Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Hey! Guess What?

The wind died down to a manageable level... for a while, at least.  And it's relatively cool (a balmy 84 degrees), too!  Here's what we look like at the moment...

The only thing that's missin' is ME, and I shall be out under the awning with beer in hand very shortly.

"Like Regular Mexico, Only With More UFOs"

Yeah, I've spent waaaay too much time at Viral Vids today.  Sometimes it bees like that, but at least I got the bike washed.

In Which I Bring Teh Cute

Laughter is contagious and this lil kid sure did spark a lot of it...

I'll be back later.  I'm off to give the lovely Miss Zukiko her final bath (at my hands).  Her new Daddy gets in town this Friday and I want her lookin' her best for him.

Monday, May 30, 2011


PBS is running "Hallowed Grounds," their remarkable documentary about American overseas cemeteries in my market this evening and it might be running in your area as well.  Here's the trailer for the program:

Watch the full episode. See more Hallowed Grounds.

The hour-long program is both beautiful and touching.  Check your local schedule for times.

Memorial Day

5/26/2011 - WASHINGTON (AFNS) -- Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley and Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz send the following Memorial Day message to the Airmen of the U.S. Air Force and their families:

As we pause this Memorial Day to honor those who have died in service of our great nation, it also is useful to reflect on what this day of remembrance reveals about the character of our nation and its people. History records that Maj. Gen. John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, formally designated May 30th, 1868, as a day to decorate the graves of the fallen.

History also suggests, however, that long before this formal decree, the people of several towns and cities organized local efforts to decorate service members' graves, demonstrating the deeply personal and heartfelt gratitude that Americans express for those who serve, and for those who sacrificed. Since its origin, Memorial Day has been an opportunity to pause and reflect on the sacrifices of the more than one million Soldiers, Marines, Sailors, Airmen and Coast Guardsmen who have made the ultimate sacrifice to secure our freedoms.

Let us also not forget those who are still counted among the missing, including more than 1,600 from action in Vietnam, 8,000 in Korea, and well over 73,000 in the Second World War. We also demonstrate America's character through our ceaseless efforts to account for each of them, with gratitude for their sacrifices and that of their families. No other nation in history has dedicated as much care, effort, and expense as we have to find our missing comrades and bring them home with the honor that they deserve. And, thanks to our staunch determination, 80 formerly missing service members, including 31 Airmen, have been returned to their families since January 2010.

Now that these 80 heroes have returned home, grateful Americans can decorate their graves on Memorial Day, too, along with those of many others who sacrificed all. This year, as we observe Memorial Day, let us renew not only our solemn gratitude for their sacrifice; let us also renew our thankfulness for having the privilege to serve such an exceptional nation. Your sacrifices, and those of your families, have earned America's respect. Our proud nation is truly grateful for your service.
We are indeed.  We're just as proud of, and grateful for, the soldiers, sailors, Marines, and coastguardsmen who serve.

Sunday, May 29, 2011


So.  Earlier this afternoon we had to get out in the maelstrom and get our Ol' Ass down to Wally-World to buy some mission essential items, like coffee, Dr. Pepper, bread, milk, and so on. I should add beer to that list, as I stupidly refused to go out yesterday (when I should have but didn't because of... wait for it... the wind) to re-stock the fridge.  One cannot buy any sort of alcohol here on Sunday thanks to P-Ville's enlightened electorate who (a) have very high moral standards (ptui!) and (b) want to ensure EVERYONE subscribes to their petty lil moral code.  I could have driven the 26 miles round-trip out to the base to buy beer but... the wind.  Our recent wildfires have made drivin' out that way on a windy day a rather dangerous proposition due to blowin' dust and I'm very damned serious about that.  So we didn't go.  Meh.

There IS beer in the fridge but it's all of the barley wine and adult soda pop variety... all the Good Stuff is gone.  I poured one of those Bigfoot Ales for Happy Hour, drank half of it and threw the rest out.  It just didn't taste good at all and sumthin' about it gave me a rather queasy feelin'.  Thank The Deity At Hand we have an ample supply of Schweppes, Bombay, and limes in El Casa Móvil De Pennington.  We immediately broke out all three and mixed up a couple o' G&Ts whereupon life proceeded to get marginally better, but still not GOOD.

We most certainly have a highly developed case of the ass today.  The post title is an ol' military term I trotted out specifically for this rant and the cure for IHTFP is FIGMO, in case you're wonderin'.  But I ain't likely to be gettin' any orders soon, so I guess we'll just embrace the suck.

Get OFF my frickin' lawn!

Oh, Just STOP Already!

I'm beginning to think about leaving P-Ville.  This wind is getting on my very last nerve.

The Sunday Re-Run... With Comments!

I just might take the (blogging) day off today but it's too soon to tell, given it's Saturday night and the new day ain't even close to bein' upon us.  So... if I DO take the day off this will be Sunday's sole post and it's (as noted) a re-run.  I came upon this as I was goin' through the archives in search of sumthin' entirely different (which I didn't find).  But that's not unusual... I can't ever find shit I'm looking for.  On my own blog.  And that, Gentle Reader, is a sad state of affairs.  But we digress.

No, I came upon this confessional tale o' woe, wherein I put my shit out on the street for all to see and remark upon when it comes to my insensitive side.  I like to think I've changed my ways but there are prolly a couple o' women around who would disagree, some vehemently.  That's their prerogative and I'll not argue the point... perception is indeed reality... unless those same women would like to do so in person.  But we digress, yet again.  Here's the Insensitive Me:

Today's Happy Hour Soundtrack... And...

We were in a Motown sorta mood for today's Happy Hour.  Here's one of the tunes we listened to as we knocked back a couple o' beers and enjoyed a Deep Dish:

Which brought to mind one of the first of not so many dirty deeds we've perpetrated on The Fairer Sex in this life. So, like it or don't, a reminiscence…

The year is 1962… specifically the Spring of that year… the place is San Jose, California. The Shirelles hit the Big Time that year, and the song above was one of my favorites then and it had quite a bit of overt and covert meaning for me and my Main Squeeze at the time…a wonderful girl-woman by the name of Marcy.

Marcy… she being about five foot three, kinda-sorta plump (finest kind!) and possessing a dazzling smile, among other wondrous things… was wonderful in more than a few ways. First and foremost, she was a girl who found me (sorta) fascinating, a minor miracle in and of itself. Second, she was a girl who ignored the conventions of the time in that she (a) was dating a guy who was about her same age; (b) I was a guy who had neither a car of my own nor a driver's license… something that was highly unusual at that point in time for a guy of my age and location (suburban NorCal); and (c) she was free with her charms... ample as they most certainly were... at least where I was concerned. Marcy, to her everlasting credit, had access to her parents' car and would pick me up and drive us about San Jose whenever we were free, seemingly without concern about the damage this would do to her image. And we were kinda-sorta in love… or as much "in love" as one can be when one is 17 and just beginning to figger stuff out. That's the background.

So… there we were… it was the eve of our Junior-Senior Prom and I was at work, doing landscaping things.

Time for yet another minor digression: I was living with my employer and his family at the time. My father and the rest of my family had moved down to LA a couple o' few months previously, Dad having taken a new job in LA and me not wanting to go along. So, with the help of kindly Mr. Roberts (my employer), we worked out a deal whereby I would remain behind in San Jose... going to school, working and living with Mr. Roberts and his family while Dad & Co traipsed off to LA. Marcy figured prominently into this calculation, by the way. Remember: we were In Love.

So, back to it. My foreman… Mr. Roberts' son… and I got into a helluva argument over the fact I wanted to leave work early and get ready for Prom Night. He wouldn't let me go; I was adamant I HAD to leave. It came down to "leave if you want… but if you do, you're fired." So I did what any impetuous 17-year old would do: I said "Fuck You. I'm leaving. Take your job and shove it." And I walked off the job, commandeering a ride from one of my co-workers back to Mr. Roberts' house. But there's more… I realized that I was gonna be out of a place to live by the virtue of the fact I'd just quit my job, in NO uncertain terms. So I took about 20 minutes and collected all my belongings, packed them up in a duffle bag, and walked out. I got my buddy to drive me down to the San Jose bus station and about 45 minutes (or so) later I was on a bus… LA bound.

And herein lays the dirty deed: I left Marcy hanging, without even making so much as a phone call to let her know I was leaving. And I never spoke to her again, to add insult to injury. I've often wondered about her in the intervening years, and if she ever gives (or gave) a thought to the asshole she loved who simply disappeared on what is arguably one of the biggest nights of one's teen years.

I suppose that kinda-sorta answers the rhetorical question… "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?"… doesn't it? And all that said… I've had worse done to me, and I've done worse. But we won't go THERE. Let's just pop open another brew and go back outside…

13 Astute Observations:

Sam said...
Dad, Never heard that one... another reason why you need to come out to the burg so we can talk more and have a drink of single malt at the bar downstairs. It may be the only use that bar gets!

JimmyT said...
Talk about burning bridges! I wonder if there is some goes-around, comes-around due on that!! I don't think I could top this when it comes to burning the fairer sex. I do have wonder about my one Girlfriend, she moved to OK and I have always wondered about her. BT: Jimmy T sends.

Reese said...
Wow. I was on the other side of a deed roughly as bad. Sucks. Love stinks. The song that triggers the memory for me is "Shout" by Tears for Fears. I guess (rationalize) that the reason you posted this is well, to post it (all the reason you need), and because the song brought it all back. Word verification: "cortt" Ouch.

Buck said...
Sam: There are MANY tales of my youth you've never heard... most of which you never WILL hear, LOL! That said, we'll put that bar to good use. Jimmy: Yeah, I burnt a couple of bridges that day. That happens when you're young and stupid. As far as "goes around, comes around"... maybe I'm living it. (Big-Ass grin goes here) Bob: Love does stink, indeed. As for my reason for posting... it's all wrapped up in the memory triggered by that song. Music is very powerful that way.

Reese said...
"...it's all wrapped up in the memory triggered by that song. Music is very powerful that way." That was my point. And as you say, yours. Still, wow.
Kris, in New England said...
I was never lucky in love as a teen, but never that unlucky...ouch. And on prom night - oh Buck. No. And life goes on.

What. A. Bummer. 17 year olds are awfully silly. I would have gotten a motel room, brought the Honey to the prom and called it a childhood. Then I would have enlisted in the Marines. (Wait... Except for the Motel and the Prom, That really happened!) Great memory you shared. I hope she forgave you, and more importantly; that you forgave yourself.

Gordon said...
Wow. Having done a couple of deeds of a similar nature of dastardy, I can wince in sympathy. I have learned, from the victim of one such deed, that forgiveness is possible.

Buck said...
Kris: As I said: young and stupid. I was all ate up with anger and didn't give a thought to the girl until much later... like halfway to LA... and then I was too embarrassed to call her and apologize once I got to my parents' place. Stupid. Darryl: I did forgive myself, years and years later. Gordon: I really DO hope she forgave me. The kinda shi'ite I pulled can sour a girl on men for life. Or maybe I'm just being hyperbolic. ;-)

Suldog said...
Oh, man, Buck. You suck! Just kidding, of course. You're still my good buddy blogger. But, wow, that was harsh (as you know, and acknowledge, and all the good stuff that makes you the nice guy you are.) I assume you may have tried to locate her via the tools available: Google, etc., without luck?

Buck said...
So.. we had this offline, Jim and I. Wherein I replied: Further embarrassment: I don't remember her last name, which has probably changed (at least once) by now. That WAS 47 years ago... He came back with "Now that's pretty funny. I don't suppose just Googling "Marcy" would get you much of anywhere :-) God bless, Buck. We've all got our memories we'd rather have been more lovable in. At least, I know I do. I bet every person who reads your story and knows a Marcy will ask her some questions, though. Who knows? You might get lucky. It might lead to someone showing up at La Casa someday with a rifle :-)" And she would be but one of many. If she took the time, about which I'm thankful they DON'T. (big-ass grin goes here)

Bag Blog said...
I'm sure Marcy was hurt, but she probably figured it all out and moved on - making her a better woman for it. "Fifty Ways to Leave Your Lover" must have played fifty times on the radio the night a boyfriend did something similar to me. When I hear that song today, I think about how stupid I was for letting him hurt me.

Buck said...
Lou: One couldn't even begin to count up the casualties in the War Of The Sexes, could they? But we manage to survive...
Ah. We were quite the little shit now, weren't we?

Saturday, May 28, 2011

In Today's Mail...

... and just in time for Happy Hour... eight lil and most excellent cigars:

That would be...
Sampler includes the following 8 cigars in a special, limited edition 5"x42 corona:
1 x Ave Maria
1 x La Herencia Cubana
1 x La Herencia Cubana Oscuro Fuerte
1 x Diesel Unholy Cocktail
1 x Diesel Unlimited
1 x Man O' War
1 x Man O' War Virtue
1 x Man O' War Ruination 
Eeeny, meeney, miney, moe... which cigar's the way to go?  I'm thinkin' we'll do two, coz they ARE small.

Update, not quite an hour later:  So we opted for the La Herencia Cubana Oscuro Fuerte, which is a pretty damned good stick (and the first of what WILL be two smokes today).  As is my UCR practice I went off searching for reviews on this cigar and looky what I found at the bottom of the first page:

Damn, but Google is QUICK.

About This Weekend

I normally wait until the actual day... as in the "designated holiday," which is this coming Monday... before I put up my Memorial Day post.  On further reflection my habit strikes me as bein' a lot like a day late and a dollar short.  Not for the lack of sentiment or sincerity, but for timeliness.  Therefore: just a reminder (as if you really needed one and I know YOU don't, Gentle Reader) as to what this weekend is all about.  Go give Lex a read, too.  He has a few great Memorial Day posts today (there are four links there).

Today's Happy Hour Soundtrack

Well, it will be... once the sun is well and truly over the yardarm.  I gotta give credit to Deb for this one, as she put up a post about Robbie Robertson, a recent recipient of the Order of Canada.  One thing leads to another, of course and I had to share my very favorite Robertson song with Deb and her readers.  And I'll share it with you too, Gentle Reader.

I wanna breathe when you breathe
When you whisper like that hot
summer breeze
Count the beads of sweat that cover me
Didn't you show me a sign, this time
"Broken Arrow" is off of RR's self-titled album of 1987... which has many more than a few great tunes (think: "Somewhere Down the Crazy River") and used to be in continuous rotation in the way-back.  "Broken Arrow" had sumthin' like "Our Song" status in Former Happy Days and it still has a tendency to make me rather misty.  If I let it.

You Too Can Look Like a Tart

From My Buddy Ed In Florida...
This photo below was taken at a competition in June 2008 involving 9 "Plain Jane" women for best makeover. They had every possible beauty treatment available to them over a period of 12 hours before the contest. Look at the before and after photos. Conclusion - there are no ugly women only poor women without the financial means to look like this. The woman 2nd from the left won the contest.
 Beer has the same effect for less money.
Ed is right about the effects of beer but I'm thinkin' all those women look pretty much the same after their make-overs.  And that's NOT a Good Thing.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Bitch, Bitch, Bitch

And we're bitchin' about The Usual.  Regarde:

Let's just say 94 degrees with 20+ mph winds is a lot like standing in front of God's Own Blow Dryer.  Sayin' "but it's a DRY heat," while true, doesn't do a damned thing to mitigate the impact of direct sun on the side of El Casa Móvil De Pennington.  It goes without sayin' the wind is too high to put my awning down, so we must live with direct sun.  Is my AC workin' overtime?  Why, yes... yes it IS.  It might could be even worse tomorrow, as the forecast is for 101 degrees.  I hope the wind dies down by then.

We were out in this krep a lil earlier, doing a remove and replace operation to fit the Lovely Miss Zukiko with her new stored energy device.  We accomplished that mission but aborted the wash and polish operation that was to follow, given my hair was well and truly dry enough.  Well, sorta, if'n ya don't count the sweat.  I know: TMI.

So now we're indoors... relaxing bein' punished with one of those Punishers I went on about last month and taking long deep swigs from a glass full of smooth and creamy Fransizkaner to take the punishing bite away from the lips.  I'm not the sorta guy who is into anything even remotely resembling BDSM, with the possible exceptions of Thai food, New Mexico chiles, and these Punishers, all three of which hurt SO good.

And so it goes.


PENSACOLA (NNS) -- The commanding officer of the Naval Flight Demonstration Squadron was relieved of command by chief of naval air training May 27.

Cmdr. Dave Koss requested that Rear Adm. Bill Sizemore relieve him of his command following a lower-than-normal maneuver during the team's last performance at the Lynchburg Regional Air Show May 22. 
Amazing.  CDR Koss' relief means the Blues will cancel two shows.  I'm so stunned I can't even come up with any appropriate Air Force/Navy or T-Birds/Blues snark.  Just... wow.

Nest, Sweet Nest

Well, my flamingos have found nice comfy places to roost but it remains to be seen if these are permanent nests.  I have a feeling these birds will move around a bit.  They have names now, too.

Sledge seems to have an affinity for my teevee.  Mebbe it's because it's warm there and you know flamingos like warm places.  Sledge is a girl, by the way, and has no inkling about QVC or the Home Shopping Network.  Yet.  She does like Animal Planet a lot, though.

Percy, on the other hand, seems to be less flighty and made of sterner stuff, the kinda bird who needs a purpose in life beyond bein' just another pretty beak.  He's taken on the responsibility of guarding my Very Important Papers, which are filed in the order they're received and thrown neatly stored in my upstairs filing cabinet.  I'm thinkin' Percy might invite Sledge in when the lights go out.  I hope they're quiet about those sorta things; I need my beauty sleep.

Thursday, May 26, 2011


Life is full of 'em.  Here's my latest:

I wanted full-grown flamingos, not flamingo CHICKS.  Oh well, I've thrown away one whole helluva lot more money in times past than what I spent here.  There was an upside, though.  My UPS Lady asked me "what did I bring ya today?" as she handed me the box.  "Pink flamingos," sez I, in reply.  You should have seen her expression.  That alone was worth the 20 Yankee Dollars.

Back to the drawing board.


I awoke at a fairly reasonable hour today... around 1030 hrs, which is reasonable for ME... fired up the 'puter, and attempted to read the overnight mail while the coffee was brewing.  Two and a half hours later... our network connection is restored, the mail has been read, and now it's off to make the rounds and see what's happening in the world.  

We take SO many things for granted in our modern lives... running water, electricity, our internet connection... and we're lost when one of those things goes belly-up.  But, Hey!  Opportunity.  My bathroom got cleaned (along with other areas of El Casa Móvil De Pennington), and that reminds me of this old piece from The Onion.  Productivity.  It's what's for breakfast.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Busy Day

We're recently in from running the day's errands... which included a trip out to the Cannon Airplane Patch pharmacy where we had a not-too-pleasant encounter with a female Staff Sergeant who told me a drug that's been prescribed for me for at least three years and which I have obtained from said gub'mint pharmacy during those three years wasn't EVER stocked by them, said encounter resolved in my favor by her quick rather lengthy perusal of my prescription history (thank The Deity At Hand for databases and patient histories)... and then it was on to The Big(ger) City™, where we had our final eye follow up, made a trip to the Suzuki store to get the lovely Miss Zukiko a new battery, and lastly a drop-in at the Top Shop for to order M'Lady a new bonnet and make arrangements to have The Green Hornet's driver seat repaired.  A full day, as it were.  Weeks will go by where the most exciting thing we do in this life is make the journey to Wally-World and then... bang!... stuff happens.

My eye follow-up was prolly the best of all possible worlds, given that my eyes have stabilized at 20/30 (distance) and we are NOT in need of glasses for distance work.  We still need readers (and I bought a spiffy new pair, which look a lot like those at left), but I can live with that.  We also ordered a pair of high-zoot bifocal sunglasses while we were at the optometrist's, the upper half bein' planos and the lower half readers, for to ensure I can read TGH's gauges and odometer and stuff while motoring on down the road at the usual, customary, and reasonable brisk pace.  I could have saved a boat load o' money if I bought those not-sold-in-stores HIGH DEFINITION sunglasses, but... whatever.  I'm thinkin' my optometrist knows more about sunglasses than those carnival barkers.

So now it's Happy Hour and Game Six of the Eastern Conference finals, which JUST started and already the Yzerbolts scored... 36 seconds into the game.


Scrapin' the Bottom o' the Bloggin' Barrel VIII

Another installment in a series o' occasional posts that fall into the category of "when all else fails."  I forgot to tell ya about one of THE most important things to happen in my so-called life, Gentle Reader, to wit: we have found another wash'n'fold service.  And none too soon, either, as we'd exhausted the Emergency Tee Shirt supply last week and were down to wearin' stuff we reserve for Corporate Casual days, which is to say shirts with actual collars and Dockers.  I just HATE havin' to look my age, yanno?

So... here's what 25 pounds o' laundry looks like:

What costs 25 Yankee Dollars, including the spiffy gift wrapping:

Ahem.  Thank The Deity At Hand for small gifts, as it's said.  I just wish ladies bearin' gifts wouldn't call so danged early in the morning to tell me my laundry is ready for pick up, yanno?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Air Force News From New Mexico

Bye, Bye Black Sheep: Airmen at Holloman AFB, N.M., held an inactivation ceremony for the 8th Fighter Squadron. The "Black Sheep" are standing down after less than two years of operating F-22s due to the Air Force's Raptor fleet consolidation plan, which calls for Holloman to lose its two squadrons' worth of F-22s and take on two F-16 squadrons for training. "We flew 2,500 sorties and over 3,000 hours. That's more than 10 sorties a day, with less than nine F-22s," said Lt. Col. Craig Baker, 8th FS commander, in highlighting his unit's accomplishments during the inactivation ceremony. The inactivation takes effect on July 15. Some of the 8th FS' F-22s are going, for the time being, to Holloman's 7th FS, while others will bolster the ranks of F-22 units at JB Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska; JB Langley-Eustis, Va.; and Nellis AFB, Nev. The 7th FS' F-22s will eventually shift to Tyndall AFB, Fla. This is the second time in the 8th FS' 61-year-history that the unit will go on inactive status. The first time was in April 2008 following the retirement of the F-117 Nighthawk. The Black Sheep have flown 15 airframes throughout their history, and they dropped the first bombs in both Operation Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom when they flew F-117s. (Holloman release by A1C Siuta B. Ika) (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Eileen Payne/Released)
There's a short video at the "Holloman release" link, above.  I gave that vid a look and the first thing that struck me was "it's painful to watch a unit retire its colors."  I've never personally witnessed a unit inactivation, at least not any unit to which I was currently assigned when it ceased to exist.  I DO have the dubious honor of stating all four radar squadrons I served in have been deactivated (the 669th, the 750th, the 761st, and the 780th) and their physical locations have nearly deteriorated into nothingness.  It's a true fact you can never go home again, particularly when "home" doesn't exist any longer.  The 8FS may live again sometime in the future but it's a pretty safe bet there will never be another radar squadron, because time and technology marches on... relentlessly.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Uh-Oh. We're HERE.

The Green Hornet and I have hit that point in our relationship.  "Buy and hold" car guys know what I mean... it's the point when one begins to weigh the cost of on-going maintenance against the cost of buying another vehicle.  I actually reached that point last year when I had my first Big Ticket repair bill, i.e., replacing the clutch.  Which wasn't as bad, dollar-wise, as our upcoming 60K mile service.  I'm getting the timing belt replaced as part of that routine service (almost exactly at the Mazda-recommended 60K mile point), replacing the shocks/struts, and various and sundry other things done as well... which may or may not include a brake job.  I'm not gonna tell ya what all that is gonna cost, Gentle Reader... it's sufficient to say I'm shaken and NOT stirred.

I received a gentle lecture from SN2 the other night about the cost of repairs at the dealership versus the all-around goodness of the DIY approach... what with SN2 being quite the car geek, complete with a well-appointed garage.  There was a point in time when I did minor maintenance myself, but that was a time when I too had a well-appointed garage with a large workbench, a hydraulic floor jack, jack stands, and the tools necessary to do this sorta work.  Times change, though, and I refuse to do this stuff in my driveway, not to mention the fact that all the foregoing support items went bye-bye in 1999's Great Goin' Out O' Bid'niz Sale.

So there's that.  It's also time for a new top; the old top only lasted ten and a half years and I'm sorely disappointed about that (heh).  Last year's stopgap re-sewing of M'Lady's bonnet worked well for nearly a year but now the rear window is starting to fall out and that cannot be repaired, beyond holding it in with duct tape... which is what I've been doin' for the better part of a month now.  So, we'll procure a new top and we are waiting for a call-back from the good folks at Craftmasters to see just how much THAT is gonna be.  We're also gonna get TGH's driver's seat reupholstered as the leather is cracking in two or three places, including an unsightly ten-inch crack in the seat's bottom cushion.  There's that, too, and it's all beginning to add up.  Still and even, we've decided to Git R Dun, as opposed to taking on a car payment.  I hope we're right.

Beer me!

Image from The Car Connection.

Posted Without Comment

I won't say anything.  I won't say ANYthing.  I won't say NUTHIN'!

Apocalypse, Now and Then

So... Saturday came and went with no Rapture unless you count the usual, customary, reasonable and quite normal pleasures of the flesh we all indulge in on Saturdays, especially Saturday nights.  So, it's one down and one to go... with the next predicted end-o'-the world due to occur on 12/21/2012.  Or so says the Mayan calendar according to some people who have trouble distinguishing their ass from their elbow.  We've all read THAT, right?  I know I have but what I haven't read... beyond the "harrumphs" and  "bullshit!" exclamations from people who can tell their asses and elbows apart... is a well-reasoned refutation of the Mayan calendar apocalypse cranks.  Until now.  From the WSJ:
Like the Aztecs and other Mesoamerican peoples, the Maya followed not one calendar but two, a 365-day civic one they called the ha'b and a 260-day religious almanac known as the tzolk'in; running independently, the two synchronized about every 52 years. The Maya also maintained the so-called Long Count, an unbroken tally of days stretching back to (in our calendar) Aug. 11, 3114 B.C., a day that was thought to mark the day of creation, just as our own reckoning begins with the birth of Christ.

For the Maya, Dec. 21, 2012, would have been a red-letter date, the completion of a 144,000-day (or nearly 400-year) period called a bak'tun, and it would have been marked with ceremonies presided over by their kings. But the milestone—known as " 4 Ahaw 3 K'ank'in" on the Long Count calendar—would not have signaled the end of the world. Rather, it would have heralded the beginning of a new bak'tun, a resetting of the cosmic odometer analogous to the one we marked on January 1, 2000.

Out of the thousands of known Maya inscriptions, " 4 Ahaw 3 K'ank'in" appears in exactly one—as a simple mention with no dire undertones. Moreover, Mr. Stuart suggests that the Maya computed dates nearly 72 octillion years into the future—that's 72 followed by 27 zeros—by which time, modern scientists tell us, the universe will have ended for real. Such extended calculations seem an unlikely pursuit for a people who expected the apocalypse to arrive long, long before.
Well, so much for the latest apocalyptic prediction, as if ya actually needed a noted scholar and archaeologist to refute the conspiracy stuff.  But it helps.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Today's Happy Hour Soundtrack

Well, this is certainly depressing but is no way indicative of my mood on this sunny early evening:

Oh, yeah
It’s easy to forget, yeah
When you choke on the regrets, yeah
Who the hell did I think I was?

And stranger than your sympathy

And all these thoughts you stole from me
And I’m not sure where I belong
And no where’s home and no more wrong
The song isn't indicative of our mood at all, coz today is a welcome break from the maelstrom.  We ARE taking advantage by spending the better part of three hours outdoors on the verandah, catching up on our reading while incrementally reducing the contents of both fridge and humidor.  Nope, the song was popular in my recent past and still rings a couple of wistful bells, even today... kinda like the tolling of a single bell over a windswept Yorkshire moor in winter.  Ah... we're not very good at constructing metaphors, are we?

It's a BEAUTIFUL Thing...

... watching the pathetic Tiburones self-destruct.  Vancouver scored their third consecutive five-on-three power play goal a few minutes ago after killing off FIVE San Jose power plays in the first 30 minutes of the game.  Canucks 3, San Jose Zip.  Nada.  Zilch.  More of this, please.

Spiritual Weirdness

Well, I'm still here, the ground didn't open up, and I've read no reports of catastrophic earthquakes of the sort Mr. Camping predicted anywhere on the globe.  It might could be I've been Left Behind... there's always that possibility.  Or, in my particular case, that certainty... were I of the Christian persuasion.  But I'm not, so there's that.  I'll not go off on any theological tangents, even though I AM tempted.  Fer instance: about two-thirds of the world's people aren't Christian.  Would they be Left Behind?  Well, yes.  But would they CARE?  I don't think so.  I'll quit while I'm ahead. 

Speaking of Spiritual Weirdness... I stumbled on to an on-line tarot reading site today and asked it a question, just for grins and giggles.  I was shocked at the answer (click to embiggen):

My question was a variation on the ever-popular "does she love me?" theme (I'll provide no details beyond that, Gentle Reader).  Imagine my surprise.  
Resolution comes with a new beginning. Be open to all the twists and curves in the road ahead. Be ready for wonderful surprises. Be open-hearted, innocent, trusting and spontaneous. Take a risk! Before you is a brand new adventure — the chance for a fresh start and endless possibilities.
Well, OK.  We'll not delve too deeply here (yet again), but let's just say I've been ready for wonderful surprises for one whole helluva long time now... not to mention the fact we're open-hearted, innocent, trusting, yadda, yadda.  And here I thought Mr. Camping was weird.