Category Archives: Just Stuff

Suggested Reading: U.S. Soldier Afghan Rampage Tears at Our National Soul Says Former Marine

The following linked article was written by former Marine, Benjamin Busch. It reminds us of something we may not want to be reminded of, just how detached the average American has become from the realities of war. Today’s wars are no longer fought by draftees and volunteers for purely patriotic purposes. They are fought by full-time professional “war fighters” leaving the rest of us go about our lives giving little thought to war’s consequences.

Click HERE to read Busch’s article.

Does Your Husband Want Metric?

In re-reading the article “CAVEAT EMPTOR” I thought about how often women–and especially OLD women–are victims of unscrupulous dealers.

In the old days, when buying cars, furniture and appliances, nearly all the sales staffs were male and I would always ask to have a saleswoman, which usually resulted in being told there weren’t any saleswomen. I knew that there were plenty of capable women who could sell cars, furniture, and appliances, but those were COMMISSION SALES jobs so men usually had them, while women were assigned to non-commission sales. I was very pleased when I saw that a local car saleswoman was ranked Number One, but unfortunately, it is not a car dealership we would use.

I wouldn’t consider making a car purchase without the guidance of my husband or Continue reading Does Your Husband Want Metric?

A Puzzle from Our Past

Thinking back to my childhood, I remember having a “15 Puzzle” and loved to play it in my spare time. It was small, could be carried in a pocket or purse, and was addictive.

Recently, I was going through a stack of old catalogs to throw away and found a 15 Puzzle for sale, but expensive. In the old days, the puzzles were made of little wood pieces. The one in the catalog was a metal holder with plastic pieces.

The puzzle was “invented” by Noyes Palmer Chapman, a postmaster in Canastota, NY, who is said to have shown friends, as early as 1874, a precursor puzzle consisting of 16 numbered blocks that were to be put together in rows of four, each summing to 34. Copies Continue reading A Puzzle from Our Past

Pork, Mustard Greens, Sweet Corn & Black Eyed Peas

Haven’t posted a recipe in a while so here’s one I made up the other evening. Placed three Western cut pork ribs in a crock pot with a jar of something called Greek Cooking Sauce, some added water, and a handful of chunked up peppers from last summer’s garden. Let that cook on high until the meat was tender (about 4 hours) and then added a can of mustard greens, a can of sweet corn, and a can of black-eyed peas.

After an hour we served it up in bowls as a soup. It was one of those very easy and very inexpensive dishes that the more you ate the more you wanted. If you don’t have Greek Cooking Sauce toss in a can of mushroom soup or something. Use your imagination and take a risk.

By the way, I really like Sylvia’s and Glory brand canned veggies and if you keep your eye out you’ll find them on sale at places like the Dollar Store.

Three Dead in O-hi-o but Virginia Didn’t Hear the Bang

I doubt anyone is keeping score but just in case, you can add three more to the total of needless, senseless, shootings that have taken place on this nation’s school campuses. At the same time kids are shooting kids with easily acquired firearms, the NRA continues to rant about Obama taking our weapons away and the 2nd Amendment being under assault. Also, as Ohioans are burying our dead and wiping our tears the state of Virginia, no stranger to campus violence, in the same week decided to repeal its ban on buying more than one handgun a month. Guns, like fundamental religious ideology, cannot be rationally discussed because so many of those who are gun minded are not open to reason, ration, or compromise. They have plastered their bumpers with carved in stone slogans and display Continue reading Three Dead in O-hi-o but Virginia Didn’t Hear the Bang

Lux Aeterna

Writing recently about the movie “Diner” being considered the most influential movie of the past thirty years, I was struck by how influential movies are in our lives. I read once that before the advent of movies, people kissed with their eyes OPEN! When the kissing scene was on the screen the actors had their eyes open and the audience, in the silent-movie theater, were tittering. When the actors began CLOSING their eyes, the audiences did not laugh.

I had never read a Stephen King book before I saw “The Shawshank Redemption”; I haven’t read one since! I read James Dickey’s book “Deliverance” ONLY after seeing the movie. I read Harold Robbins roman a clef “A Stone For Danny Fisher” after learning that Elvis’ movie “King Creole” was based on that book; about the only thing similar in the movie was the name Danny Fisher! Continue reading Lux Aeterna

Margaret and Helen

Norman Anderson introduced me to this blog over a year ago and it’s time I made you all aware of it. It’s written by a lady named Helen Philpot and I think it is consistently excellent political satire. Of course, if you were born with a weakened sense of humor and irony you probably won’t like it. I’ve also added a link to the Recommended Blogs sidebar. Hope you have a good time with these two old gals. Click HERE. You can also follow Helen on Twitter @helenphilpot.

Little Dental Office of Horror

Ever see the movie Little Shop of Horrors? If so, just how close did Steve Martin’s portrayal of a dentist come to describing your first visit to Dr. Tooth? No disrespect for my first dentist, he was just a product of his time, but he may have been the basis for Martin’s character. There also may have been a sign outside my first dentist’s office saying Little Office of Horrors.

I had a toothache and my mother told me to stop by Dr. Horrors’ office after school and have him take a look at it. The office was a very sterile and stark room, poorly lighted, a receptionists desk but no receptionist, a few hard wood chairs, and only a portable divider separating the front office from the doctor’s chamber of miseries. Continue reading Little Dental Office of Horror

Cops & Donuts – Ying & Yang

One of the truths we all know about life is that cops love donuts. The bond between the two is so strong it has, over the years, become the topic of countless jokes.

Know how you can tell when a cop has been on the job too long? He’s often seen on the streets exchanging donut recipes with complete strangers.

The connection between cops and donuts has a simple explanation. Bakers bake at night, cops patrol at night, and boogie men come out at night. Invite a patrol officer in for a cup of coffee, a sweet morsel, and you get a little free protection from the dangers of the night. Same thing worked for me when I worked in an all-night gasoline station while in college. Keep a fresh pot of hot coffee on and you’d get frequent local policemen and highway patrolmen stopping by to check how you’re doing in exchange for something to ward of the night’s chill. A win-win if ever!

Sometime however, you just gotta wonder if maybe there is something in the DNA of cops that attracts them to donut shops. On Facebook recently Continue reading Cops & Donuts – Ying & Yang

Let There Be a Sign of Hope!

During every winter there is a day I most dream of. The day when I turn on my radio or TV and hear a news reporter say, “The (insert name of major league baseball team) players are reporting for spring training today in (insert name of Florida city).” I then know it won’t be long before the winter wheat begins to green up, the day lily’s leaves begin to push their noises out of the cold soil, the crocuses will soon croak, and I can begin thinking about getting back into my cargo shorts and t-shirts. These are all signs of hope!

Who Said You Can’t Buy a Good 99¢ Story Today?

I’ve recently became a big fan of comedian and writer Andy Borowitz and yesterday received a tweet from him promoting his new 99¢ Kindle short story titled, An Unexpected Twist. While I won’t give it up I will say the subject concerns a life threatening event for him and, while not as serious, one I’ve had some personal experience with. Basically I got two bangs for my less than a buck; one being affirmed that threatening situations frequently alter one’s outlook on life in a positive way. And secondly, something I also learned from my father, that even in the worst of times there is humor to be found and humor can help you win the day.

You may purchase and download Andy’s story at Amazon.Com.

Going Postal

When I went to the post office to get the 420 1-cent stamps, there were two clerks working. The clerk Susie was busy helping a couple complete applications for passports. There were three people ahead of me in the line of the other clerk named Debbie. Debbie was telling the first customer about her divorce and about her son’s living arrangements. I was shocked by such inappropriate behavior. The second customer, turned to look behind him, and he and I rolled our eyes at each other in disbelief. When the man got to Debbie he asked for two stamps and plopped coins on the desk. The next person in line was a young woman carrying a baby. Debbie commented that the baby was “precious” and the clerk and the woman began chatting about different family members.  Continue reading Going Postal

Damn, Can’t Believe I Did That!

Several weeks ago some Facebook friends were sharing stories about embarrassing moments they had suffered through. At the time I couldn’t think of any thing to share that wouldn’t wear my fingers down trying to type it. Well, thanks to a recent cruise experience, I now have one.

Early in the cruise my wife, a friend, and myself had been near the ship’s casino competing in a trivia tournament. Afterwards I told them that after stopping off at our cabin I was going to get in some walking. That said I headed for the room and then to the upper decks of the ship where lots of walking space is available. Continue reading Damn, Can’t Believe I Did That!