Monday, February 23, 2015

Things remembered...

I received my copy of "Road and Track" over the weekend.  The article comparing the new 2015 Chevyy SS and a classic BMW M5 immediately caught my eye.  Dad often said if he had a million bucks (non pun intended), he'd drive an M5.  A little background is in order here... one of dad's favorite cars was his 1983 BMW 320i, similar to the one below...

 Another favorite of Dad's was his 1996 Impala SS... when this car first appeared as a concept vehicle, one of the car magazines wrote a wonderful article that stated "Lord Vader, your car is ready."  Very appropriate, given the car was only available in black its first year of production and had a Vette motor and equally impressive handling upgrades.
So knowing my father had an affinity for Super Sport Chevys (he also owned a 1966 Chevelle SS with a 396 big block) and BMW's... I was immediately drawn to the comparison.  The article, like most in Road and Track, is very well written and conveys more than the numbers.  It succeeds in placing the reader in both cars as they drive down a foggy highway along the coast of California and with colorful descriptive language like "all that voodoo between its fenders..." it's a quick and enjoyable read.

Articles like this take me back to conversations with my father... about cars, motorcycles and other pleasures in life that enabled him to live a very interesting life.  I learned a lot from my father, but the life lesson I enjoyed the most and continue to enjoy, is to drive a car that makes me feel alive.  I will always own a car that I love to drive... life's too short not to.


Sunday, February 08, 2015

It's hard some days...

Watching the Beloved Red Wings was a past time shared by Dad and I. We would spend time together (virtually) watching the games and calling each other after good guy goals and wouldn't call when the bad guys scored. We'd talk about the team, player interviews, Don Cherry's ridiculous suits and ties and anything Red Wings related. If the Wings were obviously going to lose, one or the other would pick up the phone to say "Alright, I'm done, don't bother calling me if you stick with it." If it was a close one the understanding was we wouldn't call if we lost. No point in that! We'd just pick up at the next game. There were even a few superstitions we shared about when the Wings or the other team would score. We would call each other quickly after each goal, lest the other team get the chance to answer with one of their own and cut off our chance to talk to each other. Most of our calls ended with a phrase like "Alright, call you when we go up by two!" if we were leading by one or "Call you when we tie this up" if we were trailing by one. So many phrases were standard we would say them together at the same time, like: "There's still a lot of hockey left!" which was an interchangeable phrase used both when we were down or up. One of Dad's favorites when we were up by more than a goal was his emphatic exhortation to finish out strong: "Skate to the throat!"

Our Wings are doing well right now and I miss being able to call him after a goal. More than a few times I've reached for the phone after a goal, only to catch myself and stop. It's a sad feeling that.

The first game after arriving back home from saying goodbye to Dad was especially hard. I watched most of it through teary eyes and when the Wings won, I broke down and cried. Won't ever be able to share that post game celebration phone call with him again and it hurts.

Apologies for the sporadic and limited posting. We will strive to improve.

Just know gentle reader, that he's in our thoughts daily and is with us wherever we go.

The plan for his ash-spreading soiree is slowly coming together. More to follow on that.

Until then, please hoist an occasional toast and think of him fondly.

And cheer for our Beloved Wings!!


Thursday, January 01, 2015

Happy New Year!

We said we'd keep it going. We will...

Many have asked about services for Dad. Sam and I are working out our plan.

You see, for those of you that know Dad at all, you know he was a particular kinda guy with a particular kind of style. Style, Dad had in abundance!

His wishes were to be cremated and have his ashes spread in various locales across the globe. These favorite places would require a small fortune to get to in a short amount of time, being the world traveler that he was, so for now, we're going to stick to the CONUS (continental US, for those of you not familiar with the military vernacular) locations for the beginning of his services.

This could be a party that lasts a decade!

Just so you know, Dad mentioned places like a favorite pub in London, a bar in Japan, New Orleans during Mardi Gras and a national park in California.

We will compile the list and hopefully begin to comply with his wishes as soon as practical.

Meanwhile, please feel free to visit old posts and leave comments as you wish. We are monitoring comments and working out a plan on how to best keep his blog alive.


Friday, December 19, 2014

Last don't have to go home, but you can't stay here...

About that title: Dad enjoyed the "Happy Hour" of his life to the fullest.

We (SN1 and SN2) were with him in his last days, reading comments to him from the blog and conveying the well wishes we've received from so many.  We held his hands as he took his last breath... he will be missed.

We honored his memory with a toast of 15 year old scotch. I'm sure he appreciated it.

We delayed posting this because we felt strongly about contacting loved ones personally... we apologize for any discomfort the delay may have caused.

Dad wanted us to keep the Blog going and we will.  We invite you all to share your favorite memories of our father in the comments below... just be polite, that's all we ask.


Saturday, December 13, 2014

No Post Today

I'm having a very bad day; motivation to do anything beyond fighting for my next breath is seriously lacking.  But I'm still here.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Not Much In the Overnight Mail

Well, not much that would be of general interest, anyhoo.  That said, there was this from the Usual USAF Source:

US Air Force crews ferried two MC-130J Commando IIs, assigned to Air Force Special Operations Command, including the one shown here, from the Lockheed Martin Aeronautics facility in Marietta, Ga., on Dec. 5, 2014, to RAF Mildenhall, England. Lockheed Martin photo.

That looks like a giant slinky trying to eat a Herky-Bird.

The only other thing in the overnight mail was a link to a short article at NPR about catalogs.  The first grafs:
Many things made with paper have become relics because of computers and the Internet: the Rolodex, multivolume encyclopedias, even physical maps.

Now take a look in your mailbox or somewhere around your house. There's a good chance you'll see a shopping catalog, maybe a few of them now that it's the holiday season.
OK, I looked and found four catalogs... one from LL Bean, one from Land's End, one from, and another cigar catalog from an outfit called Thompson's.  That was it, and I haven't cracked any of those as yet. That doesn't mean I don't use 'em; I do.  My catalog consumption is way, waaay down from Former Happy Days when I'd receive at least 15 to 20 of the things each and every month.  And I remember, quite fondly, the day the Sears Big Book hit our mailbox back when I was a kid... especially when the fam'bly was stationed overseas and we pretty much LIVED out of the Sears Roebuck catalog.  There was a reading/browsing hierarchy associated with the Sears catalog: Mom got it first, then Dad, then us kids.  Woe be unto you if you tried to browse the catalog before Mom said you could.  Death would have been preferable to what would have happened to you...

And so it goes.  I might be back with a video later; it seems The Tube o' You isn't functioning properly at the moment.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

♪♫ A Foggy Day In Portales Town ♫♪

The view from the study window a few minutes ago:

Which brings to mind this wonderful old tune:

They don't make 'em like that any longer and more's the pity.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Wrong. Just Wrong.


The media, mainstream and otherwise, are all about Crazy Diane's "torture report" today.  Just look at memeorandum, current as of about 20 minutes ago (1150 hrs ET, December 10, 2014):

The media aren't the only ones, there's this from the Usual USAF Source:

COCOMs on High Alert Following Release of CIA Torture Report

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel ordered all combatant commanders “everywhere in the world” to be on high alert following the release of a report detailing the CIA’s brutal interrogation techniques conducted after the 9/11 attacks. Speaking to reporters in Baghdad, Iraq, Tuesday, Hagel said there is no “specific information or intelligence” that a retaliatory attack was imminent. However, he acknowledged the Defense Department was “concerned about the content” being released and the implications it might have across the globe. The 525-page executive summary released Tuesday summarizes some 6,900 pages of classified documents collected by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence during its five-and-a-half-year review of the CIA. It offers a scathing assessment of the agency’s practices, which it says were conducted “in violation of US law, treaty obligations, and our values” according to an opening letter from Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), committee chairwoman.  “The report documents a troubling program ... and it reinforces my long-held view that these harsh methods were not only inconsistent with our values as a nation, [but] they did not serve our broader counterterrorism efforts, or our national security interests,” said President Obama in a Dec. 9 statement. “Moreover, these techniques did significant damage to America’s standing in the world and made it harder to pursue our interests with allies and partners,” he added, vowing to “make sure we never resort to those methods again.” (Feinstein statement.) (Full report; Caution, large-sized file.)
I won't flog dead draft animals except to say "What the HELL was Feinstein thinking?" Well, that and the fact I hope no one comes home in a box because of this travesty.  And now it's back to reading the overnight mail.

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Today's Happy Hour Soundtrack, With Images of Marilyn Monroe At No Extra Charge

Eartha Kitt, singin' about how good it is:

Je cherche un millionnaire
Avec des grands "Cadillac car"
"Mink coats" - Des bijoux
Jusqu'au cou, tu sais?
(Full lyrics here, including an English translation for those of you in need.)
Heh.  Well, I have ONE of the prerequisites...

Wasn't Marilyn just THE most beautiful woman?

Just a Lil Too Close

So, there I was, goin' through the overnight mail when I stumble upon this:

I suppose timing is everything in life, eh?

Monday, December 08, 2014

A Few Things For a Monday

First, a funny:

Heh.  Occasional Reader and Constant Correspondent Lin sent that along.

We watched us some football this weekend... on SATURDAY, of course... and the games were pretty danged good.  The big news in college ball is the playoff picture, which looks like this:
The No. 1 Crimson Tide will face the No. 4 Buckeyes in the Allstate Sugar Bowl, and the second-seeded Ducks will face the third-seeded Seminoles in the Rose Bowl presented by Northwestern Mutual, both on New Year's Day.
I'll bet the air turned blue in Waco and Fort Worth when the playoff selections were announced.  Both the Bears and the Horned Frogs have their points, TCU more than Baylor, to my way o' thinkin'.  But it is what it is... and what it is is GOOD.  The smart money will be on Bama to win the whole shootin' match but, speaking as a guy who doesn't have a dog in this fight, I'd like to see Oregon go all the way.  Watching Marcus Mariota has been a pure joy this season; he's quite possibly the most exciting player in all of college ball this year.

Meg Griffin
In other news... My teevee provider is Dish Network and has been ever since I moved into Casa Inm├│vil de Pennington, lo these three-plus years ago.  I discovered last night through the majik of fat-fingering a channel selection that Dish provides a full complement of Sirius/XM stations, previously (and obviously) unknown to me.  What this means is I can now listen to the lovely Meg Griffin in the comfort of home as well as when I'm in The Tart.  This is a great good thing.  Ms. Griffin's music selections are positively outstanding, part and parcel of that bein' she seems to choose music for airplay that resides in my CD rack.  You can't beat that with a stick.

In other, other news... (Whine alert)  The end game of my affliction is proving to be much more difficult than I imagined.  My meds just don't seem to work like they used to, I've spent the last three nights sleeping sitting up on the couch because I don't breathe well laying down, and I spend the first 30 minutes of EVERY morning gasping for breath in what resembles a low-level state of panic while I wait for the meds to kick in, giving me some small measure of relief.  I don't know how much more of this I can take.  It's well and truly depressing.