Thursday, November 29, 2018

I might be Speedy Gonzales

 I guess I need to define that title for clarity and levity. “Speedy Gonzales is an animated cartoon character in the Warner Brothers Looney Tunes and Merry Melodies series of cartoons. He is portrayed as The Fastest Mouse in all Mexico with his major traits being the ability to run extremely fast, speaking with an exaggerated Mexican accent and also speaking Spanish.”

I might just be the fastest mouse in Baytown. I guess I should be apologetic for stating this, but shaking my haid, I simply can’t. If I were to be asked why I appear to be so confidant, I would have to admit, “Because it is reinforced on a daily basis by the slower and sluggish masses.”

At the behest of my youthful Bride, I have tried to reign in my status as “Speedy Gonzales”, but “No va a pasar.” For some bizarre reason, she claims “You are just high-strung, honey!”, but we both know it is not me, but everyone around me... except her, of course. We both understand that my Bride of 41 years is skating along in my wave of speedy activity and sometimes objects to my special abilities.

I do my best to relay the simple fact that everyone around me is moving and thinking slower than me, but she is not really onboard. My observations when in traffic fail to bring her over to my way of thinking… for some inexplicable reason.

On the surface, it appears I am jumpy when it comes to a traffic light turning green, but the truth of the matter is, I am simply watching the light and when it turns green… I go. I also habitually come to a complete stop before turning right on red, which slaps me directly in the minority. No rolling stops for me. I habitually use my blinker also and usually put it on far in advance to my actual turn.

Yes, maybe I do jack rabbit from the line and often will get up the speed limit (where I stay) only to open a gap of an eighth mile between me and the cars behind me. Now here’s the weird thing. By the time I get to a quarter mile from the light, the cars that were with me at the light will all blow past me. Now who then is jack rabbiting? They were lento to go when the light turned green (cell phone alert), but after they get going, they usually blow past me 10 miles an hour over the speed limit.

If you are a driver who actually is applying the rules we were taught when we sought getting a drivers license, then you know exactly what I experience. If you fall into the sluggish group, you most likely don’t know I am talking about you. I tell folks we are living out the Walking Dead when it comes to a good number of our driving society.

Add in the other bizarre things zombie drivers do and it’s a wonder more people aren’t killed or injured on our streets. No too many moons ago I was about 50 yards behind a car when they suddenly stopped. I mean they put on the brakes and stopped in the lane. I hit my brakes and went past them at maybe 20 mph. Guess what they were doing. You guessed it; they were staring at their phone. I shook my head in confusion and muttered something along the lines of, “Que estúpido idiota.

Like my padre before me, I have never caused or been the reason someone wrecked an automobile or truck. Maybe its because when we drove, we actually paid attention to the road in front and back of us and not everything else. Call me Speedy Gonzales if you like and I won’t be offended, but if you don’t get going at a red light and are in front of me… You’re going to get the horn.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

America needs a benevolent government

Over my 10 years of columns/blogs I have made it very clear I believe the real purpose of our government is to protect American citizens. What is happening in California with the numerous fires is a perfect blackboard. Federal, State, county, and city officials need to come to their rescue. The same goes for Florida and hurricane Michael. Whatever it takes to get those citizens back on their feet is what our government should do.

Forget mid-term election results. If I were a politician who was defeated in California and Florida, the first thing I would do is hustle down to these disaster sites and help in any way possible. What I am trying to say is actually do something besides playing politics and point fingers.

I’ve been watching the “news” and I see Nancy Pelosi mounting a giant effort to be elected as speaker of the house. I may have missed the many briefings she made to help the Camp Fire victims. Maybe the fake wing news “just ain’t reportin’ it”, I don’t know, but what I do know is the partisan politics we saw in the Judge Kavanaugh monkey trial made me violently ill. It made me hate politics, especially the Democrat’s partisan attack on the man.

Major weather events like fires, earthquakes, floods, mud-slides, volcanoes, tornados, hurricanes, and blizzards are when our government can shine, but they can’t do it if they are fighting over every little partisan issue. Listen to me politicians. America is sick of watching our government fight over everything. Do something “for the people” that proves your devotion to the voters. Use our tax money for more than hand-outs to countries that hate us.

When we have whole cities incinerated and hundreds of citizens dead or missing, we need help! Forget all this politicin’ and show you care by getting FEMA to these disaster sites and get people off the ground. Modular housing with centrally located showers for starters. Food, water, and a direct line for prescription drugs for another. Bring in the Navy Seabee’s and the Army Corps of Engineers and have them clear the area. Make medical care free until they can file or not.

After WWII, this was called the Marshall Plan. “The Marshall Plan (officially the European Recovery Program, ERP) was an American initiative to aid Western Europe, in which the United States gave over $12 billion (nearly $100 billion in 2016 US dollars) in economic assistance to help rebuild Western European economies after the end of World War II.” Our leaders determined that walking away from Europe after WWI was a huge mistake and allowed Adolf Hitler to rise to power.

By rebuilding the country (and Japan) we brought them lemonade from smashed lemons. This will work here also. Put those troops to work here and let the leaders of other countries stop stuffing their own pockets with American aid money. Americans won’t try to kill our troops with IED’s either and will most likely work right along beside them.

I appreciate the President visiting California and saying we will get it done. I just hope it is more than bottled water and MRE’s. Here we are over a year after Hurricane Harvey and folks are still not back to normal.

It is high time Americans demand, yes demand accountability in times of anarchy, contagion, weather disasters, and even caravans of people attempting to breach our borders illegally. We do have to put our interests above theirs. I am always reminded of the venerated Mahatma Gandhi. Yes, he did a lot of wonderful things, but did you know that according to Biblical scripture, he was worse than an infidel? Why, you may ask?

The reason I say he is worse than an infidel is because he did not take care of his own family. He gave almost everything he earned to the poor, making his own family poorer. He would not let his many children get an education. I learned this by reading his autobiography. His wife pleaded and begged him to no avail. He took care of everyone else, but left his own family starving and ignorant. Sound familiar?

It should. It’s how our politicians view the Global scene. Feed them first! Hockey, I say! Forget the global scene if we Americans have drastic needs. I’m not saying we should break ties, I’m saying we should take care of our “family” first.

Pay your taxes, obey the laws and tell the government to only step in when we have a disaster. But when major trouble rears its ugly head, step in with both feet and do it immediately. Use government funds to rebuild and then witness the amazing recovery and voter confidence in our government return.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Eyes Wide Shut – Why didn’t Someone Tell Me?

I never knew I was considered less than attractive by the opposite sex until yesterday. Maybe it’s because I am happily married and my Bride settled for less; I don’t know. I also don’t know why this bothers me. At my advanced age, does it really matter than I am less attractive than a certain segment of maleness? No one has actually pointed this out to me and maybe that is why I have been blissfully ignorant for so long.

It all started with a new study by the legendary Journal of Evolutionary Biology, which I am fairly sure everyone has read at one time or another. The study came to light when Yahoo News reported it and seeing I am a regular reader of the journal, I instantly took note. As we all know, the Journal of Evolutionary Biology is a bimonthly peer-reviewed scientific journal covering the field of evolutionary biology. It is published by Wiley-Blackwell on behalf of the European Society for Evolutionary Biology. I think it goes without saying it is a real page turner.

I’m also a staunch follower of the European Society for Evolutionary Biology, but I deviate. According to the news release, this is how it is broken down:

Researchers asked more than 8,500 women to rate men on their attractiveness as a long-term romantic partner, Yahoo News reported.

Here’s how the facial hair rated:

    Heavy stubble (10 days)
    Full beards
    Light stubble

“Beards may be more attractive to women when considering long‐term than short‐term relationships as they indicate a male’s ability to successfully compete socially with other males for resources,” the study concluded. Beards, the researchers said, are associated with a man’s age and masculine social dominance.

I have been clean shaven since 1975 and not one friend, or should I say “real friend” has tried to masculine-up me by casually mentioning that I needed to have at least a stubble of some kind. Not one. Now I’m beginning to wonder if I even have friends. With all the old white men bashing going on, I will rapidly become a double target. There is probably no juicier target than an ugly old white man, but then again, I digress.

Friends don’t let friends walk around ugly, especially when the remedy is simply to stop shaving. I mean I did not get one warning or even a single nudge in that direction, so the only scientific conclusion any reasoning person could arrive at struck me like a fully dressed uncooked turkey right up side the head. A beard will not help me. A mustache surely won’t make a difference if the beard is a bust.

I just have to adapt to the fact that I am not an attractive male. It shouldn’t be too difficult as I have been unwittingly unattractive all these years and honestly, what difference has it made? Now, there is a remote possibility of something else. Maybe the results of the study are not all that kosher?  I laughed at that thought. Of course its accurate; its written in the Journal of Evolutionary Biology and backed by the European Society for Evolutionary Biology for goodness sake. I’ll just wear a hoodie and sunglasses when out in public and its all good.

Thursday, November 08, 2018

Say no to winter, but save us from Mossies!

My 2 winters in Montana ruined me for freezing weather. The Great Plains can do that to a person. The wind is always blowing and the frigid air is not what I call refreshing. Its fricken cold! When I was stationed in Great Falls Montana, it snowed on the 4th of July. The year was 1971. I related this to a resident of Casper, Wyoming back in 1986 and they remembered it quite well, even though they were to south a good piece.

I do not remember getting bit by mosquitoes in Montana.  I do remember the terrible cold.

I would much rather be warm. Notice I didn’t say hot. I can handle hot if its dry, but this past summer was wet, real wet. Like someone on Facebook posted, it only rained twice this summer - once for 45 days and again for 32 days.  We ended summer with a massive daily crop of mosquitoes. 3 times a week I watch the skeeter sprayer go past my house and yet they just kept biting me. My Bride rarely gets bitten, as they are feasting on me and my grandson.

The danged black salt marsh mosquitoes have been the bane of my outdoor existence (Aedes taeniorhynchus), a nuisance mosquito known as an aggressive biter, but not considered a disease-carrier of major concern. I guess that’s a plus, but holy smokes this tiny parasite packs a powerful and painful whelp. Their attraction to me has spurred my interest in remedies, because bug spray is only as good as my spraying ability. In other words, if I miss a single spot with Deet, the tiny insect nails me there. This includes biting my hiney through the webbing of my outdoor chair.

At others suggestions, I’ve tried Campho-Phenique, CeraVe itch relief moisturizing cream, Chiggerex 2X Power and Benadryl itch relief stick, which didn’t do a thing to relieve the itch and pain. I found a tube of Lidocaine ointment 5% that works real well. Of the other concoctions, only CeraVe works and it works well,

Something I found to be amazing is the cost of Campho-Phenique. I bought a ¾ fluid ounce bottle from Kroger for $5. Doing the rithmatick on this, the fluid is $800 a gallon. They sure are proud of this stuff. Chiggerex 2X Power works well and is my go to chemical for most bites and stings, but the black salt marsh skeeter demands a stronger topical analgesic.

If the temperature dropping into the 30’s, as it is predicted, stops me from getting bitten, then I am all for it, but our nightly visits to the backyard swing will probably suffer also. One person commented that we have 2 seasons and they are probably correct. It’s either too hot and humid, or it is too cold and wet to really enjoy our weather. 

I guess I’ll just be happy to not be bit repeatedly when outside.

Thursday, November 01, 2018

Politicians are modern day Biblical scribes

Then Jesus entered the temple area and proceeded to drive out those who were selling things,saying to them,“It is written,'My house shall be a house of prayer.
In the New Testament of the Bible, Jesus spoke out very strongly about 3 groups of people; tax collectors because they caused financial hardship, religious leaders who abused their power over the people, and scribes (lawyers /politicians) who also used their position to control the populace. I can't find where he attacked businessmen as a group. Keep in mind the people who were selling sacrificial items in the temple were part of the religious leader group.

Jesus entered the temple courts and drove out all who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves. 13 “It is written,” he said to them, “‘My house will be called a house of prayer,’[a] but you are making it ‘a den of robbers.’ Matthew 21:12-13

Donald Trump has the ire of certain Republicans who see him as a threat to business as usual. He's viewed like the guy who arrives at a fancy golfing event wearing a hoodie and flip flops. He’s not in the law making in-crowd of shrewd wheeling and dealing where no one gets offended and socially they party together. What these dyed in the wool Republicans need to understand is this country is in no mood for anything except making better wages and having more money to spend as they danged well please. Reasoning voters don’t want any more infringement on our Constitutional rights than has already happened.

It appears it is time these stubborn and untouchable Republicans get on the Trump train, or get off at the next depot. He is steam-rolling this country with new enthusiasm and healthy competition. Never mind it is being painted directly the opposite in the liberal media venues. Nothing the man does will please them. We saw this at the Kavanaugh hearing. What a sham the Democrats pulled. They had no intention of ever confirming the judge and used every stall tactic to wayside the process. In the end, they discredited everyone and everything and voted against his nomination, despite the fact that not one witness came forward against him other than Dr. Ford.

Concerning laws made under Obama, the Democrats are justifiably angry and upset as Trump is one by one undoing, negating, or eliminating all the precious policies their “He gives me hope!” president pushed through. Never mind that these same restrictive policies put us at a disadvantage with foreign trade. The deregulation of industry and the new tariffs are bringing jobs back and I don’t know if anyone is listening, but this means food on the table.

I think the Democrats are terrorized by the man and his openness. Frankly, I haven't been offended by anything he's said. I find it pleasantly pleasing that every word hasn't been massaged to be politically correct. Their entire platform is secondary to trashing the president. Democratic politics is akin to two 13 year old girls flailing at each other while ripping out handfuls of hair and calling it a fight. They’ve abandoned mentioning almost everything they claim they want so they can multiply their attack on Trump.

Watch the youtube interviews of college students and you will rapidly deduce they haven’t a clue what is going on. All they know is it is hip to be a liberal. What is being taught to these kids is paramount to political bias and they swallow it as total truth. If anyone dares to offer a second opinion, they are openly ridiculed and/or attacked.

People keep speculating about a Blue wave. I predict it will be just the opposite. The Democratic leaders have openly called for their minions to “act up” and “don’t let them eat in public” without interfering and then cry fowl when some right wing gun nut comes out of the woodwork. Of course it isn’t their fault (according to them), but of course they had a major part in it.

Scribes were so called because they wrote out the law, or because they classified and arranged its precepts, or because they counted with scrupulous minuteness every elapse and letter It contained. Modern day scribes need to go back to their roots and concentrate on what is workable in 2018 and forget all this infighting.

The real poop on the Ukraine

Mitt Romney’s top adviser, Joseph Cofer Black, joined the board of the Ukraine energy firm, Burisma, while Hunter Biden was also serving on ...