Guarding the Unknown

ARLINGTON CEMETERY

Jeopardy Question:

On Jeopardy awhile back, the final question was “How many steps does the guard take during his walk across the tomb of the Unknowns?”   All three contestants missed it!

This is really an awesome sight to watch if you’ve never had the chance.

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

1.)  How many steps does the guard take during his walk across the tomb of the Unknowns and why?

Answer:  21 steps – It alludes to the twenty-one gun salute which is the highest honor given any military or foreign dignitary.

2.)  How long does he hesitate after his about face to begin his return walk and why?

Answer:  21 seconds – For the same reason as answer number 1

3.)  Why are his gloves wet?

Answer:  His gloves are moistened to prevent his losing his grip on the rifle.

4.)  Does he carry his rifle on the same shoulder all the time and , if not, why not?

Answer:  He carries the rifle on the shoulder away from the tomb. After his march across the path, he executes an about face and moves the rifle to the outside shoulder.

5.)  How often are the guards changed?

Answer:  Guards are changed every thirty minutes, twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year.

6.)  What are the physical traits of the guard limited to?

Answer:  For a person to apply for guard duty at the tomb, he must be between 5′ 10′ and 6′ 2′ tall and his waist size cannot exceed 30 inches.

They must commit 2 years of life to guard the tomb, live in a barracks under the tomb, and cannot drink any alcohol on or off duty for the rest of their lives.

They cannot swear in public for the rest of their lives and cannot disgrace the uniform or the tomb in any way.

After two years, the guard is given a wreath pin that is worn on their lapel signifying they served as guard of the tomb. There are only 400 presently worn.

The guard must obey these rules for the rest of their lives or give up the wreath pin.

The shoes are specially made with very thick soles to keep the heat and cold from their feet. There are metal heel plates that extend to the top of the shoe in order to make the loud click as they come to a halt.

There are no wrinkles, folds or lint on the uniform. Guards dress for duty in front of a full-length mirror.  Every guard spends five hours a day getting his uniforms ready for guard duty..

The first six months of duty a guard cannot talk to anyone nor watch TV. All off duty time is spent studying the 175 notable people laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery.  A guard must memorize who they are and where they are interred.

Among the notables are:
President Taft,
Joe Lewis {the boxer}
Medal of Honor winner Audie L. Murphy, the most decorated soldier of WWII and of Hollywood fame.

In 2003 as Hurricane Isabelle was approaching Washington, DC , our US Senate/House took 2 days off with anticipation of the storm. On the ABC evening news, it was reported that because of the dangers from the hurricane, the military members assigned the duty of guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier were given permission to suspend the assignment. They respectfully declined the offer, “No way, Sir!” Soaked to the skin, marching in the pelting rain of a tropical storm, they said that guarding the Tomb was not just an assignment, it was the highest honor that can be afforded to a service person.

The tomb has been patrolled continuously, 24/7, since 1930.

ETERNAL REST GRANT THEM O LORD AND LET PERPETUAL LIGHT SHINE UPON THEM.

tomb-sentry-sunshine-henry-kass-2005-photo-01

Heroin rears it’s ugly head in suburbia

Rhonda:

To my blogging family and friends here on WP…whether or not this has touched you, your loved ones, your friends, your neighbors, or your communities…I ask that you read my dear friend Mo at magnoliabeginnings.org post and the included article from the Police Chief of Gloucester, MA – The little town that will – and see the logic in the approach to combat this disease. Take it even further, if you agree, and find out if your own state and local legislators would be willing to back a program as logical and compassionate as this one. Thank you for reading, bless you for caring…R
R.

Originally posted on Magnolia Beginnings:

Dear Friends,

The experience of writing this blog has proven to me that as different as we all may think we are we are all remarkably similar as well. The problems and concerns that hit me in Boston are also having the same effect on someone across the world. Records gathered from police, courts and the medical examiner shatter stereotypes about who gets sucked into this deadly vortex. It’s not all young adults. The median age of overdose victims is 41. And they’re not the dregs of society. They are homemakers, professionals, students and laborers. (Patriot Ledger) . One person every 8 days dies of a heroin/opiate overdose in my area and the numbers keep rising. I am impressed and encouraged by the actions of a small Massachusetts town Police Chief. I encourage you all to share this story with the hope that the approach will catch on. There may only…

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SOMEONE has to be the Grownup!

This is where they’ll be this time tomorrow…

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Would YOU say no?

No, didn’t think so.

Headed to one of my favorite places so Mom can spend time with the ‘girls’…friends of a certain age who haven’t ‘laughed like they used to’ for more than 20 years…think they’ll have fun?

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Yeah…me too.

Hopefully I’ll come back with stories to tell and photos to share…along with a sunburn.

Outer Banks…the Mother Duck’rs are coming…you ready?

(Bird) Food for Thought?

An Analogy to chew on…
bird feeder

I bought a bird feeder…I hung it on my back porch and filled it with seed.

What a beauty of a bird feeder it was I thought…as I filled it lovingly with seed.

Within a week, there were hundreds of birds taking advantage of the continuous flow of free and easily accessible food.

But then the birds started building nests in the boards of the patio, above the table, and next to the barbecue.

Then came the poop. It was everywhere: on the patio tile, the chairs, the table ……everywhere!

Then some of the birds turned mean.

They would dive bomb me and try to peck me even though I had fed them out of my own pocket.

And others birds were boisterous and loud.

They sat on the feeder and squawked and screamed at all hours of the day and night and demanded that I fill it and refill it, then refill it some more.

After a while, sadly, I couldn’t even sit on my own back porch anymore.

So I took down the bird feeder and in three days, the birds were gone.

I cleaned up their mess and took down the many nests they had built all over the patio.

Soon, the back yard was like it used to be …quiet, serene…and no one demanding their rights to a free meal.

The analogy?

Well, let’s see…our government gives out free food, subsidized housing, free medical care, free education, and allows anyone born here to be an automatic citizen.  Programs apparently so important to some running our government, that they hide them or piggy-back them on the shoulders of other programs that are paramount to our country’s health and well-being, so that we, the voters, don’t know about them and don’t have a say in their passing.

Illegals (notice I said “ILLEGALS”) came by the tens of thousands.

Suddenly our taxes went up to pay for free services; small apartments are housing 5 families; you have to wait 6 hours to be seen by an emergency room doctor; your child’s second grade class is behind other schools because over half the class doesn’t speak English.  

Corn Flakes now come in a bilingual box; I have to ‘press one ‘ to hear my bank talk to me in English, and people waving flags other than “ours” are squawking and screaming in the streets, demanding more rights and free liberties.

As I said…just my opinion…but maybe it’s time for the government to take down the bird feeder.

If you agree, speak up.  Help make it less necessary for the government to step in by stepping in yourself.  Donate to your local food banks, volunteer in your communities, donate your time or money helping the homeless, vote to reform immigration, or write your congressmen to stop ignoring the illegal immigration problem by making it less attractive to be illegal.

If not, just continue cleaning up the poop!


A personal note:

I am a huge proponent of immigration.

Just as, I am as huge an opponent of illegal immigration being ignored or treated as though it’s a legitimate path to citizenship based on the number of years you’ve been here (illegally)!

We, like every country in the world, have immigration laws.

We, UNLIKE every country in the world, have forgotten to enforce our immigration laws.

Instead, we make excuses and allowances for those who break the law, for as long as these choices promote one political ideology as humane and the other as intolerant, it will remain so.

I am Pro-America!

That fact alone seems to paint me as racist, bigoted, and anti-immigration.

I am none of those things.

I am Pro-Immigration!

If you want to come here to live in freedom, then do it LEGALLY and I’ll welcome you with open arms!

I am Pro-I don’t give two shits where you came from, but you’re in America now, so be a proud American!

Not African-American, Asian-American, Mexican-American, Russian-American, Somali-American…you are American of “African, Asian, Mexican, Russian, Somalian…” decent.  Like all of us.  EVERY ONE of us came from somewhere…what we now have in common is being American!

I am Pro-Keep your culture as long as you understand you are adding to America’s, not removing ours to make room for yours.

Add to our Land of the Free and Home of the Brave instead of trying to remake us into your Land of the Oppressed and Home of the Voiceless.

You came here.

I did not go there

You want to re-create your culture here at the expense of MINE by believing I must accept YOURS while you do not have to ACCEPT mine?

Why did you come here?

You want to live and breathe the country and culture you left behind, without embracing the one that took you in?

Why did you come here?

Many say Americans are arrogant and full of themselves.

Maybe we are, but how many Americans would you suppose, relocate or repatriate to other countries and make it their MISSION to change that culture to one that mirrors what they left behind?

The beauty of an immigrant rich society is what is added to our melting pot, not what is taken out.

 

Just Stay

A nurse took the tired, anxious serviceman to the bedside.

“Your son is here,” she said to the old man.

She had to repeat the words several times before the patient’s eyes
opened.

Heavily sedated because of the pain of his heart attack, he dimly saw
the young uniformed Marine standing outside the oxygen tent.  He reached
out his hand.  The Marine wrapped his toughened fingers around the old
man’s limp ones, squeezing a message of love and encouragement.

The nurse brought a chair so that the Marine could sit beside the
bed.  All through the night the young Marine sat there in the poorly
lighted ward, holding the old man’s hand and offering him words of love
and strength.  Occasionally, the nurse suggested that the Marine move
away and rest awhile.

He refused.  Whenever the nurse came into the ward, the Marine was
oblivious of her and of the night noises of the hospital – the clanking
of the oxygen tank, the laughter of the night staff members exchanging
greetings, the cries and moans of the other patients.
Now and then she heard him say a few gentle words.  The dying man said
nothing, only held tightly to his son all through the night.

Along towards dawn, the old man died.  The Marine released the now
lifeless hand he had been holding and went to tell the nurse.  While she
did what she had to do, he waited.

Finally, she returned.  She started to offer words of sympathy, but
the Marine interrupted her.

“Who was that man?” he asked.

The nurse was startled, “He was your father,” she answered.

“No, he wasn’t,” the Marine replied. “I never saw him before in my
life.”

“Then why didn’t you say something when I took you to him?”

“I knew right away there had been a mistake, but I also knew he needed his son, and his
son just wasn’t here.

When I realized that he was too sick to tell whether or not I was his
son, knowing how much he needed me, I stayed.”
I came here tonight to find a Mr. William Grey.
His son was Killed in Iraq today, and I was sent to inform him.  What
was this Gentleman’s Name?

The Nurse with tears in
her eyes answered,

Mr. William Grey

 


The next time someone needs you … just be there.

Just Stay.

**************

WE ARE NOT HUMAN BEINGS GOING THROUGH A TEMPORARY SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCE.

WE ARE SPIRITUAL BEINGS GOING THROUGH A TEMPORARY HUMAN EXPERIENCE.


Author unknown, but I’m thankful to the one who sent it my way.

Good Analogy or Same Ol’ Shit Politics? YOU answer that for yourselves

For me, I think the commentary below is a damned good analogy for Obama-care…aka The Affordable Care Act.

Yeah me, the ‘so-called’ middle class…the one who is now paying more than twice the cost for less than half the coverage.

The one who can no longer afford to go to the doctor, even though I have insurance, because the deductible is a joke.

No…worse…the deductible is half a year’s living expenses.

Political?

I wish it were that easy.

Reality?

You betcha.

I am one of those who has insurance, but will never reap the benefit of the (50% greater) amount taken from the paycheck for the simple fact that, the (4x greater) deductible is more than we could ever afford to pay on top of the premiums.

Therefore, for all (his) intents and (his) purposes…we consider ourselves one of the “Insured WITHOUT the state and federal benefits of the uninsured”

Yes, this is the reality.  If you are part of the subsidized health exchange system…good for you.

If you are not…like me…then this is our reality.

Does this mean I’m anti-poor or anti-needy?  HELL NO!

Does this mean because I work and you don’t, I am responsible for taking care of YOU before I can take care of me and my own?  NO

Does this mean I think I deserve decent, affordable health coverage because that’s what I pay for?  YES

Do I think there is a better way to achieve this than Obama-care?  YES

Why?

Because more than 50% of what my household makes ALREADY goes to the government.

When is it enough?

When is it going to be okay to think YOU take care of YOU and YOURS and I take care of ME and MINE is the way it should be, if at all possible?

Charity begins at home.  Right?

Charity comes from the heart.  Right?

Charity is NOT a mandatory tax.  Right?

Since when did the government become a charity?

I give what I can when I can, which is often.

I have never passed another human being in need, without offering a helping hand.

When did that cease to be ‘charitable’?

The future Analogy of which I speak (and please, this is not a personal attack on the Prez…just his policy) is outlined below:

Affordable Plumbing Act

Only weeks after leaving office on Jan. 20, 2017, former President Barack Obama discovers a leak under his sink, so he calls Troy the Plumber to come out and fix it.

Troy drives to Obama’s new house, which is located in a very exclusive, gated community near Chicago where all the residents have a net income of way more than $250,000 per year.

Troy arrives and takes his tools into the house. He is led to the guest bathroom that contains the leaky pipe under the sink. Troy assesses the problem and tells Obama that it’s an easy repair that will take less than 10 minutes. Obama asks Troy how much it will cost. Troy checks his rate chart and says, “$9,500.”

“What?! $9,500?!” Obama asks, stunned, “But you said it’s an easy repair. Michelle will whip me if I pay a plumber that much!”

Troy says, “Yes, but what I do is charge those who make more than $250,000 per year a much higher amount so I can fix the plumbing of poorer people for free. This has always been my philosophy. As a matter of fact, I lobbied the Democrat Congress, who passed this philosophy into law. Now all plumbers must do business this way. It’s known as the ‘Affordable Plumbing Act of 2014′. I’m surprised you haven’t heard of it.”

In spite of that, Obama tells Troy there’s no way he’s paying that much for a small plumbing repair, so Troy leaves. Obama spends the next hour flipping through the phone book calling for another plumber, but he finds that all other plumbing businesses in the area have gone out of business. Not wanting to pay Troy’s price, Obama does nothing and the leak goes un-repaired for several more days. A week later the leak is so bad Obama has had to put a bucket under the sink.

Michelle is not happy as she has Oprah and guests arriving the next morning. The bucket fills up quickly and has to be emptied every hour, and there’s a risk the room will flood, so Obama calls Troy and pleads with him to return.

Troy goes back to Obama’s house, looks at the leaky pipe, checks his new rate chart and says, “Let’s see, this will now cost you $21,000.”

Obama quickly fires back, “What? A few days ago you told me it would cost $9,500!”

Troy explains, “Well, because of the ‘Affordable Plumbing Act,’ a lot of wealthier people are learning how to maintain and take care of their own plumbing, so there are fewer payers in the plumbing exchanges. As a result, the price I have to charge wealthy people like you keeps rising. Not only that, but for some reason the demand for plumbing work by those who get it for free has skyrocketed! There’s a long waiting list of those who need repairs, but the amount we get doesn’t cover our costs, especially paperwork and record-keeping. This unfortunately has put a lot of my fellow plumbers out of business, they’re not being replaced, and nobody is going into the plumbing business because they know they can’t make any money at it. I’m hurting too, all thanks to greedy rich people like you who won’t pay their ‘fair share’. On the other hand, why didn’t you buy plumbing insurance last December? If you had bought plumbing insurance available under the ‘Affordable Plumbing Act,’ all this would have been covered by your policy.”

“You mean I wouldn’t have to pay anything to have you fix my plumbing problem?” asks Obama.

“Well, not exactly,” replies Troy. “You would have had to buy the insurance before the deadline, which has passed now. And, because you’re rich, you would have had to pay $34,000 in premiums, which would have given you a ‘silver’ plan, and then, since this would have been your first repair, you would have to pay up to the $21,000 deductible, and anything over that would have a $7,500 co-pay, and then there’s the mandatory maintenance program, which is covered up to 17.5%, so there are some costs involved. Nothing is for free.”

“WHAT?!” exclaims Obama. “Why so much for a puny sink leak?!”

With a bland look, Troy replies, “Well, paperwork, mostly, like I said. And the internal cost of the program itself. You don’t think a program of this complexity and scope can run itself, do you? Besides, there are millions of folks with lower incomes than you, even many in the ‘middle class’, who qualify for subsidies that people like you must support. That’s why they call it the ‘Affordable Plumbing Act’! Only people who don’t make much money can afford it. If you want affordable plumbing, you’ll have to give away most of what you have accumulated and cut your and Michelle’s income by about 90%. Then you can qualify to get your ‘Fair Share’ instead of giving it.”

“But who would pass a crazy act like the ‘Affordable Plumbing Act’?!” exclaims the exasperated Obama.

After a sigh, Troy replies, “Congress… because they didn’t read it.”

HooK LiNe and SinKer

Though I know spring is right around the corner, and I look forward to the rebirth of nature’s bounty and for some of you, the births of new little ones who’ll soon be pitter-pattering on your hearts can’t come soon enough…I just can’t help but bitch about this particular time change; and never more this year than any other.

I don’t know what it is.

It’s not the extra daylight surely.  Who doesn’t like the normalcy of waking up in the light and going to sleep when it’s dark?

It’s not the rain because I’ve never minded a good ol’ rainy day.  I love them actually.

Who wouldn’t, knowing this beauty below, from a year ago, is drinking it up so it can make another grand entrance?

IMG_0872

That said though, It just feels, to me, that the spring daylight savings robs more of the day than it gives.

When I wake in the morning, it feels too late.

When I retire at night, it feels too early.

When I think about lunch, it’s too close to dinner.

When I think about dinner, it’s too soon after lunch.

Feeling this way, you’d think the fall time change would make me feel the opposite…

Up too early; to bed too late; starving by lunch; when the hell is dinner.

Right?

But no…I feel none of that.  And frankly, I don’t remember the spring change feeling this intense before either.

I keep asking myself “What the hell is it this year that makes me feel so irritable about it all?”

And then it hits me.  Or at least, I think it does.

Along with all I do look forward to in the spring, now, there are things I know I’ll never see or do or feel again.

At least, not in the same way.

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I’ll never see the joy on his face when the ice has retreated enough for us to take poles in hand and put lines to water, hoping for enough perch for dinner or, at the very least, stories grand enough for everyone to swallow…

HooK Line and SinKer

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We’ll never walk the rocky path through the woods, looking for that one spot that offers the perfect balance of flat rock and clear air, to sit and cast a line (not to mention a hearty tree truck to hide behind for those necessary times).

Or a high, flat bank, on which to perch a chair to jerk a perch.

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I’ll never feel the strong surety of his hands as he takes the ‘big’ one off my line because I jumped and didn’t jerk, so that fish swallowed it all…

HooK Line and SinKer

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I’ll never see him begin another spring outing as the 5’7″ man he was, only to end the day coming in at a cool, 5’11” from the mud cake that grew on the bottom of his shoes; full of those anticipated tall tales about big fish, that we willingly swallowed…

HooK Line and SinKer

caked mud

I know the memories of these times are what are important.

I know too, that when the fall arrives, there will be even more that will make me miss him the most.

The scores of memories of him saying “Let’s take this road, there’s a great barn you need to see!”

Those are the ones that will make me weep first and smile later.

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Those times, though as forever behind me as they are in the rear-view above, will always be the happiest times we ever shared.

But I know too, and will remember well, that when next the boys lower the boat to kiss the Clyde one misty morning, he will be there.

He’s probably there now…waiting…for the ice to break, the fish to come up for air, and us kids to show up with all we need, to keep the traditions going and the memories fresh.

He’ll be there.

And we’ll be there.

Ready to take it all…

HooK  Line  and  SinKer.

the clyde

WHO KNEW?

A customer asked, “In what aisle can I find the Polish sausage?”
The clerk asks, “Are you Polish?”
The guy , clearly offended, says, “Yes I am. But let me ask you something.
If I had asked for Italian sausage, would you ask me if I was Italian?
Or if I had asked for German Bratwurst, would you ask me if I was German?
Or if I asked for a kosher hot dog would you ask me if I was Jewish?
Or if I had asked for a Taco, would you ask if I was Mexican?
Or if I asked for some Irish whiskey, would you ask if I was Irish?”
The clerk says, “No, I probably wouldn’t.”
The guy says, “Well then, because I asked for Polish sausage, why did you ask me if I’m Polish?”
The clerk replied, “Because you’re in Home Depot.”
:oops:
HomeBanner3

yabba-D.A.B.D.A.-doo the numbers

The five stages of grief

1.  Denial

2.  Anger

3.  Bargaining

4.  Depression

5.  Acceptance


1

There has been no denial…

…there was no doubt death was coming

2

There has been anger…

…but it’s an exhausting emotion

3

There was a little bargaining…

…too close to self-blaming to be tolerated for long

4

There is depression…

…that ‘happy memory’ thief that sneaks into your heart in the dark

5

There will be acceptance…

…a state of being both wanted and feared at the same time


Remembering the good times, the happy times, is not hard
there are so very many of them

Remembering I am not alone is not easy
until I hear the sadness in the voice on the other end of the phone

Remembering he is gone takes the joy out of the day
until I remember too, how much of him is left within me

Forgetting that he lived and loved and was loved in return is not an option
especially when remembering his legacy to all of us was 

Live like it’s your last day
Love like it’s your last chance
Regret Nothing

Roy E George


The Epilogue

The service is done

The tears shed

Ashes placed

His final bed

Pride in my family

Not the least of which, Mom

Who honored my father

With dignified Calm

Standing Room Only

His life well represented

Laughter the keystone

Not a life being lamented

Notes to be written

Soups to be made

We dreaded the after

But we’re no longer afraid

Of the space that is empty

His body departed

‘Cause his spirit is present

We are each lighter hearted

Remember my laughter

Remember my smile…

Remember my loving

Remember my style

I’ll forever be with you

To navigate the way

As you journey forward

I will help lead the way

You’ll never be alone

Nor should you feel sorrow

I’m forever in today

As I’ll always be tomorrow

Okay Dad…we’ll remember

The Eye of the Human Storm – Repost

As you know, Superman passed away Sunday, February 15.  I am re-posting what I wrote for him back in July because, though I thought I understood the emotions of what was looming…I couldn’t have known how I’d feel at this moment.

But, this comes as close to my feelings now as anything I’ve ever written about my father.  About how it was more about how we live than how, or when, we die.

I love this man even more for leaving me with a deeper appreciation of the life he lived, than fear for the sorrow at the loss of his life.

I love you Superman and I thank you with all my heart.

You truly were…

My First Love ♥ My Only Hero


Today’s forecast
Pain with a chance of happiness
Life – It hurts
Our first breath
Born in and out of Pain
Our last breath
Born in and out of the fear of Death
Beginning to end
The human struggle to keep moving
Beyond the current pain so we may endure the next
To begin again
The circle, the cycle of life, of pain
To reach our destination – Death
So what is the point?
When one ends where one begins?
What is the point?
The middle is the point
To feel the heart beat
Of a lover
To hear the laughter
Of a child
To know the touch of another
The touch that completes our circle
Ones who will rejoice with us
And for us
And those who will mourn us
But more – Remember
That we were here
That we mattered
That we made the difference
That we closed a part of their circle
As they too, closed a part of ours
To gather at the end of the day
To hear the sounds of silence
The human sounds we make without knowing
The sounds of love
And life
The middle
Those sounds our ears miss
But that our hearts hear
These are the sounds of silence
So loud we are compelled – T0 listen
Struggle to keep moving
From one pain to another
For in the end It is not the pain
We Remember – It is
Love
Our circles have no true beginning
They meld with our ending
We only have what is in
The middle
Today’s forecast
Pain with a chance of happiness
Take an umbrella if you must
Wear your raincoat and galoshes if you have to
But
Prepare more for getting swept into the middle
‘Cause that’s where life happens
In the middle
Never be afraid to get wet
Put the fear aside
Go beyond the tropical storm of prologue
Fear not the hurricane of the epilogue
Walk into the wind
Get pummeled by the rain
Get to the eye
The middle
Where the calm allows us to hear
The human sounds of silence

The sounds of Love

For My Father

My First Love ~ My Only Hero

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Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep

Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there. I did not die.

by Mary Elizabeth Frye

For my father, who is all things. You are here and not there.
In the simple things I love so much…thanks to you.

(But hey…do you think you could tone down the northeast wind a knot or two? And while you’re at it, this shiny diamond, snowy goodness thing you got going on is pretty and all…but could you ratchet back the swirling white stuff too…it is freaking CoLd!)

I love you Dad

Always and Forever

Simon (& Garfunkle) Says

A stanza from The Boxer keeps running through my head…

In the clearing stands a boxer,
And a fighter by his trade
And he carries the reminders
Of ev’ry glove that laid him down
Or cut him till he cried out
In his anger and his shame,
“I am leaving, I am leaving”
But the fighter still remains

Yes. Yes he does.

And this naturally, takes me to The Sounds of Silence…

Hello darkness, my old friend
I’ve come to talk with you again
Because a vision softly creeping
Left its seeds while I was sleeping
And the vision that was planted
In my brain still remains
Within the sound of silence

In restless dreams I walked alone
Narrow streets of cobblestone
‘Neath the halo of a street lamp
I turned my collar to the cold and damp
When my eyes were stabbed by the flash of
A neon light that split the night
And touched the sound of silence

And in the naked light I saw
Ten thousand people, maybe more
People talking without speaking
People hearing without listening
People writing songs that voices never share and no one dared
Disturb the sound of silence

Fools said I, you do not know
Silence like a cancer grows
Hear my words that I might teach you
Take my arms that I might reach you
But my words like silent raindrops fell
And echoed in the wells of silence

And the people bowed and prayed
To the neon God they made
And the sign flashed out its warning
In the words that it was forming
And the signs said, ‘The words of the prophets
Are written on the subway walls and tenement halls’
And whispered in the sounds of silence

And, in my own mind, I live in Kathy’s song…

I hear the drizzle of the rain
Like a memory it falls
Soft and warm continuing
Tapping on my roof and walls

And from the shelter of my mind
Through the window of my eyes
I gaze beyond the rain drenched streets
To [New]England where my heart lies

My mind’s distracted and diffused
My thoughts are many miles away
They lie with you when you’re asleep
Kiss you when you start your day

And as I watch the drops of rain
Weave their weary paths and die
I know that I am like the rain
There before the grace of you , go I

Forever Superman ♥ Superman Forever

It is quiet
not peaceful
Just quiet

Morphine sleep
not restful
Induced sleep

Vigil in the darkness
not comforting
Dreading the silent darkness

Feels lonely
not alone
Just lonely

It is almost time
not today
We need more time

We are afraid
not spoken
But we are afraid

“Am I dying?”
not today
He is dying

Must be strong
not forever
For him I will be strong

I will break
not out loud
After, I will break

Superman
will Always be
Superman

superman_vs_batman_38672

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The Ear Infection

My posts have been rather heavy of late (my Mother said I had a toilet mouth!) so I think it’s time to lighten things up.  Let’s see…one sec while I rummage through my email funny file.  Ah Ha!  Got one I think you might like and though I have to resort to using my toilet mouth a time or two…it’s gotta be real.  Ya know?


Okay…here we go:

The Ear Infection

They always ask at the doctor’s office why you are there, and you have to answer in front of others what is wrong and sometimes it is embarrassing. There is nothing worse than a Doctor’s Receptionist who insists you tell her what is wrong with you in a room full of other patients.  I know most of us have experienced this, and I love the way this old guy handled it…
A 65-year-old man walked into a crowded waiting room and approached the desk.
The Receptionist said, ‘Yes sir, what are you seeing the Doctor for today?’
‘There’s something wrong with my **penis**’, he replied.
The receptionist became irritated and said, ‘You shouldn’t come into a crowded waiting room and say things like that. ‘
‘Why not, you asked me what was wrong and I told you,’ he said.
The Receptionist replied; ‘Now you’ve caused some embarrassment in this room full of people. You should have said there is something wrong with your ear or something and discussed the problem further with the Doctor in private.’
The man replied, ‘You shouldn’t ask people questions in a roomful of strangers, if the answer could embarrass anyone.’
The man walked out, waited several minutes, and then re-entered.
The Receptionist smiled smugly and asked, ‘Yes??’
‘There’s something wrong with my ear,’ he stated.
The Receptionist nodded approvingly and smiled, knowing he had taken her advice…
‘And what is wrong with your ear, Sir?’
‘I can’t piss out of it,’ he replied.
:oops:
The waiting room erupted in laughter…
 Mess with seniors, and you’re going to lose.

Any Other Questions??

 

How to Train Your Weatherman

I walked to the window

Looking for rain

Only to find there was none

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So what did I see

Instead, on the ground and the trees

But three inches of white, and then some

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It heartens me though

To I know what I know

Which is, the government is not the only

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High paying gig

Where none give a fig

If they get it right, they’re just phonies

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Weathermen, you see

Could squirt shit when they sneeze

Then turn ’round and call it baloney

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So, like with our po-li-ti-cos

That’s just how it goes

They feed us baloney shit sammies

IMG_2075

 But next time, I think

When that breeze starts to stink

I’ll send a pic of a dick being slammied!

you would not! would you?

 Today’s forecast:  Squashed Dick, and Tortured Balls
Tonight’s forecast: Periods of Pain and Nausea

Tomorrow’s forecast:  Well now, that depends.  Doesn’t it?

I Was a Toddler-age Tosspot

Yes, I confess.
By the time I was 3, I was hooked on the ol’ brew.
(And, apparently, I passed that on to my eldest. Though, I preferred a bottle)
Observez Vous…

Gee, thanks Mom!

Gee, thanks Mom!

Actually, I was more hooked on Dad…I was his toddlin’ sidekick in mighty whitey tights!  Anything he did, I wanted to do. Anywhere he was, I wanted to be.  Not so unusual for little girls to consider their Dads their first love and first superhero.

Always ready to catch me

Always ready to catch me

Book Two 37 (2)Book Two 75Roy, Grands, Rhonda (2)

 

 

There again too…I guess boys are of the same mind.  Like father like sons?
You betcha!
Good VT Stock

 

 

 

 

oldies 11 - Copy (2) - Copyoldies 11 - Copyoldies 11 - Copy (2)

 

 

 

 


This is how the story goes…

Once upon a time, in a little town far, far away, there was a little girl who lived with her father, mother, and 3 brothers. That’s her below…the twinklin’ toddler in her mighty whities…
rhondaThe budding housewifeMother got to my hair again

Her father was a hard-working man; working 2, sometimes 3 jobs to make ends meet.  And her Mother was not your ‘typical for the times’ housewife either.

Isn't she pretty?

Isn’t she pretty?

Because, busy as she was, having had 4 kids in 5 years, she still held a full-time job outside the home.

But, this was also a time when families lived close together, daycare centers were non-existent, and family was relied upon to pitch in where they could. (Glad it was you, Gram)

Now, seeing as these were hard-working folk, what little free time there was, was catch-up time, family time, friends time. Picnic parties, horseshoes, reunions, celebrations…but all the time, busy!
Picnic at PartlowsBook Four 12Island Pondroy and chickie 35th cake

But…let’s not forget the biggie…working on cars in the yard.

That all-american male’s favorite pastime.  Grease-monkeyin’ in the driveway.
b10Working-Old-Car-onworking-on-car
Am I right?

So anyway, this is how a toddlin’ sidekick to her Daddy’s Superman, gets her tights in a twist…

A typical weekend afternoon, circa 1963…

The boys tinkerin’ in the driveway with the women folk fixin’ victuals and watchin’ babies inside.
A regular tune ‘er up, tink’er up, smoke’em up, drink’em up, Sa’day afternoon.
Rev her up..sounds good!
Close her up…hit the dirt for a test run.
No need for cleanin’up, we’re comin’ right back.

Ya with me?  Good.

To continue…

The boys are gone.
The women are inside with (8 of the usual 9) the kids.
One smarty pants little toddler decided she missed her Daddy and went outside looking for him.
She calls for him.
No answer.
She can’t see him.
But wait…there…in the driveway.
“What’s that?” she wonders in her terrible-three tiny little brain.
“Can it be?” she asks herself
“Why, I think it’s a Daddy bottle and ooooooh, he left it for me!” silently gigglin in delight she was
“I love a good Daddy bottle. It’s so much more yummy than my ucky ol’ boring one.” she hmmphs at the thought.
She looks around.
No one.
She listens keenly for any sound that would suggest Mommy was coming to take her Daddy bottle away.
Nothing.
“Yay” she thinks as she’s already on the move, toddlin’ toward that dark brown delight she knows is filled with liquid gold.
She stretches those short and chubbies just far enough to grab the neck of that father-forgotten treasure, tips it to her lips like the bottle pro she is…and chug-a-lugs.

That was the last thing I remember prior to waking up in the hospital God knows how much time later.

You see, the brew I knew and thought of as Dad’s liquid gold, was what I now call, liquid fire.

As was the custom then…and I’ve seen it again and again in the years since…these man-boys would use beer bottles as containers for gasoline when working on their carburetors. They were always plentiful, usually empty, so why buy a gas can when a beer bottle will do?

Exactly! Logic boys….logic!

The madness that followed can quite easily be imagined…and remember, this was an itsy bitsy town.
I don’t remember much of the ensuing chaos…but have heard the details often.

The boys returned to find my Mother holding me in a panic.
No other vehicle.
No hospital nor ambulance within 8 miles and 13 minutes (rural roads ya know).
And a non-breathing child turning colors no human should be.
Parents and me in the car.
Dad driving hell-bent for leather, Mom holding me.
My head out the window like a dog.
I do remember being told NOT to throw up.
I do remember having zero conscious thoughts at this time.
Arrive at the hospital alive, though I was told I didn’t take a single breath, as well as my Mother being told that it’s a miracle I didn’t vomit, for that would have been the end of my life as I knew it.
I do remember too, waking in a crib-bed with a top (?), like a cage, feeling trapped.
But, when I could, I remember looking out the window and seeing my Memere’s house and it made me feel better.


 Now, all of us that are parents, know this irrefutable fact:

You CANNOT turn you back on a toddler
EVER.
Even for a second.
Because one second is one second TOO LONG!


But…I think we can all agree…it happens.

Shit happens!

beer cap

This Bud’s for Anyone but ME!

The joy of discovering the cure for MINIpause…

When we last spoke about Mini Me’s Misadventurous adventure…the Misogynistic Mini Mechanics had replaced her engine and assorted internal organs, but left her night-blind in one eye because I wouldn’t pay them $79 bucks to change her bulb.

That aside, Mini and I had a bit of a Me to Mini convo, where I told her I was taking her into a Mini-Mechanic Free Zone so she better be on her best behavior.

If not…I was abosofrigginlutely ready to take her into the woods and introduce her Bonnet to her Boot, if you catch my drift.

She apparently didn’t want her face to meet her arse because we made it home in one piece and in time for supper.

That was Saturday.

Do you know where she was on Tuesday?

Yup.

Back in the shop.

It seems, the poor dear was low on oxygen and needed a new sensor.
(O2 Sensor…get it?)

Anyway…

$405 bucks later, she was breathing freely again, which is good, cause I had a special day planned for that Mini-bitch.

You’ll remember the little convo she and I had before we left the dealership?

Well…

SAYONARA SISTER!

So, it is now official…I’ve had my last Mini-break

I. Am. Now…

Post-MINI-pausal!


 

I’d like to introduce you to my new friend…

Su.Be.Du…Sue for short

This gal has stars in her eyes

 

Let’s see how we get along…’cause I’ve already warned her…

I know a place in the woods…
;)

Forgive me Father…For I’m Gonna Piss Someone Off (I Just Know It)

I am compelled to say this because, having walked away from the morning news about this…I had such a bad taste in my mouth, I had to rinse.

And as you know, this is where I do it.

You are my Mouthwash. :)

So, here goes…

I’m surprised that by now, that FB isn’t all a-Twitter, about the newest black/white scandal

It appears, this year, the members of the Academy of Motion Pictures, has neglected to nominate even one black thespian. I know right?

Annnnnnd, not even one black director! What next I ask.

Wait…there’s more…not one single woman director was nominated either…even though (as has been suggested) everyone knows Ava DuVernay, the black, female, director of Selma should have been a shoe in.

There even seems to be some lamenting the fact that she could have been the first African American Female Director to get an OSCAR.

Well guess what? SHE. STILL. CAN!
As there were NO OTHER black female directors nominated, she’s still got a shot at that title.

True?

Now, I don’t mean to sound sarcastic, but if I do it’s because I am.
[A bit of a sarcastic statement there.]

I just cannot believe that EVERYTHING and EVERYONE, even the OSCARS with 6,000 members of the Motion Picture Academy, have to walk, talk, and apparently vote, on eggshells where black and white are concerned.

Okay…should there have been black actors and directors, as well as female directors nominated?
Maybe.
Could be.
But…it’s all subjective isn’t it?
To each his own?
Vote for who and what you believe to be the best?

Are we now going to institute a quota system…the Oscar version of Affirmative Action?

If so, what shall we call these special awards?
Awards given to someone because they represent a minority?
What shall we call these unearned, yet apparently deserved, awards to celebrate diversity over and above all else?

We cannot use OSCAR…that’s taken.

How about a MARTIN for the men?
(Seems fitting to name it after MLK doesn’t it?)

How about a SELMA for the browner women actresses and directors?
(Browner is NOT my term by the way…I borrowed it from a self-proclaimed brown commentator on CBS as she was telling the viewing audience that America was getting browner, so we need to be more open to accepting it)

And maybe NORMA RAE for those of a different or lighter hue?

Do you see how ludicrous this all is?

Do you see how ridiculous a face to face conversation containing ANY of the above would be incredibly demeaning on its face?

Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe I’m just being naïve thinking that the folks voting for these awards are voting their preferences and not looking to maintain some kind of white status quo.

I don’t know anymore.

What I DO know is, it frustrates me to think that any, and I mean ANY, professional would welcome accolades based on the color of their skin or whether the bump’s in the pants or the t-shirt.

The views expressed here are my own and reflect completely and honestly what I believe.

I think we are ALL DESERVING of everything we deserve.

But I also know we don’t always GET what we deserve.

That’s life.

And that’s it.