Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Where did all my friends go? To the farm?

Could you run that by me again?
I have been invited once again to become a farmer on Facebook. Which brings me to the question: Why am I on Facebook and where is Farmville? I don't want to help you with your crops. Leave me alone.
I may join Farmville just so I can let loose a plague of locust followed by an invasion by an army of ants. Is that a possible option?

Why Facebook at all? Some people just have too much free time. They tell you more than you really need to know. I didn't know my Uncle Percy had thirteen bowel movements in an eight hour period. Wow! This is special.

I don't have many Facebook friends. Eighteen, I believe. My wife and I communicate regularly on Facebook. She is one of my friends.
My friend Matt has about eight hundred Facebook friends. I don't even know that many people. Wow! That is a lot of stamps for Christmas cards.

I don't know why Matt has so many friends. He doesn't even have a Farmville farm.
Perhaps it is because he is a tall, tanned, intelligent MB lifeguard who smiles a lot. My wife says he is kinda good looking also. That can't hurt.

There are some causes or clubs on Facebook that I might be interested in. Here's a list of a few that others might be interested in joining.
  • Squirrels against frozen nuts.
  • Reefer sadness. (Glaucoma sufferers of South Carolina)
  • Bad Yearbook pictures. (That is a blog in itself.)
  • 101 uses for a human carcass.
Well, at least it's not My Space. My Space is really lovely if you're a 9 year old rap singer.
I've taken steps to clean up my email. This has been a thorny issue for quite a while.
I blocked certain emails. I set up rules. I explained to my friends about viruses. It will block any email that is a forward: I will miss my relatives and friends. I told them that a forward is like having sex with everyone on the list. Some of the guys wanted to know where they could sign up.
A couple said they had herpes so they didn't care. One girl sprayed her computer with Lysol after I told her.
Ah well, I tried. Sadly I haven't gotten an email in three weeks. Not even from Barrister Michael Okubu in Nigeria. He is handling my Nigerian financial affairs.
I expect to come into some money very soon. I hope I live long enough to spend it.

One of my recent emails told me to forward it to twenty four of my closest friends or my teeth would fall out and I would die on January first of next year.
Nice friend!!!
I lost all my friends now that I made some rules. I checked my spam folder, and there seem to be a lot of people who want to be my friends and help me with certain issues. There are so many to choose from, really. Should I go for the breast enlargment or the dates with Russian girls? My wife keeps receiving offers to enlarge her penis.
Oh wait, I can get a free credit score for $29.95.

I guess I can delete a few things.
Apple wants to know if I want to buy an Ipad. (too late) delete.
Amazon wants to know if I want a kindle. Nope! see above. delete.
Amazon wants to know if I want twenty other things. They are making suggestions. delete, delete, delete.
Classmates is offering a premium membership. Already happened. (note to myself.. why am I a member of classmates? Oh, it is called social networking.) delete.
Apple wants to know if I wish to keep my membership for mobileme. Right! basically $99 for email and 5 other things I don't use. delete
Reader's Digest wants me to subscribe to their booklet. I am already subscribed up to the year 2034. Do I want to subscribe to a magazine that is now officially crap and is 50% advertisement? delete

Wow!!! My inbox is totally empty.
I think I will go get the mail....

I'm back.

Let's see what we have today. It is getting close to Christmas. Let's shuffle through all the nice Christmas cards we received:
  • the Honda dealership in Vermont wishes us a Merry Christmas and tells us our maintenaince is due. We sold the Honda 6 months ago
  • some company in Florida is informing us that it is our last chance to renew our Kia maintenance service contract. We sold that car three years ago
  • Bank of America wants to sell us some life insurance
  • Visa is telling us what a great deal they have for a credit card
Mastercard is telling me how lucky I am because they raised my credit line by a few grands

I will pin these on the fireplace. I feel so into the season now.
That is my mail for today.

Back to my computer. Oh, some one nudged me on Facebook. It was my wife.

My wife suggested that if I wanted to have her as a Facebook friend I should empty my trash folder or (and I quote) " I will kick your butt so hard and so long that it will end up in Russia and will be so large you will go to a plastic surgeon for a butt reshaping and reduction."

I believe I will keep her as a Facebook friend. Perhaps we can have a little farm together.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Is that any way to treat a hero?


It all started innocently enough. In fact, I kinda looked upon myself as a hero. Heroes need to be rewarded but that's not what happened.

My wife and I are people who like our home to smell nice. We have many things that have a wonderful aroma. We have numerous essential oils, scented candles, a variety of incense sticks and numerous diffusers. We have something aromatic in every room. We don't count the utility room where Wilson has his litter box.

One day I turned on one of the candle wax warmers, put some oil in it and let it do its job. When I went to turn it off, it gave me a wonderful light show, it started sparking and smoke was coming from the switch. I crawled under the dresser the best I could and I pulled the plug.(I am now a hero. I saved our house, perhaps the whole street, perhaps the whole north end.)
That warmer was finished. Some parts were salvageable such as the glass area where the wax sits in while it is heating up. I didn't throw that away. I will clean it up.
This morning I decided to clean it up. That is when things started getting a little strange. I cleaned off the wax and the essential oil. The essential oil was called "Pussy".
It was recommended by our friend Samantha who has a large booth at the flea market. She had hundreds of different essences to choose from and she said this one was currently a hot seller and it had a nice aroma. We had purchased a few other oils there such as Egyptian Musk, French Lavender, Patchouli, and several others.

Some of the other oils had strange or provocative names. We all had a few good laugh about the one we had just purchased. None of us were prudish about it.

So...while I am cleaning up the essential oil of the day, the doorbell rings. It's my neighbor, Prudence Goodbody, neighborhood snoop and troublemaker.
I open the door and invite her in. What trouble can I get into? My wife is upstairs working.
"Hi, remember me? I'm Prudence....your neighbor? I live a few houses away. Listen, I have this petition for you to sign. It's about our other neighbor's dog. There is dog poop all over the place. I told him we are getting up a petition to get this resolved by County animal control."
Note: This is a strict area for curbing your dog. The city doesn't like dog poop all over the place, especially this close to the beach.

"I'll sign, but I have already resolved it in my own mind. I'm going to scoop up the poop, put it in a bag, put it on his doorstep and set it on fire." I stated proudly.

While I was signing the petition she said, "It smells wonderful in here, certainly better than it does outdoors. What is that aroma?"

In a moment of madness or truthful folly, I am not sure which, I said, "Pussy."
which it was!!!!!

A long silence, then,..... "EXCUSE ME!!!!
Oops!...try to save yourself, son!...try to save yourself.
"Pussy you said?"
"Ummm!..yeah...they were selling it at the flea market. " (somehow I don't think that is exactly what I wanted to say.)

Maybe I can still salvage this. "Samantha sells a lot of it, she has a booth."
Nope! Do not resuscitate. no salvage possibilities. This would not be a good time to invite her to the donkey barbecue.
Just go with the flow.
"They're selling it openly in a public place? Oh....my...god!!!!"
"Yes...Yes, a lot of it. People are even asking for "Sex on the Beach" and a lot of other stuff too." I asked her if she would like some.
She slapped me and then fainted. I revived her by throwing a glass of water on her face. I had seen it done in the movies many times. She got to her feet, slapped my face again. Then she called me a perverted pig. She ran away screaming for the police.

When the police arrived, I explained the situation. She over reacted to the name of some of the essential oils. Did I mention that to Prudence? That the aroma was essential oils?..I thought I did. Perhaps I got caught up in the moment.

The police are going to explain that I really didn't want to have "Sex on the Beach" with her......eventually. For now I will just be a hero in my own mind.
sniff! sniff!! It sure does smell purdy in here!!!!!
What is that scent? It's...either Patchouli, sandalwood or.....Is that the doorbell ringing again?

Monday, December 6, 2010

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Well, My wife is watching her 14th straight Christmas movie, the fake fire is going in the fireplace,  I am listening to the "Phil Spector Christmas album".   I am sure I am enjoying it more than Phil this year.  I am listening to Darlene Love sing "Marshmallow World". They sure don't write Christmas songs like that anymore.  Perhaps we could get a petition together to make sure he doesn't get out of prison and write more songs like that. Whew!

Perhaps when it gets a little closer to Christmas I will bring out the big guns in Christmas music.  Maybe I can get Mariah Carey to screech out something Christmasy.  Then my wife will want to listen to Perry Como, Bing Crosby and maybe some French Canadian guy.

I will have to stuff some goodies in his little sock over the fireplace for our boy "Wilson".
He is tough to get to bed on Christmas Eve and an hour after we go to bed, he is on the bed, nudging, head butting, walking on my head, knocking stuff on the floor. He is trying to get us up.
He's hungry.  This has nothing to do with Christmas.  He just gets a little confused.  He is not as young as he used to be.  Who is?  I am an hour older than I was an hour ago.  That's kinda like saying; No matter where I go, there I am.
But I digress.
I Would like to wish all the people who inspired me to have fun with my blog.
First in line will be the little French lady, Chantal.  She encourages me, she would proofread my stuff when I first started out.  She also does some strange things, just like me. I write about them sometimes.
I like it when I write something and I get feedback and sometimes ideas.  For this I thank Bev the bitter hack, Guvanator Jensconsin, Indigo the winelush, Kwizgiver the(fill in the blank), L'empress, Rachael the thesis writer and many other.

There are others I haven't heard from in a while and I wonder how they are doing, like Becca, Judy P in Elliot Lake, Mamakerr in UK, Jo in UK. Larry, Where did you go? Kolliope, where are you? Sunny?
There are others I wonder about.  Well, I wish everybody happiness.  I will try to make you smile. FROM: Wilson, The funny French Lady and the squirrelly one. (me)

An appropriate gift to you all from a squirrel.  "Nuts to You!!!!"
Hmmm! somehow that didn't come out right.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

How to be an annoying senior citizen


It is officially the holiday season. I am at wit's end trying to think of something useful to contribute to society in general.
My experience at the doctor's office a few weeks ago gave me an idea. On the entrance door to the office there is a large sign with large lettering that clearly says "Do not use cell phones in office". I thought that was pretty clear.
Within five minutes of my usual half hour wait somebody is calling or receiving calls on their phone. This is not a huge waiting room. Perhaps it is 12 by 12. But it has about 30 chairs. There are no magazines to speak of. A couple perhaps. I am not really interested in reading "Breastfeeder's Monthly" or the "Knitter's handbook".
I did scan through Breastfeeders Monthly. Mostly looking at pictures. Umm, but I digress.
The point is that it is a very confined space for people. Sick people! I was sick. When there are 6 or 7 people ignoring the sign in the door and start calling all over the world, I start getting annoyed.

My wife was having her yearly physical in about a week. I told her I would go with her.
I told her I would bring my GPS because there was a geocache very close to the doctor's office. I had a plan. Instead of being the "annoyee" I will henceforth be the "annoyer".
Be proactive, I say. It is a senior citizen right....actually it a duty to be annoying.

We get to the office and within 5 minutes someone cellphone rings. I leaped to my feet, grab my GPS (a Garmin, I might add), put it to my ear and said, "Hello, Hemlock here!".....Hello....Helllllooooooo!....Your going to have to speak louder. I can't hear you."
I turn to my wife and say, "wrong number." I sit back down.
A phone rings again.
I jump to my feet. I grab my GPS and say loudly, "Hemlock here!!!! Hello! Hello?....I can't hear you." I turn to my wife, shake my GPS a little and say. " It must be a dead zone in here....Oops, bad choice of words, a very sick zone, for sure." I sit back down.

Now people are looking at me. One woman is biting on her finger nails. Her phone is ringing and she doesn't know what to do. Others are putting their phones on vibrate. The room has a nice hum to it. I am looking wild eyed at my GPS.
The man sitting next to me says, " That's a GPS, Mister. That is not a phone."
I slowly turned to him and said, "I know. Phones aren't allowed in here. It says so..right there on the door. It doesn't say anything about GPS's."
I slowly put my GPS to my ear and say, "call me later."
After that everything went just fine at the doctor's office.

I get to my home and someone has let their pony (or St. Bernard) loose in the common area again. Their is nothing quite like the scent of dog feces or pony feces on your sneaker soles. Everyone knows how smooth sneaker soles are. I clean it up the poop, put it in a bag and start walking it towards the dumpster... yet again.
Wait a minute.....proactive. I get a nice bag. Something Christmasy.
I write the guilty party a note:

Dear Sir,
I noticed that your pony or St. Bernard has left us another gift in front of our "curb your dog" sign. I suspect you are doing this because you heard that in Ireland they have used cow chips as fuel. How very thoughtful.
I must tell you; I do not use the fireplace and I will not use your gift to barbecue and that is not cow chips. I have also gotten away from my Irish heritage So I rewrapped it and regifted it for you. I left you a book of matches so you could get it cooking in your fireplace.
Happy Holiday
Your neighbor.

I will be more proactive the next time. That is the key. It is the season. Give...don't take.
I can sleep tonight knowing I have done something for humanity.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Truffles, Trifles and Truth

Recently, a series of events has occurred that has profoundly affected my normal day to day life. Since this all happened in a period of two weeks, it took over my life.

First, I put off getting my flu shot. This gave me plenty of "down" time. I caught the flu.
The thing about the flu is; at first you are afraid you are going to die, after a couple days of it, you are afraid your not going to die.
The second week of the flu is not so bad. You have adjusted your life to being waited on for your every need. The fact is, you start to expect it.

The second event happen when I was lying on the couch with my laptop and my favorite blanket. (The faux fur throw). I had a message from someone on "Classmates" who remembered me from high school. I remembered this lady that we will call "Betty" since that was her name. She was a studious girl who wore the hoop skirts w/poodle and the frilly blouses. She was a very quiet girl and did not seem to be part of any clique.

The third event occurred while I was reading Ann Rule's book, "Heart Full of Lies."
It was about this woman who had numerous talents but her best talent seemed to be deceiving people. If she told her friends that she could fly, they would believe her. They would just take her word for it.
This got me thinking.

The fourth event was when I got a notification by email that my blog had been picked as a "Top Blog Award", which is pretty nifty. I actually got a gift certificate with it. I guess that makes me a "Professional" now.

The convergence of these events at the intersection of Happy Highway and Arrogance Avenue sent my down a strange and winding road until I got to that Cul de sac known as reality.

As I started to feel better I decided I would answer "Betty" using what I had learned about life in the last couple weeks.
The letter went something like this:

Hello Betty,

It was good to hear from you. (I barely remember you)
Much has changed in my life.
(Yeah, I got a lot older over the last fifty years.)
After graduation from high school I went to Connecticut and entered Yale.
(Every day I worked in the university billing department for 14 years, but you don't have to know that.)
After I left Yale, I headed to Germany, a lovely country.
(yes, The base the Army sent me wasn't all the gorgeous, I might add.) When I came back to the states, I came into some money.
(I won my lawsuit).
In recent years I have been writing, mostly fiction.
(In fact, this very minute I am writing fiction)
I am also an award winning writer.
(I have the $20 gift certificate to prove it.)
I have been interrupted, Betty. My manservant, Parker, has asked me if you iron the back of american money first, or the front. We don't want to burn Salmon P. Chase's whiskers, so I told him to google it.
(Hah!....should I mention my Red Mercedes convertible?...Naw. I don't want to be pretentious).
I have to go now, Betty. So cherish this because you will never hear from me again.
(I think she will buy into this!!!!)

Since I sent this to Betty, I have been a difficult person. I started to believe it myself.
The other day at the hardware I asked the clerk if she knew who I was? At that very moment my wife gave me a dirty look and a shot to the ribs with her elbow.
The clerk said, " You're the man with the broken ribs."

The other afternoon at a local restaurant I demanded truffles from France. The waitperson said they cost about $1500 a pound. "That's expensive chocolate." I said.
French Truffles are not chocolate, I was told. It is a fungus that certain pigs can smell.
Wow! A few years back I paid that much to get rid of a fungus. I cancelled my truffles order. I settled for a twinkie.

Well, fame is fleeting. This morning life was back to normal. me too! The first thing I did....which will ground you pretty quickly is...to clean up some type of feces on the common area front lawn. Everybody in the area was just kind of staring at it. almost everyone has pets but they are all very small. This thing was huge. We took a vote.
Everyone finally agreed with me. It had to be a pony or a Saint Bernard that did it.
Funny thing is no one saw either a pony or a Saint Bernard in the area.

Oh! Wait a minute. Fame may not be fleeting. The phone is ringing. It may be my publisher....Do I have a publisher?

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Miss Matched, I think not.

My wife and I are alike in many ways. We also have some glaring differences.
What happen the other day is a perfect example.
I mentioned to her that her computer was a work computer that was supplied by her company. It had a lot of restrictions. It was not a good place to store your personal documents. The company likes everything on the computer to be work related.

She doesn't use a computer much when she is not working. She likes to have one handy in case she wants to google for some arcane tidbit of information or do her Quicken budget. So it is handy to have her own personal computer. I suggested that she could do it on my MacBook. That did not go over well. She is a PC person. I am not.
She mumbled something under her breath about Mac's. I was all over her like maggots on a Calcutta carcass. We tossed insult back and forth about each others computer.
Words were bantered about such as infidel, nerdface, geekbreath, blue screen of death,
and several other niceties. Then things started to get a little contentious.
The next thing I know, we are rolling on the floor trying to get to each others throats and other vital organs by any means possible. She was getting the upper hand.

At that point I thought it was wise to make a suggestion.
"How about if I buy you a computer?"
The tightness of her grip relaxed from around my neck.
"Ok!!!!" She smiled and stood up.

Hah! I had won this round.
She will not see that computer until Easter.
I will research it. Which one will fit her needs? I must get the most computer for my money. I will start saving next week for it while I am doing my research. If I put all my change in money jar and throw in a dollar bill here and there and throw in a five at Christmas, I am sure she will have one by Easter. Good Plan.

I got to my feet and dusted myself off.
"Let's go", my wife starts walking towards the front door.
"Where?" I croaked.
"To the computer store."

Here is the deal. I wanted a GPS. This was in early May. I did my homework. I investigated all type GPS's.
I got to know the products. I even got to know "Dave" from Garmin in Kansas.
I saved about $11 dollars a week. I was picking soda cans out of garbage at the beach.
I had a plan. In October I purchased my GPS.

My wife kinda motivated me to get it. She would say things like, "Are you going to buy that GPS before you die?" Hmmm! that was a good question.

So now we are at the computer store. My wife looks at a couple of computers, ask a couple of questions and as quick as that she says, "I'll take the purple one. Purple is my favorite color. Isn't it pretty?"

Huh? What? When did I lose control of this situation. Oh, that's right. I never had control of the situation.

You have to understand something. My wife's profession.
She is a computer systems analyst. She bases her work decisions on logic.
Algorithms, FORTRAN, COBOL, flow charts, and other mysterious stuff. You would think this would be a case of logic prevailing, after all, this is computer stuff.

What was the logic? It was purple, her favorite color.

Well, as it all turns out, she is really very happy with her purple computer. I should have known. After all, she is referred to as "The Purple Princess of Programming" by some of her colleagues.

The bottom line is that we balance each other. We usually meet somewhere in the middle. We compromise. If it wasn't for her nothing would happen. If it wasn't for me, too much would happen.

We now buy a good car and keep it 7 years instead of trading it every year. We would not live in this nice Townhouse if it wasn't for her, now if I can get to stay more than 3 years in the same place it will be wonderful. She does not have to follow that Montreal tradition of moving every July 1st. It's a tradition that became a habit for her. She is an expert on the logistics of moving.
But it all works out.....eventually.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Fashion secrets

I know it's hard to believe but that isn't me in the picture.

I quietly turned the key to let myself into the house. I was sure I could make it to the upstairs bedroom undetected. Wilson met me as I tiptoed into the living room. Thank God he is not a meower. He just opens his mouth and smacks at me. He is hungry. I whispered to him, "In a minute". This did not seem to abate his restlessness. I trod lightly up the staircase, holding my breath, I am almost there. Alas, I make it to the final step and slowly release my breath, and quietly wipe the perspiration from my brow. I have done it!!!!!

"Whatcha got there?"
I was so startled that it felt like my whole body had been put into an electric socket. I nearly soiled myself.
I was caught.... but how?
"How did you know I was home? I was so quiet."

"Yeah...well...I didn't hear a thing, but the minute you opened the door Wilson was down the stairs like you were a fresh can of tuna and when you got to the top of the stairs I could smell you. You stunk like a galley slave."
Wilson outed me for food. The little weasel!!!!

"Sooooo....What's in the bag?"
"My next blog," was my meek reply.
Yeah....I have this thing about Perry Ellis.

It all started about a year ago at Stein Mart. I decided I wasn't going to follow her all over the store. I ventured over to the men's department. There was a whole rack of Perry Ellis fashionable undergarments on sale.
Ok! Let's call a spade a spade. They were boxer briefs. Since I have been very indecisive about whether I should wear boxers or jockey shorts, I decided to compromise.

This has been my best fashion decision since I threw away my sombrero and my thong.
I really like these shorts. I like Perry Ellis stuff. I like them so much that I have purchased 11 pairs. Incidentally, Why do they call 1 "a pair"?
Well anyway....I had the urge to buy more. I am becoming a Perry Ellis hoarder.
I also buy the Perry Ellis Reserve aftershave. I can't seem to help myself.

Lately I've had the urge to walk on the street in my Perry Ellis underwear. My wife seems to think this is a bad idea.
I just want to make my fashion statement.

"What is your logic? Why do you think it is a bad idea? There are people walking on the beach right this minute who look like they are wearing their undergarments. It's not like I am wearing a thong. I threw that away after the police picked me up...remember?"

I think I outfoxed her. I can see the exasperation on her face. Then she brightened and said, "Spandex!!!!, that's the difference. You have to have a certain percent of spandex before it could be considered beachwear. If it has too much cotton it is considered an undergarment and you can be arrested!!!"

"Hah, so those gay guys wearing their tiny spandex speedos are legal on the beach but if I wear my Perry Ellis cotton boxer briefs with Spongebob Happy Pants emblems, I could do serious prison time?"

"Now you are starting to grasp the situation, Bucko!!!" was my wife's reply.

I think I will go upstairs and count my Perry Ellis stuff.
I think I will write to Perry and see if he has spandex boxer briefs.
I think I will fondle....I mean examine the smooth texture of my Perry Ellis goodies.
I will toss all my Haines stuff.

Life has weird rules.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Senior Citizen classes for old people. (first timers)

Welcome To all potential senior citizens.

I'm guessing you have muddled through the process without too much assistance or the use of power of attorney.
I don't know how old you are now, but at some point, between the ages of 50 and 60 you start thinking of yourself as "middle aged". This is a little trick you play on yourself. This will convince you that you are going to live to somewhere between 1oo and 120 years old. When I was growing up "middle aged was 27.

The reality of the situation is: Your gray hair is falling out, your nose is getting redder and bigger, your nose hairs are starting to sag, your vision needs trifocals, people don't seem to be talking as loud as they used to, you go to the dentist to get your tooth cleaned or you just drop your dentures off for repair on the way to Walmart.
The sad part is: We are just talking about your head. We haven't even started with the other parts of your body.
So...let me prepare you.

When you get older you must have an old name. You can't be 62 years old and people still call you "Skippy" or "Biff" ....guys!!! It's Percival, Luther, Ebenezer, Horace, Elmer to name a few. Change it.

Ladies....after 55 no more "Heather or Buffy." It will be Blanche, Ethel, Agatha, and other old names. Change it.
It is sad that parents don't give their children life long names. Frank Zappa had the foresight to name his kids with names that will hold up for a lifetime. The names "Moon Unit" and "Dweezle" will stand the test of time. I guess people should think about this when naming someone.

Yes, There are some down sides to Senior Citizenshipness. There also many upsides.
There is the senior citizen discount if you don't mind eating with a bunch of old coots.
honestly they give me the "willies". They are old, their walkers keep getting in my way, they shuffle instead of walk, they have bingo card all over the table in the restaurant, old people smell funny, When they have hair it is combed funny (men) and women usually have hair that is some shade of purple and they smell like vanilla extract.
I am one of them. What can I do?
I guess the saying is: " I have met the enemy and he is me!!!!..???"

Since young people think you are waste of skin and space, you can play the "I am old and confused." card. You can actually increase your creativity and intellect by pretending to be confused. I have taken my blood pressure on those machines at the pharmacies. I started hollering, "This machine won't let me go. I have hydrantphobia, make it stop." The Pharmacist saved me. He asked me if I was on any medication.
He was a nice man.
I also got myself trapped in a shed at Home Depot, went to sleep on a bed at the furniture store, directed traffic on Ocean Boulevard, asked for strange sandwiches at a diner (remember Jack Nicholson in "Five Easy Pieces". ) My favorite ploy, which I use on a regular basis is to pretend I am the Clint Eastwood.
Occasionally I just like to wonder around and pretend I am lost or confused. This works really well if you have your shirt on inside out or the buttons are not in the right button hole. Having your fly unzipped is always a good touch.
I have a senior citizen maneuver called "the triad". That would be: unzipped fly, pants pulled as high as possible with misaligned shirt buttons tucked into your pants with the shirt tail sticking out the fly opening. A real eye catcher.

Never do anything as pretentious as wearing your underwear on the outside or sox over shoes.
If you want people to give you some personal space, carry a box of depends and a can of lysol spray. Every 4 steps you take say something like...."oops!...Oh..oh.." and turn around and look at the floor.

This should get you started on the road to a fun Senior Citizenry.

Some upcoming classes:
How to convince your spouse that you are a useless human being. (For the gentleman who think his wife doesn't already know the truth.)

Dressing for distress: (not your distress, someone Else's.) What kind of suspenders to wear. What to do with unmatched sox. How to blow your nose improperly in public.
How to launch a snot rocket. (finger push on side of nostril, blow...launch!!!) How to use and misuse a toothpick. Many other subjects will be covered.

How to babble: This is a handy little ploy that will make your babble almost comprehensible. How to feign deafness. These two techniques are guaranteed to
put your listener at a big disadvantage.

How to keep your focus: I am sure that some of my contemp...ummm......so if anybody is interested in....whatever!!!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

I just bought a "killer" GPS, really!!!

Geocaching can be hell!!!

I am always looking for bargains. I buy many used books through Amazon and I keep an eye on Ebay for a good deal. In recent days I have been looking for a trail GPS.

On the first of October I was on Ebay looking at Electronic stuff when I happen to come across a GPS of my dreams. I could not believe my good fortune.
The ad read something like this:

Killer GPS for sale. It's the Garmon Styx 666. The hottest deal on the internet. This unit will take you places you have never been before.

It even had a review from a lady named "Helen Karnate". She even gave me her cell phone number 999-7734.
She said she purchased it from the estate of a man named "Bob", who walked over a cliff on his way to church. Well, the price was right so I purchased the Damn thing. I had uneasy feeling that I was missing something.

The unit arrived after a three day wait. oddly, it did not have a return address. The instructions were written in English, but when my wife looked at them she said they were written in French, the condo associations lawn care person, Pedro, said it was Spanish.
I read the instructions and then turned the unit on.
It immediately said, "Hello, Robert!...Where would you like to go?...Oh, too bad. We will not have time to go there today." I replied angrily, "Go to hell!!" The GPS responded, "I thought you would never ask, Robert."

The unit and I argued most of the afternoon. He told me that the world was coming to an end on 10-10-10 at 10:10 AM. He referred to it as Binary Doomsday.
I started to believe in him.
I was going to sell our furniture on Craig's list, but who would buy it with less than a month to live and how would I spend the money. So I decided to enjoy my remaining days by doing some geocaching. I thought this would be enjoyable and healthy.
Sadly my GPS would tell me to walk two miles into the Atlantic Ocean or try to get my to find geocaches in really bad places like in the middle of the interstate.
"Your geocaches is right there, Robert. Get it." Traffic would be rushing by and vehicles honking at me.
I soon became weary of Geocaching and my wife got tired of going down to the police station or the psychiatric unit of the hospital to retrieve me.

Finally, The day arrived. Binary Doomsday! 10-10-10
01110100011010000110010100100000011001010110111001100100 (the end?)

At 9:45, I enclosed my self in bubble wrap, put in the earplugs, ate my last peanut butter sandwich, closed my eyes and waited for the end. I started humming so I would not hear it.
I felt something touch me. It must be the hand of God.
ME:"Is that you, God?"
GOD:"Uh,uh!" (That sounded like my wife!!!!)
ME: "Are we in heaven together?"
WIFE/GOD??: "Yup, We moved to Myrtle Beach two and half years ago. Now wake up and open your eyes, you crazy coot. Your snoring is starting to annoy me."
ME: "How long have I been snoring?"
WIFE" Since 1993!!!!!"

Well, I guess it must be 11-11-11. I must have a talk with my GPS.
"Well, What do you have to say to yourself, GPS?"
GPS: "You're still here, Robert?"
That's it. That was all I could take. I remembered a Star Trek episode "The Changling" that might apply in this particular case. I used that strategy.
ME:"My name is not Robert."
GPS: Excuse me?"
ME: "You have me confused with someone else."
GPS: "LOL, WTF, OMG, LMAO, OHOH!( GPS starts to smoke and spark).
My Styx 666 had a fiery demise.

Later that day I was looking for a new GPS. I came across a Garmin etrex. I purchased it. I noticed it was spelled differently than the one I originally ordered. Mine was a Garmon. This one is a Garmin. HMMM?

Perhaps I will formulate a missive to Captain James T. Kirk. I think he saved my life.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Is it just me?

Am I correct?

The other day while my wife and I went on our long walk, we stopped at a gazebo for a trail mix break. We stopped and talk to a couple of nice people. I commented later on that one of them was "mentally retarded." My wife corrected me on this. She was right.I could have used a better term to describe someone who has "Down's Syndrome."I googled it. I wanted to check on its usage. It is still used by the mental health profession, although others find it offensive. An example of that would be Rosa's law.

This brings me to my point(s). I could have said it in a more universally accepted way and be more politically correct. My second point is about "politically correct". I think it is getting extreme.
I like ethnic jokes. The problem is: It keeps perpetuating the myth and if something is repeated enough it becomes truth to some people. People start believing it.
Having said that, I will commence to offending people.I will tell you a little about myself. I am not a bad dancer....I am overly Caucasian.I do not get lost....I investigate alternative destinations.My wife is not a nag....she is verbally repetitive.
Ok! Now that you have the idea lets tell the tale of "Little Red Riding Hood" as written by an ultra liberal.
Politically Correct Little Red Riding Hood
There once was a young person named Little Red Riding Hood who lived on the edge of a large forest full of endangered owls and rare plants that would probably provide a cure for cancer if only someone took the time to study them.

Red Riding Hood lived with a nurture giver whom she sometimes referred to as "mother", although she didn't mean to imply by this term that she would have thought less of the person if a close biological link did not in fact exist.Nor did she intend to denigrate the equal value of nontraditional households, although she was sorry if this was the impression conveyed.

One day her mother asked her to take a basket of organically grown fruit and mineral water to her grandmother's house.

"But mother, won't this be stealing work from the unionized people who have struggled for years to earn the right to carry all packages between various people in the woods?"
Red Riding Hood's mother assured her that she had called the union boss and gotten a special compassionate mission exemption form.

"But mother, aren't you oppressing me by ordering me to do this?"Red Riding Hood's mother pointed out that it was impossible for womyn to oppress each other, since all womyn were equally oppressed until all womyn were free.

"But mother, then shouldn't you have my brother carry the basket, since he's an oppressor, and should learn what it's like to be oppressed?"And Red Riding Hood's mother explained that her brother was attending a special rally for animal rights, and besides, this wasn't stereotypical womyn's work, but an empowering deed that would help engender a feeling of community.

"But won't I be oppressing Grandma, by implying that she's sick and hence unable to independently further her own selfhood?"
But Red Riding Hood's mother explained that her grandmother wasn't actually sick or incapacitated or mentally handicapped in any way, although that was not to imply that any of these conditions were inferior to what some people called "health".
Thus Red Riding Hood felt that she could get behind the idea of delivering the basket to her grandmother, and so she set off.

Many people believed that the forest was a foreboding and dangerous place, but Red Riding Hood knew that this was an irrational fear based on cultural paradigms instilled by a patriarchal society that regarded the natural world as an exploitable resource, and hence believed that natural predators were in fact intolerable competitors.Other people avoided the woods for fear of thieves and deviants, but Red Riding Hood felt that in a truly classless society all marginalized peoples would be able to "come out" of the woods and be accepted as valid lifestyle role models.

On her way to Grandma's house, Red Riding Hood passed a woodchopper, and wandered off the path, in order to examine some flowers.She was startled to find herself standing before a Wolf, who asked her what was in her basket.
Red Riding Hood's teacher had warned her never to talk to strangers, but she was confident in taking control of her own budding sexuality, and chose to dialogue with the Wolf.
She replied, "I am taking my Grandmother some healthful snacks in a gesture of solidarity.
"The Wolf said, "You know, my dear, it isn't safe for a little girl to walk through these woods alone."Red Riding Hood said, "I find your sexist remark offensive in the extreme, but I will ignore it because of your traditional status as an outcast from society, the stress of which has caused you to develop an alternative and yet entirely valid worldview. Now, if you'll excuse me, I would prefer to be on my way."

Red Riding Hood returned to the main path, and proceeded towards her Grandmother's house.But because his status outside society had freed him from slavish adherence to linear, Western-style thought, the Wolf knew of a quicker route to Grandma's house.

He burst into the house and ate Grandma, a course of action affirmative of his nature as a predator.Then, unhampered by rigid, traditionalist gender role notions, he put on Grandma's nightclothes, crawled under the bedclothes, and awaited developments.

Red Riding Hood entered the cottage and said,"Grandma, I have brought you some cruelty free snacks to salute you in your role of wise and nurturing matriarch.
"The Wolf said softly "Come closer, child, so that I might see you."Red Riding Hood said, "Goodness! Grandma, what big eyes you have!

"You forget that I am optically challenged."And Grandma, what an enormous, what a fine nose you have."
"Naturally, I could have had it fixed to help my acting career, but I didn't give in to such societal pressures, my child. "And Grandma, what very big, sharp teeth you have!"
The Wolf could not take any more of these specist slurs, and, in a reaction appropriate for his accustomed milieu, he leaped out of bed, grabbed Little Red Riding Hood, and opened his jaws so wide that she could see her poor Grandmother cowering in his belly.
"Aren't you forgetting something?" Red Riding Hood bravely shouted. "You must request my permission before proceeding to a new level of intimacy!"
The Wolf was so startled by this statement that he loosened his grasp on her.At the same time, the woodchopper burst into the cottage, brandishing an ax.

"Hands off!" cried the woodchopper."And what do you think you're doing?" cried Little Red Riding Hood. "If I let you help me now, I would be expressing a lack of confidence in my own abilities, which would lead to poor self esteem and lower achievement scores on college entrance exams.
"Last chance, sister! Get your hands off that endangered species! This is an FBI sting!" screamed the woodchopper, and when Little Red Riding Hood nonetheless made a sudden motion, he sliced off her head.
"Thank goodness you got here in time," said the Wolf. "The brat and her grandmother lured me in here. I thought I was a goner.""No, I think I'm the real victim, here," said the woodchopper. "I've been dealing with my anger ever since I saw her picking those protected flowers earlier.
And now I'm going to have such a trauma. Do you have any aspirin?
"Sure," said the Wolf."Thanks.
"I feel your pain," said the Wolf, and he patted the woodchopper on his firm, well padded back, gave a little belch, and said "Do you have any Maalox?"
The End.

Well, actually you could do the same thing with the ultra conservatives.
The fact is: If you get a conservative and a liberal to write a report of Custer's last stand, you would get two unrecognizable version.
The liberals would do it from Sitting Bulls point of view and the conservatives would have done it from Custers point of view and John Stoessel would have said the whole thing was unnecessary.
As the ever optimistic George Custer said before he went into battle, "Don't take any prisoners, men." He didn't.

Monday, September 27, 2010

"UPDATE" Opa, Ouzo, and Omicron

Greek geeks!

My wife and I went to the Greek Festival this weekend. She was so impressed that she is thinking of converting to Greek Orthodox. It is a lot like being a Catholic but you don't have to kneel.
She has started referring to Istanbul as Constantinople. She has asked me to change my name to Gianas Hemlockis. She is starting to write funny. I see triangles on paper, she says "that's "D" or delta." How the airlines got involved in religion I am not quite sure. I think I have lost her. She walks around shouting "opa, opa!!"

She is getting swept up in this whole Greek culture thing. She has ordered bouzouki Cd's of Panayotis Thomakis, "the Jimmie Hendrix of the bouzouki" as she now reverently refers to him. I actually thought he was more like the "Eric Clapton" of the bouzouki. He is very good.

She has discovered a fondness for Greek food. This morning she asked me to go buy a 55 gallon drum of Extra virgin olive oil for cooking. I told my sweetie that I have a bad shoulder and I would have trouble moving 500 pounds of olive oil.
I dodged the bullet on that one.

We will be having chicken Souvlaki for lunch, Gyros for supper. I read that the traditional Greek breakfast was coffee and a cigarette. I will check this out.
This is what "Nick" suggested. No cigarettes. Nick is very concerned about health. I am not sure I want to follow his diet. He is only 37 years old.

We toured the inside of the church. all the stuff written on the walls was in some kind of cryptic code. There was all kinds of murals on the walls and ceiling. very beautiful church. I got a little queasy inside the church. The church was St John the Baptist church. As you probably heard, He was beheaded. I have a lot of trouble with beheadings depicted on church walls. I had to leave. Don't go into any church named St. john to baptist if you get queasy about beheadings.

I thought my wife will outgrow the Greek thing. Perhaps not.
This morning she was checking real estate in Athens.
I said, "Athens, Georgia? Why should we move a few hundred miles down the road? We have the ocean here."
She said, " Athens, Greece. It is on the Mediterranean Sea."
This isn't over.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Organized Religion...Really????

Finding Religion

My wife and I were raised Catholic. I was an altar boy. I had to give it all up. Bad knees.

My wife, on the other hand, gave it up for an entirely different reason. The Catholic Church switched from Latin to French (In Quebec). She finally realized what they were saying.

We still go to church. Weddings and funerals. But we try to avoid it whenever possible.
The Catholic church kept changing the rules. You can't eat meat today. Oh, never mind. Do I have to go to confession? Not really? Maybe...Possibly, could be?
The language used to be Latin. That was cool. We had our own obscure language. Just us few. Catholics, Lawyers, doctors and Mary O'Brien, our high school Latin teacher.

My wife and I decided we wanted an easier religion. Something not based on guilt or hate. Something where we don't have to wear funny hats on certain days. Something where we don't have to fast for 52 days or eat strange food, or refrain from eating strange food.
I am thinking about making a list of things I want out of my religion.
Since all religions believe in god, I can sort through the ones that appeal to me.

I have decided that religions that put too much emphasis on sex are not for me. I am too old and too married. Perhaps fifty years ago that would sound appealing. Now It sounds exhausting. I cannot imagine being a bigamist or going door to door in a black suit and white shirt with pamphlets. That pretty much eliminated the Mormons.

I thought about becoming Jewish but I don't like the beanies. I had to wear one during my freshman year of college. Not much fun. I would have to go through some kind of ceremony, I'm sure. I wonder if I would have to be circumcised again?
Not happening!!!!
Cross out Judaism.

Baptist have good music. They like to sing a lot. My problem there is the beer situation. I like to have beer and dance when I hear good music. They don't.
I find the alcohol thing a bit odd. I am sure Jesus took a nip of wine at the last supper.
Maybe it was Welch grape juice.

I have eliminated Christian Scientists. My best friend's father died of a very treatable condition. He was a Christian Scientist....and an Accountant. What if my appendix is about to burst? Do I go to a Christian Science reading room and hope for the best? Do they have a 911 number to call? I think not.
They are off my list.

Jehovah Witness...Hmmm! What if I fall down at the non Christmas party and I need blood? I am too old to say, " Thanks anyway doc, just let me lie here and bleed to death." Too many strange rules.

Muslim....My wife won't wear the Burka...as I commanded her to do. She is an infidel.
I will have to pass on that religion.

Buddha....give me a call. You sound pretty relaxed as far as religion goes. However I will not set myself on fire to make a point.

I even tried to read the bible for guidance. This is something I have never done.
I had problems from the very beginning. Genesis!!
OK...God can do some wonderful things.
He made the earth in 6 days and then took a day of rest. Actually God could have done it with a snap of his finger. He is, after all......God. I guess he wanted to make a little project out of it. Then he took a rib from Adam to make Eve. Ok!! I like that part.
Now everything seems start unraveling and I am only two pages into the book.
A serpent talks the folks in Eden into take a bite of the forbidden fruit. I have problems with this part. A talking serpent? A gecko perhaps! The Forbidden Fruit? Acai, I suspect.

Well shortly after they ate the forbidden fruit, Adam realizes that Eve is as naked as a Tijuana Stripper....(or Jaybird?)........Eve grabs a leaf, Adam nod towards the tree house and ask, "Would you like to see my palm hammock?" and Eve says with a wink, " I'd love too." and she did.
Shortly thereafter they were expelled from Eden and I think they ended up in Perth Amboy, New Jersey. But I haven't got that far yet.

It is pretty complicated reading for me. Too many thees, thy, thou, to many words that end with eth. "Ye sayeth thee art badeth of all thine peopleth." Huh???!!!!

After that it gets confusing. I thought Goliath was about 24 feet tall. Even the bible is confused about this. At one point, it is said he was about six and a half feet tall, another biblical scholar said about nine feet tall. I suspect he was was the "Shaq" of his day. A big guy. Not twenty four feet tall, not nine feet tall, but I suspect he could dunk a basketball if he was in shape.
Apparently he wasn't in great shape. He had a head like an over ripe melon. David hit it with a rock and he keeled over dead. Shaq would have said, "What was that, a gnat?"
Then David beheaded Goliath. This is a good story to tell your children.

I am a little confused about the ten commandments. Isn't that a nice round figure. I suspect there was more commandments but Moses dropped a few stone tablets on the way down. After all, he was up there for forty days. He might have been a little cranky on the trip down. I am questioning Moses work ethic.
I can picture him negotiating with God.
God: "Did you bring a quill and some papyrus, Moses?"
Moses: "Nah! I have good memory."
God: "I have 16 commandments for you."
Moses: "16? Could we round that off to 15?"
God: "Ok, but I will have to throw in some and/or in the mix"
So God gives the commandments to Moses. God says "repeat them back!!!"
God says, "I knew it, I knew It. Here!!! I made these commandments in stone. Bring em down the hill. All fifteen. 3 tablets."
Moses:" That's not a hill, that's a mountain."
God: I know what it is, Einstein. I made it. Remember?"
Moses: "Einstein????"

Moses leaves the mountain. He gets to the bottom after twenty days and says, "Hey, ya'll gather round. I've been yonder. I gotcha ten commandments for ya'll ya'll." (he apparently spent some time in South Carolina)
This is what I think happen.

I read on a little further.
Wow!!! Did you know that Methuselah lived 969 years? Noah...950 years...Adam...930 years? What were these guys eating? No trans fats or high fructose corn syrup.
Did Noah once say, "Hey...I haven't had sex in 881 years. I am getting a little cranky."

I wonder.....these people lived a long time. I think there is a book of the bible missing or it is in Commandments 11 through 15.
It's called "Recipes and lifestyles".
It is somewhere between Genesis and Revelations...somewhere, possibly.
Some strange stuff going on in that bible.
I will keep looking. I will stick with Catholic...for now.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Get a Life

Not necessarily my own!

Last evening I suggested to my wife that our neighbors were actually aliens. I am not talking about from Mexico or Haiti aliens. No! I am talking about Alpha Centauri, Rigel 7, or Saturn type aliens.
She is very aware of my logical thought process.
"OK, let's hear it."

I explained to her that when we moved recently,we moved into a "sleeper agent cell incubation pod area." They probably have some kind of capsule they eat or they consume "Earthlings". These people are not earthlings.

"Did you ever see them buy groceries? Did you ever see them eat?" The answer to that is "NO!!!" These people are clearly not from Earth.
She salvoed with, "I smelled barbecue steaks cooking next door." " Spray!" I answered.
"It makes them seem human."
"I rest my case".

My wife looked confused and befuddled. Then a sense of clarity and resolve came over her face.

WIFE:"Wait a minute, Clarence Darrow! Aren't you the same person who chased a car to North Carolina because you thought Jesus Christ was in the car and you wanted his autograph?
Aren't you the one who was attacked by seagulls on the beach because you had a watermelon on your head?
You thought you had a connection with Peter Noone of "Herman's Hermits" because his limo ran over your toes?
Aren't you the very same person who told our next door neighbor to "Get off my lawn" because you thought you would be like Clint Eastwood that day? Wasn't this you?"

ME:"Yeah.......What's your point?"
WIFE: 'The point is....GET A LIFE!!!!!

Hmmm!!! I thought I had one. I tried to model after someone I admired and respected, Clint Eastwood. I also have a striking resemblance to him. That doesn't hurt. I have to admit that I had to cut back on my Eastwoodness after the incident at Food Lion. The incident that nearly got me arrested.
The Incident: I got to the checkout line and the clerk asked me how many bananas I had purchased. Sadly I got caught up in the moment and said, " I know what your thinking, punk. Your thinking "Did he buy six bananas or only five?" " Now to tell you the truth I forgot myself in all the excitement. But being this is a Platinum Discover card, the most powerful credit card in the world and will blow your head clean off, You have to ask yourself a question: Do we take Discover? Well, do ya, punk?"
I am banned for life from Food Lion.

That did not "make my day".

I have tried being Clark Gable but that "Frankly, my Dear, I don't give a Damn." did not sit well with my wife since that would be my answer to any question. I gave that one up after a few hours. She still won't talk to me. Now I give a damn.
Cary Grant? "Judy..Judy...Judy"..Hmmm..I tried it and I sound like Goober Pyle.
I tried "Bogie" last week. I was saying stuff like: "We don't need no stinkin Food Lion, Here's looking at you, Kid." That kind of thing.
I even tried James Cagney. I was chasing squirrels Monday. I was hollering, "You dirty rodent!!!!"
I have though of seeing a Psychiatrist, but I started acting like McMurphy in "One flew over the cuckoos nest" and I was afraid of Nurse Ratched.
My wife just shakes her head and says, " You are not well."
I occasionally slip into lucidity.
Well, I guess that's life. But not mine.
The only time I feel like my genuine self is when I am somebody else.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

A Squirrel's Tale (tail?)

Oh nuts!!!!...and fruits!!!!

Leonard and Sheldon are two squirrels who visit my bird feeder on a daily basis. A daily basis? I should say on an hourly basis.
I am at wits end.
I know! I know! A short trip!!!
I have tried everything. They are winning!!!!
They get on my patio, hop up the 3 steps, stand in front of the sliding glass doors and taunt my cat, Wilson. Wilson is furious. He is a bird watcher. They chase the birds away.
They feed hourly at my squirrel proof bird feeder.
I open the sliding doors and they flee. I should say they fly. They are getting really good at this flying thing. I am afraid I am teaching them how to fly. They are flying a good 10-12 feet in the air and clinging to the tree. I am hoping they will make a mistake and not put their furry little heads down, hit their head on the tree and render themselves unconscious. I would put them in a cage and I would taunt them.
sadly, it never happens.
If I sit out on the patio they will sit in the tree and make awful sounds. I assume they are doing the squirrel equivalent to swearing.
I purchased something that has cayenne peppers in it. It is suppose to keep squirrels away from the feeder. Leonard and Sheldon love it but it almost blinded me.
When I was putting it in the "SQUIRREL PROOF BIRD FEEDER", the wind came up and blew it in my eyes, up my nose, in my mouth, all over. At that point I was begging for someone to "just kill me now.....please...please...please". No one did.

I have tinkered with idea of hooking up some electricity to the bird feeder and giving them a shock when they get on the feeder. Somehow I feel that I will be the one getting the shock or the next day they will show up with rubber gloves and wire cutters and destroy my work.
I am starting to feel like Wile E. Coyote.
My neighbor caught a couple of squirrels in humane traps. He took the time to drive them to North Carolina and release them. He should not have stopped for that cup of coffee.
The squirrels were back before he was.

Well at least he didn't end up like my other neighbor, Mary Margaret O'Callahan.
Mary Margaret has started calling herself, Thermodora the Warrior Princess and squirrel slayer.
She wears a thong and a bra, a plastic tiara and a BB gun now.
She shot a squirrel with the BB gun. It didn't do much damage to the squirrel but now she is on a mission. She mumbles, giggles and twitches quite a bit. She walks around the neighborhood in her outfit saying, " Hey squirrel, I got something for ya."
Nobody will report her. The women are afraid of her because she is armed and the men think she is "kinda good lookin".
I can see the road I may be going if I do not revise my thinking.

I have finally decided to make peace with Leonard and Sheldon.
Yes, this will give me peace of mind. I will do this. After all, they are only doing what they were put on this earth to do. I don't want to end up like my neighbors. It is the natural order of life. I should embrace this concept. I should embrace Leonard and Sheldon. Yes, embrace.....(twitch)...them. Embrace them VERY HARD.
Squeeze the life out of them. (twitch)
I must deny these rodentia of MY air, MY space!!!!(hee!hee!)