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Sunny Day...

I’m craving some sun. It’s the shank of winter… and time for a break.

Sadly, though, I’m reminded of how much I used to enjoy traveling, of being at airports, of GOING. But now? It’s such a hassle. I hat getting gate raped. Hate having my luggage pawed through by a stranger in dirty gloves. Hate being treated as a suspect. Suspected of what? Wanting to get some sun? *shakes head*

A pilot, Patrick Smith, said this a while ago. “In the United States alone, more than 2 million people fly every day, subject to all manner of tedium and humiliation, yet there is virtually no protest either from citizens or their leaders. Certainly there is no political will to get things changed. People grumble, shake their heads, and move along in a woozy capitulation to a security apparatus that is both repressive and ineffective.

This will continue, presumably, until disaster strikes, at which point the screams for accountability will be shrill and righteous and entirely too late.”


While I don’t fully agree with the NSA, I’ll take that over the TSA any day. At least there’s a better chance of something good coming out of it, and no one is getting physically violated in public.

But in the meantime... daydreaming of this (and not logistics).


Really, Yahoo?!

Look at the timestamp on the top two messages. The reply arrived before the original! It's just one example of bad service that's all-too-common with Yahoo. All they have to do to be successful is have a simple interface to email that works. Leave all the fancy animated stuff to the other one.

WTH Yahoo

Jan. 10th, 2014

De-cluttering the entire house = 80% done! It's a huge project but I think I can hear the house exhaling.

Left to do on the list:
Touch up two areas in the master bath from towel rod installation.
Linen closet
Coat closet

I'm not fully participating in ApartmentTherapy's January Cure, but it's serving as good inspiration. Next year I'll Live Blog.

Fifty Years Ago

Today was the first time I've ever seen the Zapruder Film.  (I've had horribly uneven general history education.)

Frame 313. Nearly speechless. Horrible. An image that will not be able to be erased from my memory.

I understand why Zapruder wouldn't let that frame be aired.

On Sales, Walmart, Ford, and Keynes.

Apparently, Walmart’s sales are continuing their downward trend. Its customers have less, or even declining, expendable pay, so their sales are dropping. What's important to recognize that Walmart’s customer base is lower-wage workers who are working at places like, well, Walmart, and Walmart refuses to raise its median wage of $8.80 an hour. So what?

So this: As the largest employer in the US, it’s the trendsetter for all other employers of low-wage workers. As long as Walmart keeps its wages near the bottom, other low-wage employers keep wages there, too. On the other hand, if Walmart raises its wages, other similar employers would have to follow suit in order to attract employees. See that? Walmart is so large that a wage increase just at Walmart would ripple through the entire economy, putting more money in the pockets of low-wage workers (read: Customers), and helping boost said economy -- including increasing Walmart's sales. By focusing on increased sales instead of cheap labor to turn a profit, everyone wins.

It’s been done before - very successfully - by a fellow named Henry Ford. Ford paid his employees three times the typical factory wage of the time. This boosted factory wages across the board, enabling so many workers to buy Model Ts that Ford's revenues soared far ahead of his increased payroll expenses. And he made a fortune.

Oh yeah, Keynes. What's he got to do with this? Well, it's his theory, after all.

Cat Scout Obi, repurrting.

In case you don't know, today is teh Cat Scout Cardwood Derby. I've entered mah sweet ride here:

It's made of recycled and upcycled parts. We bought nothing for it, just got creative with what was around. And added blood, sweat, and purrs. My pit crew is some of mah housemates. Mah brofur, Cliff, was sooper interested in mah car. Mah Mommacat, Chloe, wanted to drive! And mah sisfur, Maya, helped with a lot of teh pre-race inspection!

If you're not aware, Cat Scouts is a community of cats who are looking to make an impact on teh world by bettering themselves and establishing friendships. It's a good time with a bunch of swell fellas! I highly encourage yoo to check it out - if you're mancat enough!

Scout Obi.

Oct. 13th, 2013

“When it is harder to obtain a library card than it is to buy a gun in this country, something is terribly wrong. I mean, would you let your neighbor drive 100 miles an hour in their car through your children's school zone? I hope you wouldn't, but regardless everyone has the right to own a car but the safety or our community comes first and foremost. It's just common sense. We must always balance our rights and responsibilities as responsible citizens.”
- Tony Bennett

I am willing to say without reservation that there's something seriously wrong in a country where private citizens own 300,000,000 guns and are still whining that their Second Amendment rights are being threatened.

Hunting? No. Use a bow. If you're that bad of a shot, you probably shouldn't be hunting in the first place.

Home defense? If home defense is so important that it needs military weapons, where are the sandbag barricades at front doors? How about the bulletproof windows? It’s fine to keep a handgun or shotgun for home defense, but we're either going to go back to the Dodge City days, or we're going to have to trust our local and federal governments to take care of some of the law enforcement. Oh, and I don't like to pay taxes as much as anyone, but the solution is not to disappear into the woods and become a paramilitary.

Guns are not like cars. Most people really need cars, and very few people really need guns. Guns in every home made sense 200 years ago, when the US was the first to ever break away from its colonial ruler. It makes less sense now, but it is ingrained in society. Nonetheless, every portion of the Constitution is modified by laws showing that times change. There are gun laws of various types, and yet, no one is trying to take away everyone's guns.

Quit already!

I just read an article on the Huffington Post about smoking. Personally, I don't understand how anyone would start in this day and age. It's not as if the effects are unknown. Anyway, the most startling thing in that article was this: If tobacco farmers around the globe were to grow food instead, they could feed more than 70 percent of the world's 28 million malnourished people. That’s 20 million people.

Medieval Times

Family history can be traced back to 1510-ish. There's one line to go back farther, but the dates are just speculative. Also, I have parish records from the 1600s. This makes me incredibly happy.

May. 4th, 2013

We each had a beer for you at Hofbrauhaus today, Pfundi. It would have been better with you there with us physically, not just in spirit. (No pun intended.) We both remember you fondly, as well as look up to the sky with a shaking fist at what could've been prevented. I think you would've liked the crab boils and and crawfish boils. You would have had us out on our bikes much more often than we are. And AK would've dragged you Happy-Gilmore-ish hindend out to golf a lot more.

Moving Forward

I’ve recently been getting reacquainted with an Aunt and Uncle that I haven’t had much contact with in nearly 20 years. I think it’s awesome.

A few days after our last meet up, I was with my mother. She’s not into it. She spent a lot of time telling me of things my Aunt and Uncle did to make her and my dad upset. The last serious infraction was in 1991.

My parents find fault with anything and everything. If their food order at a restaurant comes out wrong, they’ll suffer through it instead of sending it back, and then complain about it for the next couple of weeks. They’re not close with many people; they have little social life. They’re the type who can sit in a roomful of people and not attempt to talk to a single one, and then complain that no one spoke with them. Talking to them is getting a report on who-did-what to them and what is going wrong; serious conversations or sharing opinion on, say, national issues or global happenings, is never an option.

My aunt and uncle are a lot more like me and Adam - active with friends, entertaining, and hobbies. They’re easier to be around. You can have conversations. You can share wine.

I’ve decided that losing 20 years of time with my aunt is ridiculous and I really want to move on. So is she. We talked about it and were in complete agreement in that whatever is/was we don’t care – move forward. Now that I really think of it, I don’t believe the grudge against them, perpetuated for a time be me, was ever really mine to hold. I don’t care what happened 34 years ago (25 years ago. X years ago.) It’s over. Losing 20 years of *my* relationship with my aunt has been “punishment” enough for my parents’ choice of holding onto that negativity. And I don’t care what they think of my choice.

My parents had their feelings hurt, several times. Guess what? It happens. You can either forgive, move on, and seek happiness, or hold onto that negativity and let it make you bitter and resentful. It really is your choice.

I don’t understand what good comes from a grudge like this. I’ve quit associating with people because of what they’ve done to me, but I’ve went on and made more friends. I made my choice and continued with my life in a more positive direction. I’m doing that again. Does it make me crazy to want to forget what I heard happened via one-sided story, start anew, and enjoy what time I have left with my aunt and uncle?!


Good Boo
Researching my family history has made me aware of many things, the least of which is not that one has an infinite amount of time on this earth.

Life is too short, people.

Eat dessert first.

'Expert' Travel Advice?!

Things NOT to do when staying in a small space/ tiny apartment with other people:
*Put your shoes under the radiator.
*Leave wet towels on the (only) bathroom floor.
*Use all the hooks in the (only) bathroom for your dirty clothes.
*Leave dirty dishes on the counter, island, and in the sink.
*Not throw empty yogurt containers in the trash.
*Not rinse wineglasses so they get smelly and stained.

Things NOT to do when traveling with other people:
*On a cold day when car windows can’t be opened, take you shoes off in the car.
*Change the GPS route en-route without telling the driver. Or, if driving, don’t listen to the GPS when it’s routing you away from a traffic jam, thinking you know better.
*Continually reference someone’s dietary restrictions at every meal stop/dining opportunity.