If you want to change things, get up off your butts and run for an office. The office I ran for was being contested by a darned decent guy and I chose to not campaign against him. As it was, he never said an unkind word about me and he beat me by a few votes. With all the flack the school board is taking right now, I am pretty sure that he has the hard road to hoe and I got off easy.

Go plant something, good works, fruits or vegetables or just clean up something in your community. I am.


End of the Season

This is my little buddy Austin from Alabama. I borrowed this picture because it really sums up how I feel about the KU season. After the last game, the players walk away and while it is the end of that step, it is just the beginning of the rest of the world. 'Cides, Austin makes me smile more than any game could.

Vernal Equinox

Unless you are asleep at the wheel, you probably have noticed that the days are getting longer. Even with the shift to Day Light Savings, it is light outside at 7 PM. In spite of a weather set back over last weekend, it is getting warmer and in fact if was 48 degrees this morning. We are having a brief period of rain today but it will keep the temperature about 50 all day. The last remnants of snow will finally melt out of the drifts and ditches. Oh, the equinox meant that on the 20th the day and night periods were equal and the tilt of the earth's axis is on towards periods of warmer weather.

I went over to the Social Security Administration office to increase my with holdings to help with the taxes come the end of the tax year. There is some obscure rule that the maximum you can withhold is 25%. There is no allowance for more even if you will owe it. Dang, I hate it when that happens.

We have been showing the Valley brook house quite a bit lately. Lots of people want to look, but don't make hard firm offers. Perhaps one of these days someone will start the ball rolling that direction. I guess its not like we don't have the time to go over and meet new people.

Yesterday I went to the store and locked to the cart return was a great looking red Rand Rocket recumbent. My bike has a low pedal bracket and this one has the pedal pretty much right out on the front of the bike. I think I would want some kind of a chain guard if I owned one. Not for me, but for any unfortunate person that might walk out in front. That exposed chain sprocket sure looks like it could tear a hole in a tree let alone a person.

I guess I'd better get on with things. have a great day out there.



Must be near Spring

When I start losing my resolve and inspiration to write on my blog, it must be near spring.

When Barb mentions cleaning, it must be near spring.

When 'Manda mentions that she needs to get skinny again so she can fit in a bikini, it must be near spring.

When the Ford honks its' horn in the driveway, ready to travel, it must be near spring.

When Barb can't pass a rack of seeds in a store, it must be near spring.

When the weather goes from near 60 to 6 inches of snow and back to near 60 in four days, it must be near spring.

When my Income tax Table get put out by my computer so I can do taxes, it must be spring.

When the sun streaming in the window causes us to want to dust, it must be near spring.

When the garage looks like the local dump, it must be near spring.

When the garage door goes up and down without the porch kitty running inside, it must be near spring.

I saw a red Rans Rocket Recumbent riding today, it must be near spring.
When I notice the windows need cleaning, it must be near spring.

When the basketball season ends for KU, it must be near spring.
For God's sake, it must be near spring!



Deleted it!

What I think of National Health Care!
During the St patrick's day parade here in Google, KS a horse went by and left a steaming pile of excrement. Later one of the floats threw candy in the middle of the pile. This is what I think congress has done. I would choose not to pick up the candy from the middle of the pile and eat it.

I wrote an angry post and I deleted it. After some good biscuits and slices of orange I feel better. Perhaps by tomorrow I'll be happier.


Oh Boo Hoo, get your Big Girl Panties on and deal!

Yes dear ones, it's true, the KU Jayhawks didn't take care of business and they lost. News Flash. This is the time of year that only two men's teams will go home unbeaten. One from the NCAA Championship and One from the NIT. It was a grand year and there will be another one next year.
I included Barb's pictures from yesterday to help those in Twin fall where it is 61 degrees to understand what 6 inches of snow looks like here in Kansas. I'm sure the robins are thinking they got an early start on nesting this year and if it were not for the handout on the back porch at Rabbit Run they would have starved. Must be a hawk nearby, there's not a bird in sight. En mass they flew away . They will be back slowly at first then a flock will show up.
I know it probably bores you to tears to hear me talk about it but I do enjoy the birds as they feed. I have some mixed feed that has a little of everything. I throw it on the porch when the snow covered the ground. The first thing to go is the sunflower seeds. Then the small corn pieces, them the larger corn pieces, the millet and last the Milo. There is always some dumb bird playing bully and trying to keep the other birds from eating. The little birds just come in the backside and eat as the bully runs around not eating until it is all gone. We have robins, juncos, a couple of sparrows, a wren or two and almost all kinds of woodpeckers. There is a cardinal or two in their spring colors. The woodpeckers start small with the downy and get larger until the Flicker shows up. He is the largest bird we have feeding here unless you count the hawk feeding on the other birds.
My mother is in the Heritage Villa Nursing Center, 1244 Woodland Loop, Bartlesvill, OK 74006. (918) 335-3222. She came home from the other place and promptly fell down. Thank god she was able to catch the shower curtain to keep from falling into the tub and/or breaking anything. My brother works for the owners of this nursing home so he is there almost daily. He is making sure that the Occupational Therapists work her hard to help her stay on her feet. This time I feel that Mom is a lot more aware of the need for speed. She just wanted to go home last time and now she wants to get better.
Oh well, might even try to get out some today if I can figure out any where to go.


Just a Note

I personally have carried a National ID Card since 1966. That's what happens when you are in the Military. For the life of me I do not understand why those of you without a Nationalized ID worry about the health care Bill making it a requirement. Do not eat at the National Feed Trough and expect them to not want to know which pig are you?
COL (Ret)

It's all in a Name

There is a BYU player James Firdette that has a nickname "Jimmer." What a great name "Jimmer Firdette." I couldn't make up a better nick name myself. I just think names are really neat. Here is just a few of the most notable names I have recorded in my book of life:
Millard Filmore Molthrup IV
Gentleman Johnny Lott
"macho" Ramone>...........
Bobby Dean (Barb's nickname from her Dad)
Shady Drake (When we would ask him what he liked he would say Shader Shits aka Potato Chips)
Atta Jundue Obiajulu (That's the way it sounded if you used a proper British Accent)
Candy Date O-By a Jew Lu, the way our red neck TAC officer said it.
Assy, as Phylis was called by her little sister.
Danny Rex, I don't have a clue why I almost always used his middle name.
Bone head. A nick name given to one of my hard headed friends by another hard headed friend.
Great White father in the Great green Chevy. Name given to Bone Head by a Wichita Police Officer.
Ding and Ding Ding. The two guys at the corner of Bird and Mellor in Wichita. If their mother rang the bell one time in succession; ding, wait for it Ding, Ding she wanted the older brother to come home. If she rang it twice Ding-ding, ding-ding, ding-ding she wanted the younger brother to come home. If she commenced to ring the bell, ding ding ding ding without pause we all ran home.

It snowed again this morning and there is about a 30 MPH wind straight from the North Pole. Not fit weather. Oh well, didn't have much of anyplace to go anyway.



They Died

Two of my childhood hero's died recently. Peter Graves of "Mission Impossible" and Fess Parker of "Davy Crockett" are both gone. Like most of the kids that grew up during early Television, I had a coon skin hat and big dreams of killing a Bar somewhere in the hills of Tennessee. Later, a lot of us were always amused and amazed at the antics of a team that would take on the toughest jobs and perform heroic feats in Mission Impossible. I guess when you start to see the hero's of your youth passing, you are getting old. Funny, I don't think old, I just feel old.

I just hope that someday I don't wind up stuffed in some museum somewhere. I think Barb has listened when I tell her that "I don't Care" where I will wind up. The idea that anyone would spend a lot of money to bury someone is just against my good senses.

It is funny to read the papers this morning and to read that everyone thought the Hawks would lose to Lehigh. All season they have played good enough to win and you could tell that when Robinson, Johnson and CJ Henry get into a game, the coach thought it was pretty easy for his team. (You are supposed to go who? ) The won by 16 and K-State won by 20. The papers are full of praise for the Wildcats and wonder what happened to the hawks. Hell, I saw the Hawks get behind by 19 points at Nebraska this year and then turn the game into a victory. The very fact they can is where I focus. They are good enough for Government work. They win and that's good enough for me.

I think we are going to do a little shopping today. The weather maps are full of those little snow symbols for tomorrow. See you on the flip flop.



From the Backseat of a Bird Dog

I was commissioned at Fort Sill, OK as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Field Artillery on the 3rd of July 1967. I turned 20 on the first of August of that year.In early 1968, I went to Vietnam by boat. Once in Vietnam, I had been in the country about a month and I was reassigned as the Battalion Ammunition Officer in a 155mm Gun Battalion in Pleiku. I had gone over with one unit and to keep that entire unit going home at the same time many of us were put in other units. My assignment in the new unit had me flying almost daily as we resupplied the Ammunition Supply Point (ASP) in DakTo. I provided air cover and artillery support for convoy back and forth from Pleiku to DakTo. That ASP had been blown up during Tet a month or so earlier.

Flying over Vietnam you could pass a lot of different kinds of villages. This is a Montagnard village in the Central Highlands. At one time they were scattered over the remote country but the US moved most of them down into areas where they could be protected from the enemy. In a regular city, the kids would stand beside the road and beg for candy and cigarettes. Near the Montagnard villages the kids would salute convoys as they passed by. The yards as we called them were a proud people that the GI's loved and the Vietnamese people thought were the product of a leper and a dog.

On the runway at Pleiku is a Mohawk ready to take off. Most of them had a lot of intelligence equipment under their wings to allow them to look for North Vietnamese men and equipment . I think this one has a pair of Side Looking radars.

What is seen here is the view out of the back seat of the OH-1 Bird Dog. Under the wing on each side were rockets that the pilot could fire to mark targets if there was a need. Under the right wing is also a small push pull valve to test the tank for water. On the runway, you can see another Bird Dog moving down the revetment runway ready for take off.

I think one of my favorite stories was the day I was flying and my cigarette lighter ran out of fluid. Being the stupid young guy I was, I pulled the insides out of the zippo, reached out of the backseat and pushed the cotton inside of my lighter up against the valve. I put everything back together, let the excess gas evaporate and dry down and made sure the valve didn't stick open. I then lit my pipe and man does that Avgas flame up in a zippo. The Pilot asked me over the headset if I smelled gas. Yep'er, just the old zippo fill trick. He was kind of pissed off but admitted that he did that from time to time. He just didn't do it while flying. AVGAS was so thin that it leaked out of the lighter and it did a chemical burn on my leg.

A lot of times when we would fly, the Pilot would trim up the plane, tell me to set up the joystick in the back seat and then go to sleep. He would tell me what altitude to fly and what heading and for how long to fly and have me wake him up when we got there. For some reason they never wanted to let me land or take off but I probably had 20 hours of stick time just boring holes in the sky en route to a new area.

Within the first month of covering the convoy of my unit, they were ambushed. We were right over the ambush site and these pretty silver and green twinkles came streaming up at us. Holy shit, those idiots are shooting at me. There was a gun battery right up the road and I returned the favor. It was a hoot to shoot fires at the enemy and move them when the A1-E skyraiders showed up to work them over. After that, the gunships came in for a few passes and then the fast movers from the Air Force. I will promise you that that stupid little North Vietnamese unit had it poured on them. What the Special Forces units cleaned up was a torn up unit with few survivors. I'm sure the Tigers cleaned up what was left. Not some unit named tigers, real damn big tigers. I'll tell that story some day.


What Do You Wear to Cross the International Dateline?

When you are on the USNS Geiger and appointed as the Morale & Recreation Officer what do you wear to cross the International dateline?

Scroll Down for the answer

Sunglasses and a Crown

And great big pillow with photo cube nipples


Oh Lord

Today the paper ran an article about the feds using Facebook, Twitter and even Blogger to track down stupid criminals. Yes, I agree that stupid and criminal is redundant. What is scary is that Facebook restated their wanting people to be truthful when they write on Facebook. At what level does a small tale become a white lie and evolve into a damn big lie. I challenge you to tell a story three times without starting to embellish the facts to make it fun to read or tell.

If they were to enforce the truth in writing on Blogger, would this be any fun to read at all? The idea that writing on a "Social Network" that has any privacy rights to me just doesn't make sense. There is an old saying that if you want to keep something a secret, start with you. Don't tell anybody anything you don't want the world to know. Unless of course it is funny as hell and then laugh as you tell the story.

Barb and I are probably going to the St. Patrick's Day parade downtown. We are Irish. The name is O'Patty from the patio Furniture Clan. Green Beer and Corned Beef with a side of potatoes please. (Well, you can hold the beer. Barb thinks it tastes nasty and I think it tastes waaaaay to good)

I am resisting jumping in the car and driving to OK City. Tomorrow and Saturday, both KU and K-State play a game there. Normally I would say something about unless they lose but both teams have their "A" game available and are playing "B" teams so I'm not worried. I'll bet there will be more blue and purple in the stands than any other color.

Yesterday Dave brought me a connector box with software to help me make a DvD out of the games I am recording on the DVR. No, I don't have a clue but I think I can hook up the damn thing and we'll see how complicated this all is.

Happy Saint Patrick's Day to you all.

MUD O'Patty


Why I Wear a Seat Belt

When I was in the Army, My dad and I bought a Volvo. He used a piece of crap, my Renault as a trade in. When I finally got to where I could have a car at Fort Sill, I took over the payments and took the car in to get it registered. The first thing they said was it takes seat belts to get it registered. I went to a salvage near Lawton, Oklahoma and found shoulder harnesses out of a car a lot like the Volvo. I installed them without the lap belts and prayed that no one would notice when I took it in to register. Sure enough, the MP doing the inspection was outside the car and when he said seat belts, I showed him the shoulder harness and he passed the car.

I drove the car until it was time for me to go to Vietnam. Dad took over the payments and started driving that car. He would make regular trips to Arkansas over the weekend and one weekend he was driving through Gerard, KS. A driver pulled out of a roadside park and dad hit him broadside doing at least 45 MPH. The accident pushed the wheels clear under the car and mashed the front end back to the fire wall. The wreck totaled both cars.

Dad had put on the shoulder harness and the impact caused several ribs to separate from his sternum. His knee flew up and broke his nose. Other than a real tough time breathing from the pain and a bloody nose, he walked away from the accident. Had it been any other car other than a Volvo, and without the belts, he probably would have been dead.

Wear yours or not, I will miss you but I won't feel sorry. I wear mine and for a damn good reason.


Gott'a Stop Going to Walmart

Them people there will take your picture. You know who this looks like. Now tell the truth
Is that the Idaho version of Flavor Flav?

I just couldn't help myself, they said they weren't responsible for stolen bikes in the parking lot.
PS Thanks to peopleofwalmart.com for sharing me with you

Sex, Money and the Funny Papers

The paper is just an inspiration to me and I would hate to give up holding those thin pages and just read my news on line. Today's items that helped me bring my blood pressure up to a higher standard were:

SEX -John Roberts girl friend says they are still in love. The problem as I see it is that she loves him and so does he. Most of those sissy boys that spend hundreds on haircuts and primp every time they see a mirror, is that the thing they want is sex not love. Men like that will fake love to have sex. Women like that think if they give sex they will get love. The sad part is that if she hadn't got pregnant he would still be with his wife and using her illness to propel him in politics. Old guys should take Viagra and Ginkgo Biloba. If the Viagra doesn't work they will at least remember what sex was like.

MONEY- The State of Kansas is letting the Federal Government bribe them into a seat belt law. They have 10 million dollars waiting if Kansas will implement a primary seat belt law. I think it should be illegal to drive a car without seat belts or ride a helmet without a motorcycle (or something like that) but I don't want the Federal Government to spend money making that happen. Someone wrote in the editorials that laws should make sense and should be passed without Federal Bribes. Let's see.... Common sense and no bribes in Government. What a novel concept. Right now, a police officer cannot stop a car to write a ticket to a driver without a seat belt. They can issue you a ticket if you are stopped for another violation and are not wearing one. The root of the problem is that you cannot eat at the federal table without playing by their rules. So far, the Supreme court stands oblivious to this gradual erosion of our rights by the feds. I have a dream that some day we will be ruled by men and not money. I know, take a nap and get real...

Now the Funny Papers. In Baby Blues, the kid is writing a paper about my favorite Composer. He said that John Phillip Sousa was a composer and a ninja. When his mother shouted WHAT? he said that school papers are better if you make us some facts. Sounds like he will be a good writer for the papers some day. (Or a great Blogger)

In Pickles, the grandfather bemoans the fact that he had hoped to be the great teacher of all things when he grew up. His grandson is showing him how to use the computer. Sad but true, the kids today know more about how to use the computer by accident than we old dinosaurs ever will. The even sadder thing is that I have two new pieces of technology, a DVR and an Iphone and both of them can do thousands of things I'll never understand. Hell, it takes me two controllers to use the TV and get it to do what I want it to do. The even sadder fact is that there are four remotes here and I am forever trying to figure out which two I need.

The American Way -To end this morning's madness, I have finally found the toilet paper I love. the problem is the name is printed on the package it came in and after distributing the rolls though out the house I threw the wrapper away and don't have a clue what the name is. Dang I hate it when that happens.



Second try

I started telling jokes and about the third one, I deleted all of them and started over. I am not sure why but I did.

What would you do if you were sitting in a restaurant and some guy a few booths down got on his cell phone and started swearing like a sailor (Or a soldier if it makes you happier)? It really didn't bother me that much but the guy a couple of booths down had his wife with him. he didn't do anything so I just ignored it. I did ask the manager of the restaurant what I should have done and she said next time come to me and she would put a stop to it. I did notice that he got a second call from his wife and he only said hell once and not one F*&K.

Someone put a challenge on facebook to use the phrase "Nuttier than squirrel turds". I did get to use it concerning the POTUS and the congress spending our dollars without thought to where we are going to get the money to pay for it. That is just nuttier than squirrel turds. But, par for the course in Congress these days.

OH Well, MUD


Why Do I Do This?

I write on my blog because I want to or I wouldn't do it. There are occasions that I feel compelled to write after reading something I read or hear through the media, but mostly it is because it is something I want to do. Yes, there is a large pile of tax papers right beside me to work on and there is always something to do in the garage but I get to do this because it is something I want to do and that's all there is to it.

There are times when I miss having any comments or reading updates on your blogs, but that won't serve as an impediment to me doing this blog.

I started to write this because of some frustration and realized that I do it because I want to and read it or not, comment or not, write on your blog or not... here is another load. back on your heads.


A New Day

In the past, the KU team would play hard during the season and fold their tent during the BIG XII tournament and get some rest. This time they won the league Play and the tournament. What a day. Now, the rest of the story. Basketball is a game played by students and they all work hard to do well. To me, the shame is that not enough of them stay to the end of their 4 years and earn a degree. As a lot of you know, getting an education is an expensive and a hard job. If you can manage to come out of the end with a degree and no large student loan you are lucky. At the end of the game, crown the victors, salute the losers and move on.

Even with the small clock on the first page of the newspaper I had to stop and really think what "Spring Forward" meant. (I asked Barb if it was 8 or 10 AM) For years, we would go to Fort Riley and have a Field Training Exercise out in the cold and mud. It always griped my butt that we would do it on the Daylight Savings weekend. We would work all day, stay up late, lose an hour to Daylight Savings and then drive home so tired that it is a wonder we didn't have more accidents.

Barb is still on the move to sell the Valley Brooke house herself. I think she has the idea that we will keep trying until about the first of April and then give it to a real estate company. So far everyone that looks at it loves it but they have a shortage of money. We looked at a house near there and it is 200 sq feet smaller and they want almost $20,000 more than we are asking. I think when we get it in the right hands, it will sell fast.

I have a lot of things going on right now, and it is a wonderful time of the year. The daylight is lasting longer, the days are getting warmer and we are about to charge into March madness. I even read my first baseball spring training story in the paper. Lots of plans to be made about building projects and travel adventures. Oh well.... have a great day out there.



Free Speech

I Refuse to post stupid signs here. You can
read the rest of this story safe in the fact
I will not print them here!

There is no way I can tell you how much I think the Church led by Fred Phelps and his misdirected family/church is wrong. Fred thinks that because some obscure passage in the bible directs men to not lie with other men like they do with women, that homosexuals are all doomed to hell. He feels that it is his calling to make sure the world is aware of this and nothing he can say is too outrageous in that battle. Somehow shouting "Semper Fi Fag" at a funeral of a young marine makes me wonder where that line should be drawn. Fred's minions stand on the street corners around Topeka and shout that God Hates America because the Don't Ask, Don't Tell ruling in the Military. I have listened to him on the radio and in person is a very dedicated pastor that thinks the behavior of his church members is required and to do less threatens their souls to hell. Do not confuse his signs with stupid and believe he is not doing what he thinks is the only way to personal salvation. He contends, and back it up with lawsuit after lawsuit, that his preaching is freedom of religion wrapped in free speech.

Thus, the Supreme Court is about to enter the fray and look at Hate Speech, stupid Speech and Free Speech and Freedom of Religion. I think they are going to have trouble with this issue and like the issue of what is pornography will find it a mouthful that just makes you want to vomit rather chew it up and swallow. I fear that the winners may be the losers in the erosion of what should be the standard of freedom of speech and religion.

In my perfect world, you and I should be able to practice religion without any force from the Government. I am not impacted by what you chose to do as your religion, and the same can be said about the impact of what I do on you. The problem with this is as people we all have a "judgement ability" and the need to use it. The problem is that there is no perfect world and there are a lot of things written down that we can't fully enforce of control.

I personally don't practice any religion and think the Bible is an excellent guide to proper behavior. The 10 commandments are a wonderful way to live and if we all practiced them we could have a perfect world. What about lust? If like in the Muslim world just looking at the exposed hair of a woman is lustful, should my eye be put out or should she be forced to wear a scarf? See, this isn't as easy as it looks. If the Jews refuse to recognize Jesus, is their Torah not valid? Is the Muslim holy book different than the Bible and if it is, which is right or more right? beats the hell out of me, and will soon consume the Supreme Court's time instead of having the Court ensure that the Congress and the President are not exceeding their authority under the Constitution.

Tonight we will get to see the number one vs the number two team in the BIG XII play and man should it ever be a great game. Now if I can just figure out how to get the DVR to record the game and have it to savor for later.



Say What?


Somewhere out there, is a village without it's fool. This is a writer for the Topeka Capital Journal that just opens his mouth and what ever is in the front of his mind fall out in print. His latest claim to fame is that he says the BIG XII would be a better conference if KU didn't win all the time. Lets see, seven teams possibly in the NCAA Men's basketball Championship and the fact there aren't more is KU's fault? There are three Division I basketball programs with over 2000 wins and KU is one of them. Isn't that known as tradition not "hogging the glory?" I promise you this is the last time I will give him credit in this blog for writing anything.

As was expected, the BIG XII tournament has the number one seed playing the number four seed and two and three will play in the later game tonight. Having the number 11 and 12 seed advance really didn't matter in day one as the finals are the best four playing for the championship position. We attended the game last year with Baylor and KU and I could see that with just a little help they would be awesome. Texas A&M is right there with Mark Turgeon as their coach. That young man is a winner and he just brings out the best in his teams. For some reason, I really don't like the faces and shouting down Frank Martin does. I think he is a bully but his team is winning and I don't have to play for him so they will go to the big dance and win some. They play aggressive ball like Missouri but don't seem to run out of steam like Missouri does.

Let me be one of the first to tell you that Texas is one of the most talented teams anywhere. I just don't understand their lapses and losses. They seem to be a team in search for some glue to hold the pieces together. They can come down the floor and stomp the ball in the basket almost at will and then look like a team of third graders on the next trip. They should own the rebounds and often look confused when they lose it out of bounds as three players in burnt orange go for the ball. They could play on in the playoffs or lose their first game. There is just no telling what they will do.

One of the TV announcers was telling his counterpart that KU won because of Roy William's time there. I guess that Bill Self having 10% of all the wins KU has just isn't enough. Bill self has won a bunch of conference titles where ever he goes and is a proven winner. His assistant coaches are sought after and he sends players to the NBA on a regular basis. All I can say to the North Carolina cry babies staying home this year is, "Roy Who?"

In spite of Coach Bobbie Knight knowing a lot about basketball, he is so dry that listening to him talk during a game just puts me to sleep. The only good thing I can say is at least he isn't Dick Vital droning on with stories that have nothing to do with the game at hand.

I am not sure why, but every once in a while a political blog just piles up here and then basketball just spills out. I guess it is the time of year that instead of doing my taxes, I find myself all involved with basketball. It ain't April 15th yet.



Welcome to Google City!

When Gov Alf landon used the Sunflower for his 1936 symbol
in his run for the Presidency, FDR said "Sunflowers die in November"
As most of you know, I live just outside the City of Topeka, Kansas. It seems that today the city proclaimed it's infamy in the national media for several reasons. Here is our roll call to shame:

A couple of years ago four of our finest after spending the day rotating from party to watering hole, went over to a neighbor's house and told them to tone down the music. No, they weren't in uniform or on duty, they just wanted the music a notch lower. At the end of the scuffle, fight and gun battle, the two people whose home the party was in were shot. Neither died, and now, their lawyer is telling the city that either they settle out of court or face a 45 Million Dollar law suit. It is my preference that they two Lamas brothers win and own the city. I don't have a clue where the city could find any extra money and the two brothers should inherit the debt and problems the city owes. Perhaps it would serve as a symbol to the world to be careful of what you ask for. Kind of like the mess in Iraq and Afghanistan. How many billions of dollars has that fist fight cost us? How come we didn't declare victory and go home quickly?

The second notorious event on the national stage is the Phelps family finally getting their day before the Supreme Court. This one case has more civil rights in it than you could ever imagine. A church feels that they have the right (and calling) to go to funerals of soldiers killed in war and protest. They say horrible things about God and Country to the grieving family and are hateful. On the other side, the family feels they have the right to grieve in private and that when someone comes to the funeral of their son, it is denial of their right to free religion. The Phelps clan brings a stink to the word religion and just pisses on what religion and patriotism stands for. The only counter is the right to free speech. They should at least be charged for stupid speech and be made to shut up for a week or so. Many of us would just love to have the group church to be taken and the sign "God Hates the USA.com" painted over.

Finally, just when many of you out there are protesting that Google takes searches in directions that we don't want to go, the City of Topeka is wooing the Google company to bring their test here and wire the city with the high speed fiber optic net and show the world what could be. Yes, I think we need a Fiber Optic net to our homes but II don't want Google to do it. Besides, I live outside the city and have a pretty darned good carrier brought to me by AT&T. There is no limit to who is my search engine is. If I want to "Dog Pile" and not Google, it is my choice.

On the national Round ball stage is the KU Jay-Hawks today going for their 2,000 all time win. At least we can now say, "Roy Who?" Win or lose, this has been an exciting year for us and we will accept the wins and overcome the losses. No matter what you think, at least Kansas is in the news, for what it is worth.



Home Loan Deductibility

I am a lot confused about the discussion concerning the deductibility of the interest on your home loan. For most people, it is not a choice of which to do, it is just the tax code and a help to own a home. As a Land-Lord, I can promise you that owning a home and renting it to someone else is not the way to get rich. As a homeowner and purchaser, having the deduction was nice but not near as nice as owning your home. Once you have the Mortgage company out of the deal, you will still have to save some money for taxes and insurance.

The only solution I know of, is to buy a house on a 15 year fixed note and work as hard as you can to pay it off as early as you can. Use the tax code to deduct the interest and be glad if you can use the standard deduction or the interest which is the biggest.


Let The games Begin!

The BIG XII tournament starts today in Kansas City with the play-in games. The bottom 8 teams start on Wednesday to play their way into the big Dance. Baring a complete wash out, half of the BIG XII will probably go on. I have even seen that the 7th team might be there. We'll see what happens starting about noon today.

Speaking as a fan of college level Basketball, I think a lot more than necessary is made of the post season tournament. It is the time of the year that for most teams two losses and you go home for the season. Heck, a good number won't even get to play after their conference championships are decided. After 30 or so games, I can imagine that a lot of the young men are ready to go back to school and study. It has been a great ride for most of us and life will go on.

After working on several houses over the last couple of years, I find that I have a bunch of junk left over. I have at least one bay of the garage full of stuff that I "needed" to have to do the work and a bunch of stuff that just accumulated. I will make a run to the County Hazardous waste recycle center the first Saturday in April. That will help get rid of a lot of the stuff. There is even an accumulation of automotive fluids to dispose of. A lot of the containers were the type that just would have been put in the trash in the past. a 1/3 full can of drain cleaner. More half empty jugs of rug cleaner. A can of "Spot Shot" that is almost too rusty to read the label.

Right now, I am nursing my back back into shape. I lifted the table saw in and out of the truck and it has the sciatic nerve inflamed to the point that it says hello every time I stand up, sit down, or remain in one spot too long. It will be better in a few days and soon we'll start to ride our bikes and that always helps. Even if the back doesn't feel better, the sun and exercise make me forget any pain. I tell you that a recumbent bike doesn't make your back hurt.

Better run and see what's in the paper.



Candy Store for Adults

Google City Sign at Lake Shawnee
Via Photoshop & Barb

This weekend we went to the home show at our local "Expocentre." (This is their spelling not mine) It is like a candy store for adults. A lot of the displays were pretty to look at but expensive to own. I have a champagne taste but only a Beer budget. I think we are more the type to look for the best cost/benefit ratio only when we really need to replace the furnace not just to save money tomorrow.

I have an architect friend in Mississippi that has to build buildings for customers and within their budget. I'm sure that if money was unlimited he would make things last forever and dazzle your eyes. Unfortunately, he must meet the cost parameters and there is just a limit where good enough must count for something. I once worked on a construction job that the owner of the shopping center wanted a wall to be the most perfect wall with a strange color. I think the final color was a salmon concrete and the laminate we put on the forms cost more than the plywood we would have used on the rest of the walls. They even had some kind of oil they used on the laminate to make the wall smooth that was about $20.00 a gallon when you could buy a quart of oil for about a quarter. One of these days I am going to visit that wall and see if it is even there any more. It was probably a 50 year wall if the building lasted that long.

I would love to go to the BIG XII tournament in KC this week but my back just isn't up to sitting in stadium seats for hours at a time. Besides, it will be on TV for the most part and with a 40 inch home TV screen I'll have a better view.

Our county Commissioners have a weird idea that people that owe property tax on their property should not be able to buy license tags for their cars. I guess those people that don't live in the real world don't understand that most people that don't own their house or are still paying on it through some company don't have a clue if their taxes are paid or not. You have to own a lot of the property to get your loan company or bank to let you pay your own taxes. I did have a boss that had just paid off his house and the first year the taxes came due, he didn't think to pay them. I called him and told him that his name was in the paper as delinquent and he about had kittens. I wonder what he would have thought if he went down to put tags on his car and got turned down because of some new administrative rule.

It has been warmer here than in Twin Falls for about a week. For a couple of months, that has been the other way around. We deserve a few more days of moisture and cool, not cold days.



Make Up Your Mind!

Before the latest round of economic woes, the press was critical of the excess consumer spending and our appetite for new and shiny things. Now I read that it is our reluctance to spend that has the recovery on hold. Either spending is a good thing or it is not. To the Press, I say, "Make up your Mind!"

In my humble opinion, I think that most of us are building a little nest egg just in case things don't go as well as we hope. I think it is a personal thing and it is varied from family to family. It was reported that there is a pent up demand for appliances that will spill out one of these days and help drive the economy back to a more consumer driven place. I think that if your wash machine and dryer works, all the advertising about the newer front loading and steam cleaning units won't make you rush out to buy. To me, the nest egg is whatever Barb feels comfortable with. As long as we don't go hungry, what difference does it make to me what the balance looks like.

I think the Government is screwing with supply and demand and because of the stupid laws and rules people aren't sure what to do. We went to the home show this weekend and every booth had some mention about rebates or refunds or credits that are mysteriously buried in red tape and programs. Some are automatic and if you buy windows somehow you get a credit on your income tax. Others are some form of a rebate you apply for and the program is open to the first 1000 people. What they don't know is that unless it is a good deal in Barb's eyes with a short repayment period (Less than 5 years) we will probably not do the deal.

After 20 years, I think Barb is looking at the kitchen counter remake. When we built here at Rabbit Run, she opted for a laminate counter top. After all these years the tea bag stains and years of cutting things has them looking fairly bad. The kitchen sink is way beyond looking bad and we saw a lot of neat ideas. What is the determining part? $60 to $65 a square foot cost. We have a lot of cabinets in the kitchen and that all adds up to just what do we want and at what cost? Back to the consumer question. What does it cost and what are we willing to pay?

Oh well, off to the Doctor this morning. I am sure that you don't want to know what that will cost. They will run a lot of tests to make sure that I am on the right track and don't have some rare or hidden disease.



Where did I leave those Sunglasses?

Short Term vs Long Term Memory. Over the length of my life, I have probably been more of 1/4 inch deep and a mile wide kind of guy rather than a Doctorate in one subject. I think that by reading a lot of books as a student, I acquired a wider range of information. I will be the first to admit that there are categories in Jeopardy that I often know nothing. More often than not, I know a little about a lot of categories and can't find my damn sunglasses. I have worked out systems to keep me in glasses and keys. I have one of those dishes on my dresser that holds my keys, my change and my keys.

As I age, and yes I am on the other side of 62, I find that unless I really try to remember, I just don't put things in a place where they re-appear at will with ease. Mom has been in a Nursing home near Tulsa and they have a problem with patients escaping. They have a lock on the door and give you the code written down on a small slip of paper. Over the three days were were there, I found that I had to get the paper out and re-read the code each time I left. I remember long stretches of my time in Vietnam and yet a simple 4 digit code eludes me.

I think that anyone that has spent much time near older people in a nursing home setting have witnessed this. They remember their time as a small child and forget what they had for dinner. I was often amazed that each time my Dad went into the VA in pretty severe condition he wouldn't remember long stretches of time there.

Last night, I watched the Des Moines Auto auction of the "Late Great Muscle Cars." If you ever wanted to re-create your younger years by owning a classic, now's the time. Cars that would have sold for 40 or 50 thousand dollars were selling for around 20 thousand. A silver medalist 1962 Chevy car with a 409 Chevy engine went for a lot less. That car had been featured in the Classic Chevy Magazine last year and the owners must have taken at least a 50% loss. I think the high seller was a 1938 Studebaker Truck with a Hemi engine for about $39,000. One guy with a wad of cash and his son in tow bought a bunch of the cars. A tricked out 75 Corvette didn't bring $8,000.

I would tell you what the name of the auction was but it wasn't stored in my short term memory.



Cost of Care vs Quality of Life

I read a story this morning about a kidney cancer "survivor" who lived six years at a cost of over $600,000. In that story was a smaller story about a squad going ashore in the initial landing on D-day. The Sergeant in charge told them that 9 out of 10 would probably be killed. As the story goes on, the guys all looked at each other and wondered about those other poor nine sum'bitches. I wouldn't volunteer to be one of those 9 that died, but I am concerned about living out my days and at what cost.

If anyone can explain the cost of modern Health Care, they are smarter than I am. Try mixing that up or into a Blue Cross and Blue Shield policy with a Tri-care policy. Neither one reimburses the cost as billed but between them seem to have the Doctor's Business offices happy.

As I am not afraid to die, and because I can currently remember where I wrote down the combination to the gun safe, I am not concerned about quantity of life, only quality of life. About 20 years ago we bought a house from a man that was terminally ill with a brain tumor. He did not come to the closing on the house and I asked the real estate agent why. He said the man had committed suicide rather than suffer any more from the inoperable tumor.

A part of me doesn't want the Government to be in charge in deciding when people should die from a cost standpoint. Another part of me wonders about the cost. At what point is it OK to turn off the switches and let someone die a reasonable death? Let me assure you that there will be a group that will look at the cost and availability of health care no matter what they call it. It may be a bureaucrat or a board but once the cost goes past the set limit, there will be control.

Let me assure you that I am not currently in any way terminal. I have lived a great life and would want you all to know that I am proud of what I have accomplished and the way I have lived. I share with barb all the time that she has made me the happiest guy I know. I am proud that she can find me in a crowd by listening for the laughter. Perhaps the loud laughing might be somewhat because of the deafness caused by the Artillery but I choose to think it is because of the fact I think life is so much fun.


47 Degrees at 8 AM

There is a veritable heat wave ongoing here in Kansas. It was a beautiful day yesterday and because of a cloud cover, it didn't cool off too much last night. As I look out the window, there is a patch or two of snow left but not much. Perhaps by the time the KU/MU game is over, it might be warm enough to take the bikes over to the Lake Shawnee trail and make a few pedal circles. I know my body is ready to get out and do something.

In the paper this morning, one of the Sports writers took on the challenge of trying to find a split that will produce different results in the BIG XII. He is advocating a split that separates the conference north to south along a line along I-35. The problem is, that KU has won 70% of the Basketball Championships (10 of 14) since the inception of the BIG XII. I don't see how having KU play the bottom of the conference teams is different no matter how you split the league. I don't see much difference in Iowa State losing to KU or Texas. K-State needs to continue to get better on its own and not depend on a fantasy split of the league to make them better. Oh well, Tully needs to get a life and report the real things not just his desires.

I told you about the Garlic Garni I got for Christmas. I also just got a new shipment as I reordered more, in larger containers. They also have a getti-garni that has cheese in it ti sprinkle over spaghetti. The only problem is I have yet to find anything I don't like with a flavor of the stuff. I haven't seen how it will hold up to smoke from the Webber, but I guess if it is used as a wet rub early and a sprinkle afterwards if should be as good as things cooked on the kitchen stove.

For those of you that didn't grow up with parents that called the fridge an ice box, I tend to use the terms on an interchangeable basis. Yes, I know that the term Ice box came from the old oak cabinet that a lot of people had in their kitchen that the ice man filled with a block of ice to keep the milk cool prior to the invention of the modern refrigerator. The other day, I was watching a program about antiques and one of the kids called an old ice box a refrigerator. I guess I was probably one of the few that noticed. It is really bad when you are old and wrong at the same time. Having a lot of experiences gives you a chance to have more things to confuse and to be wrong about.

One of my friends, Harvey, complained that there seems to be a shortage of good leaders in our Government. I think it has something to do with the fact that most of the people that would be good at leading are just too smart to get involved in something that makes you look bad no matter what you do. I think Barb would make a great politician. Good luck on trying to buy her vote. When you come to her with a good idea, it better pass the smell test. I don't know if she has ever really studied the cost/benefit ratio idea but I know she sure as hell has the idea down pat.

Breakfast is calling.



Strange headline

Lake Shawnee Duck - Not the Stuck Duck

Try saying this headline fast four or five times - Firefighters, Stuck Duck. Seems like it was a slow news day and the AP picked up a story about a Duck in Sante Fe, New Mexico stuck in a chimney. I won't even start to tell you what my dyslexia made the headline into. I have a couple of firefighters in the family and love them way too much to ever utter a discouraging word about them.

Looks like the Democrats are working on passing the Health Care Bill by the back door. The next sound, if they do, will be the door closing on their careers up there in Washington. I have an idea, lets throw them all out and start over. NRA - Never Re-elect Anyone.

This morning, Barb went upstairs as I was working on the computer. Pretty soon, I smelled cinnamon wafting through the furnace air. She brought me the best cinnamon/raisin toast I have had in a long time. Add a half a banana and finish it with a great cup of coffee and it doesn't get much better. The only thing that could have added to that is the taste of the oranges she brought home from Sam's club the other day. They were as big as grapefruit and so sweet.

Barb had put the Valley Brook house on Craig's list and already has had an inquiry. I guess that $8,000 stimulus bill just might stimulate people to look far a house rather than rent. We'll see.
Better go and see if there isn't some things need attention after being focused on the other house. I'm sure there is a dust bunny or two that needs killed.



With Any Luck

I have high hopes that today will be the day we finish working on the Valley Brook house unless or until a seller decides something else needs done. Cross your fingers on that.

What can I say to add to the winning taste of the hawks over K-State last night. I don't think the announcers understand how hard K-State worked to make those come backs from 10 points or so a couple of times. You could tell when the shots started clanking on the front of the rim in the second half. As soon as the loose balls started to bounce all for KU, K-State was finished. K-State will play in the Big Dance and that's what they should have as a stated goal from the first of the season. KU will play long and deep in the Big Dance.

The local paper listed the KU players that they think won't be back next year. If they win the Championship game, they will lose a couple more than not, but they still have a bunch of McDonald's All Americans on the bench. They have a long record of reloading and playing on past the loss of a bunch of winners. The one I really hope comes back is Cole Aldrich because he is an Academic All American and should graduate. He'll make all the money he needs in a year or two why push it now. Oh well.

Better run and get started on a few things.



More of the Same

Can anyone tell me who will miss the Saturday mail delivery? When was the last time you got anything in the mail that wasn't a bill? The USPS needs to start at the top and re-define what it is they are and what they will be in a few short years. Nothing goes on forever.

Lets see if I got this right. Our children on food stamps are too fat. The Government wants to see if we have too many fast food restaurants in the poorer section of our cities. Where did the congress of the United States get such ideas? Don't they have a budget to pay for? I guess Sen Bunning thinks so and no one else up there reads anything they pass.

General Colin Powell is going to start working on the problem of High School drop outs. The root of that problem lies in the fact that having a high school education doesn't get you ready to do anything but go to college. Where are the people that we need to keep all our Toyotas running? Where will we get electricians and plumbers and builders? What we need is to find a way to build hope that graduating from High school will get you ready to do anything more than sell dope and listen to music.

Why would our Secretary of State take 20 satellite phones to Chile? Where does she get the authority to tell them that we will send them what they need to get their infrastructure back together? I would think the last thing they need is another "lookie lou" traveling around and seeing how bad things look after a 8.4 earthquake. Where is OPEC's help?

I understand that watching the KU/K-State game would be fun. I plan to be in front of a 40 inch Plasma TV tonight. What I don't understand is why the tickets would sell for $370. You can sit at any sports bar (now without smoke) and watch it for a lot less.

Can anyone out there tell me why so many Colleges can fill a football stadium with 50 to 80 thousand people and then not fill a 15,000 seat basketball arena?

Now our Government wants to hook up a device that disables the throttle when you apply your brakes. Holy crap, don't those people know that thousands of kids spend millions of dollars so their exhaust sounds like a sports car when they are at a stop light. Not so much anymore.

My closing thought - a Camel is a horse designed by a Congressional committee.



Hello, Is anybody out there?

Note to the Congress, If you pass a stupid law about pay as you go, you need to pay as you go. Jim Bunning is 100% correct in telling the rest of you that do what you say and say what you do. We expect you to tell the truth for more than 2 weeks or stand up and admit it was wrong or a lie. Are you telling us what we want to hear now or were you telling whoppers then?

Mr President, If you are going to get out of the White House to come see what we think, listen to what we say. Or, plan on being thrown out of the White house at the next election. Why do we need to send money to Chile after their earthquake? Are they 14 trillion dollars in debt? Lets see if they can pay as they go.

Just as a thought, if unemployment was for a shorter period, would the recovery be faster? If an unemployed person could go out and find an illegal doing a job, he should be able to have that person arrested and he would get the job.

Just saying that there is a wealth of ideas out there. Why do we get the same old crap out of congress. Don't tell me it is an excrement sandwich and then steal my bread.


Final lap

Old Grandpa Possum on Back Porch

This week has me on the final lap in cleaning/painting/repairing the Valley Brook house. I have found the repairing has made almost as big a mess as living there. I get one area ready and another needs attention. I think I am almost finished painting so perhaps that mess won't reappear.

I have done some carpet cleaning with a Bissel rug cleaner. It does an OK job but there are places where I needed it to get in deep and it doesn't. I guess if I want perfect, I need to have the pros come in and work. We'll see.

I am wondering how much time I will take off once we are rid of that house. Truth be told, I have enough work to keep me busy full time on maintenance at all the other properties. At least the renter at our biggest house is catching up on his rent. He was headed for three months behind and is now only due the current month.

The snow is melting but the far north side of the hill is covered. Perhaps by Thursday when it reaches 50 it will be clear of snow. Barb's garden has remained snow covered for a couple of months and she is worried about the soil temperature. Perhaps if I covered it with some of that black plastic sheeting it will warm up. Oh well...

Miles to go and cleaning to do.



Bad Mojo

Waiting for Warmer Weather
Wonder what squirrel stew would be like?

My brother Rick said that his daughter, Becky, said that his hurting back that has kept him away from the Tulsa Games has hurt the team's Mojo. I take him to Stillwater and the hawks lose, Perhaps there is something to that Mojo stuff. Nah, Rick is a good fan and loves a good game. The kind of game decided on the floor not in some hypothetical mumbo jumbo.

Speaking of settling it on the floor, Wednesday night the K-State team will be in Lawrence to play for their share of the conference title. With KU getting a wake up call in Stillwater, I'm pretty sure that they will be ready for this game. Can't wait for the game.

Have I said that I hate getting old lately? Friday morning I was doing my best to multitask as I packed to go on out weekend escape. I filled my medicine container and then filled a glass of water. Instead of pouring out the Friday Pills in my hand, I grabbed the glass and poured myself a big hand full of water. Duh Dennis. I guess most of my life people have been telling me to slow down and concentrate. How does that punchline go? You know you are challenged if someone asks you why you are standing looking at the orange juice container and your reply is that the container said concentrate.

There is hope that by the end of the week we just might hit 60 here in the heartland. It was tough to leave Oklahoma knowing that their low on Sunday morning was about the high back here in Kansas. There is still snow on the ground here but with a day or so more of 40 that will be gone until the next snow. I think we won't truly be out of the winter until it reaches mid April and the temps stop falling below freezing. As a life long Kansan, I can tell you we have had some deep snows in March. Not that I am campaigning for more snow, just telling you the truth.

Better run and see what trouble I can get into elsewhere.