Friday, October 31, 2014

The retired strippers home

Food shopping and I was going through the checkout and as usual the clerk asked me if I wanted to contribute to the United Way and as I generally do I said that I give to the Retired Strippers Home.

She apparently wasn't too  bright and asked me about the place which, of course, does not exist. I told her it was to provide for strippers when they became too old to shake their goods in front of people. 

:It is a public service and saves the eyes of a lot of men because there comes a time when a stripper stops being eye candy and starts becoming an eyesore," I said. "The home gets her out of the public eye,"

The woman behind me, she looked to be about fifty, was suppressing a smirk. I turned to her and saw she was still fairly attractive.

"If you were a stripper you would be ineligible to go there," I said.

"Oh? Why is that?" she asked, somewhat warily.

"Because you're still really quite a pleasant eyeful," I said. "You have a long way to go before you're eligible."

She blushed a bit and her face lit up. "Why, thank you," she said.

About twenty minutes earlier I had crossed paths with another woman pushing a cart. While there was no near collision or anything, I was polite as I usually am. "Excuse me, young lady," I said as I crossed paths. She smiled when she hear it.

Some dopey looking guy with her spoke up. "That's my wife," he said. "What did you call her?"

"Young lady," I replied. "She's certainly younger than I am and seems to be a lady."

"Yeah," he shot back. "Well, I don't like it."

"That is because you want to sleep on the couch tonight," I replied casually and started off. I wasn't ten feet away when I heard the two of them start bickering. 

"So what am I, an old broad?" I heard the woman ask her husband. She was pretty irate and embarrassed. I figured he was going to wind up on the couch. I had called that one.

A couple years back in Philly I had a similar thing happen with an Islamic woman. (They could have been Christian, Jewish or Hindu for all I cared) All I said to her was 'Excuse me," and left it at that. Her husband demanded to know what I said and I told him and he tried to say something to me about it.

"Sir, I am an American gentleman," I said. "I treat everyone including people's pets with courtesy and respect. That means everyone. Including your wife and children."

"I'm from..." he started.

I cut him off. "You're far away from there," I countered. "You're in the States now. Learn your manners. You left where you came from to come here. Learn our ways. They are the reason you came here. You didn't like the old country. If you don't like the States go back to where you came from or find somewhere else to live."

He didn't know what to say.

"We are a kind and generous people," I said. "We are either your best friend or worst enemy and the choice is generally left entirely up to you. My mother raised me to be kind and generous and the army trained me to fight for those that can't fight for themselves. How I respond to you is your choice." Then I smiled warmly.

"I'd just as soon be kind to you," I finished. "It is a whole lot easier."

I tipped my ball cap to the lady. "Good day, Ma'am," I said and turned to the man and nodded. "Good day, Sir." With that I left to go about my business.

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, October 30, 2014

I just got me the music for my upcoming church service.

I had a kindred spirit make me a CD of some pretty good Gospel music, most of which actually comes from the black community. It's pretty lively and ought to serve for giving me a background for a pretty good tent revival type service.

What this is about is that there is a shoot of sorts I sometimes attend. The nearest neighbor is constantly calling the local law enforcement people to shut us down. They have been there any number of times and have had only good things to say about the way things are run.

The neighbor objects to the noise, apparently. Truth is he brought it on himself when the landowner bought the land. He came over and gave the new owner a hard time rather than simply trying to be civil. The issue has been in and out of court a couple of times and the neighbor has lost. The neighbor has also apparently perjured himself in his effort to get things shut down. 

I suppose these things happen but what irked me at my most recent attendance were the signs the neighbor put up that I read on the way in and out. They said that we should go back the hell which is where we came from among other things. There were also references to Sunday being the Lord's day.

Apparently the neighbor fails to realize that almost all of us are basically good Judeo-Christian men even though we may not look a whole lot like it.

Incidentally, there is a church in the distance and they are inside of hearing range during the winter and fall so we secure range operations Sunday mornings until they let out.

I was offered the job of putting together a service when someone noticed the sticker on my pickup that says I am a minister. I was instantly appointed chaplain and asked to put together a service.

I agreed but made it clear that it will be a bona fide service, open to all religions and with a Judeo-Christian bent to it.

It ought to be pretty good because I plan it to be a lively service with music and an ad-lib sermon celebrating the day the Lord has given us, rain or shine.

It should serve as a reminder to the neighbor that he has no business posting those offensive signs calling us devil worshipers.

Quite frankly, I think he's going to call the police on us yet again over this but I really don't care. The right  to conduct divine services is protected by the First Amendment.

To tell you the truth, I hope the police ARE called. They are getting tired of this guy and his antics and will likely take satisfaction telling him that divine services are protected by the First Amendment and to simply stop whining.

I just thought of something as I end this epistle. 

I'm now a officially an appointed Sky Pilot. 


For those that are not familiar with the term, a sky pilot is a chaplain. The term comes from the Royal Navy. There were and still are people with local knowledge of certain waters that are hired to pilot ships through them. They are called ship's pilots. 

Royal Navy sailors started calling chaplains sky pilots because they figured they knew the way to heaven.

It's a charming term when used in the proper context that is seldom heard anymore. It's too bad in a way.

Back when I was in the service I referred to the DivArty chaplain (a tough Jesuit, no less) as a sky pilot and he grinned. He was a tough old bird.

Also after I got out I met a retired Navy chaplain that once referred to himself as being a 25-year Navy Sky Pilot. He was pretty funny when he confessed he liked being assigned to the Marines. 

"Up front, good old fashioned sinners," he grinned.

Anyway I'll keep you posted when I get around to holding my service. 

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

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

I remember the time

 we had a Russian ship pull into Kodiak for some reason or another. It turned into a pretty good party if I recall.

I believe that this was before the Berlin Wall was torn down but I may be wrong.

Still, I remember that there was a political officer of some sort that was wandering through the bars watching and listening to the guys off of his ship. He was a real wet blanket because when he walked in the Russian sailors got pretty quiet pretty fast.

Along came a certain somebody that befriended the guy and somehow managed to get a couple of drinks into him and relax him enough to drop his guard. That seemed to be all it took. I don't know what he did to the guy but he passed out and was left on the dock at the end of the Russian ship's  gangway. That's when things in the bars began to cook.

Work of the political officer being taken out of the equation really got things cooking. Word went through the Russian sailors ashore like wildfire. Let the party begin!

I like the retelling of the tale because as it got retold time and again I believe the story grew to where they took the passed out officer somewhere and tattooed the Stars and Stripes on his chest.

Then again maybe they DID tattoo the bastard! I don't know. I always hoped they did.

Still, I remember I had nothing special to do that day and enjoyed having a couple with a bunch of Rooski sailors. It was a lot of fun.

If I recall the Russians started running out of money quickly as they didn't get paid nearly as much as we did. That didn't slow things down much. The fishing fleet was in and they were flush and had plenty of cash to blow on a good party.

The truth is that I'd bet that the fishermen of the Kodiak fleet did more for grass roots international relations in a day than anyone in Foggy Bottom could in months. I'm sure the Russian sailors had a blast.

I kind of liked those guys. They were all right as far as I could see. Then again sailors are all cut from the same cloth.

Now that I think about it we'd all be a whole lot better off if we were more careful aout who we let run our countries. Generally it's governments that start all this crap in the first place.

Maybe we ought to elect drunken sailors to public office. At least when drunken sailors run out of money they stop spending 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

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

I just bought a fedora

 because I am thinking of taking my old look back. I tried it on and it looks pretty good.

Between the mid 70s and sometime around 1983 my basic uniform was a pair of Levi 501s, a khaki shirt, an old G-1 Navy leather flight jacket and a fedora. For a while I traded the fedora for some kind of a western hat. However after some broad in a bar stole my western hat. I returned to the fedora.

In 1983 or so Indiana Jones came along and I had to change my uniform because everyone said I was dressing like him even though he was dressing like me. It was a look I had gotten from the 40s and early 50s which is pretty much where Speilberg got Indy's look from.

A good fedora is a neat hat that you can be anyone in. You can be an explorer, a swashbuckler, an archeologist, a 40s truck driver, a soldier of fortune, a gangster, Clark Kent, a private eye, a moonshiner, a reporter, or even a police detective.

Dick Tracy never caught a disfigured criminal character without his on and the only time it ever came off was when Prune Face (or was it Knot Head) shot a hole in it.

The possibilities of who you can be in a fedora are endless. 

Or you can just simply be an ordinary guy like me.

I originally got the look from the generation behind me, my dad's. The leather jacket and fedora was a common uniform of former flyboys in the late 40s and early 50s. Back then men wore hats. Somewhere I saw an old picture of my dad in his Air Corps leather jacket and a fedora, circa 1947.

When I got off of the airplane from Alaska in a visit home back in '82 my dad laughed and commented I reminded him of himself back when he got out of the service. He had picked me up at the airport when he said that.

When we got home, my mother commented that I looked like my father did sometimes thirty years ago. Actually she added my fedora was pretty grubby and dad would never be caught dead in such a ratty hat. Dad was a little more of a natty dresser than I was. She later took me out and bought me a new one.

It was the last time I ever saw him alive and the year before Raiders of the Lost Ark came out.

The look came from countless movies, pulps and comic books. It's sort of a retro 40s thing.

It's been a long time since Indy stole my look. Thirty odd years is a long time. 

I think now is the time for me to take back into my Old School uniform again. 

Screw Indiana Jones. I'm taking my look back.

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, October 27, 2014

Buy your own.

I always got a kick out of the college kid that went fishing with us one halibut opening and started trying to tell the skipper where he thought we ought to fish.

He thought he had joined up into some kind of democratic venture where everything gets voted on by the crew. Or at least he acted like it.

The first time the skipper listened to him and acted interested and receptive to his ideas. When the kid was finished, the skipper simply said, "Buy your own."

I always wonder about people like the kid.

They have nothing invested in something yet they insist on telling someone that does how to run someone else's  operation.

This was in the early 80s and the skipper/owner had a million bucks tied up in his boat and about the same tied up in gear. The kid had a $10 crewman's fishing license tied up as his investment and even then it wasn't the boat's license. It was the kid's and he could take it anywhere he wanted. He had the option of simply staying ashore and done something else had he chosen to and all he would have lost is his lousy ten bucks. Or he could have simply found another boat to fish on.

The skipper had no such option if he wanted to keep his boat and gear. He had to work it. If no fish are caught then boat payments are not met and he loses everything.

During the trip the skipper asked me for an idea or two which was his option. Truth is it was pretty much rhetorical and I knew it. I knew he just wanted to get his brain flowing. I shared a couple ideas and left it at that. I really didn't have much useful to give him and I knew it. He was simply brainstorming.

Some skippers do that from time to time. They ask the greenest crewmember for suggestions figuring that in their ignorance might uncover something they have been overlooking for years. It's looking for a fresh point of view.  I've done it myself.

When it was all over and done with, I walked away from the trip with a pretty good sized chunk of change and the skipper made his payments.

He gets the credit for that and that's the way it is. He made the call as to where we fished and he told us where and when to set the gear and the entire ball was in his hands.

There are those out there that would gripe that the crew shares should have been bigger but the truth is they don't have a clue. They had nothing invested in it. The skipper, being an owner/operator did to the tune of a couple of million bucks. That's a lot of fish he has to catch to pay for all of this.

The complainers should buy their own boats and see how their attitude changes.

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, October 26, 2014

A couple of years ago

 I ran into a former cohort of mine. We knew each other from spending time in Kodiak.

One of the subjects that came up for some odd reason was the Filipino community. I never had a single problem with them and he said that he hadn't either although a shipmate of his had been stabbed by one of its members.

When he told me about the stabbing I commented that it was most likely fueled by alcohol and testosterone on the part of the fisherman. He agreed. It was a case of someone looking for a fight and finding one.

Generally a scuffle involving Filipinos happened when some drunken fisherman stumbled over and picked a fight with them. Most of them are of a slight build and not fighters by nature. When they are forced to fight they generally look for an equalizer. The culture in the Philippines is somewhat of a blade culture so grabbing a knife makes sense.

There was no shortage of stupidity. When someone went looking to get his ass kicked there was generally someone there willing to oblige him. If he is a big assailant you can generally expect the assaulted party to throw an equalizer of some sort into the equation. Ginsu. Buck and Schrade make  good ones.

When I arrived in Kodiak I was warned that Filipinos carried sharp knives and as a result I stood clear and observed. I saw a group of people that were fun loving, cheerful and basically happy.

Most of them were cannery workers and it was the evening before cannery payday and a half-dozen were sitting at a table nursing beers. By this time I knew a few of the the ins and outs of Kodiak and decided to make a few friends. I told the bartender to give me a case of beer.

"I think I'll make a few friends," I told him.

He gave me a deal on a case of Olympia, popped all the tops and I took it over to the guys and dropped it off on the table of surprised Filipinos. Instant party.

That's all it took.

I have said in the past that the Filipinos are the Irish of the South Seas and to a point they are. They love a party, are happy by nature, never forget a slight and never forget a kind gesture.

After that I had a standing invite into their community.

A meal in a Filipino home is similar to a meal in an Irish, Italian or Mexican household. It is bedlam, chaos, laughter, teasing and just plain fun. There is nothing formal or serious about it at all. 

Actually the case of beer incident wasn't my introduction to the community. I had been introduced to the community via a cannery I briefly worked in for a few days processing roe herring.

It was after I had been there a couple of days that I  mentioned I had carpentry skills and when I did a couple of the Filipinas looked at a Mexican woman. The  Mexican woman told me I ought to work for a couple of Mexicans that had a boat repair business.

One of them even went so far as to make a phone call and arrange a meeting. One of the Mexicans met me at the door at quitting time and hired me on the spot as somewhat of a grunt for about a week's worth of work.

For what I learned from them I would have worked for free. They were astonishing. I won't get into that here, but these guys were amazing. When they were done with the job they hooked me up with another builder that needed a hand and from then on I never wanted for work.

As far as the case of beer incident went it paid huge dividends. A couple of times I was invited into their homes for dinner and in return I took a couple of Filipinas to the movies. I was clever enough to offer to take a brother with me.

These people are pretty devout Old School Catholics and I didn't want even the appearance of any shenanigans with the womanfolk.

Over the next few years my friendship with many of them developed and they became another part of the woodwork although a couple of times at the Anchor Bar I'd get grabbed to defuse a confrontation. 

One confrontation I settled was a failure to communicate. A somewhat drunk gentle giant was horsing around and managed to intimidate a small Filipino. I sensed trouble and said something to the Filipino on my left and the incident was headed off.

We wound up sitting them down at a table and handing them both beers and telling them not to get up until they were done. They became friends of a sort.

All it took was the ability to treat people with courtesy and respect and to be willing to part with a case of beer that I got back tenfold anyways.

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, October 25, 2014

One of the interesting things I spoke of with an uncle of mine was about my father's post-war adjustment.

I won't get into his career except to say he got booted out of primary fighter training for rat-shack racing and hedge-hopping. I later found out that the school actually booted people out at random for that to set an example keep this sort of stuff to a minimum. His turn, I guess.

Truth is they WANTED fearless wildmen in the skies. They wanted guys that would attack forces several times their size without thinking about it.

Anyway, he became a bombardier and flew. Bombardiers were generally officers and officers were treated much better than enlisted men.

Dad was typical of the generation that lit up the skies. He was a high school graduate with an aptitude for math and physics. The army crammed a couple of years of this into him in just a few months.

Prior to his entry into the service he played jazz to make a few bucks in night clubs while attending high school. Clarinet and sax. Today this would be like a high school kid playing in a rock band a couple nights a week while attending classes during the day.

Anyway, like a lot of guys, dad got pretty used to being treated like an officer in the few short years he flew during WW2. He ate in the officer's mess and drank in the officer's club. His details and duties did not include things like guard duty, mess duty, cleaning grease pits and digging ditches.

He would sometimes oversee things like this as officer of the day or other duties that were handed to young officers. Actually, when a flyboy was on the ground he had a pretty good life, considering. He generally lived better than the enlisted guys did.

Upon discharge he was pretty much thrown to the wolves. Truth is, it was a pretty big fall. The relative ease of an officer's life was thrown to the wind and he was left to shift for himself. He was just another discharged GI with a high school diploma looking for something to do to feed himself.

Dad did resume playing jazz for a brief period and he got by. Still, he was simply another former GI and nobody cared if a guy was a former private or a former colonel. He was just another guy looking for a job.

In the movie The Best Years of our Lives, Dana Andrews plays a recently discharged bombardier and to some extent it paralleled my dad's transition. Andrews played a discharged bombardier that was a decorated captain that returned to his pre-war job as a soda jerk.

Andrews' character also saw that the B-17s he flew were obsolete, being scrapped and were a part of history. He knew that even if he returned to the Air Corps there wouldn't be a B-17 bombardier's job for him.

Dad eventually went back to school under the GI bill and then later on went to college at Northeastern, graduating in 1957. In January '51 he married mom and in November '51 he started doing what he was put on this earth to do.

He was sent here to raise a family.

When I was an infant he worked in a few manigerial and sales positions but didn't like the headaches and found a job fixing cars as a mechanic and flipping a few used cars on the side.

Unlike the white collar jobs he worked at, being a wrench for hire gave him the time to do the job of raising kids right.

Still, he had a pretty hard time adjusting to life after a hitch as an officer and gentleman and it was interesting hearing it from my uncle later on when I was just out of the service. 

Interestingly enough, during the Cuban missile crisis Dad, along with a lot of vets was terrified of being called back into service. He said he'd be damned if he'd go in as a private.

Like the Dana Andrews character, Dad knew there were no more B-29s left to fly and hence no officer flight jobs for him. 

I was enlisted and believe had a much easier adjustment than he did. I guess I just knew I'd have to bust my ass doing something somewhere when I was discharged.

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, October 24, 2014

Generally overzealous church people ruin stuff.

One of the things I remember well in Kodiak was the Annual Buskin River Raft Race that took place in the spring. It served as a pretty good vent for cabin fever and was a pretty good fund raiser for one of the local clubs. I may be wrong but I think it was sponsered by the Lions Club.

It was a race down a piece of the Buskin River and had six mandatory beer stops. By the time someone had completed the race they generally had a pretty good glow on. Actually the beers were only 7 ounces each if I recall.

It was a great release after being cooped up all winter or busting your ass in the Bering Sea fishing for crabs. We would laugh about it for weeks afterwards.

Now Alaska has always drawn its population heavily from the four M s. Mercenaries, Missionaries, Malcontents and Misfits. The mercenaries are there to make a buck, the malcontents and misfits are there to get away from the Lower 48 to a place where they are accepted and/or left alone.

The missionaries, on the other hand, are there specifically to ruin things and turn the place into an extension of the Lower 48 and are just one colossal pain in the ass as far as I am concerned. They do it under the guise of doing God's work. Truth is they have a track record of ruining just about everythng they touch.

 The church people came along and thought they knew what was good for us and they raised hell over the raft race and it went away.

It seemed that everything that was fun or outrageous went away during the years I spent in Kodiak and it got to slowly be a less colorful and fun place to live. When you went to figure out why it was almost always the doings of the church people.

I would imagine that a number of church people are reformed drunks simply because there is nothing worse than a reformed drunk. They have seen the light and they want to take the light and blind everyone else with it.

As time went on my desire to punch a certain hypocritical preacher in the face grew and grew. Preacher or no preacher, that guy deserved a good hickory shampoo. 

Self-rightous people like that are miserable to be around because they always want to eliminate what they don't like. The attitude I have toward most things I don't like is to simply stay away from them. Who am I to tell someone that they can and can't do if it doesn't hurt me or rob from me?

Of course, it it hurts me or robs me, then that's a different story.

The way I see things is that crimes have to have a victim. The church people were not victims no matter how you slice things. I'd have liked them if they had simply kept their noses out of where they didn't belong.

Incidentally it isn't just Christians that are a royal pain in the ass, either. Every time I see militant Muslims babbling about trying to get Sharia law passed I get just as angry. To me it is all the same. It is people trying to ram their religious beliefs down everyone else's throat.

Actually I sometimes think that if someone volunteers to be governed by Sharia law that's fine by me. They can mutilate each other's genitals, stone each other, hack each other up all they want as far as I am concerned. I'll just sit by, eat a ham sandwich, drink a beer and watch. I got ten bucks on the bearded guy with the big scimitar.

Of course, if the bearded guy with the big scimitar even looks at me cross-eyed, it's Indiana Jones time and out comes the .455 Webley. 

Now that I think about this a little, maybe you ought to put the militant Christians into a big pen with the militant Muslims and let them settle their differences.

The rest of us could watch the carnage. It could be quite a pay-TV event. Afterwards we'd take the winners and put them on a boat headed to a tropical paradise on earth. Then along the way to the tropics we park the boat next to USS Oriskany.

The ship could then serve as an artificial reef and get listed on a Scuba website of the ten best dives in North America.

It would save us ALL a lot of trouble.

Incidentally, some of the nicest people I have ever met are deeply religious. They simply know when to butt out of things. What's more they don't necessarily fall into the 'church people' category.

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, October 23, 2014

One of the neighborhood kids turned 12

 a few months back and does a few odds and ends for me. I wonder if he's free on Halloween.

It has been a while since I have chased kids around on Halloween wielding the family chain saw and it just might be fun to do it this year. It's always a fun thing to do.

It generally scares the hell out of the parents more than it does the kids, especially if the kid being chased is a good actor.

The past couple of years seem to have made things catch up with me so I suppose he'll have to call me grandpa instead of dad like a kid did a few years back. Also I don't run as fast as I used to.

Actually this may not be a very good idea because when I did it several years ago some dopey mother called the cops on me. The responding cop was pretty good about things when he saw the chain had been pulled off the bar and the saw was nothing more than a scary looking noisemaker.

He explained to the woman that the chain saw was harmless but the woman wasn't buying it until he told me to cut my own leg off with it. Of course, I couldn't cut anything with it but the woman was dubious and still acted all weirded out.

Of course, you can't fix stupid and the woman kept insisting that there had to be something unsafe about it. She kept prattling on and on until I looked at the cop and said, "You got better things to do. How about if I put the damned thing back on the shelf and simply leave it there?"

Then I turned to the woman and said, "Will that shut you up?"

And I went back into the garage and shelved the chain saw.

I'll think this over and figure out what I am going to do this Halloween.

Generally I give out candy to the kids and hot buttered rum to the parents. Most of the parents are grateful.

I say most. There's always one and she showed up a few years back, too. She started giving me hell about dispensing drinks in front of kids. I was just ready to tell her off when another soccer mom, a busty little redheaded little spitfire started in on her telling her to stop ruining things for everyone else.

It caused quite a heated argument for a while and I seriously thought the little redhead was going to start swinging. The last thing I needed was a catfight in my garage.

I stepped out into the driveway, held up a twenty and shouted "Catfight in the garage! I got twenty bucks on the little redhead with the big tits!"

The guy across the street shouted, "I'll take ten of that!" and started across the street, laughing.

Of course, the two of them instantly knocked it off and they both left but the redhead returned a little while later and I gave her another hot buttered rum.

"I hate people that ruin good things," she said. She mused a second. "Twenty bucks on me, huh?"

"Yeah, I figured you could take her," I said. "You're half her size, but it's not the size of the dog in the fight. It's the size of the fight in the dog."

We chatted a while and she left.

Still, as time passes Halloween grows a little dimmer with each passing because there is always some jerk coming along and ruining some part of it.

Still, I'll keep the good fight up for as long as I'm alive and able. Halloween should be fun, and this year it's going to be, dammit!

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

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

One of the things I learned early on

 was the value of keeping secrets. Especially in the areas of romantic dealings with the opposite sex.

I noticed early on that the kiss and tell guys didn't last very long. Women talk among themselves and when it gets back to one of them that some idiot is bragging about his most recent conquest then an awful lot of women tend to avoid him. 

Especially in a small town.

I was always seen entering and leaving any of the bars and hangouts alone. It didn't take much to tell a prospective romantic partner to quietly leave alone and discreetly meet me somewhere else in a few minutes.

You would be astonished at how much this was appreciated. Most women don't care to advertise their private doings.

Unless I was with a regular girlfriend or out on the town with a date of some sort I was seldom if ever seem leaving a bar or restaurant with a woman.

What was interesting is that it was appreciated by the women I was with. 

Keeping my mouth shut paid pretty good dividends.

Consider this a lesson to you young readers from an old man and let's leave it at that.

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, October 21, 2014

I see a lot of car and motorcycle

 shows on TV these days and know that a lot of it is made-up drama for TV. 

The impossible deadlines, the setbacks, the bids that leave little room for error and the usual things that make for a little interest in the show.

What interests me is the money that people are willing to pay for these various cars. Many of which easily run well over a year's pay for a working stiff.

Of course the money is out there because if it wasn't the guys would not be building these custom vehicles.

Still, I have a hard time justifying paying, say, $75K for a hot rod.

Back in the day, kids would build their own and by the time it was over and done with they may have had a grand or so tied up in the whole project. I would imagine that some of the machining was likely done in the school shop eiter as a part of class or after school. I recall that some of the guys got to do a few things after school.

One of the things I recall about the guys in school that were into cars did was to make their own. These days it seems that a lot of the hot rods seem to come out of custom shops. I wonder why that is?

I suppose that a lot of guys have more money than time and I look at things differently (as usual). 

I think that if I was a car guy that wanted a hot rod I would value the time to build one more than the money to have someone else build one for me.

I had a doctor that lived a couple miles away from me as a kid that liked to spend time working with cars and I remember he rebuilt a Jeep from the ground up. When he was done he had a brand new twenty-five year old Jeep. He was pretty proud of it and I heard he entered it in a couple of shows although I may be wrong about that.

I have no clue how much he had into it but I'd bet it wasn't a whole lot when you consider he did all the work himself. While he certainly did replace a lot of parts, there were a lot of them that were in good shape and only needed cleaning up, rebuilding or refinishing.

Still, he put one hell of a lot of work into the project and it came out a beautiful job and displayed his talents in a way that he should have been very proud of.

On many of these car shows we get to see guys building a custom car for someone else. The final owner brings nothing into it but a checkbook.

To me having something you bought out of the custom shop is nowhere near as nice as something one put together with their hands.

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, October 20, 2014

Welcome to Right Wing Nut Case Central.

So named by someone that read this blog and told me that I was one of those terrible people that doesn't love the poor and hate the rich.

Yup. That's me.

I don't hate the poor, nor love the rich, either. They are just there. The rich are generally rich because they have the talent and drive to get rich. They generally put up a lot of money and risk it in a venture of some sort. They have the dreams, vision and drive to get into a venture of some sort that make them a lot of money.

The poor are poor because they don't have the drive and or talent to get ahead.

It is really that the rich have chosen to get rich and in most cases the poor have chosen to be poor.

There was a cartoon once about Bill Gates. He was trying to get a few $100 investors back when he was working out of his garage. There was a guy that didn't want to invest in Gates.

Instead he took the money and bought an 8-track tape player. 

Betcha he feels like a fool now.

Truth is that if I had put the price of an 8-track into Microsoft back when Gates was working out of his garage I likely would be sitting on top of some mountain somewhere instead of busting my ass out on a boat.

The truth about a lot of the so-called poor is that life is too easy for them. They get free food, clothing, shelter, telephones and God only knows what else. They can find ways to either trade their government subsidies or work under the table for tattoos, beer, drugs and cigarettes.

We have made it too easy for them and by doing so have created a generational system of dependence.

Hey, if I had the basics coming in for free it would be pretty hard for me to get a job just to buy my own basics. Why bother?

Unfortunately there's a lot of wasted talent in the welfare rolls. I'd bet that if you did away with the benefits and made people support themselves there would be a number of people that would be quite successful once they got the hang of things.

I don't hate these people for this, I just wish they would decide to start taking care of themselves.

Thinking this way seems to have gotten me labeled a nut case so I figure I won't fight it. I guess if you want to call this blog Right Wing Nut Case Central, then go ahead.

I suppose I COULD care less, but I don't see how. My care-o-meter is resting on the zero peg.

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, October 19, 2014

Back in the day in Alaska every town of size had their own radio station.

 I guess they still do.

I suppose that in Anchorage they were fairly polished affairs but in the smaller towns they were a little less polished but were more in tune to the actual needs of the town or area they served.

They generally had little programs scheduled that announced who needed people to work for them. In Kodiak sometimes the canneries would have an announcement that they needed a few people or that someone needed a carpenter or plumber.

They opened that little daily program with Sha-Na-Na's song, 'Get a job'. Then they announced the jobs that were open.

They also provided a message service for people that lived out of town in the bush. When my father died I was out of town and the station announced "Piccolo, call home."

Someone else heard it and passed it on to me via marine VHF. I called home on the marine operator and got the bad news.

The service in Kodiak was called "Kodiak crabbers". You could call the station and have them announce something directed to someone out of town. They would air them about five or six times a day.

Other towns had similar programs. There was the trapper hotline and another town had a program called Caribou Clatter. There were also Mukluk Messages, Ptarmigan Hotline and others all over the huge state. They are the ame thing with different names, messages to people outside the grid.

Many of the messages sounded like they were coded and likely they were to avoid broadcasting someone's personal business. It was generally easy enough to figure them out, though.

"To Tim Smith. Aunt Louise is fine." ( We took this one at face value.) 

"Al Murphy, your prescription is ready at the drug store." (We always said that message sounded like a dope deal)  

"Lonnie Davis, Doctor Lewis says the test was negative."(We guessed Lonnie had been sleeping with Betty Lou Thelma Liz last time he was in town)

"Louise Gilson, Mike is coming out on Inland Air tomorrow." (Louise had best clean the cabin up.)

People from the Lower 48 were somewhat confused the first time they heard some of the local programming. I don't know if they still have these programs in Alaska, but I'd bet they do.

They are useful for people living off the grid.

Someone explained to me that stateside it's illegal to use a radio station to broadcast private messages like that but that the FCC had given Alaska an exemption because there were enough people living off the grid so that the programs would provide a bona fide service.

Another thing some of these local stations did was to air little things that locals created. I remember in Kodiak a group of locals got together and created a drama serial program based loosely on local characters. Of course the names were changed but everyone knew who they were.

It was a local thing. You had to be a local to appreciate it but it was funny as hell. It was obviously a product made by amateurs. There were no personal computers or internet then to get special sound effects from back then. It was like one of the old radio serials of the 40s. Thunder sounds came from shaking a piece of sheet metal, for example.

The program sounded pretty much home brew but that just added greatly to its entertainment value.

Another thing they had was a daily morning program called "Stump the professor". If you could, you won 5 gallons of gasoline from a local service station. You would call in and he'd answer the first caller's question.

The Professor was actually pretty good. People would generally ask him all sorts of complicated science questions and he usually knew the answers.

I won 5 gallons of gas once. There was a bar manager that always wore beautiful hats to work every day. She was often affectionactly called  'The Hat'.

I called in and asked the professor what color hat she was going to wear to work that day. He instantly admitted he didn't have a clue. The bells rang and the announcer announced that Piccolo had just won 5 gallons of gasoline.

When I came by to collect my gas the station owner came out and grinned. He told me he thought I was pretty sharp and told me he was giving me an extra gallon for making him laugh. I felt like I had just won the lottery even though it was only three bucks worth of gas.

Later that day I met up with The Hat. I went into the bar she managed to meet someone. She looked at me with a blushing, sheepish look on her face and shook her head. Then she bought me a drink. Actually I knew she wasn't upset in the least. She actually thought it was pretty funny. 

I suppose she made money on the deal. Half the town had to come in and tease her about it and most of them bought at least one drink. One of the things I noticed about successful people there is they generally had a pretty good sense of humor.

One of the things I liked about life in Alaska was that things like radio stations did cool things for the average guy. They actually tried to serve and entertain the community.

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, October 18, 2014

A third of nothin' is nothin'

Is an old adage of commercial fishermen.  It goes back to the way fishermen are paid. They get a percentage of the catch.

Of course, the bottom line for a fisherman is how much money he gets to take home after the trip is over and done with.

Back in the day I fished herring one season and had agreed to a 30% share because we were fishing a two man boat and I was not having a share fuel, bait or groceries deducted.

We didn't catch a lot of herring and as a result I worked for about six or eight weeks for under a grand when everything was over and done with. Fortunately I had no rent or other expenses to worry about at the time. I was living in a camper-trailer and the landowner let me stay there for free just to keep an eye on things.

Actually I took the job knowing I likely wouldn't make a whole lot of money but would get to see a lot of pretty good scenery. I have no regrets looking back on it. It was a wonderful spring and I got plenty of fresh air, exercise and a pretty good adventure out of the deal.

On the other hand I fished a halibut opening and was generously given a 10% crew share on a 5 man boat. The boat's share was 50% and the rest of us split the other 50% of the catch.

I did quite well on that trip because we caught a lot of fish.

I learned early that the newbies were the ones that worried about percentages. If you had half a clue you simply decided who to fish for by looking at the actual dollar amount of the checks the skipper wrote the crew.

I recall the time I was offered a fishing job from a skipper that didn't have a very good catch record. He offered me a 15% share which was considered generous. I didn't take the offer and later a friend of mine asked me why.

"Fifteen percent of nothin' is nothin'," I said.

Incidentally a job comercial fishing is not a job in the normal sense. It is an opportunity to make or lose money.  It is gamble, a real crapshoot. You can go out and make a fortune or come in broke.

Once I listened to the father of a college kid griping that it wasn't fair that his kid worked all summer and had so little for his season. I pointed out that had he made a fortune the skipper would not have put a cap on his income. He rolled the dice and lost. They don't give losers their money back in Las Vegas.

Fishing is one of the few places left where you can see that kind of opportunity. No minumun and no maximum.

A lot of people are masters of the snow job. A big piece of the pie sounds pretty good and may very well may be pretty good. 

It depends on the size of the pie.

While we're on the subject of percentages...

I have been a proponent of an across the board flat tax rate. There are a lot of people out there that say that the rich will be skating and not paying their fair share.

I have an answer for this: Pig's puckey.

Do the math.

Using ten percent as a figure for taxation this means that someone in the lower end that makes 25 grand a year will have to cough up $2500.

A guy in the upper middle making a hundred grand annually will pay $10,000 to Uncle Sam yearly.

A big shot that generated a million bucks for the year has to cough up $100,000. The rich guy will pay more, the poorer guy will pay less.

The guy making a million a year will wind up paying ten times as much as the guy making a hundred grand.

Sounds reasonable to me.

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, October 17, 2014

Halibut feeders are bottom feeders except for on windy days.

On windy days they feed on the surface.

Their eyes are on the top of their heads and the swim below the surface. When they see something above them they leap out of the water to catch it.

Because their eyes are on the top of their heads they have to flip over to see where their prey is and it exposes their white bellies.

On windy days you see a lot of white things on the surface of the sea. It's halibut feeding on the surface.

Or so I was told once. I didn't fall off the turnip truck yesterday so I knew it was a crock.

Once when I lived in Kodiak someone wanted to hire a pilot and airplane to spot herring. He took out an ad of sorts on the local radio station. The announcer misread the ad and said, halibut spotter instead of herring spotter. Then he corrected himself by saying that he believed the person was looking for a herring spotter.

I was sitting with a couple of the guys doing gear work and we were listening to the radio. One of the guys jumped up and snapped "Wait here and listen to the radio!" and took off like a shot.

There was a phone booth nearby and he ran to it and called the radio station and explained that the person looking for the spotter was probably looking for a halibut spotter and explained the windy day feeding habits of the big, flat soakers.

The announcer got the call and asked my friend if he would explain things on the air.

He agreed and much to the laughter of most of the town, there was my friend Blaine, booming over the airwaves.  He explained that halibut were surface feeds on windy days and so on. He had the announcer totally buffaloed and fascinated.

"Thank you," said the announcer after my pal had finished. "I never knew that." This added to our already side splitting laughter.

For the next month Blaine never had to buy his own beer.

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, October 16, 2014

I took my sweetie for a walk the other day.

 She's now six.

She never let go of my hand the entire walk.

She still gives me hugs when she sees me. It's funny how little kids remember things. Come Christmas it will be three Christmases since she became my sweetie.

She was three at the time and extremely shy. Her father had just finished putting up the Christmas lights and was lighting them up. I offered her my hand and offered to walk her across the street and let her look at the lights from the other side of the street.

She mulled it over, looked at the lights, then looked at me. Slowly she decided that overcoming her shyness was worth it to see the lights and she took my hand and we crossed the street together.

In the Christmas lights I saw awe, wonderment and childish delight on her face and after a while she and I walked back home across the street and she let go of my hand.

She's been my sweetie ever since.

It's interesting how kids like that remember things and make friends like that. I figured that by now she'd have forgotten it but I guess she hasn't. She was excited when I invited her to go for a walk and prattled on and on excitedly the entire walk.


I have read this before I posted it and have to add that being around kids is likely good for me. I had none of my own and being around them has a tendency of making me a little less of a grouchy person.

My sweetie's older brother is 12 and does a few odd jobs for me and takes care of the cat when I have a day's shopping or something like that to do. The cat likes him and he's good to him. He's an honest and responsible kid and that is something rare in this day and age.

Sometimes I pass advice on to him, but make it a point to keep his parents in the loop. I'd hate to sabotage their efforts.

Most recently I have spoken to him about the value of being a kind and generous big brother to his kid sisters. It's likely going to be hard. Kid sisters can be annoying at times, but with any luck it will pay off when he gets older.

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

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

That's my story and I's stickin' to it


A trip to the doctor's office and the Big Nurse behind the counter spotted me and came charging around from behind with my form and asked me if I had anything to change.

"Nope. That's my story and I'm stickin' to it," I replied.

What she wanted me to change is the cause of death of my mother. She died well into her 80s and that tells me there was nothing genetic or out of order. Mid 80s is a good long life as far as I figure it.

My dad died of heart disease when he was 57 and THAT was pertinent. I filled out everything I could about that. 

On the other hand I simply left Mom's cause of death blank as I figured it wasn't pertinent. If course, the nebby woman behind the counter wasn't too pleased and demanded I fill it in.

I put down that she was killed in a knife fight after she had won a wet T-shirt contest.

The woman behind the counter read that and went nuts. Chaos ensued and the doctor came over and rescued me from the wrath of the Big Nurse.

My neighbor, who has been an RN for over 30 years heard about it and thinks it's funny. She feels the same way I do. When a person passes well into their 80s there isn't really a genetic problem in their offspring worth looking into. At least unless you are of the mentality of those that show up to the funeral of a 112 year old and ask, "Gee! What did he die of?"

Someone once asked me what my mother-in-law died of after she passed at 91. I snapped that she had flipped her Harley. They looked hurt but it was really their fault for asking. Any woman that lives to the age of 91 is free to die of anything she wants to die of.

Anyway, the record stays. The record says that my mother was killed an a knife fight after she had won a wet T-shirt contest and it is going to stay that way.

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, October 14, 2014

Old ladies are loose cannons

I had a conversation with a woman yesterday that was approaching her 90s but didn't look much over 70. She was a character.

We were talking about medical coverage and the foolishness that sometimes goes with filling out the forms. I told her about listing my mother's cause of death as 'killed in a knife fight after she won a wet T-shirt contest' and she laughed like hell.

fgvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvbb vcc

damned cat.

Anyway, she was pretty feisty and commented that back in the day she'd have probably done well in such a contest.

I laughed and told her to stand sideways and stepped back.

"You'd likely do quite well in a wet T-shirt contest  now," I told her. "You're STILL built like a knockout! All natural, too! You're a lot more attractive than most girls in their 20s."

It was a risky thing to say, but my gut said I could get away with it.

Her face lit up like a Christmas tree, she blushed slightly and she proudly told me, "I just turned 88 and that's the nicest thing I have heard anybody say to me in years."

"That's because you take care of yourself," I said. "What you ought to do is light a cigarette off of one of the candles of your 100th birthday cake. You sure look like you're going to make it."

She laughed. "My grandchildren would go crazy if I did that," she said.

"One more reason to," I replied. She laughed.

"I should," she replied, laughing.

Little old ladies are such loose cannons.

You never know what's going to come out of their mouths and quite often it can be pretty outrageous, yet you never know.

You have to be pretty careful around them because you can't tell by looking at them. I have had older women get offended by hearing me say 'darn it' and have heard others use profanity that would make an Old School drill sergeant blush.

You can't tell by looking at them either. Someone that looks like she raised Wally and the Beav may suddenly come out with a string of totally vile profanity while another old lady is apt to be offended by just about anything.

Incidentally the woman I spoke with yesterday was far from trashy. She was actually a fairly classy woman with a somewhat risque and mildly ribald sense of humor. There's one hell of a difference between the two. 

I had business to take care of and I started to leave. "If you ever decide to enter a wet T-shirt contest, let me know. I'll be in the front row whistling and cheering."

"You've got a long wait," she laughed.

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, October 13, 2014

I must be getting pretty grouchy.

And maybe that's not all that too awful bad.

The other day I was pushing a shopping cart around and was headed to the checkout and it looked like another woman and I were going to arrive at the checkout at the same time.

Generally I'm pretty good about things as I am usually not in a hurry but this woman had an air about her. She carried herself like the world owed her a living, probably because she was pretty busty.

Like I said, normally I am pretty good to people, but this one was different. A glance at the severe look on her face told me she was a selfish bitch. I looked at her and smiled.

"So who gets to check out who's ass?" I asked her.

She looked a bit stunned. She had figured I was going to be a nice guy, but she recovered quickly.

"You go first," she said.

As I was unloading my cart onto the conveyor belt I turned to her and said, "Too bad I'm not 30 years younger instead of simply being an old man, huh? It's probably be easier on the eye."

She said nothing but I did detect the trace of a sarcastic smirk and watched her shake her head.

I paid for my handful of items and left.

I think it was about fifteen or so years ago when one day I decided that I wasn't going to take a lot of crap any more. It was a series of events that led to it. 

The first one that comes to mind was when I was getting a cup of coffee at the local 7-11 and some big guy tried to barge me out of the way. I stood my ground and told him to wait his turn like everybody else.

He started to give me some crap and I told him that he ought to smarten up because he was in North Hills and over 50% of the concealed carry permits in the county were issued to North Hills residents. He might want to mind his manners while he was in the area.

He turned to the cop behind him trying to make it sund like I had threatened him but the cop didn't take the bait.

"He's right," said the cop.

The guy caved in.

The other event was with a braided armpitted hairy legged hippie chick that was entering a store behind me. I held the door simply to show basic civilized manners.

I was treated to that old 'I can hold my own door' crap.

"Excuse me, I didn't mean to mistake you for being someone else," I said.

"Who did you think I was?" she asked in a condescending tone of voice.

"A mannerly, civilized human being," I replied. "But I guess you're just a miserable bitch. I won't let this happen again. Oh, and don't try turning on the water works. I'm immune to it."

After those and a few other incidents I decided to simply go about my business and try and make everyone I meet a happy person.

If they're happy being happy, fine. If they're happy being miserable, I can do that, too.

After I decided to take that course I have felt a lot better and have had to carry a whole lot less baggage around.

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, October 12, 2014

It's easy to spot someone that is going to stay poor forever.

All you have to do is tell them they have their choice between a one time lump sum of $250,000 or $5000 per week for the rest of their lives. The chronically poor are likely to take the lump sum while the successful will opt for the weekly payout.

It doesn't take a rocket scientist with a degree in calculus to figure out that the break even point is fifty weeks and that by the end of the first year the person that took the payouts is $10K ahead.

It wouldn't take Sherlock Holmes to to be able to see who took the lump and who took the payment, either. Most likely the person that took the lump would have a new, slightly dinged up expensive car, a boat and a Winnebago in front of their hovel amid a pile of booze bottles and  trash.

The person that took the payout is more apt to live in a decent, well kept home and would likely have a modest car in the driveway.

While the person that had the brains to take the payout may crank up their life style a bit, it's pretty likely they would continue to live within their means. Meanwhile inside of less than a year the guy that opted for the lump will likely be broke again.

I wrote once that poor people have poor ways and it isn't the income one has so much as the way they spend it that's the difference between poverty and a decent lifestyle. Dig it up if you want.

Still, it's the truth. Poor people are generally poor because they have poor ways. 

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, October 11, 2014

I can now look into the way-back and feel peaceful

All I have to do today is move a couple of piles of weeds and put it into the compost pile. I ought to be done by 10 or 11 this morning.

Not bad.

I was reading a Facebook post about how voter registration laws are so evil and I fail to see how. All that is required is you get an ID of some sort and register. It's not a whole lot of effort.

It seems the left thinks it's unfair but the truth is that it isn't. If you are not a citizen you have no right to vote. It's as simple as that.

Personally I think the left is against voter ID/registration laws so they can stuff the ballot box with a bunch of illegal votes from illegals.

It makes sense. Illegals are more than likely to vote for anything that is going to give them a freebie. If I were an illegal and could vote, you can bet your ass I would vote for someone that offered me a free cell phone.

It strikes me that we ought to have several tax choices. This would show us a lot.

First of all, no deficit spending. Not one nickel. Everything that was spent the previous year gets paid up on 15 April of the next year.

Watch that open a few eyes.

Social security would be an option. If you don't want it, you don't pay for it. Your choice. Of course, if you don't pay for it then you don't get anything from it. Same with Medicare. You pay for it. 

Next, Social programs. If you want social programs, you pay to have them. If not, you don't. Simple. Watch a lot of leftists take a sharp right turn when they foot the bill.

Everyone, of course would pay for the basic infrastructure. Interstate highways, DoD, National Parks and things of that nature. Everyone would pay their fair share of that.

My basic guess is that if a guy were to opt for only Social security, medicare and pay his share of the basics his taxes would stay in the same ball park.

On the other hand, those that support all of these so-called social programs would go nuts as their taxes would probably at least double.

How about we try that one out for size?

Nothing funnier than watching someone make a fast 180 degree turn.

Incidentally I have seen this type of thing before.

At a woman's self-defense handgun class an inordinate number of women taking it had either been of had someone they knew that were crime victims. 

An awful lot of them were for strict gun control before the incident took place. Afterwards they decided to take responsibility for their own safety and learn how to use a handgun.

It's funny how attitudes change when you become involved.

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, October 10, 2014

A good read for those of us that are getting older.

This is a great read for those of us that are getting older

I have had a pretty good run so far, next month it will be 63 years.

As we know, all good things come to an end and I have thought about that since I turned 60 and posted that from that day on when I finally die it will be from old age.

If anyone asks what I died of, anyone that knows me is to say I died of old age. Period.

There is nothing more stupid than being at the funeral of a 123 year old woman and having someone ask, "I wonder what she died of?"

Somewhere in a doctor's office there is a form listing my mother's cause of death as having gotten into a knife fight during a wet T-shirt contest at Sturgis. She died in her mid 80s after a long life.

My family history is a mess of heart attacks in their late 50s, diabetes, and Alzheimer's. The latter is the worst way I can think of to go.

Over the years I have spoken quietly to a few relatives and said that if they were to ever hear that I went by my own hand that there must have been a damned good reason. 

Before everyone over reacts and starts carrying on and trying to ship me off to counseling and rehab, I am in good health and plan on sticking around a while.

Still, when the time comes along that the Grim Reaper has me on his list I reserve the right to go out with a little dignity. I have no desire to die slobbering in some kind of hospice covered with urine, drool, feces and not knowing who the hell I am.

We treat our pets better than we treat ourselves. Some time ago I put Blacks down. The poor kitty was suffering and I took her to the vets and put his suffering to an end. We ought to be able to let people do that sort of thing when it becomes necessary.

Those social engineer types can butt out on this one. Over the years those that have tried to save me from myself have not fared very well. Then again, if you ARE a social engineer that wants to come along with me when the time comes feel free to interfere.

Incidentally there have been a LOT of people over the years I have discussed this with and most of them have been in agreement. It's time the lawmakers paid attention.

I mentioned this to Mrs. Pic and she told me that if it was going to make a mess then I ought to take it outside. I do see her point.

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