Archive for January 2014

01-30-2014 Journal Entry – Coffee Trivia II   Leave a comment

“That’s something that annoys the hell out of me- I mean if somebody says the coffee’s all ready and it isn’t” ― J.D. Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye

Yesterday in Coffee Trivia I I had quite a lot to say about my previous addictions as well as my fondness for coffee. Today you’ll receive more useless coffee information that I’m required to supply because of my addiction.  All addictions have a downside and besides tasting wonderful so does coffee.  It gives me that extra energy burst and ability to talk for long periods of time without taking a breath.  Lucky you, your here for the lecture.

My love affair with coffee didn’t start at an early age like you might think. I wasn’t permitted to drink all that much coffee as a kid because my father felt it might effect my ability to play sports. Once I left for college his control over my beverage intake was finally at an end. I found coffee to be that best friend I’d been missing. The love affair began in earnest at that time and I’ve never looked back, not once. At the time I lived with five other guys in an apartment and there wasn’t a minute of the day that the coffee pot wasn’t full,  steaming hot, and available for drinking. We never kept track but I can almost bet we drank more coffee than alcohol during those years and that’s saying something.

I eventually left school and enlisted in the army since the draft board was hot on my heels.  For the next three years both in the United States and overseas I drank enough coffee to float a battleship. There’s nothing like Army coffee, it can almost eat the enamel right off your teeth. I won’t even begin to try and explain how the Korean’s made their coffee, it was indescribable. I also learned how to make instant coffee from C-ration packets and it sucked so bad I was forced to cut my coffee consumption in the field by 10%. For me that was a major concession.

Skipping ahead a few years and all of a sudden I’m a police officer working in a profession that is known for coffee and donuts. I was never too concerned with the donuts but I thrived on the coffee for seven years. I carried a thermos of hot coffee in the car with me and I’d stop when necessary to refill during my shift. Night shifts were another story altogether. My partner and I were never without a steaming hot coffee in the car or during our lunch stops at restaurants.

So you can see how my addiction to coffee has been the one consistent thing in my life for decades. All of my other addictions were just distractions but my love of coffee remains constant and still does. So let’s get this show on the road. I thought I knew a lot about coffee but I really had no clue. Some of these facts are humorous and some aren’t but they’re all interesting.  I’ve found so much information on coffee I may be forced to increase the number of Coffee Trivia postings to four or five.

  • Flavored coffees are created after the roasting process by applying flavored oils specially created to use on coffee beans.
  • Frederick the great had his coffee made with champagne and a bit of mustard.
  • Hard Bean means the coffee was grown at an altitude above 5000 feet.
  • Hawaii is the only state of the United States in which coffee is commercially grown. Hawaii features an annual Kona Festival, coffee picking contest. Each year the winner becomes a state celebrity. In Hawaii coffee is harvested between November and April.
  • The Nicaraguan Margogpipe is the largest of all coffee beans.
  • It takes 40 coffee beans to make an espresso.
  • One coffee tree yields less than half a kilo of coffee per year.
  • A coffee tree lives for between 60 and 70 years.
  • By 1850, the manual coffee grinder found its way to most upper middle class kitchens of the U.S.
  • Coffee is the second most traded commodity in the world (oil is the first.)

“It is inhumane, in my opinion, to force people who have a genuine medical need for coffee to wait in line behind people who apparently view it as some kind of recreational activity.” ― Dave Barry

  • Brazil produces around 40% of the world’s coffee supply.
  • A Belgian named George Washington invented instant coffee in 1906.
  • Coffee has been used as a beverage for over 700 years.
  • Coffee as a medicine reached its highest and lowest point in the 1600’s in England. Wild medical contraptions to administer a mixture of coffee and an assortment of heated butter, honey, and oil, became treatments for the sick. Soon tea replaced coffee as the national beverage.
  • Coffee beans are similar to grapes that produce wine in that they are affected by the temperature, soil conditions, altitude, rainfall, drainage and degree of ripeness when picked.

“There are three intolerable things in life – cold coffee, lukewarm champagne, and overexcited women…” ― Orson Welles

  • Brewed espresso has 2.5% fat, while filtered coffee contains 0.6% fat.
  • Johan Sebastian Bach wrote an opera about a woman who was addicted to coffee.
  • There is a way to brew coffee with marijuana in it and it is described as producing a “dreamy” kind of coffee buzz.
  • More than 20 million people worldwide, work in the coffee industry.
  • There are two species of coffee plant: Arabica and Robusta.

MORE TO COME

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01-29-2014 Journal Entry – Coffee Trivia I   Leave a comment

“Coffee should be black as hell, strong as death, and as sweet as love.”       Turkish Proverb

Let’s talk about coffee. It’s the only major addiction I have left and I cherish it. When I stopped smoking twenty-eight years ago it was coffee that helped me through all those terrible days without nicotine.  That and Tootsie Pops of course. I don’t know for sure how many Tootsie Pops are in a pound but I gained thirty-five pounds eating them over the course of five months.  Coffee helped to keep me going until I was free of the damn nicotine and then the Tootsie Pops.  Unfortunately by the time that was all over I was also addicted to the coffee as well.  I replaced one killer addiction with a much milder version and was happy as hell about it.

My second major addiction was alcohol.  I never drank enough to join that infamous club of alcoholics but I drank my share.  Now at this stage of my life I’ve given up up drinking almost completely.  Coffee again has been there to help replace the stimulation I received from alcohol with a much milder version.

My third big addiction was eating.  Not the food itself but the eating of the food.  I’ve been a nervous eater for most of my life and once my metabolism slowed it became a problem.  With each passing year it became more of an issue but I waged a good battle to maintain my weight. My good buddy “Coffee” again came to my rescue and for that I’m grateful.

I decided to take a closer look at coffee and to learn as much as I could in the context of this blog..  Today will be Coffee Trivia Day.  I’m celebrating my last great addiction that has made it possible for me to defeat three others.  Here is a list of twenty trivia tidbits, the first of three Coffee Trivia  planned postings.

“A 41-inch bust and a lot of perseverance will get you more than a cup of coffee – a lot more.” ~Jayne Mansfield

  •  Until the 18th century coffee was almost always boiled.
  • Until the late 1800’s, people roasted their coffee at home. Popcorn poppers and stove-top frying pans were favored.
  • When a coffee seed is planted, it takes five years to yield consumable fruit.
  • William Penn purchased a pound of coffee in New York in 1683 for $4.68.
  • Hawaii is the only state that commercially grows coffee.
  • In the ancient Arab culture there was only one way a woman could legally divorce: If her husband didn’t provide enough coffee.
  • 52% of Americans drink coffee.
  • A acre of coffee trees can produce up to 10,000 pounds of coffee cherries. That amounts to approximately 2000 pounds of beans after hulling or milling.
  • A scientific report form the University of California found that the steam rising from a cup of coffee contains the same amounts of antioxidants as three oranges. The antioxidants are heterocyclic compounds which prevents cancer and heart disease.
  • Adding sugar to coffee is believed to have started in 1715, in the court of King Louis XIV, the French monarch.
  • Advertisements for coffee in London in 1657 claimed that the beverage was a cure for scurvy, gout and other ills.

“Decaffeinated coffee is the devil’s blend.”  ~Author Unknown

  • Espresso Coffee has just one third of the caffeine content of ordinary coffee.
  • Coffee beans are really berries. Each berry contains two beans (pips).
  • An expert in preparing Turkish coffee is known as a “kahveci”.
  • Irish coffee was actually invented to warm up cold American plane passengers leaving from Ireland.
  • And lastly, Teddy Roosevelt is and was the greatest American coffee drinker, consuming a gallon a day. But you probably shouldn’t attempt to do that.
  • An Arabica coffee tree can produce up to 12 pounds of coffee a year, depending on soil and climate.
  • Australians consume 60% more coffee than tea, a six-fold increase since 1940.
  • Caffeine is on the International Olympic Committee list of prohibited substances. Athletes who test positive for more than 12 micrograms of caffeine per milliliter of urine may be banned from the Olympic Games. This level may be reached after drinking about 5 cups of coffee.
  • Citrus has been added to coffee for several hundred years.

“Coffee, the finest organic suspension ever devised.”  ~Star Trek: Voyager

MORE TO COME

01-28-2014. Journal Entry – Cemetery Visits   2 comments

I thought today I’d show you a few photographs I took during my travels yesterday. Even though it’s winter and freezing cold with snow piled just about everywhere, I needed to get away from the house for a few hours. I reverted to my old habits, took my camera, and began my search for some old cemeteries.

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“A cold and wintery resting place.”

One of the things I like best about living in New England is the number of ancient cemeteries that are scattered throughout almost every community. It seems that every large family back in the 1600’s that owned property maintained a private cemetery for their family members. Almost all of them have survived but most are difficult to visit since they’re away from public roads and on private property.

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“This shows how old the cemetery really  is. These folks were buried here before those trees existed.”

I became quite the cemetery visitor when I lived in southern Massachusetts back in the 1980s. My ex-wife and I owned a small gift shop and as part of that business I painted landscapes of local cemeteries and sold them in the shop. For a time I could be found creeping around the older of the cemeteries with a supply of T-shirts to stretch over tombstones to do gravestone rubbings.  A great many people thought the idea of owning a T-shirt with their family name on it was edgy and cool.  They sold like hot cakes.  On one occasion I was visited by the local police in a cemetery where they questioned me as to my activities.  Fortunately I was able to explain things to them and avoided arrest. Within a week I had supplied one of those officers with his own personalized shirt and was never bothered again.

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“The day was too bright and made the names difficult to capture.”

I just love cemeteries, the older the better.  It’s a quiet and serene place to spend a hour relaxing and reading old epithets.  Yesterday I found a few within a short drive from my home that were accessible and not covered in snow. 

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“I tweaked this photo with software but still couldn’t get the names readable.”

I can’t wait for the return of Spring and Summer weather so I can search out a few more of the isolated graveyards and add their photo’s to my collection.

01-27-2014 The New Senior Enlistment Program   3 comments

I’m a former Vet who is now in his sixties and I fondly remember most of my service time both in the United States and overseas. I received the following email from my nephew in Texas, also a former Vet, and it made me laugh out loud.  The fact that some of it makes good sense is beside the point.  I did a little editing to clean it up some and here it is.  I’m considering sending a copy to Mr. Obama.  He’s always looking for a good program or two to shove through Congress.  I use the terminology “shove through” in the most respectful way, of course.

Send to All Vets over 60 Years Old

I‘m over 60 and the Armed Forces thinks I’m too old to track down terrorists. You currently can’t be older than 42 to join the military. They’ve got the whole thing ass-backwards. Instead of sending 18-year olds off to fight, they should be sending us old guys. You shouldn’t be able to join a military unit until you’re at least 35.

Researchers say 18-year-olds think about sex every 10 seconds. Old guys only think about sex a couple of times a day, leaving us more than 28,000 additional seconds per day to concentrate on the enemy.

Young guys haven’t lived long enough to be cranky, and a cranky soldier is a dangerous soldier. “My back hurts! I can’t sleep, I’m tired and hungry”, we’re impatient and maybe letting us kill a few assholes  that desperately deserve it will make us feel better and shut us up for a while.

An 18-year-old hates getting up before 10 a.m while us old guys always get up early to pee, so what the hell.  Besides, like I said, “I’m tired and can’t sleep and since I’m already up, I may as well be up and killing some of those fanatical S-O-B’s.”

If captured, we couldn’t spill the beans because we’d forget where we put them.  In fact, name, rank, and serial number would be a real brainteaser.

Boot camp would be easier for old guys. We’re used to getting screamed and yelled at and we’re used to soft food. We’ve also developed an appreciation for guns. We’ve been using them for years as an excuse to get out of the house and away from all the screaming and yelling.

They could lighten up on the obstacle course as well.  I’ve been in combat and have never seen a single 20-foot wall with rope hanging over the side, nor have I ever done any pushups since completing basic training.  Actually, the running part is kind of a waste of energy too.  I’ve never seen anyone yet who could outrun a bullet.

An 18-year-old has the whole world ahead of him. He’s still learning to shave, to start up a conversations with pretty girls and he has yet to figure out that a baseball cap has a brim used to shade his eyes, not the back of his head. These are all great reasons to keep our kids at home to learn a little more about life before sending them into harm’s way.

Let us old guys track down those dirty rotten cowardly terrorists. The last thing an enemy would want to see is a couple of million pissed off old farts with bad attitudes and automatic weapons coming towards them.  A gang of old mean men who know their best years are already behind them.  Look out.

P.S.  How about recruiting Women over 50 especially those in menopause. You think men have bad attitudes,  OMFG. If nothing else, put them on border patrol, they’ll have it secured the first night.

Yikes!

01-26-2014 Journal Entry – I Love the Nightlife!   1 comment

There was a time time in my life when I was the ultimate night person.  I slept all day and worked and played all night.  After work I’d  visit a variety of clubs and bars returning home in the wee hours of the morning.  It was a great time in my life because everyone knows the best shit happens after dark in the middle of the night.

I worked those hours for more than five years.  My job required visits to massage parlors (not officially as a patron), strip joints (not officially as a paying customer), and even the occasional brothel (again, not as a paying customer).  I became educated very quickly to the unbelievable quantity of nightlife activities, how to enjoy them, and even more important, how to survive them.

The more things change the more they remain the same.  All these years later I’m discovering a whole new word of nightlife here in Maine that I’ve been totally unaware of.  We live in what could be called a rural area.  Our home is adjacent to a small river and a large forest of pines.  We live far enough out that without assistance from technology (range extender) we can’t receive cell phone signals and are not registering on most GPS devices.  It’s like living in Never-Never Land.  That being said, we love it. We thought that “wildlife” in this area was mostly confined to the Portland metro area and was low key and had a minimum of crime to deal with.  How little we really knew.

Last night we had an unusual snow fall. It snowed for no more than twenty minutes and then stopped completely.  There was just enough snow to cover everything in a pristine white sheet.  We went to bed after the snow fall stopped and remarked to each other about how white and smooth the back yard seemed with the new snow cover.  There wasn’t a mark of any kind on that snow.

We awoke this morning and walked to the window and were shocked at what we saw.  It appears that our backyard is the night club for most of the “wildlife” in this area.  These pictures will give you some idea of the night time traffic taking place in our back yard.

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We live our lives giving little or no thought to the “life” swirling around us every day and night.  I saw tracks of coyotes, deer, chipmunks, squirrels, one lonely turkey, a big fat skunk, and a trail left by that sneaky cat belonging to our neighbors.  I’m not surprised too often but this was amazing. I guess that one day warming trend we were blessed with brought everyone out to celebrate.

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I think I may have to pay a little more attention to what’s going on around me.    With a good lens and a small night light I might just be able to get some really interesting photographs.

01-24-2014 – Journal Entry   Leave a comment

I’m sitting here this morning trying to decide whether leaving this warm bed is the smartest thing to do. The weather remains problematic as always and I’m not in the mood to deal with it today.  It’s been in the deep freeze here for two weeks and it isn’t expected to warm up anytime soon.  The only thing I know for sure is that I can’t spend the next two months in this bed as much as I’d like to.

I’ve been trying to be as careful as possible with all of the snow and ice we’ve been having.  Now that my broken leg is almost healed I’m deathly afraid of slipping or falling and ending up back in the hospital.  I’m walking very softly these days.

The better-half stumbled out of bed early today for another shopping safari with her daughter.  It was unplanned but she responded immediately to the telephone call, rolled out of bed and hit the ground running.  Nothing is more important than spending a little quality time with her grandson and shopping at the same time.  If she’s lucky she may be completely awake by the time they arrive to pick her up but she’s like a zombie right now.

I began a small construction project this week which has been on hold because of this cold weather. I plan on removing a large window in our living room and I need at least three hours of warmer weather to do it.  It shouldn’t take too long to remove the window, replace the missing studs and insulation  and then close up the hole.  I can finish the rest from the inside of the house in just a few hours of drywalling and painting.  I must be out of my mind doing this in February.  Why I didn’t I do it in September is beyond me.  I’ll just sit around for another week or two waiting for a few hours of temperatures above the freezing mark.  Hurry up and wait.

I have a quiet day planned for today but it never seems to work out that way. I need to spend at least forty five minutes on the dreaded treadmill before I do anything else.  It’s been a huge help in rehabilitating my leg.  It still amazes me how much a limb can deteriorate in such a short period of time.  Another week should have my injured leg back to it’s normal size.  Rebuilding lost muscle tissue is difficult and time consuming but must be done as quickly as possible.

Since the better-half has four days off I thought I’d surprise her with a night on the town.  I have a few ideas of places to visit with the Great Lost Bear  heading the list. It’s the best place in the Portland area where she can feed her ever increasing addiction to smoking hot chicken wings.  They specialize in XXX wings that are hot enough to set your hair on fire.  The second possibility is The Strike Zone located in Old Orchard Beach and their specialty is deep fried everything.  It’s a typically small sports bar where deep fried foods are the rule of the day. My weight loss program will be at serious risk if we go there but OMG the food is delicious.

It’s time to get motivated and moving.  I love Winter.

01-23-2014 – The Price of Love and Sex!   3 comments

I thought today I would address an issue that seems to have become an accepted illegal activity in parts of our society and other societies in the world. You see it almost every day on TV, in many  movies, and in everyday life if you travel to Nevada and Las Vegas. It was also responsible for kick-starting the career of one of America’s most famous actresses, Julia Roberts. It’s known as the world’s oldest profession and I suppose I’d have to agree with that because I can’t prove otherwise.  It’s just an excepted fact that almost anywhere at any time in history when you get more than a few human beings living together it’s quite possible one of them will be or will become a prostitute.

I’m about to lay a gang of statistics on you about prostitution in the United States and around the world. The numbers listed are estimated figures collected from open source documents published by security agencies, nongovernmental organizations, and media reports. Thank you so much Internet.

Say what you will, prostitution is big business. The worldwide prostitution revenues are estimated to be $186 billion per year and the number of prostitutes working worldwide is estimated to be near 13,265,900.

How many times in recent memory while watching a Olympic sporting event have you heard the chant, “We’re #1, We’re #1” or U S A, U S A.  It may be true in sports but it certainly isn’t true in prostitution. Here are the top ten countries by number of estimated prostitutes.  As in many things these days, China is leading the pack.

Number of Prostitutes

1.  China  5,000,000
2.  India  3,000,000
3.  Russia  1,600,000
4.  United States  1,000,000
5.  Philippines  800,000
6.  Mexico  500,000
7.  Germany  400,000
8.  Thailand  250,000
9.   Brazil  250,000 children
10. Bangladesh 200,000

And then there’s poor Ireland:

29. Ireland 1,000

It just goes to prove that the United States is losing market share in everything including the sale of sex. Now I’ll list for you the estimated prices for prostitution services in these great United States of ours. I’ve listed poor Bangladesh only because as far as I can determine from the statistics I reviewed that it’s the cheapest place in the world to get laid.

United States Prostitution Price Sheet

$50 to $100 for street prostitute (National Averages)
High-End Escort in Indianapolis: $500 per hour
High-End Escort in NYC: $10,000 a night
Legal Brothel in Nevada: $200 to $600
Massage Parlor: $200 to $400 for oral sex and intercourse
Massage Parlor Worker Earnings: $8,000 to $10,000
Minnesota: $60 for oral sex with minor
Pennsylvania Earnings: $2,000 a week
Portland, OR: $130
Prison Guards: $150 charged by female guards
Santa Ana, CA: Under $100 per act
Silicon Valley: $350 to $500 per hour
Underage Girls: $40 to $100 for 15 to 30 minutes of sex
Washington, DC: $200 an hour

And once again poor little Bangladesh bringing up the rear (no pun intended).

Bangladesh: $0.60

My next statistic  includes the top 10 countries in the world by the estimated revenues collected by their prostitutes. It’s no big surprise the Chinese are again the world leader. The United States has dropped to fifth-place in this category behind our former WW II enemies, Germany and Japan. I’m not sure whether that’s relevant but I’m putting it out there.

Revenues in U.S. Dollars

China   $73 Billion
Spain   $26.5 Billion
Japan   $24 Billion
Germany   $18 Billion (Legal Industry)
United States   $14.6 Billion
South Korea   $12 Billion
India   $8.4 Billion
Thailand   $6.4 Billion
Philippines   $6 Billion
Switzerland   $4.4 Billion (Legal Industry)

You regular readers of this blog know I’ve spent many hours compiling lists of totally useless information for your review. Today I’ll be supplying you with totally useless information but only about prostitution and prostitutes. Some of these facts are interesting and some are not but here they are anyway.

  • 70% of female inmates in American prisons were initially arrested for prostitution.
  • Over 1 million people in the US have worked as prostitutes.
  • 77.8% of prostitution arrests are women, 22.2% men.
  • 85-90% of those arrested are street prostitutes, who account for only 20% of prostitutes
  • Only 3-5% of STDs are prostitution-related.
  • 80% of prostitutes have been sexually assaulted, some raped as many as 8-10 time annually.
  • 59% of prostitutes have thought of committing suicide, compared to 61% of non-prostitutes.
  • In a study in London, England 50% of clients were married, or cohabiting.
    Male prostitutes sometimes report that their clients include married men who identify as heterosexual.
  • Street prostitution accounts for between 10 to 20% of the prostitution in larger cities such as Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York.
  • The average age of entry into prostitution is 13 years of age.
  • 52% of the women stated that pornography played a significant role in teaching them what was expected of them as prostitutes.
  • A Canadian Report on Prostitution and Pornography concluded that girls and women in prostitution have a mortality rate 40 times higher than the national average.

I suppose you’ve noticed by now that I’ve not mentioned any of my own personal involvement with prostitutes or prostitution. While it’s really no one’s business but my own, I’m not the least bit embarrassed to admit I’ve on occasion paid my own way. It was many years ago in a faraway land and it was a “Right of Passage” for some of us servicemen. Of course after looking at today’s prices I’d be forced to travel to Bangladesh to be able to afford it. Don’t forget, I’m on a fixed retirement income and I’m forced to watch every penny but even I could afford $ .60.

01-22-2014 – Hail to the Chief!   Leave a comment

In the past I’ve been known to take a few potshots at politicians, both local and federal. I don’t ever intend to stop doing that but in all fairness I thought I’d quote a few presidents of both parties to show all of you that stupidity and wiseassiness is endemic to  both.

I think it’s fairly obvious in this day and age that the office of the presidency has lost some of it’s sparkle. We no longer assume that any president has all the answers or in some cases has any answers. They’re  just regular people who were for some reason elected into an extremely important office and they spend most of their time trying not look stupid. Unfortunately for us the majority of the time they’re not very successful.

I’m listing these quotations in no particular order.  I think it’s only fair that I leave the Presidents speak for themselves so you can make your own judgments.

* * *

“Even though most people agree… I’m presenting a fair deal, the fact that they don’t take it means that I should somehow do a Jedi mind-meld with these folks and convince them to do what’s right.” —President Obama, mixing up Star Wars and Star Trek references while discussing working with Republicans in Congress (March 1, 2013)

”I was under medication when I made the decision to burn the tapes.” —Richard Nixon

‘Too many good docs are getting out of the business. Too many OB-GYNs aren’t able to practice their love with women all across this country.”—President George W. Bush, Sept. 6, 2004

”Did you ever think that making a speech on economics is a lot like pissing down your leg? It seems hot to you, but it never does to anyone else.” —Lyndon Johnson

“Some years ago I became president of Columbia University and learned within 24 hours to be ready to speak at the drop of a hat, and I learned something more, the trustees were expected to be ready to speak at the passing of the hat.” – Dwight D. Eisenhower

”I think this is the most extraordinary collection of talent, of human knowledge, that has ever been gathered together at the White House, with the possible exception of when Thomas Jefferson dined alone.” —President John Kennedy, at a dinner honoring Nobel Prize winners of the Western Hemisphere, the White House, April 29, 1962

‘Politics is supposed to be the second-oldest profession. I have come to realize that it bears a very close resemblance to the first.” —Ronald Reagan

”If one morning I walked on top of the water across the Potomac River, the headline that afternoon would read: ‘President Can’t Swim.” —Lyndon Johnson

”If I had to name my greatest strength, I guess it would be my humility. Greatest weakness, it’s possible that I’m a little too awesome.” —Barack Obama, at the 2008 Al Smith Dinner

”My esteem in this country has gone up substantially. It is very nice now when people wave at me, they use all their fingers.” —President Jimmy Carter

”Being president is like running a cemetery: you’ve got a lot of people under you and nobody’s listening.” —Bill Clinton

”He can compress the most words into the smallest ideas better than any man I ever met.” —Abraham Lincoln, referring to a lawyer

* * *

I don’t see anything all that impressive in this posting which doesn’t surprise me in the least. Presidents are just as silly and stupid as the rest of us except they dress better and have a nicer place to live.  Hopefully “We the People” will never take them as seriously as they seem to take themselves, that could be a serious mistake.

01-21-2014 Journal Entry-Boredom!   Leave a comment

It’s a terrible thing to be bored.  It’s doubly terrible when you’re in Maine and it’s Winter.  It feels like being up in the air on the “Vomit Comet” flying very high, then diving straight down, and then pulling back up again to what is supposed to be normal.  That weightlessness between dives in my mind is the ultimate boredom.  You’re just floating around in a pointless manner, accomplishing nothing, and feeling even worse.

Maybe if you were like me and had a fifty year love affair with adrenaline, the ultimate aphrodisiac, it would help you to understand a little.  Hang gliding, sky diving, bungee jumping, and smashing down doors to apprehend criminals or mental patients can in no way be considered boring. Defying death or serious injury was never the point for me.  The point was experiencing the dangers and not giving a shit what happened.  Putting your entire existence into the hands of fate and doing so with no regrets. Most people never get to that point and don’t really want to, unless they can feel the adrenaline rush without committing to the danger.

So you have your regular run-of-the-mill boredom and then there’s the adrenaline-free boredom which is even worse.  I’m drifting through life living vicariously through my own past experiences to help keep my head above water.  Unfortunately once you reach a certain age with all of the physical limitations that come with it, your choices become strictly limited.  Writing a blog, painting a picture, sculpting, sketching, remodeling a home or even walking in the woods are a just a stupid laundry list of poor substitutes.

I actually attempted for a while to live vicariously through others but OMG what a mistake.  Many of the people in my sphere of influence, not all of course, put me into a deathlike comma.  They’re lives have taken boredom to new heights and they don’t know the difference since they have nothing to compare it to. I may sound a little harsh in my criticisms but so what.

So I’ll start another day writing this blog, walking a couple of miles on my treadmill, reading a book, watching some TV, petting my cat, and then walking outside and screaming at the top of my effing lungs.  Now don’t you feel a hundred percent better about your life?  You should.

Here are a few boring things from my list of thousands.

  • Celebrity Worship
  • Baseball (Except for Little League)
  • Soccer (I don’t consider it a real sport.)
  • Politics and Politicians (Pundits and  Talk Shows too)
  • Sermons (Religious or Otherwise)
  • Musicals
  • Shopping War Stories
  • Vampires
  • Werewolves
  • “Wives of”  (From any City. State, Country, or Planet)
  • Sports
  • Country Music
  • Waiting Rooms
  • Commercials of Any Kind
  • Soap Operas

01-19-2014 Journal Entry–More Snow!   Leave a comment

Well the weekend has passed without much of interest to talk about.  I have to tell you though that taking Sundays off from my life is something I recommend highly for anyone to try.  No exercising, no blogging and no dieting. As always I remind you that Sunday as a day of rest for me is not a religious leftover from my childhood.  It just happens to fit into my strangely scheduled current  lifestyle.

We had another eight inches of snow through the night which meant I was to spend at least a half hour with my favorite motorized friend, the snowblower.  The snow was wet and heavy and a real pain in the ass to deal with.  I did it quickly so my better-half could access the outside world and then I returned to my day-off.  I snapped a few pictures around the house of this storm because the snow was sticking to everything and made for some interesting photos.

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The weather has warmed a little which brings out the visiting birds in large numbers.  We feed them regularly but in frigid weather they become scarce. Since we live in a forested area we have three or four generations of woodpeckers that stay with us all winter.  We place suet out for them because they’re the most successful in pecking it apart when it’s frozen.

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They’ve been flying in and out in shifts so often they’re averaging one suet container a week.  It apparently keeps them healthy and makes living through the winter months a little easier.

I then decided to leave the warm bosom of my house to explore the neighboring area for a few photo’s of the snow scenes.  Here are three that should give you a better idea about what Maine is like in winter.

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It’s now Monday morning and I’m back on the treadmill for a mile or two of good heath and exhaustion.  The better-half’s loving the new slimmer me but I think it’s just her way of motivating me a little more.  Either way  it’s a win/win.