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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.

 

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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.”

the clyde

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?

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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…

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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:
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