Just So You’ll know

“So unless a solar storm surges and affects Earth, screwing up Sat. Radio and not allowing any of us to hear the ballgame.  I think we are all going to be okay.”

“Just so you’ll know.”  Deborah on Everyone Loves Raymond used to say that all the time, really cracked me up.  This morning I am wondering about a couple of things.  It seems to me that my life for some strange reason is now defined by events “that are supposed to happen, but somehow, never do” and that often bothers me.  Like this Malware thing that was supposed to take off yesterday, it did not happen here.  Last night I did not catch the national news, and this morning, so far, it was a non-event.  All of my clocks are running on time, and the little lite on the micro-wave is not blinking.

So here is the ever present question in 2012 … What’s up with that?

Weatherman is wrong more than he is right this year, all of these things that I hear about (often impending doom) just do not materialize.  Just like this Mayan calendar thing, what happened with that, who are the people that keep selling all of this jazz to us.  I wish they would stop.

But there is a bright side, there is always a bright side.

I understand that the lawmakers in Kansas have in their infinite wisdom, decided to make Toto the official state dog of that state.  Yes boys & girls, Toto, the little cairn terrier, the little breed of Dorothy’s dog in The Wizard of Oz, is the official state dog of Kansas.

Another thing that is bothering me is Email, I often get a lot of it, this morning it was all bad news.  Two of my old school chums have developed cancer and they are not going to be at the next reunion.  Last time it was someone I knew and grew up with, dying in a motorcycle accident, and it goes on and on.  All of these kids starving somewhere I cannot find on a map, and I am being asked to save them.

I am so tired of bad news.

It would be better to hear of something like this.  For more than twenty-five years, customers at Fat Smitty’s Cafe in Washington have been plastering the walls with dollar bills.  A lot of places do this, I have been in several over the years.  When he enlisted the local boy scout troop to help him take the money down, and then give it to a charity, they welcomed the challenge.

Last week he discovered that over the years, the patrons had put up something like $10,000 in cash.  The money went to a local children’s hospital in the area.

Here is another snippet of good news.  You are now safe from a threat “to destroy America.”  A British tourist was handcuffed and barred from entering the U.S. because had tweeted that he planned to “destroy America.”  When arrested he tried to explain to the authorities that this was current slang where he lived and it meant to “party quite hard in” America.

But they did not buy it (You have to remember here he is talking to airport scanners, and we all know about them by now, don’t we?) after his explanation, they simply told him, “You’ve really F _____ up with that boy.”  Is this a great country or what?  I feel so protected.  Kind of makes me wonder, “who is it that read our tweets and supposedly private Emails, and don’t they have something more important to do?”

So that is about it for Tuesday, please stop sending me all of this negative Email, and telling me the world is going to end.  All of you whank-ho’s who how have come up with various scenarios for global catastrophe.

Keep it to yourselves.  I am not sitting around here in at my Goat Farm in Oklahoma, waiting on massive earthquakes and tsunamis, the eruption of a super volcano, and the sudden reversal of the earth’s poles.  Send all of that to Charlie Sheen or Tom Cruise.

I like the one theory that a rogue planet named Nibiru, or “Planet X” is hidden behind the sun and will emerge and collide with Earth later this year.  Here is another one you can file along with the Easter Bunny, Santa Claus and UFO’s.  Can you imagine the tan lines you would have if you spent all of your time hiding behind the sun?

Not to be deterred, there is another supposed deity named planet, Eris.  NASA dismissed Nibiru as an internet hoax, and explained that while a dwarf planet named Eris does exist at the edge of the solar system, its distant orbit precludes any collision with Earth.  I don’t know exactly how far it might be, but smart money says you would go bankrupt trying to buy enough gasoline to get you there, so don’t worry about it.

So unless a solar storm surges and affects Earth, screwing up Sat. Radio and not allowing any of us to hear the ballgame.  I think we are all going to be okay.  We will be sitting here waiting on rain that is never going to arrive, in front of our computers that do not work because they all have Malware, anticipating with great anxiety and trepidation Christmas 2012 and our free gift of a Mayan Calendar.

I can hardly wait.

(One more thing, “if any of you have a good modern day working definition of the word Whank-ho’s please Email it to me.  Thanks.)

OOO

Please make all checks and/or M.O. payable to BoxcarOkie, we will take care of the rest of it … Trust me.

Just In Time For Summer

Let’s see, we have a cat with an arrow thru its head in Santa Cruz California (no real story there, they are looking for the cat hater), Osamma-been-forgotten is now no longer with us and Facebook is alive with virus attacks (I found that somewhat amusing, all these ding-dongs clicking on the death video, which we all know, there wasn’t one, and then getting infected … gives a totally new meaning to the term “friending another person” now doesn’t it.).

Charlie Sheen tours tornado damage in the deep south (I am not making this up people!)

How about Manuel Albert Soares, an international fugitive sought by Portugal since he skipped out on a prison sentence in 2008.  He was caught driving in the carpool lane of the New Jersey Turnpike this week without enough passengers.  Now that was stoooopid …  So I guess that leaves us with the milk truck?  Remember those ad’s on television awhile back …  “Milk … It does a body good.?”  Well a quick thinking driver of a milk tanker in Northern Ireland saved the lives of two men trapped in a burning car by dousing the flames with milk.

When he came across the crash scene, he positioned his truck so he could hose the fire from the tank’s rear valve.  When firefighters arrived on the scene, they rescued the trapped men, and then they were transported to a local hospital.

A high school janitor has paid for a new running track in White Center Washington.  He won $3.4 million on the lottery (over five years ago incidentally) and has continued to work at the school during this time.  Last week, he donated $40,0000 toward the installation of a new track.  He is retiring, and he said that “kids do things for you, they keep you young.”  I will have to remember that one.

Reminds me of the principal of a grammar school who had a problem with all the girls in the girls bathroom smearing lipstick on the mirror.  They would apply their lipstick and then in turn, kiss the mirror to smear it.  When the principal told the janitor about it, he said, “I can fix that.”

So they both went into the girls bathroom when all the girls were present (forewarning them first that they were coming in) and the principal, in front of the little ladies “explained the problem to the janitor.”

The janitor then said to the principal, “I can fix that.”  He then walked over to the closest commode, stuck in his brush, pulled it out, smeared the liquid all over the mirror, then pulled a wipe rag from his pocket and rubbed vigorously until the mirror was again, squeaky clean.

From that day on … There was never a lip print on the mirror again.

Never underestimate the power of American ingenuity.  That is what they often like to call pro-active thinking, and then you run across non-productive thinking, such as in the next comment.

Just when you think “you have seen or read it all” you come across the moron’s in Thornton, Colorado, who have outlawed spinning barbershop poles.  Here is another bad case of legislated American overkill.

The tradition of marking barbershops with a red, white, and blue striped pole dates back to medieval times.  But the city fathers in this backwater stop to nowhere have said that a modern version of it poses a threat to public safety.  “We don’t want signs to be distracting especially to motorists who are driving by.  (Motorists who are most likely driving by and text messaging on their cell phones for cryin’ out loud)

We need a break from all of these elected “do gooders that over regulate our lives.”

One more and then I am outta here (Which my good friend in Florida, Bill, hates it when I say that).  Just this week, in New York a new law was passed regulating childhood games such as tag, Wiffle ball, and horseshoes, which will now soon be designated “non-passive recreational activities with significant risk of injury.”

Glad they got that straight, and lookie here, just in time for summer.

Give me a break.

OOO

Love Hurts

Uh, I forgot?

Santa Fe New Mexico Officials have figured out why they could not find the 50-year old time capsule, due to be opened in 2010.  The capsule was never buried.  A local newspaper has revealed that Santa Fe’s former mayor quietly gave up on the time capsule in 1960 when the city ran short of money.  “Those were the days of confusion, days of chaos.”  said the mayor.  The capsule, a 150-pound iron tube, would up being used as a garbage can in an office supply store.

Time In A Bottle

Darin Winkler was walking along the banks of the Spokane River when he spotted an antique bottle with an old fashioned cork stopper, inside was a pencil-written note dated March 30th, 1913, requesting that the finder of the bottle contact Emmett Presnell of Rockford, Washington.  By sleuthing on the Internet. Winkler determined that Presnell died in 1978 after a long career as a homesteader.  Presnell’s 86-year old nephew, Tom, thinks his uncle launched the bottle out of curiosity while tending cattle on the banks of nearby Rock Creek or Hangman Creek.

Not everyone believes in Earth Day and a healthy planet.

Spokane residents are smuggling in dishwasher detergent to evade a new ban on phosphate containing cleaners.  Many consumers say the new “green phosphate free detergents” they’ve bought leave their dishes greasy and encrusted with food.  So they’ve stooped to driving to Idaho to load up on Electrosol and Cascade.  “Yes I am a smuggler” said resident Patti Marcotte.  “I am taking my chances because dirty dishes I just cannot live with that.”

New wrinkle on an old twist.

Thousands of boat owners hit hard by the recession are abandoning their pleasure craft, rather than pay for their upkeep and mooring, by sandpapering off their registration numbers and sinking them at sea or ditching them in harbors or on the shoreline.  Our waters already polluted and strained to very breaking point are now becoming the new dumping grounds, especially hard hit, Florida.

Unfortunately for Mother Earth, the news is never going to be good.  Man will never be concerned about global warming or the greenhouse effect.  The words are not scary enough, they do not evoke the primary emotion of fear.  Global means all-encompassing, warming connotes comfort, green equals growth in most peoples’ minds, and house breaks down to shelter in some schools of thought.  Growth, shelter, and all encompassing comfort.

It is at best a “mixed message.”

Doesn’t sound like a real threat.

Relax.

With automakers expecting to sell 6 million fewer cars this year than last year, and estimated 1,200 car dealers will go out of business this year.  900 went out of business last year.  Newest attempt at fleecing the consumer here is “an advertising fee.” As it was explained to me this is added to the car because “we have to advertise these cars, so all of us in a three state area, pay into an advertising pool” that is what that is for.

Yeah shure, sign me up for that, and throw in another five gallons of turn signal fluid while you are at it. People who operate like this, they deserve to go under.  In this case it is better to entertain an idea, than to take it home to live with you for the next 8 to 10 years of your life.

The new Arabs of America

The Japanese dealers in the area, riding high on their own particular Tsunami of economic good news, are now selling their cars for “FULL RETAIL PRICE” plus an added $900 dealer prep sticker or some other bogus charge in order to drive up the price.  So trust that greed and avarice are still alive in this country, despite the best efforts of the government at trying to stop or kill it.

Bored?

Have we a deal for you.

Chase a twister in Oklahoma on Tempest Tours five-night mini tornado tour.  Thrill-seekers board “storm-intercept vehicles” and hunt down severe weather patterns.  The tour runs June 8 thru the 13th, and packages start at $1,295 with lodging.  Me and the wife were in a “storm-intercept vehicle” once, it cost us about $1,300 in hail damage and of course, “was a real adventure.”

Here is a switch for you.

Reverse Migration

Sallie Mae (student lending institution) is closing down call centers and IT operations in India and other foreign countries and will bring the jobs back to the United States.  Hard to believe eh?  Sallie Mae, which employs 8,000 people nationwide, expects to add 2,000 jobs to its U.S. Payroll in the next 18 months.  I am sorry Punjab, you will now have to move to the USA and we are going to have to ask you to turn in your locker keys. Who knows, it might be soon, that you will be able to pick up a telephone, call these people, and get someone in Birmingham Alabama, who actually speaks English and you can understand them.  Now that is a concept.

Love hurts.

A Florida man was arrested recently while wearing an “I love (heart) my marriage” t-shirt.  He was arrested for allegedly choking his wife and throwing numerous items at her during a fight.  Isn’t marriage a wonderful institution, where you search the ends of the earth, for that “special person” that you can hook up with, and annoy for the rest of his/her life.  Marriage is a rough job, because you always end up dealing with feelings and of course, lawyers.

Yeah?  I hear you snickering and giggling, chortling and you are not fooling anyone.  If you believe that marriage is a 50/50 proposal, then you do not know a thing about women in general and nothing about percentages.

There is always another perspective on it, if you want a taste of it, check it out. That Saddity Chic

Now me, I am a smart man, a practical man, a man for all seasons.  I do not want to, nor do I plan, to irritate my wife.  I am going to make every possible effort to insure that my marriage is a full and rewarding experience, that it is a success, a model for all to see.

Why?

Because I love my house, that is why.

OOO

The Love Boat

Chilly America

winter-map

Back home and it is cold.  Been an interesting week.  Life is so good to me, now I can vividly remember when George Bush gave his “final-final-this is really it-goodbye speech.”  I stared at the television and thought to myself, “I cannot believe this nightmare is finally winding down and he is truly going to go away.”

Visibly frustrated beyond belief, I wanted to take off my shoe and throw it at him, but unfortunately, we pawned our last pair of shoes on Wednesday to buy some groceries.

We Have Closed Our Stinking Springs!

Idaho Falls Idaho – Federal officials said they will redraw a map that mistakenly includes part of an eastern Idaho ski area as closed to people. The Bureau of Land Management’s Stinking Springs winter wildlife closure map includes 66 acres of Kelly Canyon Ski Resort. Closures are intended to help reduce wildlife interactions with humans during the tough winter months.

Are You Water-boarding My Wife?

Kind of a slow day, think I will drive down to my wife’s employer and ask them a question.  “Each morning I bring to you my wife, she is fresh, she is smiling, she is in a good mood.  The woman that I love radiates with good will and energy.  At four P.M. I come to pick her up, and you deliver to me, the She Cat From Hell!  What are you people doing to her anyway?”

Sarah Palin Is Mad At The Media

Sarah announced this week that she has had it with bloggers and the media, then she turned around to complain to …… Yeppers … The media.  It will be great when her new book comes out this spring, then we will finally find out the truth on all this.  Don’t you just love it when they write a novel or a book, then we get to find out if the person had past lives where she was an explorer of the frozen north, an empress who tried to seduce a king, a priestess of politics or a maxi-pad.

New Action Figure in West Palm Beach

West Palm Beach Florida – A man with a visible potbelly – and a memorable disguise – tried without success to haul away two different ATMs over the past two weeks, the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office said.  Security video from the ATMs showed the man dressed in a black ninja outfit with a hood that revealed only his eyes.

What?  The Great American Prairie is empty?

Bismarck South Dakota – Officials in the state’s largest cities are trying to find places to put all the snow. In Bismarck, a pile in the parking lot at the Famous Dave’s barbecue restaurant is nearly 20 feet high. Manager Shane Frank said workers have had to shoo neighborhood children off the newfound sledding hill for fear of injuries.  It works the same way with a pile of sand on the driveway in the summertime.

Kids are after all … kids.

On the other end of the country, frustration was mounting in Spokane, Washington after freak winter storms buried the normally arid eastern Washington city under six feet of snow.  This has snarled traffic, disrupted garbage collections, and frayed the tempers and nerves of many residents.  Police are now reporting incidents of “Snow Rage.”  One man allegedly shot at a snow plow operator simply for honking at him.

Not Right Now Honey … The Game Is On.

A group of U.S. congressmen asked House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to rearrange the voting schedule so that they could watch a football game.  In a note to Pelosi to “kindly consider” rescheduling votes so that he and other lawmakers could attend the national title game between Florida and Oklahoma.  Pelosi’s office denied the request.

Oklahoma choked and blew it, but if you bet on Florida, you came out alright.  Anytime Oklahoma goes to a bowl game, bet the other side, because Sooners they like to party too much the night before.

Holier than thou, or at least, taller.

A small Brazilian farming town announced plans this week to erect a statue of a 128 foot tall Jesus.  This is 4 feet taller than the country’s famous Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro.  Here is a miracle for you.  A supposedly paraplegic Mexican woman who’d been begging for change from her wheelchair jumped up and ran down the street when a security guard saw her trying to augment her income by breaking into a store.

Can You Spare A Dime

You ever notice that the beggar on the street corner always has a smoke?  Cigarettes selling for $4 a pack and higher in some areas of the country, but they always seem to have one.  And last week, a totally new wrinkle.  Standing there on the corner with the customary cardboard sign that says “stranded — homeless — anything will help” and he reaches into his shirt pocket, fishes out a cellphone and takes a call.

I believe I have seen it all.  No!  I Don’t Have A Quarter!

While we are on the subject (cell phones).  Clermont Florida – Brad Cox is lucky to have an unlimited text messaging plan. His daughter, Emilee, 14, sent or received more than 35,000 messages a month twice in the past year, a volume confirmed by Sprint. Emilee’s big month was June, when she tallied 35,463 text messages, about 1,182 a day. She attributed the spike to trading messages with friends while at cheerleading camp.  Here is a probable candidate for either carpal syndrome or a brain tumor for sure.

Obama Fever Grips The Nation

Just A Few Days Until The Celebration

The country is gearing up for its “Day In History” and the huge celebration in Washington DC.  This should be some shin-dig for sure.  Dancin’ In The Streets — The whole nine yards.  We in the Heartland will be tucked back into our warm cocoons and will watch in comfort and warmth from our living rooms.  At my age, that is the only type of history I am capable of celebrating.  Living in about the “reddest state in the nation” I am all too familiar with the drill.

Two Oklahoma farmers were discussing politics and the first one says: “I believe in a share and share alike policy. One where we are all equal.”

“Well” replied the other farmer “I’m not sure about that. What you mean is that if you have two horses you’d give me one?”

“Of course” says the first.  The second farmer continued: “And if you had two cars, you’d give me one of them too?”

“Absolutely”

“So” says the second farmer, “if you had two pigs then you’d give me one of them?”

“Ah, now hang on a minute” says the first farmer, “you know I’ve got two pigs!”

000

Brad & Jolie Phone Home

President-elect Barack Obama this week announced plans to launch the largest public works program in a half-century.  In the hope of creating millions of jobs and stimulating the sinking U.S. economy.

The new federal program that mirrors Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal and Dwight Eisenhower’s massive project to create the federal highway system, will hire workers to rebuild the nations’ crumbing highways and bridges, renovate aging schools, extend high-speed Internet throughout the country.

Here comes another $500-$700 billion from the pot of gold at the end of the Washington rainbow. Well, at least he is not reading Harry Potter now, he has moved on to something more substantial.

No matter how the money is spent, this public works special isn’t going to be enough to save this floundering economy.  Consumption and business investment are for the most parts in a “free fall” and no matter how many roads you build or the people you hire, it isn’t going to change it.

What amazes me, is the very people that caused most of these massive problems, are now the people that we turn to in order to save us.  Must be that time of the year, or maybe, just perhaps it is me?  Christmas is a time when kids tell Santa Claus what they want and adults pay for it.  Deficits are when adults tell the government what they want and their kids pay for it.

Almost comical in some respects.  So tell me … Are you laughing?

Word just out of the Washington area today.  The White House press agency is stating that for the remainder of his term President Bush will only be visiting impoverished countries in Africa and certain villages in the Amazon forest.  The reason given was those people do not wear shoes.

Lousy Tree Huggers … No really …. Lousy Tree Huggers.

Environmental outrage, after a furious “green” group notified Polish authorities that a rapacious logging  company was cutting down their trees in a nature preserve.  Investigators determined that the 20 trees in question had been felled by beavers.  Save The Whales … Collect the whole set.

Staying busy in retirement

Rajo Devi of India became a mother for the first time at the age of 70.  Her doctor said she is the oldest person to give birth after invitro fertilization.  Just think, when her child graduates high school, she will only be, what 87?  So what are the benefits of having a child at this advanced age?  Well, look at it from this perspective, soon they will BOTH be in diapers at the same time.

In God’s Hands

You hear about the little boy that wandered away from his babysitter this week, he and his puppies just walked off and had to spend the night in the sub-freezing cold alone.  He was found the next day, sitting next to a tree, all of the dogs snuggled up to him, and they say that their warmth was what kept the boy from freezing too death.  Truly a Christmas miracle, eh?

Caffeine Wars

McDonalds is taking some Seattle, Java Jabs at Starbucks.  They are running billboard signs all over the Seattle area that simply state “$4 is dumb.”  Which is in essence telling folks that are paying that much for espresso, they are crazy, especially when Big Mac sells their brand for $1.99 per cup.  So both are selling “coffee” (nothing fancy, just the brewed stuff) for about the same price.

What do you want folks, the best price or the experience?

It is up to you.

Okay, they are doing it again.  We now have a new generation to track, and a totally new name for them.  This is the first time I have seen this one.  Millennial, these are people born between 1980 -1990.  Pepsi is now targeting them as an audience because survey’s show that they are optimistic about 2009, that some 95% agree that it is important to “maintain a positive outlook on life.”

Let’s see, if you were born in 1980 that would make you what?  28 years old.  Yeah, I was pretty optimistic when I was 28, little jingle in my pocket, had a new car, woke up with a woody in the morning and a smile on my face.  Correct me if I am wrong, but “millennial” means a thousand years, Pepsi is in for a little surprise.  Nothing lasts that long, not even the rocks.

Friends Don’t Send Fruitcakes To Unemployed Autoworkers.

Couple of emails on the fruitcake deal and the autoworkers.  Fruitcake just cannot get any respect.  The much mocked dessert ranked last in an online survey of snacks.  Just 11% of some 3,500 adults surveyed expect to eat any of it over the holidays, it even falls behind “trail mix” (12%) and we all know how good that is!  And then there is the obvious question …. Do you really have to ask why Fruitcake is at the bottom of the list?

As for the automobile people, if it walks like a duck and it quacks like a duck, then it is probably a Chevy.

Loooooooooooong Distance Charges May Apply

brad-pitt-angelina-jolieBrad Pitt has taken up “spirit channeling” to cope with his midlife crisis.  So being married to one of the most beautiful women in the world isn’t all it is cut out to be apparently.

The actor who recently turned 45 is not only seeking spiritual counsel from religious leaders, including the Dalai Lama, but has taken up the practice of “deep-trance channeling” in hopes of getting life advice from the dead.”

Jolie is worried that “Brad’s new mystical bent could harm his public image.  Angie is afraid that if he tries to bring it into the mainstream, people will really think he’s gone off the deep end.” Last I heard she was trying to find the current phone number for Tom Cruise.

Sunday being a slow day and not much going down, I turned everything off, unplugged the telephone, slunk back into my office (the master’s lair) and began to mediate.  I thought to myself “if Brad can do it, then by gosh, so can I.

Now I have to admit, at first I was a little bit skeptical and somewhat worried, “I mean the last thing I want to conjure up, or channel into my life is my Ex-Wife” so I was somewhat timid in the beginning.

But after a determined amount of time, things began to happen and then I found myself speaking to my channeled spirit.  His name was Siddartha Gautama who achieved his nirvana while meditating beneath a a Bodhi tree in India and became the Buddha, or “enlightened one.”  And he shared with me the benefit of all his years of wandering around the country of India, throughout Asia, living skimpily and sharing his wisdom.

Some of which he did give to me:  “Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.” And then he mentioned in passing that Shirley McClaine also said hello.  In all honesty, in the long run, I don’t believe it works.

The long run after all, is a misleading guide to current affairs.  In the long run, we all end up dead, and I haven’t heard of anyone coming back from that here lately.  I will believe that when Pat Boone gets a number one selling CD.

All and all, the visit was entirely too short, before I knew it the experience was unfolding before my eyes and then it was just as sudden as it began, I found it ending.  He said to me, “Is there anything that you should desire of me concerning the after life?” and I thought long and hard, and then asked, “Will I need a change of underwear?” and he was gone … Just like that.

What we think we become.

(I think I am done?)

000

Obama’s History

Here are some misc. items on the President Elect, Mr. Obama.

  • He collects Spider-Man and Conan the Barbarian comics
  • He was known as “O’Bomber” at high school for his skill at basketball
  • His name means “one who is blessed” in Swahili
  • His favorite meal is wife Michelle’s shrimp linguine
  • He won a Grammy in 2006 for the audio version of his memoir, Dreams From My Father
  • He is left-handed – the sixth post-war president to be left-handed
  • He has read every Harry Potter book
  • He owns a set of red boxing gloves autographed by Muhammad Ali
  • He worked in a Baskin-Robbins ice cream shop as a teenager and now can’t stand ice cream
  • His favorite snacks are chocolate-peanut protein bars
  • He ate dog meat, snake meat, and roasted grasshopper while living in Indonesia
  • He can speak Spanish
  • While on the campaign trail he refused to watch CNN and had sports channels on instead
  • His favorite drink is black forest berry iced tea
  • He promised Michelle he would quit smoking before running for president – he didn’t
  • He kept a pet ape called Tata while in Indonesia
  • He can bench press an impressive 200 lbs.
  • He was known as Barry until university when he asked to be addressed by his full name
  • His favorite book is Moby-Dick by Herman Melville
  • He visited Wokingham, Berks, in 1996 for the stag party of his half-sister’s fiance, but left when a stripper arrived
  • His desk in his Senate office once belonged to Robert Kennedy
  • He and Michelle made $4.2 million last year, with much coming from sales of his books
  • His favorite films are Casablanca and One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
  • He carries a tiny Madonna and child statue and a bracelet belonging to a soldier in Iraq for good luck
  • He applied to appear in a black pin-up calendar while at Harvard but was rejected by the all-female committee.
  • His favorite music includes Miles Davis, Bob Dylan, Bach and The Fugues
  • He took Michelle to see the Spike Lee film Do The Right Thing on their first date
  • He enjoys playing Scrabble and poker
  • He doesn’t drink coffee and rarely drinks alcohol
  • He would have liked to have been an architect if he were not a politician
  • As a teenager he took drugs including marijuana and cocaine
  • His daughters’ ambitions are to go to Yale before becoming an actress (Malia, 10) and to sing and dance (Sasha, 7)
  • He hates the youth trend for pants which sag beneath the rear (saggin)
  • He repaid his student loan only four years ago after signing his book deal
  • His house in Chicago has four fire places
  • Daughter Malia’s godmother is Jesse Jackson’s daughter Santita
  • He says his worst habit is constantly checking his Black Berry
  • He uses an Apple Mac laptop
  • He drives a Ford Escape Hybrid, having ditched his gas-guzzling Chrysler 300 SUV
  • He wears $1,500 (£952) Hart Schaffner Marx suits
  • He owns four identical pairs of black size 11 shoes
  • He has his hair cut once a week by his Chicago barber, Zariff, who charges $21 (£13)
  • His favorite fictional television programmers are Mash and The Wire
  • He was given the code name “Renegade” by his Secret Service handlers
  • He was nicknamed “Bear” by his late grandmother
  • He plans to install a basketball court in the White House grounds
  • His favorite artist is Pablo Picasso
  • His specialty as a cook is chili
  • He has said many of his friends in Indonesia were “street urchins”
  • He keeps on his desk a carving of a wooden hand holding an egg, a Kenyan symbol of the fragility of life
  • His late father was a senior economist for the Kenyan government.

There is no way on God’s Green Earth where I would be willing to subject myself and my family to this kind of scrutiny, I don’t care what the job pays.  Welcome to the grinder folks best suit up and get ready to play.

000

Cheep Fills

So here I am boarding a plane for Seattle, and I was feeling a touch nervous because that morning a plane was forced to make an emergency landing at this very airport after a window blew out at 14,000 ft above sea level and this incredibly huge Wall Street Banking Investment Counselor was sucked right out the window headfirst!

Okay, you caught me, I am lying. What are you gonna do, sue me? It is a pleasant thought tho.

Being as I love to toss mostly unpopular ideas your way, and the thought of writing about warning decals on the side of my garbage truck being written in Spanish doesn’t seem to appeal to me this morning, I decided I am going to write about something important to us all. Male pattern baldness, no wait, Incontinence, which fork to use in a really good restaurant.

No, that was not it, what was it? Oh yeah, gasoline, the price at the pump.

Now no one wants to talk about gasoline, gas after all is old news, with all these crooked bankers cleaning up, the political candidates “rewriting history” as they go along, and I suppose the recent announcement that Britney Spears Mom and Dad have established a curfew for their “twenty-five year old daughter.”

I mean face it … Who wants to talk about gasoline?

I suppose my email will again heat up because of this unpopular subject. Your overriding concern for my well being is touching, don’t get me wrong. A few people here lately have actually inquired about my mental health, sobriety and or prospects for a continued life in this galaxy. And taking it one step further, some would actually like to run over me with a bus.

Such is life.

Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful to those of you who send me messaged laced with such kindness such as “You are a real Okie Squat, y’know that?” or “I hope you sit under a sick horse” or “Your parents were not married” something like that.

So in the spirit of gentle discourse, here goes: Please forward any and all complaints to the appropriate system coordinator at WordPress.com, whoever that is this week. Now that was funny, no? Here it comes, git reedy (As Toby Keith would say) … Gasoline is a great deal! Even if the price goes back up and we have to pay even more.

So in case you missed it, here it is again … Gas is a good deal.

Give me a freshly paved two-lane and a couple of gallons, throw in a good tail-wind for good measure, and I am happier than a wildcatter at a down-hole convention in Lubbock. (Try and make sense out of that one … I dare ya.) Being your typical American red-blooded truck lovin consumer, I would drive to hell and back if I thought I could make it in a weekend.

Unfortunately, I like you, have realized that a $20 bill won’t fill up my old Chevy-resale-red-hoopie any more, on most days in doesn’t even come close, in some parts of Utah, three times that ($60) won’t cut it either. But I am not complaining.

The fact is that gasoline remains relatively cheap right now (wait until the election is over boys & girls, this will go out the window, quickie pronto!) and I know that I have been a fortunate pilgrim up to this point. You see, we have had decades of cheap priced fuel. But those days are over, like an early morning mist, they have evaporated and no longer are to be found.

Back in the day, I could fill up my ‘47 model Plymouth for about $8, then later on, oil embargo prices arrived and the long lines formed. Our local gas station converted to the metric system so it could sell gasoline at more than $1 a gallon without saying so; 33 cents a liter sounds better. (Its no small wonder a gallon of fuel is over $9 in the U.K., look what they use for a standard of measure). Most countries around the world look at us, and consider us foolish (if not fuelish) and think we are crazy.

They KNOW what fuel costs, unlike us.

We know the price of everything but the value of nothing.

Two decades ago, during the Persian Gulf War, gasoline prices were about 32% lower than they are today, and adjusted for inflation it should be about $6 per gallon or more. We have celebrated low oil prices by buying fleets of gas guzzlers, military-size vehicles that boast of fuel efficiency of 10/15 mpg, have the aerodynamics of say, a brick. Our society has been spoiled by all the reduced energy costs over the past three decades, so much that we cannot even fathom that we have a good deal.

Cheap fuel after all, makes us feel better about our world.

So there, I said it, I feel better already.

Please forward your complaints to the appropriate system coordinator at Conoco-Phillips 66, Exxon, BP, or your nearest Arco Station. Now I am sneaking over across the street to siphon some gas, while it is still dark, I need to mow the lawns.

000

For Your Information:  Is Ethanol Really A Good Idea