Wednesday, January 28, 2015

You're never going to get anywhere if you don't.....

is how a lot of lectures I have received started.

"You're never going to get anywhere if you don't stop playing around with boat and buckle down with a career," is one I heard several times.

I would always snap back at my accuser, "Where am I going? When it's all over and done with we're both going to wind up in the same place."

Anyway, I didn't start my career until I was damned near 40 and inside of ten years my home and cars were paid off.

I'll bet a lot of my detractors were still paying off theirs while I was sitting in Fat City.

To top that I have a whole lot of neat adventures to look back on.

To find out why the blog is pink just cut and paste this: NO ANIMALS WERE HARMED IN THE WRITING OF TODAY'S ESSAY

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Mob guys and other fools.

One of the things I notice about criminal types is that they always seem to stay put. I have never figured it out. They don't leave the area.

They do something that either draws police heat or gets the mob after then and they wind up being picked up or whacked  in the same area they got into trouble in to begin with.

I can't figure it out.

If I were in, say, New York and got either the police or the mob after me I'd be out of New York like a shot. Maybe move west somewhere and start over.

Yet you seldom if ever hear about anyone doing that. They always seem to want to hang around the neighborhood and either get arrested or gunned down.

I suppose these days they can track you down on line etc. unless you can get into the Witness Protection program. Still, the least you can do is give them a run for their money. For one thing you have to remember about the mob and most city police departments and that's that they seldom if ever leave the pavement.

If you can get into a remote area somewhere and stay mum you at least have a chance of surviving.

To find out why the blog is pink just cut and paste this: NO ANIMALS WERE HARMED IN THE WRITING OF TODAY'S ESSAY

Monday, January 26, 2015

Women can't sew or cook anymore... or so it seems.

I went to Target to buy a certain kind of thread and the entire sewing section was about 3 feet by 3 feet if that. They didn't have a whole lot. I got curious and asked the woman in the aisle that was stocking a shelf what the deal was. Why such a small section?

The clerk had a pretty good sense of being able to read people and she read me by the look on my face.

She said dryly that although women didn't know how to darn a sock, they were pretty good at whipping out the plastic and buying another pair. Sounds about right in this day and age.

She reported to me that about 60% of the people that bought stuff off of that section looked like they were single men. I wasn't too surprised to hear that.


I'm on a first name basis with a couple of the deli clerks in the supermarket next to the Target. A while back we had a brief discussion about the number of women that feed their families straight out of the deli and prepared foods section.

He told me he was convinced there were a lot of women out there that couldn't even cook a basic meal.

This really doesn't surprise me a whole lot as I have seen a lot of things change over the last 63 years. The changes in American womanhood are one of these changes.

Still, I wonder about the future because it seems we are losing basic skills and becoming dependent on others to take care of us. 

Many men are no prize, either. There are a lot of guys out there that can't even change a tire and that's nothing less than a disgrace. There is nothing that I hold in contempt more than an incompetent male.

I suppose that there are changing roles in between the sexes for any number of reasons but there is no excuse whatsoever for not being able to cook a meal or sew up a torn jacket.

As I write this I just recalled that some of the best housekeepers I have ever met are co-workers on the boats and guys I have fished with. At sea there is a sort of rivalry between men as to who the best cook is. In addition to that, I have never seen anyone like a fisherman that can sew up a torn set of raingear so it won't leak.

Granted, the fisherman may be using dental floss for thread and shoe goo as a sealer but when he is done generally the job is a piece of art.

I suppose that as time passes we will keep getting more and more dependent on The Big Machine out there to take care of our basic needs.

While that may sound good to some, it is a double edged sword that can swing back on someone. When we get too dependent the providers then have us at their mercy and can likely get away with charging us what they want.

I suppose when that happens there might be a rebirth of people learning cooking skills but I don't see that one coming into play in the near future.

To find out why the blog is pink just cut and paste this: NO ANIMALS WERE HARMED IN THE WRITING OF TODAY'S ESSAY

Sunday, January 25, 2015

I'm gonna go it ALONE!

Yeah, right. Who are you $hittin'? It sure as hell ain't me.

I saw on some internet board the bright idea of some survivalist with a bunker somewhere in Outer Slobovia that has plans to hole up there alone in the case of TEOTWAWKI.

TEOTWAWKI stands for The End Of The World As We Know It. 

So this clown is going to hole up in his bunker with a bunch of food, gasoline, ammunition, medical stuff, and so on and wait the big collapse out.

Yeah, right. 

You have to sleep sometime and when he does someone will just take his stuff away from him. Bang. One shot fired, done and over with. Drag the body out and toss it somewhere to feed the buzzards. They gotta eat, too.

Over the years I have done a couple of interesting things that were fairly independent. I spent 14 months in a tipi in the Rockies and I've done some singlehanded sailing.

One thing it produced was a bunch of hot air on the part of other people that wanted to tell me how independent and free I was and so on ad nauseum.

Nothing was further from the truth.

It reminded me of all the people that gush over the pilots when the Blue Angels show up at an air show. 

I remember back in the early sixties when my dad took us to an air show and we got to meet the pilots. My dad said "Son, hotshot pilots are a dime a dozen. Let's meet the real brains and brawn of this operation."

The pilots grinned broadly when he said that and one of them said, "Your dad is right." Then he turned and shouted, "Hey, Smitty! Come on over! You and the guys have some fans here!"

Dad had been a WW2 flyboy of the propeller age and wasn't too familiar with jets but that was OK. He stood there and had an interesting chat with the guys on the ground crew much to the amusement and appreciation of the pilots. The pilots knew that they were only as good as their ground support. It was obvious that they appreciated dad giving them their fair share of the credit.

When I moved into my tipi back in the mid 70s I did erect it myself and I did live in it myself. Still, there were a lot of other people involved that probably never even knew who I was.

Someone at the tent company built the tipi and someone shipped it. People made the canvas and so on.

I wasn't alone. 

My axe, rifle and other goods required people get up and go to work to make them so I could have them. 

God knows how many unseen and unheard of people were involved in that 14 months I spent in the Rockies.  

We really don't do a whole lot of things alone when you think about it.

To find out why the blog is pink just cut and paste this: NO ANIMALS WERE HARMED IN THE WRITING OF TODAY'S ESSAY

Saturday, January 24, 2015

this is my new wallpaper

I find it to be very kind to my eyes and it reminds me of simpler days. This picture has a very calming effect on me.  

Left click on it and see it in a larger size. This little picture doesn't do it justice.

To find out why the blog is pink just cut and paste this: NO ANIMALS WERE HARMED IN THE WRITING OF TODAY'S ESSAY

Friday, January 23, 2015

eBay bids.

Someone asked me where I got a power supply for my 2 meter rig and I told them I got it on eBay which I did. I paid $25 for it. Shipped.

They were astonished that I got it at that price.

The reason I got it so cheap is because the seller had mispelled the word 'supply'. He had put down 'suppy' instead.

When I saw that there were thousands of power supplies to choose from I started cruising through different mispellings and found several. One fit my needs so I bid on it and got it for peanuts.

Normally when I see something I want I figure out how badly I want it and then toss out a bid and forget about it. Either I get it or I don't. I'm not stupid enough to get into an emotionally charged bidding war and wind up buying something used for three times its new retail price like some people do.

I recall reading about a bidding war that ended with someone coughing up over $400 for a rifle sling that sold in the surplus market for about $6.

You can easily let yourself get taken to the cleaners on eBay if you let your emotions get in the way. It's not a hard thing to do. Sometimes it is insidious. You just keep upping your bid a buck or two at a time as things climb and then before you realize it you've overpaid for something. You can't balme anyone because you did it to yourself.

I always wondered if someone has tried to sue them because they overpaid for something. My best guesss is probably so. I can see some whiny little hippie babbling that they overpaid and it's eBays fault. Screw that. Dumbass. He did it to himself.

As I sit here I see a couple of items that I have bid on that I won't get. Someone else has topped my bid. It's gone and that's the way it is. Too bad. I'm not getting into the bidding war. I'm not stupid.

I am getting ready to post this and I have had another offer declined. I'm not too worried about it.

Still, every once in a while you can get a pretty good deal on things on eBay if you're patient and careful.

Incidentally the season of eBay deals has passed. Generally you can do pretty well between Thanksgiving and New Year's as people divert funds from stuff they might simply want and put the money toward Christmas presents.

Something to remember next holiday season.

To find out why the blog is pink just cut and paste this: NO ANIMALS WERE HARMED IN THE WRITING OF TODAY'S ESSAY

Thursday, January 22, 2015

I suppose I'm going to get slain for this but that's too damned bad.

I just got an email from a friend that commented on the racial situation in this country. For what it is worth this man works and plays with a number of blacks. He's not a Klansman type.

It seems to me that these days that when blacks accuse whites of keeping them down they are spouting off a lot of crap left over from the 60s.

The truth is that not a whole lot of people want to keep the black man down. If for no other reason, it's just too damned expensive. They want people to succeed.

One of the very few things the failed Great Society programs did was to put many blacks in the golden handcuffs of the governmental welfare system. This means that it costs the average guy money come tax time.

The average guy is sick and tired of shelling out his hard earned cash to Uncle Sam to support those that won't support themselves and would really like to see everyone start taking care of themselves.

It really is that simple.

While there is no shortage of non-blacks on the governmental assistance rolls, it does occur to me that the percentages in the black community are pretty high.

Most people in this country simply wish these people would start supporting themselves.

A big part of the problem actually lies with the black man keeping himself down. It's crab syndrome. When you put a crab in a tub he will try and escape. He very well may unless you throw another crab into the tub. Then the crab that is escaping will be pulled back into the tub by the other crab.

Same seems to hold true in the urban black community. Some of this is done by gang recruiting. A lot of youngsters seem to get dragged into the local gang and sucked down the tubes by this. Many of them never really have a chance. It's sad.

Of course, the gang isn't going to support them trying to get ahead in anything but the gang. The last thing they want is their membership to start heading out into the straight world.

Another thing is that it has been 40 or so years since the LBJ Great Society programs have been enacted and that has given people an awful lot of time to get used to things. That's about three generations of dependency.

Add the support to the dependency being thrown at the black community by the professional race baiters (Al Sharpton etc.) and you have more support for not even trying to be successful.

Incidentally, this dependency is not strictly a black thing. There are a lot of whites that fit this bill.

Still, what I am paying attention to in this post is the black community. That was the subject of the email I received and am addressing now.

The truth of the matter is that in a most cases it isn't the white man keeping blacks down. It is quite often a case of blacks being their own worst enemy and keeping themselves down. 

Incidentally, don't expect me to shoulder any of the blame on this. I have spent my entire life believing that Dr. King was right when he said he was looking for a day when a man would not by judged by the color of his skin, but by the content of his character.

To find out why the blog is pink just cut and paste this: NO ANIMALS WERE HARMED IN THE WRITING OF TODAY'S ESSAY