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My favorite time of year

In Uncategorized on November 20, 2014 at 6:36 PM

Sorry for the long sabbatical but my favorite time of the year is here and I couldn’t be happier!
For years,  I have loved the fall season;  maybe it’s because the changing of the seasons usually brings on the Christmas cheeryness in us,  or maybe I was just meant to be a happy person at least once a Year? I couldn’t tell you how many Thanksgiving dinners we had as a kid, where mama had spent the morning cooking that big O’ honkin turkey,  all the fixins and the family gathered,  in peace for a few hours. Thatmay be why this time of year — October-February — holds a special place in my heart.
I love the weather because for some reason,  I can not get enough the falling leaves with their changing colors, and the fond memories I have as kid when I used to rake the leaves of the neighbors around my house; the hot cocoa that always seemed to meteralize out of thin air between Halloween and Christmas; maybe it is the fact, that in my mind,  I live in a Norman Rockwell painting,  and still look for the good of people,  and trust those same individuals with the honor system,  despite every shred of evidence to the contrary. Right now even, I’m lying in bed, still in my jammies and having a mug of hot cocoa, despite it being close to five in the Evening!

I will,  hover give equal space to the things that I hate about this time of year,  too. For starter’s, I absolutely despise every god damned Christmas commercial that I see the first of November, totally bypassing the Thanksgiving, the only damn holiday in the month. Why? When did we stop caring about the holiday that was supposed to bring us all together, and start caring more about a fat man who commits a felony and leaves you presents, all the while stealing your Food! Also, wouldn’t Santa get a sugar high and a milk sleep while Flying?
Another thing I hate about the “Holiday Season” is the damned Christmas music! The old songs about Santa and the Snowman are OK, simply because they aren’t about anything other than the aforementioned fat ass and snowball. The radio stations here play nothing but Christmas music all day and night; not all, but some. And it is still annoying. The new Christmas songs that they play are fucking awful! I love Frank Sinatra and the Rat Pack, but not even Ol Blue Eyes can make me like the damn Songs!
Christmas sweaters. I don’t fell the need to explain why I hate them with the fury of a millions pissed off Vikings bring the rapture, but I want to. For starters, why are they so damned Ugly? Did the secret Society of Sweaters have a meeting and discuss That? I get why they are Christmas themed (duh), and it annoys me because they are always so damned awful; not just in design, color, theme, and print, but because they are so fucking Itchy! My mama can knit like nobody’s business, but there ain’t no dang way I’m gonna ask her to knit me One!
Having to say “Happy Holidays” instead of Merry Christmas. If you recall the post I left some time ago about religion, then you remember that I don’t believe in God, but it doesn’t mean I don’t like Christmas! I don’t celebrate the birth of Christ, but I do celebrate getting together with the family and mama passing out the presents that the aforementioned fatty “Left” the night before. Even if you want to display the Nativity Scene in your front yard, be my guest. I might not share your beliefs, but I support your right to believe it.

I think that as a kid,  the best part of the year was seeing my neighbors Christmas lights and their display grow as the years passed. They had a talking Santa that I absolutely loved to walk passed, just to hear it say “Hello, there, little one.” As a five year old waling with my mama to the store, that was the beans! I never got the chance to meet the folks behind the festivities, and, sadly, someone smashed that Santa display and absolutely killed the spirit for them; things just weren’t the same after that. I can’t fault them for having their hearts ripped out and then never decorating again. I don’t think that the couple ever recovered from it; i know that I haven’t seen the neighborhood darker in my life.It’s as if every light down that street suddenly went out at once; the people, even the people that I grew up with, the same people that mama trusted to care for me,  stopped smiling. The once friendly street had turned ugly. Homes whose blinds had never been closed, now never opened. Christmases where less holly-jolly and more Bah Humbug after that night.
Even with that, however I still love to see the lights being displayed, just not in the middle of September. When I walk into a store, I don’t wanna see half the damn store decked out with Santa and his reindeer when it’s still a hundred seven Outside! One of the best memories I have as a kid is of grandma loading me and the rest of the family up in her pickup truck and driving us all to the ritzy neighborhoods who had decorated their houses with lights and synced them with a computer to control them with the beat of music. The most that we ever had as a kid was one small string on the outside of a small bathroom window.
We had our tree, of course. Mama can’t have pine, but we begged mama for a real tree, and one year she got us one. It was a happy memory for those of us who could see and weren’t in hell because of allergies, so every year after that,  we have always had a fake tree; mama would set it up around the middle of December and we would decorate it with the ornaments and tinsel and we always had either an angel or star on top. My siblings where taller than me and so their decorations spanned more than the bottom eight of the tree. “Look,  Mike,” my sister would say, “you gotta hang them higher; spread them out.”

Sadly, this time of year also brings about a few sad memories for me as well. My great grandma was born on Christmas day and I loved her, and every year, we wound all pile into her tiny little one bedroom apartment and celebrate a second, or even third Christmas with her. Adding to the sorrow of the year is the fact that my dad is gone, too. I lost count of all the times when he’d come home tired from work, lean on the doorjamb and say “Ah, hell, Again?” when he saw the tree in the window and the lights being plugged in. I’d have to hit myself if I didn’t mention the time that we tried sneaking out the room and into the living room to see our presents under the tree, only to be foiled by my dad saying “GET TO BED!” Sadly, I will neer him say that again…

Either way, I still love this time of year simply because it is great time of year to be alive. The wonderment and the excitement that I felt as a child is still there, and I have to thank my nephew for that; I get excited watching him get excited at the presents that are under the tree.
Good Night and happy Thanksgiving, it is November, after all!

Who needs drugs when you have fountain pens?

In Uncategorized on January 10, 2014 at 2:59 AM

I recently got a new ink refill for my fountain pen, and I’m over joyed because too me, they are the best thing ever. From their simple elegance tho their smooth feeling and writing style, they are just fantastic!

I received my first fountain pen for Christmas. That “Classic Pen Set”that was sold in every pharmacy around Christmas. I’d see it advertised and as a young child (the same commercial ran for about ever) and think, “wow, such a beautiful writing instrument”. So, one year, I was shopping for a few items with mama and Rite-Aid had two sets left, and a week before Christmas, they weren’t expected too get any more. That night I told mama “I’m not expecting anything, given that I’m not working and money is tight, but I did notice that Rite-Aid had that classic pen set.” She gave me some typical noncommittal mom answer, and I took care of some business I had. Christmas morning, I woke up, showered, ashamed and noticed the family was up. I headed into the living room, where I saw mama, my sister, aunt, nephew and brother-in-law. Mama handed me a copy of Wall Street (that came with the terrible sequel) and one rather large box. I opened the classic pen set, and was actually stunned; stunned to the point of silence!

My second came from the last that I took care of in Utah. She found it in a box of who knows what and said that if u can clean it up, I could have it. Well, sadly, I was unable too clean out, but I did manage to knock the broken bladder bits out. And I still have it to this day!

My third was a calligraphy pen that I had to file down the nib tho make work as a fountain pen. That was a learning experience because I found out the difference between a calligraphy pen and a fountain pen…still have that one, too!

My third fountain pen is a beautiful Cross number that my aunt bought me before we left Utah. I used it while in, and leaving Utah, especially on the train. It took some digging, but a place that sells the ink at a great price. I discovered this by going into OfficeMax too see about their pen set that had everything from the ink bottle, converter, vs syringe, pen, book and a cleaning cloth…too bad out was almost 79 dollars! Needless to say,I found the ink for it after cursing Cross for being so damn difficult in making their barrels Twitter, thus creating the need for a custom ink cartridge and no option for a converter!

So, as I stated earlier…Who needs drugs when you have fountain pens?

An idea that may actually work?

In Uncategorized on November 30, 2013 at 2:22 AM

As I sit here, I had a jolly good idea. Make vending machines, and thus everything accessible via debit card! Think of how much easier and simpler our lives would be!

As we progress into a more plastic carrying nation, and thus stop using paper money, it would be a boon for banks and the like to manufacture a vending machine that takes debit cards. If you’re like me, then you no longer carry cash, and want a Wild Cherry Pepsi at, oh, say 1:25 AM, but have no cash on hand, and refuse to get dressed and pop off to the nearest petrol station. What’ll you do? Grab your debit card, mates!

How this genius idea will work is like any other debit transaction, you make a selection on the item, crisps, or soda, and insert your debit card, then your pin number. Bam, soda and a bag of crisps!

Not to mention that if you ride buses to and fro, then the debit system is a no go. You need to get to work, but no time to pop off and get a few dollars? Guess you’re late, chum. Not with my debit system. Slid in your card and insert your pin, and your off to work in no time! See, I’m not always blogging about the crude things we should do, this one helps!

We already pay via debit for everything, so why not include vending machines and public transport? The laundromat in my old neighbourhood took credit cards! That’s one I didn’t think of when compiling this list of greatness. We can buy stuff online and have it shipped to us via debit card, so why not have sweets, and soda? Hell, most of us can’t even reach our pockets. Not to mention that we could curd the random drug trades in the street, as I doubt that T-bog wants a paper trail. Strip clubs could also benefit, as a girl will still come to your table with those little machines that read the card, the user inserts an amount he wants to pay (tip included) and then she would start her dance. Want more dances? Just insert another am out and off she goes again. Of course we would still have the cash option, but after a few years they would be fazed out, either from lack of use, or the government decided that paper and coin money is a fallacy. And not to mention that paper money, such as a dollar or a penny costs somewhere between half and double the amount of the denomination to make, where plastic cards can be made for next to nothing and hold billions. See economical!

They burn paper money after it gets too old. Plastic cards can be melted down and made into anything like a Corvette for instance…that you bought with…..a new debit card! Its the circle of life! And, as technology progresses, we will manufacture new ways of producing the cards, and eventually, plastic will non longer get used, saving the hippy crybabies and their hippy tears. See? Works for everyone!

So, in closing, the debit card is a boon, and as soon as our government rulers realize this, the better, and more convenient our lives will be.

This is a change…

In Uncategorized on July 29, 2013 at 11:18 PM

Due to the recent influx of requests, I have decided to post another in a series, however I’m, changing it to be stuff I enjoy….

The first thing I enjoy is cold weather. Something about wind and cool temperatures just…it just gets me, you know?

I enjoy the smell of fresh bread! My aunt makes the best bread; sadly, due to a work injury, she cannot make it. My house hasn’t been the same since!

I enjoy the first puff of a fresh batch of pipe tobacco. To me the best time to smoke is after a hard day’s work, just grab your favorite (preferably non carbonated) beverage, a book (or blog…) and sit back and enjoy!

I enjoy video games! Shocking, I know…but I do. Probably the best video game I’ve ever play is Pac-Man; as old as it is, there is something about watching that little cheese wheel, that just captivates me. Even as technology advances, and an original working copy becomes harder to find than a unicorn-rhino hybrid, that will always be the best game.

I enjoy a great book. One that starts off as great as it finishes. Tom Clancy is my favourite author, despite just handing his ideas off to someone and collecting a paycheck. His novel Rainbow Six was his best work, even if it took the video game to make me read it!

As crotchety as I am, I enjoy the company of others. I enjoy my friends and family, it’s “outsiders” I cannot stand. When I’m with my friends, the rest if the world can wait!

These are just a few of the tthings that I enjoy. If I posted them all, the internet would crash, so I am going to leave it here. As always, feel free to drop me a comment and let me hear you kind folk’s opinion. Thanks for reading

I sell propane and and propaba accessories

In Uncategorized on May 29, 2013 at 4:12 AM

As I finish an episode of King of the Hill, I decided to vent a few questions that I have, and share my thoughts on the series.

When it debuted, it was different than what Fox had with The Simpsons and Family Guy, as it was family oriented, and wasn’t “blue”. It had comedy, but also had life lessons that everyone could relate to. It had just about zero drama, aside from the propane explosion at the Mega-Lo-Mart, that is.

Hank was the assistant manager for Strickland Propane, which for today, is a lost art; everyone has to have a fancy job and and car, Hank had two trucks in the series’ run. Just two. Bobby was the typical teen, didn’t want to partake in sports, good at video games, great at getting his dad to say “That bout ain’t right”. Peggy was the misguided wife, who tried to price she knew enduring, despite being wrong on just about everything except Boggle. The crazy neighbor was played by Dale Gribble, and who amongst us can say honestly that they have never known a crazy neighbor? Kahn was the Asian who hated living next to rednecks, but tried making the best of it. Bill was the neighbor who, despite all of Hank’s trying, just couldn’t do much for himself. Boomhouer was a mystery…at least until the final episode, that is. The program even had the crazy, stuck in his ways grandpa, played by Cotton, the WWII vet.

I remember when the show premiered. It was a boring Sunday night. My family was prospering for the next work and school week. The programme started with Bobby playing softball and getting beaned in the head. That was the best part of any cartoon I have ever seen! When the introduced Kahn to the neighbours, I was howling with laughter when Bill kept asking “So are are you Chinese, or Japanese?” despite being told Kahn was Laotion. It’s a tad racist, but funny. The way Hank introduces himself as “Hank Hill, assistant manager, Strickland Propane” was the highlight of my week.

Hell, out was the only show too make grandpa dying hilarious. When Cotton died, I laughed so hard…he thought the chef of the Japanese restaurant was trying to cut him, so he jumped onto the stove, melted shoes and all, and asked Bobby, “Are they going to have too take my knees, boy?” That was funny!

I also have a few complaints about the show. Such as, ever notice how the calender never changes, yet the show takes place in all times of the year? Also, how does Luanne age from 17 to 21, yet Bobby only ages from 12 to 13? The show was on for at least a decade…you think the lad would’ve at least gotten to age 14 in that time span! If Dale was convinced that the government was watching him, how did he not know that Boomhouer was a Texas Ranger? You think that most guys like him would know that, right? Before they explored Peggy and her background, she was born and raised in Texas, but they changed that to being the daughter of a harsh Montana rancher without explaining it; they did the old sweep it under the rug thing that Hollywood is famous for, I guess. They did explore the relationship of Kahn and Minh, but briefly. If memory serves, Kahn was a treble in the eyes of Minh’s father, but she loved him, and after The General realized it, he was ok with it…but they never have much thought to the second, our third tiered characters; Bill fell in love with Kahn’s mother, which upset Kahn naturally… Anyone remember even the guys built Kahn’s swimming pool? They never seemed to mention that again, not did they explain what happened to GH after Cotton died. Did he and Debby move in with family or what? I need closure, here!
Peggy was the time substitute teacher of the year, until she went to work for the paper. They never explained if she kept her teaching license or not, either.

Did Bobby finally become a prop comic, like he wanted? How did Boomhouer find time to be a Texas Ranger if he was always chasing trail? For that matter, did Dale ever make enough to live on as an exterminator? We ask know it was a matter of time before Nancy left him for John Redcorn, right?

Anyway, that is my post about King of the Hill, I hope you enjoyed it. If you know anyone who has power in the entertainment world, convince them top make a movie about this show, the world needs it!

The New Yankee Workshop

In Uncategorized on May 20, 2013 at 9:36 PM

As a child, I used to watch The New Yankee Workshop with my dad. It was on Saturday afternoon, around one, and we would sit in the couch and watch as Norm Abram would build the items that every man should have in his workshop. Neither my father nor I had the tools, space, out even the desire to recreate the items being built (even though we could get the measure drawing from their website…) but we would watch him build everything he needed, including a jig for whatever cut he happened to make…he seemed to have a jig for Egbert cut known to man…

Recently, I started watching his program again and got to wondering a few things… First on that list is did he ever make mistakes, and if so, are they available to the public, our sites PBS keep them locked in a vault? Second, did he build everything himself, or where interns just out of camera that helped him? Was that his own workshop on his land, or was that something studio hands crafted for him to use? What lumberyard did he use, our did he cut the tree himself? (I’m picturing Norm out there with a custom made jig as I you’re this, and it’s making people look at me funny)

Whatever his methods, they worked like nobody’s business… Did Norm keep the furniture he made inn the shop, our did he give it away, or destroy it to reuse the lumbah (as he and my father would say)? And his safety glasses had to be custom made to fit his prescription, or did he just always have them on?

Well, those are just a few thoughts on The New Yankee Workshop, maybe I’m the future I will post a blog about This Old House and/or its spinoff Ask This Old House. Just remember, read, understand, and follow all safety warnings on your power tools, and there is no more important safety feature than these, safety glasses

A few ideas to make baseball better

In Uncategorized on May 14, 2013 at 1:50 AM

As baseball enters the mid-point of the season, I was thinking of a few ways to make the sport even better…

The first way is to get a mulligan rule. Not for every day, but one time a year, and not in the playoffs, or the World Series, however.

The second way is to bring back the 500+ feet range from home plate to the center field wall. They used to have them, but for reasons I do not know, they got rid of them. They where cool in the baseball games, and I would love to see one like the old Polo Grounds, or Ebbits Field again.

Way number three is to bring back the fans in center field. This just having them from right field to left field is stupid. The home runs from center field are where the money is.

Another way to make baseball better is to stop “upgrading” or building new stadiums every twenty years. What was wrong with Yankee Stadium? The House that Ruth Built was just fine. This new one had to wait a few years before they even entered the post season… I get that Bud Selig wants all baseball to be played outdoors by 2020, but then you have to factor in your Minnesota and Toronto playing years have snow in them…lots of snow. With the Skydome and Meteodome, you could play all year if you wanted to, but I am happy that Target Field opened up and Minnesota is finally playing outdoors again! If the old Met Stadium was any indication, then we could see a few good things from the Twins…eventually…I hope.

Anyway, there are a few ideas that I have to make baseball even better. If you have any of your own, please feel free to add them in the comments and let me know. Thanks

I am a Mad Man

In Uncategorized on April 7, 2013 at 5:31 AM

Well, its almost here! The season premiere of Mad Men. I am both happy and depressed by this; happy because one of my favourite programmes is coning back, but saddened because Paul Kinsey and Peggy Olsen aren’t returning. Paul left when the guys split to form their own company, and Peggy left because Don didn’t respect her. I admired Paul because there was a fellow pipe smoker on television, and I thought Elisabeth Moss was cute, and she just fit the show so perfectly!

When I first started the show, I thought that it was decent, but didn’t expect it to be a major hit for the network, nor did I expect it to win just about every award that it is nominated for. I have since grown to enjoy the programme. The thing that troubles me most is that they bring Paul back as some Buddhist monk-type with a ponytail that starts at the back of his skull, and they write him off just as quickly! What the heck, man! I know that they cut him because of budget issues (there was a major story about it, hence why almost every week they cut players or relegated them to guest stars) and his character didn’t have chemistry with Don, but I would love to see him in the coming season.

They let Peggy go, and I can only hope that she will return somewhere, even if she winds up humping Don at some point. They brought back Ken Cosgrove, just to piss off Pete, but no one calls Salvatore? I get that in the show he was stymied by the fact that by the mid sixties the ad companies where going to cheaper and easier photography for their ads, thus killing the art department, but I always felt that he and the other seconds had great chemistry, but what do I know, I’m just a fan.

I’m hoping that this season will continue to piss me off by not having that pretentious d-bag Paul (whom I loved, if you remember)!

Perfect weather

In Uncategorized on March 15, 2013 at 11:33 PM

As I sit outside in my pajamas, it is a fantastic late winter /early spring night. I have been missing my nightly smokes due to the weather being too cold.

Today was the finest smoking weather I’ve had since I left Utah and the desert. The air is still, the temps are moderate. Everything about this night just screamed “GO OUTSIDE AND SMOKE!” So I did. If its the only thing that I love about California, it is hy far the weather; sure as hell isn’t the government…………

I’m smoking what we pipe smokers call the “Parfait bowl” which is to say that two or mike blends have been mixed. The first blend is a bit of Molto Dulche that my brother gave me, with some Brlurley and Black that I sandwich in with a top layer of the MD. The taste is fine, and can only be achieved if the blends are close in terms of smokability. Which means that they complement each other. I.e. two airomatics that mesh or two English blends, etc.

Normally, I would’ve tried this in my old corn cob pipe, but ye olde briar was close at hand. In fact, you should always smoke new or untried blends in a cob before you move on to a wodden or clay pipe, simply because the figs do not absorb the tars and juices that wood does and you wont “ghost” your bowl.

That is going to do it for this entry. Stay tuned for some more random musings

The joys of journaling

In Uncategorized on February 23, 2013 at 10:29 PM

Each night before bed, I make time to record the day’s events and my thoughts on them in my journal. It is a practice that I got into back in grade school. Back then, we recorded our thoughts in whatever subject we happen to be studying at the time.

Journaling is a great way to chart your personal growth, and to reflect on your past memories.  Plus, if you a kid, you can pass it down to them, or if you get famous, you can publish them and give the world an insight into your mind.

Some say that keeping a journal is strictly for women, typically between childhood and adolescence, usually stopped because the girl becomes interested in the boy next door. That’s not entirely true. Great men if history have kept journals. Men such as General George Washington, Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Abe Lincoln, Nepoleon, and President Ronald Reagan, just to name a few.

Some even consider online blogs to be a journal.

Getting started is easy. All you need is a quiet place in which to write, a journal (duh), a pen (preferably a fountain pen, but you can use a ballpoint one as well, just no pencils) and a comfortable place to sit. You can use an app or the Word app on your computer, just make sure that if you go that route, make sure that it is passcode protected.

If you’re unsure how to get started, your local library may have some books on the subject, or you can even use the internet to get tips.

However you choose to go, just enjoy the hobby in good health.

Feel free to leave your ideas on the comments page and share your thoughts with others. Thanks for reading.

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