Day by Day cartoon

Saturday, May 30, 2009

What did I do this weekend?

friends,Flaming Gorge,kokanee,fishing
Beats the hell out of wrenching on a busted Tempo, I can assure you of that!

See all the pictures here from a fabulous weekend of friends, perfect weather and exciting fishing. Details tomorrow, after I have rested up!

UPDATE: Details still remain to be written. But I did upload a grundle more pictures from Kenny at the link above.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Save the Sea Kitties?

Don't eat the Sea Kitties? GMAFB! Take a look at what PETA is promoting to kids- Save the Sea Kitties. This is the stupidest promotion ever from the dumbass folks behind the PETA brand!

Maybe it's time to re-energize the Eat An Animal For Peta Day promotion and send them some rib bones in a baggie!

Going fishing!

I'm leaving tomorrow after work with Kenny and Jim to go fishing with Rob, (he owns the boat) at Flaming Gorge! This should be a very exciting fishing trip because Rob fishes Flaming Gorge every weekend as part of his fishing tackle business, so he knows how and where to catch big lake trout.

And in spite of Kenny's whining, I'm driving my truck so we can lock up our stuff under the tonneau cover. The BSU took it to the shop this afternoon and got the air conditioning recharged so we will be able to ride in comfort.

Pictures when I get back!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Car engine changes made simple- don't do it!

I made a discovery today while preparing to remove the engine from my boy's Ford Tempo that just about made me jump for joy. I've had the car in the driveway since February and I bought a used motor a month ago in preparation to removing the bad engine and replacing it with the used one. I actually moved the car into the carport probably 3 or 4 weeks ago but the work has been slow based upon my back injuries, lousy weather and our vacation. And I really haven't had my heart in this project so it was turning into something I had to do rather than something I wanted to do, so I've been dragging my feet instead of jumping in hard to get it done.

But the engine was almost ready to be removed and today I finally got around to taking the new motor out of the back of the truck and parked it on the slab near where I'm working. Reading the Haynes manual, it says to remove the engine and transmission out through the bottom of the car which seemed like a lot of extra work to me. So I was investigating today to see if there was room to separate the engine and transmission in the car and just lifting out the engine.

That investigation got me to looking closely and then I discovered that my work was done! I'm going no further with this car except for a phone call or two to have it taken away to the scrap yard. Look what I found-

93 Ford Tempo Frame
I thought I discovered a crack in the subframe that holds up the front of the car but no- not a crack. Look at this picture taken from underneath-

93 Ford Tempo Frame
Somebody cut that frame! It looks like somebody else during this car's past decided more clearance was needed to remove the engine and so they cut the subframe and hammered out the needed clearance! There's a welded patch panel on the outside-

93 Ford Tempo Frame
but made no effort to weld the cuts they made on the inside of the subframe.

That's just dangerous. I don't have the skills to weld it myself and the ca's not worth paying somebody else to repair that much damage. So my job is done. I'm going to try to sell the engine on KSL classifieds and have the car hauled away for scrap.

It also pretty much confirms that the only way to get the engine out of the car is with the transmission attached and out through the bottom, just like the book says! There are more pictures here and as always, click the thumbnail pictures above to see the full sized pictures.

UPDATE: After talking with my dad today, who spent several years selling Ford car parts at numerous dealers, I think I know why this subframe was cut. I don't think it was done to pull the engine out but rather to replace the harmonic damper on the front of the crankshaft. He says they used to sell these parts regularly as they were prone to failure. Since the engine didn't show any other signs of previous replacement, I believe that's the answer. Somebody cut a clearance hole so they could get the damper off the crankshaft. It doesn't matter, the car is still junk!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

A no kidding product endorsement, Plumb-Away

Somehow between yesterday and this morning, our shower stall drain stopped draining. It hadn't been running slow and gradually getting worse, it just stopped. Overnight. When the BSU took a shower this morning, the bottles of shampoo were pretty quickly floating because the water wouldn't run down the drain.

I tried snaking it but couldn't get the snake more than 3 feet down the pipe. I tried some gel hair clog remover to absolutely no success. But when I was at Home Depot, I also spotted a different type of clog remover called Plumb Away which purported to use compressed gas to remove clogs in 1 second.

I was sceptical but I bought it at the same time as the gel clog remover. And after two doses of the gel failed to get the water moving, I decided to give Plumb Away a try. I read the instructions, fit the adapter into the drain and gave it a blast.

It worked! With a blast of gas and water the clog was gone! I turned on the water faucets and let it run and the drain was completely clear. Color me surprised because I wasn't really expecting it to work but my drain is running free so I'm a happy plumber tonight.

So, if you have a plugged up drain, I recommend this. Get down to Home Depot and buy this Plumb Away and give it a try.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The prairie dog population of Wyoming remains intact-

As Kenny and I were unsuccessful letting the air out of any of them today. We only found a few and they managed to dodge our attempts at ballistic deanimation today.

We did have a great day touring around Wyoming and Kenny had a great place in mind for our lunch, which turned out to be really very tasty, so the day wasn't any loss even if the body count hung up at zero.

Friday, May 22, 2009

In between the pending thunderstorms and 62 degree temps-

Kenny and I are going to Wyoming tomorrow with the hope of finding some praire dogs that will allow themselves to be ballistically de-animated by our shooting efforts. I just hope it doesn't rain too much because off road travel will become problematic if it gets muddy.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Sent a letter to the editor today-

The editor of Concealed Carry Magazine, explaining my analogy about why I carry a firearm nearly every day outside my house. She wrote back promptly and asked for permission to publish my letter in the next issue! Sweet!

If you don't know my analogy already, I'll save it until the magazine publishes and reprint it then. Stand by!

I think I might have to buy some of this-

I've not mentioned so far that I'm in the process of building my own AR-15 rifle, mostly because the process has only involved purchasing a Rock River lower receiver and browsing the online Brownells catalog. I figure it will take me a year of saving my lunch money to purchase all the parts I'll need to build a prairie dog killing machine, so I haven't been in a big hurry to brag about something that's right now just 1 piece of machined aluminum.

But when I do get around to buying more parts, I'm pretty certain I am going to dress my rifle with this wood stock, forearm and grip! This stuff was apparently introduced at the NRA show last weekend and I think it's neat. One of my least favorite aspects of Evil Black Rifles is the black plastic furniture and this company has a solution to that ugly and same-same look of almost all AR-15 rifles. Since I don't intend my AR to be a "tacticool" carbine laden down with lasers and flashlights and front handgrips and flash hiders, I think putting wood on my rifle will be a perfect solution.

Now I just need to pick out a color combination!

Vacationing in Michigan- contd.

So, when last I left the keyboard, I left the final portion of our trip to Michigan untold. And now it is time to remedy that situation. On Monday Mom showed a couple neat museums in Alpena but she came up with an even better idea for Tuesday- a trip to Mackinac Island, a fabled place in Michigan history which somehow I had managed to never visit in spite of so many summers spent in the northland. The weather looked promising- glorious even and so the decision was easily reached that we would set off on Tuesday morning for Mackinac.

It is a beautiful island resort and it has been a resort area since the end of the Civil War. To get there you have to ride a ferry boat and we picked seats right behind the boat captain’s controls to have a view of the approach. When you get to the island there’s an interesting surprise- NO motor vehicles! There are exactly 2 powered vehicles on the island, a fire truck and an ambulance. Everything and everyone else travels by horsepower, typically 2 horsepower, meaning draft horses pulling carriages or carts. The good citizens of the island banned horseless carriages in 1897, one was snuck onto the island causing havoc and injury in 1902 and after that, the horse lobby won and self-powered vehicles were prohibited. So there are 400 resident draft horses on the island during the summer and they have very nice barns, exercise pens and rest pastures for their maintenance. The horses don’t winter on the island but are instead shipped over to the mainland and boarded with farmers all over the upper portion of the lower peninsula of Michigan.

We took a pleasant carriage ride on the tour around the island, entertained by a driver and tour guide and 2 Belgians that were not so pleased to be back in the harness after their winter break.

vacation May 2009
We saw and photographed probably the most photographed rock in Michigan, Arch Rock-

Arch Rock, Mackinac Island, May 2009
spoiled most of the tour guide’s lame jokes and departed the tour at the entrance to Fort Mackinac. The fort was built as a defense for the straits, surrendered to the British without a shot being fired at the outbreak of the War of 1812, held captured Confederate supporters during the Civil War and is now a very nice museum of life on the island and behind the walls during its heyday. There are young men dressed in the military uniforms of the times giving demonstrations- (yeah, cannons!)

Michigan vacation
and describing life in the fort. Due to the fort’s idyllic location and minimal military necessity, life was pretty good at Fort Mackinac and a desirable place to be stationed.

Lunch was served at The Tea Room, outside on the deck in the glorious sunshine and due to the early season and mid-week timing of our trip, we had the staff’s complete attention. The manager came over and visited with us for a bit and it felt like we were living the lives of The Rich and Famous while enjoying some delicious lunch.

Michigan vacation
The view from the Tea Room was really nice too, although the harbor was empty of pleasure boats due to the earliness of the season.

vacation May 2009
Take special notice of how clear and blue the water was. I didn't see water during our Carribean cruise that was any prettier than it was here.

After lunch we left the fort, walked down the hill and did some window shopping and browsing down Main Street. We didn’t buy anything but ice cream cones but we did have a very nice look around at the artist and t-shirt shops. Remember that I said everything gets delivered on the island by horse and cart? Even the UPS delivery guy has a hose cart! He even had a dedicated driver to manage the horses as he unloads boxes and makes his deliveries.

vacation May 2009
I thought this was the funniest thing I saw all day.

One of the beauties of the day was the early season timing of our visit. Travel to the island between Memorial Day and Labor Day and the place is packed with tourists on horse carriage, foot or bicycle and sight-seeing becomes an effort in avoiding being jostled by all the thousands of people that flock to the resort. Instead, we had lots of elbow room and opportunity to look at the beautifully maintained historic homes, hotels and shops because we visited so early in the year. We were a couple weeks early for most of the flowers to be in bloom and one of the island’s charms are the beautifully groomed flower beds in every yard and corner. But we did see some of the early bloomers and enjoyed some terrific spring weather.

It was a grand day with the 2 most important women in my life and we all had a great time. Dinner was at Big Boy back in Alpena at the end of the trip. Why don't we have Big Boy's here? I really miss them!

The next morning it was time for a few more pictures-

before getting back into the rental car and setting Magellan in search of the Detroit Metro Airport. That's my Mom on the left, Grandma Manning in front and my uncles- Mike and Glen in the back row. Mom and Grandma really have a great deal in their home, Mike lives in the basement with his wife and Glenn lives next door with my aunt and cousin. There are more aunts and uncles just minutes away and most of them are at the house very regularly.

But we got back to the airport and back to Salt Lake City without much drama. It was raining at our layover in Chicago and our plane left late but we got home safely to 2 very cats!

Awesome loop-the-loop

Real life Hot Wheels! See the video here!

A solution for Barry and Arnold

So Barry's in trouble and needs to find a way to live up to his campaign promise to close Guantanamo prison and move out the foreign terrorists held there. It seems that he is having trouble getting the rest of America, including his Democratic senators to go along with his scheme, since they announced this week that they would not provide the necessary funding for the project. And since the voters on California turned down all the tax increase proposals on this week's ballot, Arnold continues to have a budget shortfall of mammoth proportions.

I have a proposal for both of these guys. Arnold wants to sell San Quentin prison- for some much needed cash and Barry needs a place to house prisoners. I suggest that the .fedgov purchase the fabled prison from the state of California and park the prisoners there. That would enable Barry to meet his 1 year deadline for closing the camp in Cuba and provide some much needed cash for Arnold's budget.

Problems solved for both guys. It's a win-win solution all around. I'm certain that the kinder-gentler population of Nancy Pelosi's district would not only welcome these hapless, unfortunate individuals caught up in the illegal invasion of their homelands with open arms but also be appreciative of the new jobs created by housing and feeding these folks. Maybe the Code Pink chapter in San Francisco could bake organic cookies and bring them out to the prison regularly to make these prisoner's stay in California a little more comfortable.

There's no need to thank me, I'm just trying to do my part as a good citizen to help out where I see the opportunity.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Still working on the vacation wrap-up...

Even though I have most of the post written, I got home late last night and I was too tired to import all the picture links and finish it up. Tonight probably.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Our vacation Part Deux

So the previous post was all about our trip to the Land of Lincoln to see our grandbabies and let me just say again how much fun it was and how much we both enjoyed our time there. It was really terrific.

But we had another place to be in the Midwest- Alpena Michigan, to see my mom and grandmother for Mothers Day. It was 4 hour drive from Detroit to Alpena but the Lincolm MKZ that we rented and our Magellan GPS made it short and sure.

It was late when we got in but we got tucked in and then in the morning went with Mom to church. Afterwards there was a dandy dinner with several of my aunts and uncles and cousins. We had an extremely enjoyable afternoon visiting and checking out firewood piles and an uncle's new house next door to Grandma's. I have some really neat cousins that have cool talents and hobbies and I like getting to sit around with them discovering what they have been keeping busy with. Cousin Steve has taken up blacksmithing as a hobby and this month is on the cover of the Michigan Artist Blacksmith newsletter with his hummingbird that he makes. His talented spouse took all the pictures and wrote the story and they were both tickled to have their efforts recognized on the cover of the newsletter. I actually got to see one of his hummingbirds and some beautiful lilies that he made for his folks. Cousin Tom helped his dad build the new house from foundation to shingles and everything in between. He's also a motorhead that likes buying damaged vehicles and rebuilding them. Cousin Tammy is a talented gardener. So catching up with my kin is always a real treat and the Sunday afternoon visit was a terrific time.

On Monday Mom took us sightseeing in Alpena, first to the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary and then to the Jesse Besser Museum. Out back of this really nice museum is a log house that belonged to my Grandma's grandfather and there is a picture of the gent sitting on the steps of the cabin hanging in Grandma's house. I didn't know this but from 1910 to 1913 there was even a car manufactured in Alpena. The museum was dandy with replicas of some old buildings, an antique fire-fighting rig and some very fun taxidermy displays.

Later, uncle Mike grilled some thick pork chops on the grill and we had a very nice Michigan evening with family. I even was able to do a couple fixes on Mom's computer!

Tuesday was another very full day and will require its very own post. But it will have to wait until later. I'm tired of typing tonight!

We had a wonderful time!

I know I'm late getting to telling the tale of our vacation but I've either been too tired or too busy so it's just happening now. I uploaded pictures to my Photobucket account this AM and created my first slide show of some of the pictures but for some reason I can't get the coding/copying right so time was wasted on that.

But on to the tale! I've already described the first night's re-introduction to the kids at their other grandparent's very nice restaraunt and it was a very great evening. Astin was kind of shy for the first little while and Marinda took to us like she had been waiting forever for us to show up and introduce ourselves. She is an extroverted little girl and made friends with us in just a few minutes. We brought 2 toy, stuffed hamsters as gifts for the kids and after supper, Marinda and I taught her hamster some tricks- sit, lie down, roll over and how to stand on its head. Marinda seemed to think that was great fun. Here's some pictures from the first night-

The next day the kids and their mom came to our hotel room, (thanks Comfort Suites!) just before lunch and during a drowning downpour. The weather ruled out our plans for a nature center trip so instead we first went to lunch-

Sunday and Marinda anxiously awaiting for lunch to arrive
then played with some new toys in our room and then went for a dip in the hotel pool-


We had a great time playing in the pool until we were all well wrinkled and played in our room a little longer- Astin loved the Hot Wheels track and cars I had bought for him and then we went to another pool where Astin had a scheduled swimming lesson. Afterwards, we all got to pet a stuffed black bear and admire lots of other game animal mounts at the adjacent sporting goods store. The kids really seemed to think that black bear down at their level was pretty neat!

The next morning, before we had to leave, we met the grandbabies and their mom one more time, this time for breakfast at Cracker Barrel. We spent some time just playing and sharing some pictures we had printed up early and finally said our good-byes and headed back to the airport for the next leg of our journey. That's the next post...

I think everyone agreed that our visit was a huge success. The kids seemed to really like us, (hey, toys helped) and enjoyed playing with us. Their mom was gracious and friendly and relaxed and provided us with some really nice pictures of the kids from a studio. (Where did I save those? I know I scanned them at Mom's.) We talked about how often we might be able to repeat the trip. I know I would like to do it 3 times a year if I can work the costs into our budget. We will have to see. I do know we will be going back as often as we can afford and Sara will tolerate!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Hey! I know that guy!

Actually, truth be told- I’ve been pie-eyed drunk with that guy!


One of my regular readers will remember that in a year many decades ago, I worked for a Kawasaki motorcycle dealership in Malvern Ohio. The owner’s name was John Furey and John once upon a time handed me a one hundred dollar bill and told me to go out and spend it all on fireworks for his 4th of July party. He did get the money back later after the homeowners association balked at his plans but I had some pretty big intentions for a fireworks display using John’s cash. Working there was a great deal of fun, if not one of my more successful career moves. One of the highlights was the pretty regular trip to Red’s Tavern after work on Saturday to consume too much Genesee Cream Ale before heading home. My regular reader might also recall a number of weekend cookouts and booze bashes spent at John’s place when we slept in the car before going home in the morning.


Anyway, imagine my surprise while driving to work this morning to hear an article on NPR’s Morning Edition about Chrysler’s letters to their dealers detailing the dealer’s continued support by the company or whether the dealerships were being dropped. It’s all part of Chrysler’s bankruptcy proceeding that is going on right now. And somehow NPR found their way down to the tiny little town of Malvern Ohio to participate and report while John Furey opened his letter! Apparently, after some Google searching, the motorcycle dealership is no more but in its place, John has been operating a Chrysler dealership for a number of years and gets to remain a Chrysler dealer after the reductions that were announced yesterday.


So, congrats, John for a job well done in keeping your connection with Chrysler and I hope your dealership continues to be successful!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Shooting pool cue chalk at 200 yards?

Yeah, this guy does it and he has video to prove it. That seems like the kind of practice I need to try. Maybe I should start with some clay pidgeons and work my way smaller...

I need to go shooting!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Where was I today?

I had a fabulous day with my Mom and spouse today in a very unusual location. Check out this guy-

vacation May 2009
That's the UPS driver! Ever seen a UPS driver on a rig like that one?
Here's a picture of my Mom and I.

vacation May 2009

So, where were we? Guesses in comments. And as always, click the little pictures to see the biggie sized ones.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

I'm no longer hating the TSA-

I found my pocketknife! It practically fell out of my suitcase when I unzipped it last night! Where it was hiding, I have no idea. But I've got it now so I'm happy!

Friday, May 08, 2009

Well what a day today has been!

We have been playing, swimming and eating french fries with the grandbabies non-stop since noon today. I will tell you this, those two are high speed & low drag critters with seemingly only one speed- fast! They have worn us out quite thoroughly!

We did not get to go to the Nature Center that we had hoped for due to a lashing Midwest rainstorm that ate up most of the afternoon. So instead we went out for lunch then played and splashed and jumped in the hotel pool for quite a while. When we wore out splashing we retired to the room where we played with a Hot Wheels track with 4 new cars and a Fisher-Price airplane with both the kids.

The ex D-i-L was even wearing the locket that we brought for her and gave her last night and it looked really nice around her neck. I hope she likes it and wears it often.

Tomorrow morning we will be meeting with the kids again for breakfast and then heading back to the airport for the 2nd leg of our trip- flying to Detroit and then driving to my Mom's house.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

On another note from my vacation-

I'm pretty certain the baggage handlers at Salt Lake City airport lifted a Benchmark pocket knife from my checked baggage! It is possible that a prized pocket knife fell out while I was packing and still lies unmolested on my bed. But I am almost certain that I would have noticed if it didn't get into my bag and now it is not in the zippered, inside pocket of my suitcase where I intended it to be.

In the morning I'll dig through all the contents of my bag but I am NOT hopeful that my knife still belongs to me. I'm betting that some dumbass xray watching baggage jackass has it clipped to his back pocket.

And that prospect does not make me very happy...

Safely arrived in Illinois-

The Cadillac CTS is sweet... It was completely painless driving over here from the airport and the Magellan drove us right to where we needed to be.

But I did just find out we are having dinner not only with the ex D-I-L and the grandbabies but with her parents too... I'm not so happy about that development. And no extended visiting tonight because the kids are cranky...

Apparently we are eating in the fanciest place in Effingham, Rexroats Distinctive Dining.

UPDATE- After dinner: Well, that turned out far better than might have been expected! In the first place, we wern't just being joined by the other grandparents for dinner- we were having dinner in the grandparent's place! That's right, the fancy place in town in partially owned by the D-I-L's parents! We did NOT know that! So dinner, which was quite tasty, was also free, even though I tried to pay for our portion. And "thanks" to our very gracious hosts for the very nice dinner and hospitality!

More importantly, the grandkids are great! Marinda, who is just 2, is outgoing, friendly and ready to make friends at the drop of s toy, stuffed hamster. Astin, who is 4 1/2, is much more timid but he did warm up to us and (repeatedly) shared with me the contents of his oversized Spiderman backpack, in which he carries around all his prized possessions, including a fresh pack of glow-in-the-dark Lightning McQueen briefs! Astin did warm up to us after a bit and we played with the stuffed hamsters that we had brought for each of them until both of the kids were worn right out and needed to get home.

Tomorrow we are either going out to a wildlife center to see some butterflies and birds and some fishing in a pond or we have been invited to use the other grandparents pontoon boat for a little boating on the lake behind their house. And I'm hoping to buy a hummingbird feeder and get it installed at their house so they enjoy their bird's antics as much as I do. We'll see. And pictures tomorrow when I'm drinking coffee in the morning, not drinking vodka before bedtime!

Blogging from the airport

Is trickier in my iPhone than from my laptop. But I'm not paying the airport 8 bucks for Internet connectivity for just an hour. And my phone doesn't need their damn paid connection! Anyway, we are awaiting our flight to St Louis and the grandbabies. Blogging might be even more sporadic than usual for the next week. Or, there may be grandbaby pictures and fun pictures posted. Nothing forbyou to do but check back regularly.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

You know you're in a redneck church if-

The finance committee refuses to provide funds for the purchase of a chandelier because none of the members knows how to play one.

People ask, when they learn that Jesus fed the 5000, whether the two fish were bass or catfish and what bait was used to catch 'em.

When the pastor says, "I'd like to ask Bubba to help take up the offering," five guys and two women stand up.

Opening day of deer season is recognized as an official church holiday.

A member of the church requests to be buried in his 4-wheel-drive truck cause "It ain't never been in a hole it couldn't get out of"

The choir is known as the "OK Chorale".

In a congregation of 500 members, there are only seven last names in the church directory.

People think "rapture" is what you get when you lift something too heavy.

The baptismal pool is a #2 galvanized " Wheeling " washtub.

The choir robes were donated by (and embroidered with the logo from) Billy Bob's Barbecue.

The collection plates are really hubcaps from a'56 Chevy.

Instead of a bell you are called to service by a duck call.

The minister and his wife drive matching pickup trucks. (In our church it would be the minister and her husband, but they drive a Honda minivan.)

The communion wine is Boone's Farm "Tickled Pink".

"Thou shall not covet" applies to huntin' dogs, too.

The final words of the benediction are¦ "Y'all come back now, Ya hear".

Now, I got this from my dad, and I shared it with our priest, who just last Sunday, since it was Good Sheppard Sunday, arrived in raggedy blue jeans and purple cowboy boots, and she thought these descriptions were pretty funny. She is from Eastern Oregon and thought these descriptions sounded like the churches where she came from.

The tiny buzz bombs have returned!

Mother’s Day is Sunday and that has been traditional arrival point for the hummingbirds after their long trip north after soaking up the sunshine and margaritas in their winter home in Mexico. Last weekend I heard just a couple of their distinctive chitters in my neighborhood so I hung out the first feeder of the year. Later in the same afternoon, I spotted the first hummer to stop for a fill-up at my feeder!


Maybe, with the arrival of the hummingbirds, summer will finally arrive properly. We have had an unusually wet and extended season of lousy spring weather so far, with few scooter riding days. But maybe the weather will turn the corner into a warm and dry summer and after I get back from a week’s vacation, I can get some outside tasks accomplished.

Reports of my demise have been just slightly exaggerated

I got home from work yesterday afternoon, took the BSU out for some fast food and when I got home, I went to bed! At 6:30. I intended to just take a nap for a couple hours but when the spousal unit turned ff the lights at 10:30, it just seemed right to go ahead and stay in bed. I think I got up twice to go to the bathroom but otherwise I slept until the alarm clock went off this morning. I was feeling pretty crappy all day yesterday, but I don’t seem to have the hamthrax, so I really don’t know what has worn me down so badly. Mostly it’s the meds from treating my back, I think.


Anyway, I’m back to work today and wrapping up for the pending vacation that begins tomorrow. There are clothes to pack and electronics to decide upon and a dog to drop off at the kennel and we have to go see the newest grandbaby and his mother tonight, which means a trip to Salt Lake.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Ever loaded pictures into a jewelry locket?

If you have, I sure wish I could get some schooling on how to do it. Spousal unit bought 2 lockets for baby pictures, then assigned me the task of getting the pictures in the lockets. I picked some pictures, shrunk their size, put them on my memory stick, carried them to Kinkos for printing, then drove 2 places in town trying to find an expert that knew how to put the pictures into the lockets.

One of the lockets has tiny little heart shaped rings that pop out and I got that one loaded- wrong pictures in the locket but I got it done. The second locket is not the same as the first and I can not figure out how to install the pictures. This locket does not seem to have pop out rings to secure the picture, so I am completely stumped.

At little help? Anybody?

One more reason I'm happy not to live in England

I did live in England, for 4 ½ years, back when I was stationed at RAF Mildenhall, and at the time I really enjoyed it. England was a pretty terrific place to live and travel and visit. But the British government is way ahead of even Barry's HopenChange dream for America when it comes to silly laws and intrusion into private life. Now, instead of actually trying to catch criminals, they have handed megaphones to the local constabularies and sent them out to frighten and threaten the citizens, warning them to lock themselves in their homes and not enjoy the fresh air and sunshine that they have been waiting for throughout their long winter.

I don't remember if it was a Monty Python sketch but for years in my family we have routinely made fun of the British police officer's inability to actually defend themselves with the shout, "Stop! Or I'll say stop again!" This story reminds me just how far the rights of the citizen have fallen and how misguided lawmakers can be when given free rein. It is time for the citizens of Great Britain to collectively "grow a pair" and get their government off their backs.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

I really hate not feeling good-

and the fact is, I've been pretty lousy lately. It's my lower back that is giving me problems, just as it has given me problems off & on for 3 decades. I've been hurting for 2-3 months now and self-medicating with anti-inflammatories that the Doc had prescribed when my rotator cuff was torn up a couple years back.

But that script ran out and I didn't have the meds for a couple weeks until I got in to see the Doc last week. He had X-rays taken, checked me all over and pronounced me with a bad back- big surprise! He also prescribed 3 fresh scripts, an anti-inflammatory, a pain med and an anti-spasm med and a neoprene back brace.

In spite of the meds and the brace, I have still been hurting most all the time, some times less than others but never completely comfortable. So I've been taking it easy, reading Angels and Demons, watching Yogi Bear cartoons while I try to stop fretting over the yardwork and car repairs that are going undone outside. I also had to buy 4 new pair of larger pants so that I can wear my brace under my clothes!

I sure hope that this back problem heals up shortly because when I'm hurting, I'm cranky. And I don't like being cranky!

Moving up to the 21st and 1/2 century...

In expectation of some driving in places I'm not familiar with- Illinois and Michigan later this week, I broke down and bought a GPS unit to assist with the navigating. I talked to everybody I know that already uses GPS for travel, considered their favorites, did a little hands-on research at Marconi Hut and finally plunked my money down at for this Magellan Maestro 4050.

So far, I am really impressed with this little package of high-tech gear. I mean, it is just a little bigger than my digital camera but it finds 10 or 11 satellites in just a few seconds, gives directions including street names, has Bluetooth connection to my cell phone so I can make hands-free phone calls and it seems very intuitive for my amateur efforts. I've already added in the addresses to our destinations and all I have to do is to push a couple buttons and it gets busy calculating a route to those places. It's 1481 miles from home to our first stop, if we were driving!

But we aren't driving most of the way, we are flying and there are 2 rental cars waiting on me. Now I'm ready to plug in, turn on and follow those tax dollar funded satellites to our destinations!

You should SEE the storm going on outside right now!

There is thunder and lightning and hail and high winds making theirselves known right now! It is just wild outside our windows!

Never Know What Might Turn Up

That's the name of a new blog, written by a friend of mine. His mother turned me on to it and thought he wrote in a style, (I have a style?) similar to mine. Anyway, I want to encourage him, so I'm encouraging you to go check it out and say hi.

I'll be adding a link on my blogroll later tonight when I get some more time to sit down. Right now I'm waiting for a teenager from church to show up and help this old, tired guy with some yardwork- in between rainstorms!

Saturday, May 02, 2009

True 50 years ago, still true today

I found this at Days of Our Trailers which is getting added to my blogroll sometime this weekend.