By The Numbers

One thing that is nice about Internet banking is that you can sit at home, in the comfort of your office, and when there is nothing on television, while away your time watching your money disappear. The new entertainment of the 21st Century.

Looking in here this morning, and I notice that my I.R.S. stipend has arrived safely back home from Fresno, California, and is nestled in there with the rest of my obligations and ready for processing. Last night the circus was back in town, as all the local affiliates lined up to interview the terminally procrastinated tax payer. As usual, we have the assortment of rookie news journalists camped out at the main post office trying to interview all these fiscal invertebrates who wait until the absolute last second to file.

Like this is some kind of news scoop or something, same old garbage year after year, on April 15th.

Taxes in the USA are a bargain believe it or not. Compare your federal tax rate to that of Israel, where the well-off pay 70 percent of their income in taxes. Germany where a 50 percent bite is the norm. Sure I’d prefer that my tax dollars helped some underpaid school teacher, inter-city youth, rather than some Agri-business cotton farmer in the Mississippi Delta region. But that is not logical, that would be practical, and practical isn’t cool anymore.

Ask any lobbyist, they will straighten you out. So there it is, we have the best system of government money can buy. I said it and I feel better for doin’ it.

Hard to understand why an Okie is sending his “contribution” to Fresno anyway. Seems like Austin Texas, was a much closer and more reasonable place to send it. As usual, I have more month than money and I am going to have to watch it. I hate that. But then again, I don’t suppose I am the “only American” with this problem, I don’t have the Lone Ranger Syndrome on that one.

We could all move to Zimbabwe which has an inflation rate of more than 10,000 percent! They announced this week that they are going to start printing a “1,000,000” bill in their currency. So if you want to be an instant millionaire, I suppose Zimbabwe is the place to be. Unfortunately, a sandwich is gonna cost about $75,000 and we don’t even want to consider a glass of sweet tea.

My mailbox is once again, full of Obamma, Hillary, and McCranky this morning too. Most of them get deep-sixed as I am sick of it. An Okie farm boy knows that “If you wrestle or dance with a pig, it is a total waste of time, you and the pig get dirty, and the pig likes it!” Now I do have something that put a smile on my tired ol raggedy face. Who needs a presidential library, when you can have this!

This week a San Francisco community group launched an initiative to rename the Oceanside Wastewater Treatment Facility the “George W. Bush Sewage Plant.” Organizers said the name would provide the president with an “appropriate and enduring legacy.” Our unflappable Non-Resident Texan said this week, “I think it would be a fantastic experience to be on the front lines of helping this young democracy succeed. It must be exciting for you … in some ways romantic, in some ways, you know, confronting danger.” This in a speech to military personnel in Afghanistan.

And we wonder why they want to name a sewage treatment facility in his honor? Meanwhile back in the good ol’ USA“Only a fool or a fraud sentimentalizes the merciless reality of war” John McCain in the Los Angeles World Affairs council at the same time. Learned a new word yesterday. “Schlemiel.” An unlucky bungler: Chump.

Sign Of The Times: The Absolut vodka company has apologized for an ad campaign that showed the southwestern United States as a part of Mexico. The ad, used only in Mexico, shows a map of the Americas prior to the war of 1848, with California and the Southwest as part of Mexico. Believe it or not, it didn’t upset anyone other than a large group of U.S. Bloggers (of all people), after numerous public outcries, Absolut changed the ad.

Did you know that 60% of Mexico’s population is under 30 years of age, and in the USA that number is 42%. They are catching up with us too. Their national divorce rate is now up to a whopping 12%, soon they will be just like us, except we won’t be speaking the same language. (Yeah I know, give it up)

Married couples in America maintain a clear and traditional division of labor. In 57% of households, men say the take responsibility for the yardwork, compared with only 12% of the women. In 68% of the households, women say they take care of the laundry, compared to 10% of the men. In 69% of households, it is the men who keep the car in good working condition, it is the ladies who clean the house. 61% of the women make decisions about furniture and home décor.


(I have my wife’s’ permission to say that 25% of the time).

So that are it for Wednesday, April 16, 2008, a full 81% of you out there think the country is heading in the wrong direction according to NBC and my next door neighbor’s borrowed newspaper … The other 19% seem to think that everything is just going fine … That would be the Oil Executives I assume.

(Tomorrow we will talk about the end of the world, the Sky Is Falling! Don’t tell Al Gore, we want it to be a surprise)


One More Day


To wait an Hour … Is long

If Love be just beyond

To wait Eternity … Is short

If Love reward in the end.

                                          Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)


Marge sat in the pew at the First Baptist Church, of Muskogee, and watched her husband of forty-two years, Harvey, blow his nose and then carefully, almost artfully, fold up the handkerchief and put it back into his pocket.  She looked at him and said, “Honey, after you blow your nose do you always fold up the handkerchief like that, fold it up perfectly, and then put it back in your pocket?” 


And he said, “Yes I suppose so, been doing it that way for years.”  Marge sat there, stunned just a little and perplexed.  Then she said to her husband of that many years, “Y’know, all this time I would be cleaning out your pockets and what have you, and I would run across those handkerchiefs, neatly folded up like that.  And I just naturally assumed that you had not used them and I put them back into the drawer on your chest in the bedroom.”  Harvey just smiled and said, “Well, that explains why after all these years, I never was able to get my glasses clean!”


You ever hear a song on the radio and say to yourself, “Gee, I wish I had written that.” Or something along those lines.   Rascal Flatts has a song out like that, it is called “One More Day.”  Every time I hear that song, I think of someone, I think of somewhere, a time, and a place.  And then I smile, music has that effect on me. 


My bride, Cup Cake, looked at me yesterday with those big brown eyes, eyes that a guy could just get lost in, and said, “You make me smile, despite it all.”  And I just gave her my best toothy grin and said, “Yeah? (Then I walked off into the other room and wondered what in the ____ does that mean?) 


You see, we are men, and we don’t have a clue, we don’t know diddly when it comes to the emotional side of life.  The majority of the time we are checked out.  No one home.  We just “fake it.”  You girls pay attention, I run a serious risk of horse whipping or could possibly suffer other severe penalties for giving up these manly secrets on the page like this. I could very well be riding out of town on a rail by six O’clock tonight!  When you rattle the bars on the cage of the beast, it can quite often be a dangerous and stupid thing to do. 


One more day of marriage, another day sharing your life with someone and I guess that isn’t all that appalling.  Tad bit confusing at times, but not necessarily a bad thing.  So you adjust your attitude and forge on.  Everybody loves a lover, I am a lover, and everybody loves me. 


There could be a nugget of truth in here somewhere, just keep digging.


Cold and windy outside today, wind is howling like some kind of wild banshee out of the north.  Another one of those Oklahoma Memory Makers, that is what I call them.  (Unforgettable days and I am not talking indescribably delicious like the candy bar)  One of those I got dust in my eyes and I wanna die moments of spring.


A day when even a dog would be better off inside, the penalty or the price we have to pay for spring.  That luscious wonderful time, just before the tornado’s arrive, the time of new life, the precursor to summer heat and a harvest of plenty.  The Red Buds are in full bloom and my eyes quickly fill with pollen.  Spring is the time of the year when a man’s fancy naturally tends to drift toward what I call “lighter things.”   


A time or a season when he leans towards affairs of the heart, when his gruff manly features, sort of melt away and the soft side of his being emerge for but a short while.  A time of Easter Bunnies, fresh litters of puppies, and new beginnings.    


Okies, boogers, memories, and springtime, it just caint git any bettern’ this. 


My life feels so circumspect here in the moment.  Life has been very good to me, my wife loves me, half-box of Cheerio’s in the cabinet, cup full of milk … Man, I got it made.   


Sitting here in a pair of well worn pajama bottoms, my very favorite Virginia City, Nevada, T-shirt, and a pair of house slippers.  I am into my uniform of the day, doing my Hugh Hefner wanna-be best, to kick back and take it easy.  Bring on the girls!  But break the Viagra in half, because I am just in the mood to “cuddle” this morning.


To be loved and appreciated is a wondrous thing.  Life is so sweet.  Step out of your comfort zone today, find someone and just hug the fizz out of ‘em … do it because you LOVE THEM and of course, because it is spring!