This category contains 24 posts

What’s In A Name?

Billy Shakespeare said that.

I’d a recent experience, wherein I left a blog post comment @ one of my blogfriend’s™ blogs.  A few minutes later, it occurred to me that I’d addressed him by someone else’s name!

And there was no method in his blogging software by which I could make a correction.

(I did go back and make a second comment, apologizing.)

This reminded me of a year-or-so ago, when a kind soul sent me a few dollars on my sidebar Paypal link.  (hint, hint).  It was late, I was preparing to retire, and had taken my evening meds.  (HALF of the medication I am prescribed has possible side effects of memory loss!)

And I thanked him profusely, using a wrong name!

Then, I sent him another email, apologizing.  Hopefully, I got it right the second time(?)  I’ve not heard from him ever again.


At least, in the few significant personal relationships I’ve had in my lifetime with the opposite sex, I’ve not uttered another woman’s name whilst in flagrante delicto!

I don’t think?  I wasn’t on this kind of medication, then…

I don’t know…

The Great Escape

(Sadly, not the exceptional book by Paul Brickhill, nor the film based on it by John Sturgis)

I rent-a-room from my ex-gf J.  We dated a few years ago for about four years, and have remained friends.  Hell, she offered me a room in which to land when I lost my home!

The point being, we have been acquainted for going on eleven years(!)  And I with her menagerie – a smattering of chihuahuas and cats.  Some of whom have passed on (Mike was a terrific boy kitty!).   Others remain, and continue to age.

Fooling us into complacency.

The drill used to be to make certain the gate from the back yard into the parking lot was secure, because DYLAN could escape.  And has.

When I first met Dylan (which I privately spell Dillon – gun folk will get it), she was three, and very animated and active.

And she did get loose a couple of times, running willy-nilly, constantly checking for pursuers over her shoulder and laughing.  She was a rescue dog, and had probably lived on the street for some time.  Of course, the main fear was she’d run into the street and get killed.

Now, she’s going on 15-years-old, and has an arthritic back leg.  Spends most of her time sleeping, sometimes with one eye pealed for the cats or the puppy.  She moves kinda slow.

We were alerted by the (evil) HOA to keep our back gate unlocked (an impossibility, due to the spring-loaded lock) lest they need access to make ‘authorized’ repairs and improvements.  For a specific three day period.  And we were used to the gate being closed and secure.

So we had to leave it ajar for the three days.

I wasn’t worried.  Dylan could barely walk, and D.J. (the happy boy idiot dog) wouldn’t leave, regardless. And Lola (the puppy) generally used paper inside by the back door.  (She was a showgirl, ya know!)

Part of the morning routine was to check the backyard for maintenance folk, close the gate, THEN let the critters out.  But the habit, based on years of programming, was just let them out.

You can see where this is going, can’t you?

I let them out, then looked up to see the gate still ajar about a foot.  I wasn’t worried.

Then, Dylan looked at me and bolted out the gate like a shot!  I quickly ran (well, relatively quickly) and called to her.  There she was, as if she were again three, running away, looking over her shoulder at me.

And laughing.

I let D.J. back inside, secured Lola in her kennel and yelled to J that Dylan was loose.  She ran out back with her car keys.  I searched the opposite direction on foot.

J. is asthmatic.  Going to her car is her best bet.  I’m crippled.  Hobbling slowly after a very fast puppy old lady dog is the best I could do.

Dylan did her best to stay about 60 feet ahead of me, even taking time for a ‘rest stop’ – just to mock my pursuit!  J. drove around the parking lot slowly, searching.  After about 15 minutes, I chased her to Judy, who scooped her up into her car and went home!

She ended up running a few hundred yards.  Which I ended up walking.  Slowly and painfully.

The important things are Dylan is back home safe, Judy is breathing okay, and I have additional pain medication.

Here is Dylan, after her little ‘adventure’.



I See Dead People

dead…or rather, I wish I did!

A number of folks close to me have pre-deceased me.  And with some (not all) it would be nice to have another 15 minutes.

Or a day.

My Mother, who passed when I was in the Second Grade.  My maternal grandfather, Gramp, when I was 24.  Of course my daughter Molly, when she was 12…

And a couple of others.

But, I’ve never had that kind of  spiritual connection.  And I’m a little envious of those who have!

My friend Bob – who saw a vision of his mother in the moment of her passing.  Five miles away!

A girlfriend who saw ‘something’ resembling my deceased dog Ilsa wandering around my house.

My daughter had a childhood friend and neighbor who awakened one night to see a black cat outside on her closed window sill.  My daughter loved cats.  And the cat opened her mouth and laughed, sounding just like my daughter!  Of course, this could have been a dream – except the girl’s mom ran into her room and exclaimed, “I heard her, too!”  This was about one month after Molly’s passing.

But for me, bupkis.

I like to think I’m a spiritual guy.  Perhaps I am, but just not in that way.


I’ve Wondered About This…

I’m old enough to remember the Watts riots in L.A., Detroit.  Rodney King?  And a multitude of others.  And something has always bothered me:

WHY do these folks feel the need to violently destroy THEIR OWN NEIGHBORHOODS to make a point?

In days of yore, I participated in protests.  I remember one at the State Capitol, wherein we stood in the Summer heat (all 250 or so of us) to protest The Clinton so-called ‘Assault Weapons Ban’, and our own State legislature considering similar legislation.  This was in the 90’s – the temperature was around 100°.

And not one of us engaged in violence, criminal looting or destruction.  We had been advised not to come armed, and we didn’t.  We carried signs (and American flags), signed petitions, talked amongst ourselves and drank lots of water.  And listened politely to speakers like Sheriff Mack.  And watched media trucks circle us deciding whether or not we were worth a spot on the 10 o’clock news.

Apparently we weren’t.

Here’s one opinion as to why they foul their own nests:

The borderline-Jacobins at Slate, who believe spanking is child abuse, and personal responsibility is out of fashion, try to explain looting away as a social phenomenon: “Why would anyone burn down the only CVS in their neighborhood?”

The reason, I think, is likely the same reason that poor black Americans in cities across the country burned “their own” neighborhoods in the late 1960s:

They did not experience those places as their own. Then, like now, police brutality was a precipitating cause of the violence, but it was the long-term experience of the indignities of the ghetto that gave shape to the riots. Then, like now, commentators compared the rioters to animals who had run wild and needed discipline. Rioting, to these bystanders, was not proper political protest but the criminal actions of poor people who merely wanted to grab what they could for free. This narrative, which I heard throughout my childhood growing up in Baltimore in the 1980s, put the blame not on the depredations of the ghetto, but on the character of its residents. It completely misapprehends the political economy of our poorest neighborhoods.

In other words:  they riot because society has ignored them.  Not only is that a specious argument, but it also highlights the fact that Baltimore hasn’t had a Republican mayor since 1968So which party is responsible for ignoring the downtrodden social class?

Told another way, Abraham Miller at National Review wrote:

More @ Red State
Of course, the writer above seems to think the only answer lies with which flavor of government.
What do YOU think?
h/t Brock Townsend



not my car, same color

…well, more problems with my 2000 Oldsmobile Intrigue!

I was running an important errand for roommate J. evening last (well, going to a soft ice cream emporium for pumpkin pie blizzards appropriately healthy treats!), when I noticed the car was running kinda doggy.  And the battery light on the dash lit up – as did some other miscellaneous lights.  And even seeing the lit dashboard was becoming a challenge…!

All this while in line at the DQ!

Fortunately (or perhaps, unfortunately) this is about 1/4 mile South of our residence.

So I limped her home in the dark, lights and engine in various states of fail, praying for her not to die in the street.  And for no constables to be patrolling nearby.  And my prayers were answered!


I was able to coax her to just outside our respective marked covered parking spaces.  Emphasis on the just.

And there she died.

I attempted to physically push her into my space, being the fat cripple I am, and failed miserably.  And the area directly behind the parking spaces is a private drive – a road – wherein traffic has been known to travel.  So I couldn’t just leave her there!  The H.O.A. would have her towed probably before my key hit my lock.

So, I called J., my roommate, landlady, and friend, who was lounging inside awaiting her Blizzard healthy snack.  Thank the gods for cellular telephones.

She responded tuit suite, and together we pushed my Intrigue into my space.  Again kinda.

She’s difficult to maneuver with no power steering, and two persons-of-our-vintage with various physical issues don’t help much, either.  J. had to retreat because of her asthma and move HER car to a different space so mine can sit comfortably – albeit diagonally – across our two allotted spaces.

Next, the problem of diagnosing what exactly is wrong, and coming up with the money to fix her.

SIGH – it’s always something!

At least she’s not on the street!  :-)

AND, about an hour later, there was enough juice to close the driver’s window and secure the vehicle!  HUZZAH!

“What A SQUARE!”

When I was growing up, I wanted to join The Boy Scouts.  They seemed cool, but, I was too young.  There was The Cub Scouts, though!  And one could evolve into a Boy Scout from there.  I convinced my parents I should join.

I think I was in the Fourth Grade.  I became a Bobcat, a newbie.  My parents never even sprung for a full uniform, just the shirt, bandana and cap.  And I had to walk about a mile to my den mother’s house on meeting days.  At least I got to hang with other boys my age, and we sometimes did cool stuff.

But, soon, my den mother moved away, and no provision had been made for us to transfer to another den.  By default, I left.  No Boy Scouts for me!

But one of my fondest memories of The Cub Scouts was the Scout Oath.  Not the solemnity or the promise.  The language.



In the early 60’s, the counterculture wasn’t yet tipified by the hippie.  It was the beatnik that brought societal scorn.  As typified by the character Maynard G. Krebs on The Dobie Gillis Show.  (the G stood for Walter, it was silent!)

When something was mainstream, whitebread, uncool, the beatnik said it was SQUARE.

And The Cub Scout Oath (of that era) was:

I, _________, promise to do my best
To do my duty to God and my country,
To be square, and
To obey the Law of the Pack.

Now, sometime after 1964, the changed the oath to read to help other people, instead of to be square.

I wonder if that was because every boy jack of us said the oath as follows:

…To be a square…

Not really comprehending what being square meant.

Being on an extremely limited disability income, I sometimes (often) find myself in a financially uncomfortable situation.  Often a week or more before my stipend is due to arrive.  I wish I could say it was because of extravagance, but more often than not it’s because of a math error.

Fortunately, I am sometimes assisted by my friends.  I am most blessed.

And yes, today, I AM SQUARE.

I AM ALSO A SQUARE!  I need one of these!


The Words For The Day Are GRATITUDE And PATIENCE

Walter - curmudgeon emeritus

Walter – curmudgeon emeritus

I don’t wish to lose my curmudgeon membership status, but, it’s true!

This past week was replete with increased car difficulties, coupled with my ongoing computer/internet problems.  The car stuff still exists, but (for the moment) she still runs.

I FINALLY appear to have found a technological combination which works to make my new (old) borrowed laptop work less-buggy.

Will wonders never cease?

This is the first day in many I’m able to check my emails, do my blog and read others’ news and blogs without difficulty.


Perhaps now I can go about the ‘business’ of blogging and keeping up with the blogosphere better!

And, there remains a new puppy with which to play, AND, my roomie recently upgraded her cellular telephone, which means I now have her ‘old’ one – a Samsung Galaxy Note 3!!


Sigh…Here We Go AGAIN!

Got up ‘late’ (0730!), something  I  never  do.   Okay, rarely, now that I’ve done it.

Went to work on the  blog – except  I couldn’t get the @&-+=#&! computer  to work!


Sorry guys.   No quote, funny, beauty  or video  this  morning…


Thank God  for my cell and the puppy!

“Lions and Tigers and Software, Oh My!”

lionsWhen, oh when, will computers (and software) develop to the point they can behave like older electronics, e.g. TVs, stereos and such?

Obviously, the goal is to turn on the computer (or awaken it) and have it go to the correct page, and do what is asked for it to do, not unlike turning on the TV and having Edmus Scary’s Late Nite Horror Show with Plan 9 From Outer Space showing, as one intended.

If you’ve been reading me for over a month, seek professional help. you know I’ve been having issues with browsers and such.  I finally found one that seems to work, and have added security and malware programs, and things have been better, BUT…

NOW, I find I cannot post comments on BLOGGER-based blogs certain BLOGGER-based blogs!  I do the set-up, my identifiers, hit enter and poof – the posts magically disappear!

I’m having ‘issues’ with three or four blogs, but the most difficult is one of my daily readers, who comments on GiA almost daily, Rev. Paul of Way Up North.  It’s most distressing and embarrassing as he is not just a fellow blogwriter, but a friend!  Apologies to another friend, Lagniappe’s Lair (Murphy’s Law) as well, for the same issues!

If you’ve not seen a comment from me as of late, and use Blogger, THIS is why!

I’ve had problems with BLOGGER, before.  It’s why I now blog on WordPress.

Ah, BLOGGER, my old friend, I’ll chase him ’round the moons of Nibia and ’round the Antares Maelstrom and ’round perdition’s flames…no, that’s not it…

I’m using Comodo IceDragon as a browser; Windows 7 Home Premium, WordPress as a blog publisher; security by Malwarebytes, Comodo, Kasparsky, and Windows.  Add-ons include DoNotTrackMe, Ghostery, and PrivDog.  Any suggestions?

Anyone else having ‘issues’ posting comments on specific Blogger accounts?

Just When You Thought It Was Safe…

Just when you thought it was safe...

Just when you thought it was safe…



First, my private disability insurance.  I have a small stipend in addition to my Social Security disability, which comes from an insurance company policy I purchased when I was employed.  It’s not much, but it IS something!  I had to fight to keep it a couple years back, because they didn’t bother to read their own files. Recently, I received a letter from them stating they had not received copies of my medical records they requested from my primary care physician.  And they threatened cutting off my benefits unless I pushed this issue with the doctor.  Just in time for the holidays!  After much back-and forth, it was determined the doctor HAD sent the records, AND, the insurance company DID receive them.  THE SAME DAY the form letter went out to me!  So (for the moment) all is well with my private insurance.  (I’m reminded of Dave’s Law of Banking – the insurance company corollary – Insurance Companies are not in business to serve you.  They are in business to make money!  The didn’t build the John Hancock Tower by giving it all away.)

Second.  I live in a townhouse.  There are two (covered) spaces assigned for each homeowner.  Everyone else is to park in the uncovered spaces, which are plentiful.  My roomie (the homeowner) occupies both spaces, as is her right.  Traditionally, I park five spaces to the North, in the uncovered area.  No biggee, right?  It should be noted that I parked in this very same space before I lived here, as a frequent visitor, for the past 10 years!  There was never any problem.

NOW the (almighty) HOA (homeowner’s association) has taken it upon itself to ‘cite’ me for being a resident parked in a visitor space!  

Seriously?  And they have threatened me with being towed if I continue to park there!

The townhouse HOA here is very poor.  The exterior (their bailiwick) needs paint, maintenance, upkeep. There is a beehive residing outside my bedroom window, making it’s way into the eaves!

But they spend their time harassing tenants and collecting their monthly HOA fees.  And don’t get me started on the rear fencing!

I was ‘cited’ the same day I received the insurance company warning!


"One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas - how he got in my pajamas I dunno!" - Groucho Marx as Captain Spaulding in Animal Crackers

This election is not about who gets voted off the island.
It’s about who is at the tiller of this Republic’s Ship of State. - Guffaw



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"I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain." - Bene Gesserit, from Frank Herbert's Dune

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I'm currently on disability, unable to work, and receive marginal benefits. I've been advised by SSDI I may receive some additional income. Based on their statements, I'm adding a bleg to this blog. Effective 03/06/2012. Thank you for your kindness.

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