Thursday, May 31, 2012

I Admit It~~I Can Be A Grouch

The other night I turned into a grouch for the stupidest reason. It seems that happens to me every now and then and usually I take it out on the people that are closest to me. I have given a lot of thought to this recently as the reasons for my 'grouchiness' escape me.

When I turned green and slid into my garbage can the other night there was nothing that preceded it that I would consider an igniter of my bad temper. Maybe things build up below the surface and erupt on their own.

The act of 'grouchery' is not a new one. There was actually an ancient Greek play whose name, Dyskolos by Menander, was translated to mean 'The Grouch".  Another name for this play is "The Bad-tempered Man or Old Cantankerous". This play describing my behavior was written approximately 316BC.

I have also read several articles about 'How To Be A Grouch' so I could decide if I had a terminal case of  'grouchitis' or if my recent relapse was temporary. According to these articles being a grouch takes talent. Spend a day with a frown on your face and an unpleasant demeanor and you realize that being a grouch is tougher then you previously thought. Practice can compensate for the absence of natural grouch talent.

I think that my case is temporary at the worst. Hopefully it is not contagious, lol.

The remedy that I prescribe is a good solid slap across the face tempered by a healthy dose of love. That is exactly how I was handled the other night and I seem cured.

For those of you that feel a need for full time grouchery I suggest you hold your worst outbreaks until National Grouch Day which occurs every year on October 15th.


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Hunger Games, USA, USSR And Anticlimax

I just finished the trilogy, The Hunger Games, Catching Fire and Mockingjay, and found them to be a very enjoyable read. This trilogy was originally advertised as a 'young adult' series but there are lessons and comparisons to be learned within its pages.

The books depict a classical struggle between good and evil with a twist. One is not always sure which side is the good or the evil. It actually mimics life very well especially considering the world we now live. A classic power struggle with people used as pawns and layer upon layer of deceit employed by those holding power.

The struggle for freedom, as depicted here, can draw comparison to The USA's struggle with England in the 18th century and the satellite states struggle with Russia in the 20th Century. Both fights for human rights, self determination  and basic freedoms. Even to the point of their being 13 districts in Panem and 13 American Colonies. and the references to Panem existing geographically where the USA once held sway.

The other striking comparison, without giving away the ending, is the anticlimactic way the characters are treated. This bothered me at first until I came to the conclusion that the players in all wars, real and imaginary and given their survival, do live anticlimactically for the rest of their lives.

Returning from war, and we can see that now in the faces of those returning from Afghanistan and Iraq, life is anticlimactic. You live out your lives, albeit ones filled with nightmares, in relative safety after seeing the cruelty of war. After living each day with deaths door within easy reach you find yourself spending time with your family, working, going to church and living a relative prisoner of normalcy. With your life's adventures, ones you would never have picked for yourself, behind you.

My opinion so take it for what it's worth.

I read this trilogy over a three week period. All three books are an easy read that holds your interest and gets you involved with the characters. I would recommend them to be read before seeing the movies.


Saturday, May 26, 2012

Things I Hate and Could Do Without

Life is supposed to be lived! It is supposed to be fun! We have our ups and downs but for the most part we should be enjoying our lives. There will always be some of us that seem to be miserable every day. Luckily I do not fall in with that group. I generally go through life happily seeing my cup half full and not half empty.

Of course I have my moments, lol. There are things that set me off and get my blood boiling. Some are little in nature. Others are larger than life. Unfortunately most of them are reoccurring.

I only mention this because I am endeavoring to write more blogs on the happy or funny side and less of the ones that make me spit insults and vitriol at STUPID people.

Some of the things that I am trying to avoid to achieve my happy blog goals are:

~Stupid People~Very hard to do you say? Yes it is!!!!!  A simple trip to Wal-Mart will produce multiple sightings of the Species Peopleus Stupideous. I find the 4pm - 7pm time slot particularly entertaining and avoid it at all costs. I now shop at Wal-Mart around 5am when no one is around.

~The Internet News  New Catch Words~AOL News is especially grievous in this respect. Words like Outrageous, Massacre, Slams, Frightening and Surprising are used to draw people into stories that little substance or are non news. I have stopped reading any story that has any of those words in the title.

~Weather Reporters Covering Extreme Weather~You know the ones I mean? The reports that are mandatory whenever a hurricane comes ashore or a snow storm hits. The scene; weather person standing outside and near a beach. Usually in their hotel parking lot. Fighting hurricane force winds while trying to hold their hat on and telling us that its windy and raining. My God it's a hurricane dip shit!! Of course it's windy and raining. The Weather Channel is famous for these types of reports. Their 'hurricane experts' in the field at the slightest mention of a hurricane sighting. The funniest reports are the ones that are given while standing on a beach that the hurricane has missed. The hapless reporter showing us 2 foot waves and lamenting that the storm made land fall to the north of their position. Good luck for property owners and bad luck for their career.

~Tofu~The other day my neighbor, who tends to give me food and who I greatly appreciate, invited me to a dinner consisting of tofu with veggies. A good thought considering my recent health issues. I sat down with her and her husband and eat every bite she gave me. Even the seconds, lol. The veggies were wonderful but the tofu was something I try my best to avoid at all costs. It has no taste looks strange on the plate and they do not have a dog to slip it to when she was not looking. I particularly felt bad for her husband who had to sit there and eat it after a hard days work. The next day I took him out to eat at a 'country buffet' as a form of apology for the tofu.

There are so many more things that make me want to spit nails. In no particular order:

~Okra Boiled
~Neck Bones and Rice(WTF is up with that)
~Sweets Without Sugar(Is it really a sweet if it has no sugar)
~Seedless Watermelon(Takes the fun out of spiting the seeds for distance)
~Borrowing Someones Handicapped Sticker(I want instant jail time for this one)
~Low Fat Ice Cream(Whats the point!!!!!)
~Baseball Type Caps Turned Sideways(It just looks ignorant)
~Pants Worn So Low Underwear Shows(I actually saw a woman wearing pants like this last week)
~Multicolored Hair On Anyone I Have To Do Business With
~Drivers Seats Reclined So Far The Driver Is Practically Laying Down

God I could go on and on!!

Make your own list. I think you will be surprised at what you include.


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Wedlock~~Jokes, Confusion, Pain And Happiness

Wedlock~~the union between two people that unites them in a life long quest for mutual happiness. At least that is what is supposed to happen, lol. I have been married three times. The first ended in a mutual split up of two people that were way to young to get married. The second ended because there have been times in my life that I was am immature ass and proved it. The third was full of mutual and individual mistakes that eventually took there toll. Through each and every one of them there were good and bad times, fun and sad times, love and hate but I would not wish them not to be as my four children are proof of happier times and I love then dearly.

I saw this picture and my thoughts were that this newly minted married couple are looking out over this pastoral scene and contemplating their future together. If they were to turn around they would see a demonstration of their sex lives in 20 years; the male in search of his own satisfaction and the female wondering how long he will take so she can get back to the laundry.

The term 'wedlock' has been around for centuries and literally means the locking of two lives together for their mutual benefit of both. Unfortunately as time went by marriage has lost its overall impact on our lives giving way to cohabitation, raising children without parental commitment to marriage and single parent families(both male and female) in lieu of tradition.

"Marriage is a great institution, but I’m not ready for an institution yet.” ~~Mae West. How many of us have felt this way? Especially on the morning of our intended nuptials. The morning of my third wedding I was alone in my apartment, having been abandoned by my best man and groomsmen so they could dress, and thinking about what I was about to do and the last bit of instructions my bride to be had given me, "make sure you eat something before the ceremony".

I admit to having second thoughts. I think many people do early on the day of the ceremony. But I overcame my fear and moved onto breakfast before I dressed. My refrigerator held little and I settled on a banana and a beer to get my day started. That breakfast lasted me 22 years and I now sit here writing this having been single for five years. I still repeat that breakfast each year. AHH! Traditions!!

“The horror of wedlock, the most appalling, the most loathsome of all the bonds humankind has devised for its own discomfort and degradation.”~~Marquis De Sade

Obviously the Marquis' view of marriage was bit skewed by the fact that he was a raving lunatic but I am sure many men and even more women can relate to his ideas.

Wedlock has been the fodder of comedians for eons and rightly so. Like every thing, in our lives, that presents with a modicum of truth jokes about marriage fall in the range of the funniest of tales. Some examples from people we all know and love;

“I think men who have a pierced ear are better prepared for marriage. They’ve experienced pain and bought jewelry.” ~ Rita Rudner

“A man doesn’t know what happiness is until he’s married. By then it’s too late.” ~ Frank Sinatra

“I was married by a judge. I should have asked for a jury.” ~ Groucho Marx

“I haven’t spoken to my wife in years. I didn’t want to interrupt her.” ~Rodney Dangerfield

And finally from that famous and well loved person Anonymous~~“Getting married is very much like going to a restaurant with friends. You order what you want, then when you see what the other fellow has, you wish you had ordered that.” ~ Anonymous

What wedlock/marriage should give you is a sense of love, safety, companionship, oneness in another person, joy at the site of the other, happiness in simple conversation, an ear that you can tell anything, a soul mate, a lover, your best friend, a person that confides in you and someone to share your triumphs and failures.

It's funny, I have that in Second Life but I so sucked at it in real life.


Monday, May 21, 2012

Why Buy The Cow When You Are Getting The Milk For Free?

Why Buy The Cow When You Are Getting The Milk For Free? One of my mothers favorite sayings back in the 60's and it was always said to remind me to find 'a good girl'. That was my mother, always trying to look out for her boys.

For the most part I listened to her advice and searched out marriageable women because mother wanted her sons married, raising families and being responsible. Of course there was a lot of 'free milk' along the way but that was the the times we lived. Even back in those times of emerging free love and increased opportunities for sexual experiences we tended to act responsibly. Births, out of wedlock, happened but no where near the frequency we are seeing today.

By the way, I love that word wedlock. There is a story in it but that is for another day, lol.

Have you ever made a mistake and learned from it in the hopes that you did not make it again? I am sure we all have at some point. So if I had fathered a child out of wedlock I would be damned sure that it never happened again.

Enter Desmond Hatchett, a 33 year old Knoxville, Tennessee man who has fathered 30 children with 11 different women and was married to none of them. Mr Hatchett is know as a 'serial father'. He actually had 4 children born in the same year twice. AMAZING!! Now this guy knows where all the free milk in  hidden.

To his credit he apparently pays child support on every child. BUT! There is always a 'BUT' with these cases. But he has a minimum wage job and his meager pay is broken up for each child. One mother gets only $1.49 per month.

There is an enormous level of lack on responsibility on Mr Hatchett's part. There is also a tremendous lack of responsibility to be heaped upon the mothers. I can not imagine what these people were thinking? 

Two things come to mind; 1. they are scamming the system by adding children to get bigger assistance checks. Not unheard of but working seems so much easier than raising multiple children, 2. Hatchett is hung like an Arabian horse and he knows how to use it, lol. Maybe he is to big for the available size condoms and other forms of birth control is out priced. I am trying hard to give them the benefit of the doubt.

This story originally caught my eye because Mr Hatchett was before a judge asking for a 'reduction in child support' so he had some money to live. Hopefully the woman getting $1.49 per month gets to keep her whopping support check.

A quote from Andy Rooney, not totally appropriate but one of my favorites:“Yes, we praise women over 40 for a multitude of reasons. Unfortunately, it's not reciprocal. For every stunning, smart, well-coiffed, hot woman over 40, there is a bald, paunchy relic in yellow pants making a fool of himself with some 22-year old waitress. Ladies, I apologize. For all those men who say, "Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?", here's an update for you. Nowadays 80%of women are against marriage. Why? Because women realize it's not worth buying an entire pig just to get a little sausage!” 


Monday, May 14, 2012

A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Unemployment Numbers

The headline reads; 'Unemployment Rate Falls To 8.1 Percent As People Give Up On Looking For Work'. So what does that mean to those of us on the ground trying to buy groceries and put our children through college?

8.1 percent is pretty good compared with the 10 plus percent of six months ago but these figures are misleading. The unemployment figures count those people, and only those people, that are actively collecting 'Unemployment Insurance Checks'.

If your benefits have run out you are not counted even though you are still unemployed.

If you have been out of work for an extended time and may have given up looking for a job you are not counted.

If you are one of the thousands of 'Underemployed' you are readily counted as working even though underemployment means you may well be working for a less than living wage. A college graduate flipping hamburgers at a fast food place is a terrible sight but people do what they need to do to keep their family fed.

I have heard 'Actual Unemployment Numbers' estimated from 15% to 18%.

Do not let politicians fool you into thinking the economy is getting better by leaps and bounds. If you are in the trenches, like so many are these days, you know the truth. Look beyond the numbers. Numbers tell you nothing really.

Look into the eyes of the unemployed. That is where the real story lies.

"For me, there will be no enemies but unemployment, the deficit, excessive debt, economic stagnation and anything else that keeps our country in these critical circumstances."~~Mariano Rajoy Prime Minister Spain 

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mothers Day

Hello Mom,

It's Mother's Day and I miss you terribly. There are two days a year that your loss hits me hardest; Mother's Day and of course your birthday.

Last night I went to Golden Coral for dinner and a real sadness came over me. The place was full of families who had taken their mothers out to eat. Mom it was very hard to watch. So many memories came rushing back it was stifling.

My mind is always full of thoughts about times I missed coming home to see to you. I regret every one of those missed opportunities.

I miss talking to you. I miss your advice. I miss your cooking. I miss sitting around the dinner table with family. I even miss you passion for every thing Don Ho(Tiny Bubbles brings tears these days).

I know that you and Dad are happy together now. Finally together after all those years. I smile when I think about it.

I would love just one more conversation, one more meal or one more chance to spend time with you.

I love you Mom!!


Saturday, May 12, 2012

Kiss~~Keep It Simple Stupid

"They think I'm simpleminded because I seem to be happy. Why shouldn't I be happy? I have everything I ever wanted and more. Maybe I am simpleminded. Maybe that's the key: simple."~~Dolly Parton.

When I was in college KISS was my basic concept for taking exams. I actually wrote it behind my name on blue books to remind myself to stick to that concept. By the way, I erased it before I turned in the exam. Did not want the professor thinking I was making an offer, lol.

Over the years I seem to have drifted away from KISS and the more my life became complicated the more control over life I seemed to have lost. After my recent hospitalization I decided to revisit KISS in my life.

My recent weeks have been spent getting use to my post illness lifestyle; simple healthy meals, more exercise and avoiding stressful situations have become the order of the day. I spend my days writing and reading. I have been avoiding confrontations with people that in the past have been a sore point with me. Like the drug user next door who has dealers arriving at his house all hours of the day and night.

I have been simplifying everything form laundry to bill paying. Somehow this all should seem normal but it does not. I have stepped out of character to live a simpler lifestyle and that is what has been bothering me.

I am not saying that I miss being confrontational but by looking to be a more docile person I seem to have lost my edge. This loss of edginess shows up mostly in my writing. Most of what I write has a confrontational aspect to it; especially in this blog. On days that I write a particularly confrontational blog I also find that my work on my never ending novel, especially parts that have any violence, goes much easier.

I have never professed to be a 'hearts and flowers' writer nor do I think that is something I could do. The key, for me at least, is finding a balance between KISS and the 'pain in someones ass person' I was prior to my illness.

While in search of this balance point my blogs will be all over the place in content and substance. Once I find my groove writing and life in general should play out on a much more consistent plane.


What I am reading:

The Hunger Games~~Suzzane Collins
World War Z~~Max Brooks
The Buddha Book~~Lillian Too

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Sadness In North Carolina

It was like watching a scene from a zombie movie. Zombiefied church goers filing out of their respective religious enclaves and under orders from their head zombie, their ministers, they walked in horde formation to the voting booth to deny a basic right to a group of American citizens.

It saddens me that the North Carolina Constitution is being used to deny rights to North Carolinians. Our constitution should be amended to enhance our rights not deny them.

Apparently 61% of North Carolinians believe it is alright to make an American a second class citizen. These same deniers would be first in line to complain if it was one of their rights being stolen from them.

We have awakened in a state where same sex couples , in committed relationships, do not have the same rights as married heterosexual couples. Which, by the way, was the case before the amendment was passed. We have also produced a situation where any couple, in a committed relationship, does not have equal rights to a legally married couple. Sexual orientation be damned.

I believe that one of the reasons churches wanted this law was to produce a situation that would eventually make all civil unions null and void in favor of religious ceremonies. These bigots running churches, out of every unoccupied store front and holding their religious callings from the backs of match book covers, are grasping at every possible straw to bring people back into their dying churches. A desperate attempt to force religion down peoples throats in the guise of 'doing Gods work'.

A pathetic attempt to hold sway over peoples lives in Gods name.

I have seen jobs lost, progress in cities growth delayed and people held in poverty by ministers that attempt to put their churches and their collection plates before the needs of human beings. Now I have seen the denial of a basic human right. Sad indeed!

I have said this before; same sex couples will achieve equal status in time. A battle has been lost but the war continues.

In a world where 'executive orders' are regularly being used to bypass congress I hope that amending the state or federal constitutions has not been introduced as a new tool to try and control certain segments of the population.

I am metaphorically flying my North Carolina flag at half mast today in disgust over the loss of a human right. Lets hope the 61% does not have to do the same one day when someone amends our constitution and deprives them of their rights.

Red haired people beware!! A large segment of the population has always held you in disrespect. A constitutional amendment banning your hair color may be  right around the corner.

I wonder what the Bible says about red hair?


Wednesday, May 2, 2012

I Am Now An Independent

This morning I got up early and headed down to the local Board of Elections and changed my party affiliation from Republican to Independent. I have been thinking about this for a long time and one issue has finally prodded me to action.

I will always be a conservative in most of my politically thinking but the Republican Party no longer serves my needs and quite frankly they have lost their way by breaking down into smaller groups of single issue thinkers much like the Democratic Party. Liberalism gives me hives. So I will stand as an Independent from now on.

I often wonder what happened to the 'party of Lincoln' that stood for equality among human beings. Where did that party go that was willing to press a 'civil war' to free slaves from bondage? How did that party move from those beliefs to one that believes not all humans are equal?

The 'religious right' has usurped the party and bastardized the belief that we are all equal. They are forcing the conservative movement away from beliefs that are basic to 'our American values'. Freedom to be who we are, whether that means how we worship, who we love or what political thought we will have, is what makes us Americans.

More and more these bigots use there pulpits to spread hate against people. The stories of what is being said in Gods name have become more out of left field than I ever imagined could be possible in this country.

These self proclaimed 'conduits of God's thought' are beginning to act like God actually speaks to them and them alone. They issue edicts from their pulpits as to how Christians should act toward other humans. And many of their 'conservative talk show hosts' echo their garbage over the airways.

What are some of these right wing pundits saying?

Tamara Scott~~Gay marriage leads to Eiffel Tower Marriages-ones that encourage relationships outside a marriages. I wonder if she has ever hear of heterosexual extramarital affairs.

Bryan Fisher~~Gays are responsible for the Nazi Party. As I remember gays were on Hitler's extermination list.

Pastor Wooden~~Gay sex causes men to need diapers. Must be a lot of gay men in nursing homes.

Linda Harvey~~Do not let gay doctors attend your children. I wonder if she thinks it rubs off.

Pat Robertson~~ Compares Polygamy, Bestiality And Pedophilia To Gay Marriage

Scott Lively~~Gay-Straight Alliances Are Designed To Recruit Kids

Tony Perkins~~'If You Want A Military That Just Does Parades,' Allow Gays To Openly Serve.

James Robison~~'The Enemy' Is Using 'Glee' To Destroy America, Gays are the enemy?

Newt Gingrich~~Gay Marriage A 'Perfect Example Of What I Mean By The Rise Of Paganism'. Do we even have to discuss this man's morality!!!

Daniel Lapin~~Gays Should've Been Quarantined To fight AIDS. This man is a Rabi. Does he not remember the Jewish struggles.

In my opinion these people and their ilk have lost their collective minds. The really sad thing is that there are people sitting in their churches, synagogues and listening to their talk shows that are being systematically brain washed into believing this hog wash.

Homosexuals will get their full compliment of civil rights in time. I have no doubt. It will be a struggle as many things worthwhile have been but Americans, even though many come to the table slowly, always seem to do what is right and just in the end.

I am a heterosexual man who stands arm on arm with the homosexual community and will do so until we are one community absent of bigotry.