Friday, May 27, 2011

" 33 "

I'm awake.  It's 2:09 dark thirty in the AM.  Instead of coming home tonight from the bike shop around midnight toasted, roasted, thrashed and ready to crash, I came home pumped up hard with my fire still stoked and burning on a full flame.  I performed some minor domestic magic, emptied the pick up of the trash I brought home to take to the dump on, at this point, some vague and hazy date in my soon to be immediate future.  I fitzed, farted, and diddled around with basement stuff til almost two and then sat down here and pumped Neil Young up to way past wow. 

Two beers later my boiler seems to be calming down.  Obscure relief valves I did not know I had have opened releasing the adrenalin built up but not used to full capacity over the course of the previous 16 hour workday. 

I ponder the wisdom of re-stoking the furnace with some sweet sour mash knowing that in a few hours I have to get up and do it again.  Go to the bike shop and play fire fighter attempting to douse numerous small blazes threatening to burn out of control unless I at least cast an angry eye or token gesture in their general direction.

In the meantime, as my brain struggles to come to grips with this new conundrum, I am still awake and by now I am tapping my old white boy feet to "Warehouse".  Oh no, it's almost over.  What to play next at volumes no human should even entertain introducing to their brain?  So loud I can feel inner juices bubbling up seeking escape from the din I have subjected them to.  Yes, some tunes are meant to be played just shy of painfully.  Later in the morning I will most likely want tunes I can barely hear as I struggle to chase and shake drunken cobwebs out of the way as I move into another day.

"Turn that crap down.  You'll go deaf ferchrissakes.  And where are you then smart ass?  .....................I said turn that crap, turn that crap off.

Uh?  Dad, you talking to me?  Can't hear whatja saying.  Got the tunes up. 

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Walker's Paradise

I was taking a few rare moments from my recent business related only time on the Internet this AM to peruse some of the news from around the globe.  I hit the regular sites, Drudge Report, Drudge Retort, NY Times, Google News, etc.  An interesting article on pedestrian death rates popped up on my radar.  It appears that if one has a penchant for running over pedestrians, Florida is prime hunting ground.  I assume it is the concentration of old fogies that makes it easier pickings. 

If one likes to walk with a sense of safety, New England seems to be Walker's Paradise.  My own state comes in at number 45, New Hampster at 44, and Massachusetts is a relatively safe 42.  And while Alaska can claim being the 2nd safest state to hoof around, Vermont comes in as the safest place to wear out those new Reebok walkers you just bought.  If you want an edgier walk while up here in the North East, head to Connecticut (29th), or Rhode Island (31st).

I guess it is no surprise that states with more rural and less urban would be safer to walk in.   Cram more people and cars into smaller spaces and the interactions between the two groups will have a higher percentage of ugly results.  Why then does the State of New York come in at a lofty 39th?  No place is more crowded than New York City.  Throw in all the other urban areas in that state and I would have expected New York to be at least breathing down Florida's neck for the top spot.   I guess there might be something to the notion that New Yorkers are born street smart. 

I've been to New York City many times.  Only once did I come close to taking out a pedestrian.  Matter of fact it would have been a three-fer.  But I went on auto pilot and stopped inches from rolling over a very big black woman with a child clutched in each meaty hand.  She stepped back from the front of my GMC tractor trailer, looked up at me with eyes the size of pie plates.  I looked down at her with my pie plate eyes.  A scowl came across her face and she screamed, "Fucking Asshole", then proceeded to continue her Jay Walk across the street, dragging her scared shitless children behind her.  I will admit I checked my drawers when I finished the 6 blocks left to the Bronx Food Market.

47,700 plus pedestrians have been mowed down by cars, trucks, buses, motorcycles, or bikes between 2000 and 2009.   That breaks down to almost 5000 people a year. The article goes on to say that while automobile deaths have dropped dramatically, drops in pedestrian deaths have not enjoyed a similar decline.  The pedestrian death rate is hardly chump change when compared to other causes of death in this country.   But in the hierarchy of what we die from, getting nailed by a moving vehicle is just another hazard of living in an increasingly crowded country.


 Image from "I don't Brake for Nuns"

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


Well I guess we dodged a bullet and I got myself some new underwear I didn't need.  Harold Camping now insists his prediction of the Rapture beginning on May 21st, 2011 was but a snafu in his interpretative calculations and that October 21, 2011 will encompass both The Rapture and The End.  I have to say, it certainly seems to be a more efficient use of World ending power to just do it once, get it over with, and move on to the next planet full of fornicators, blasphemers, and deviants.  I am guessing God did not get to the lofty position he sits in by wasting his time with installment plan destruction.  Smite once and move on, it's a big Universe.

Now that I have completely ruined any chance of making the Rapture Elevator, I figured I would take a look around the planet to see what the blissfully ignorant teeming masses did once the grand event did not unfold as Harold indicated it would.  Was there a collective sigh of relief echoing across the oceans?  Were there screams of disappointment that once more God failed to live up to the promises his prophets had made?

No on both counts.  Collectively, Mankind did not even blink an eye.  Sunday morning came and it was business as usual.  Fornicators fornicated, Blasphemers blasphemed (not sure if that is a word, but hey who cares), and the knee benders showed up pew side as usual to pay deep respects for a God they know is watching.......................SSDD. 

But one person apparently was MIA.  Seems Harold, the man who stirred up this recent End of Days scenario, was keeping his head down.  I am trying my hardest to be somewhat sympathetic to the many people who divested themselves of their worldly goods and obligations in anticipation of being included in the group of 200 million chosen to go topside.  They woke up on Sunday, May 22, 2011 and their cars were re-poed or being re-poed.  The bank computers were busy churning out all kinds of past due notices these poor unfortunates will be facing in the coming weeks.  Their kids will have to make friends all over again.  And I imagine dealing with such a complete let down of faith and belief will take some time to get over. 

As I said, I am trying hard to find some sympathy for them.  Failing that I started looking for some pity.  That cupboard was bare also.  So I tried to laugh at them and I couldn't.  They did not get what they asked for.  But they surely got what they deserved for allowing themselves to be led down the garden path.


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

An Update on the Last Date - The God Variable

First of all, I noticed that some Internet gremlins got hold of Google and screwed up my last blog post.  Several comments mysteriously disappeared.

Hmm.................... Is this a sign that in 3 days we will see the beginning of the end?  According to a fellow name of Harold Camping , the recent series of exploding watermelons in China are a sign.  So maybe he would also like to add to his list of random events signaling the end, my lost comments.  I would be honored if they were added.  If for no other reason than to keep his comedic lunacy at a fever pitch.

But what if he is wrong as he was in 1994?  The World will still spin and the planet's creatures will continue to fornicate, grow, die and new malls and subdivisions will be built.  Or maybe just old malls will be sold and old subdivisions will be sold.  Regardless, Life as we know it will continue it's erratic but steady pace.

According to Harold, 200 million of us will ascend to Heaven.  He claims even Jews can make it if they accept Christ as their savior.  He made no promises regarding Muslims, Buddhists, or folks of the Hindu religion.  The 6 billion or so of us who are left will suffer excruciating deaths by fire, crushing earthquakes, or be turned into pillars of salt.  This agony will last until October 21st when I am assuming the Earth will self implode, explode, or just wink out of existence.  Whatever happens our pain and suffering, especially the pain of anyone rooting for teams from Cleveland, will finally be over.  I am guessing some Cleveland fans are secretly hoping he is right.  The first sign Harold is right will be at 6PM, Australian time on May21st.  An earthquake will strike Kiritimati Island, a Pacific Ocean atoll and follow the Sun around the planet.

Harold's claim is based on foolproof mathematical formulas that tell the whole story.  Numbers don't lie and I for one, after careful scrutinizing of his addition, have to admit the numbers add up.

2,011 + 391 - 1 = 2,401, or 7 x 7 x 7 x 7.  See.  Right there in front of you, the proof stares back with detached and emotionless truth.  2011 is obviously this year and 391 refers to 391 BC when he claims The Old Testament ended but I am not quite sure what the one "-1" is.  I am assuming it is the God Variable.  But I have faith his math is right on.  I mean really, 59 = 7x7 + 11 -1 right?  If this is correct then he must be also.  Logical and well thought out I have to say.

I would look into this more, but I have to head down to Walmart for some new underwear.  If I have any chance of making the Rapture Elevator, I am hedging my bets by wearing brand new, not just clean, underwear.

See ya in Heaven or maybe under some rock.....................

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Wear Clean Underwear on May 21st

I think I was 8 or 9 when I was first confronted with the concept of the end of the World.  My mom and I were on our way north from the Washington DC area to visit my aunt and uncle in Maine.  We stopped in New York City for 3 days and did the tourist thing.  Empire State building, Statue of Liberty, etc.  We spent one day just walking around.  I had never seen buildings so tall, or people so crowded together.

One of our walks was through Central Park.  Apparently there is one area of the park where all the whack jobs congregated.  They would stand at some prominent spot, a park bench or on a concrete wall surrounding a fountain holding signs or the Bible and voice their opinions on any number of subjects.  "The End" was apparently a hot topic.  More than a few had distinct views on when we humans would finally wear out our welcome.  I can remember one fellow was sure we only had a few months left.  He assured me and the small group of onlookers that unless we repented our sins, God was going to plow us under and start over in a few weeks.

Eight year olds tend to take anything an adult says seriously and even worse, literally.  What followed my exposure to this new world view, was probably one of the first serious conversations I had with my mom about anything other than the real world, real time things kids think about.  The guy scared me.  He was serious.  He was an adult.  And he told me the World was going to end.  I had been well schooled by that point to listen seriously when an adult got serious.  I believed him.  My mom talked me down, trying so very hard to keep a straight face. 

Anyway, ever since then I have been fascinated by End of the World theories and warnings.  Over the years I realized that at some point one of the whackos was probably going to nail down the right date.  Odds being what they are and all.  So whenever I see a new End of the World date pop up, my first thought is, "Hey, maybe this one is going to be right."

Imagine my delight when I heard the other day an interview with a fellow who is positive May 21, 2011 is our day of reckoning.  And by October 21, 2011, it is a done deal and only a select few will be allowed into Heaven.  The rest of us will end up in some galactic landfill somewhere.  The man went on to explain that once he was convinced it was all over in a few months, he actually became a happier man.  He stopped worrying about mundane realities of the physical world and concentrated on the world he was sure he was headed for.  He hoped to be one of the "chosen" who would end up poolside in Heaven sipping cool drinks and swapping tall tales with St Peter, Gabrielle, or maybe even the big guy himself.  He even claimed he had stopped paying bills, had not filed his taxes, and had given away almost all his worldly possessions. 

Is May 21, 2011 the date that will finally win the Armageddon Lottery?  Maybe, maybe not.  All I know is just to be safe, and make the right impression in the right circles,  I'm going to be sure I'm wearing clean underwear on May 21, 2011.

See ya soon.........................or not.  ;)

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Well Done Mr. President

My initial reaction when I heard Bin Laden had been killed was, "Jeez, about time ferchrisakes".   It was not until I had had time to really process the information and let it filter through all the pent up anger and frustration built up inside of me these past ten years that I experienced my true reaction. 

I was not dancin in the streets ecstatic, but I was pleased enough to high five and grin.  As the days passed since I heard, it seems a weight has lifted off of me.  The sorrow and grief from 9/11 ran deeper than I thought I guess.  America got a bit of closure and a much needed boost to our morale.  Suddenly we resembled our old selves again, if only for a few days. 

And how was news of Bin Laden's death received in the Islamic world?  At first like us, not much other than being stunned.  I think the entire world was caught way off guard by the audacity and daring of a US raid into the heart of Pakistan.  No immediate outrage, just muffled half hearted complaints at first from his supporters.  Al Qaeda  had been sucker punched.........hard.  And that pleased me immensely. 

What pleased me the most however, was the reaction from most of mainstream Islam.  Instead of the predicted outrage, I have the distinct impression a majority of the Muslim world is happy that Osama Bin Laden is dead.  Yes, he will always be a hero to the fringe lunatics who use terror to make their points.  But like I always knew, the average Joe Muslim is just like me, they just want to be allowed to carry on with their lives peacefully.  Like me, they hate that fringe voices have hijacked their culture and use it in all the wrong ways.  Maybe now the stupid, petty hatred many Americans have for any Muslim will ease up. 

And then this morning I read an article about the outrage of one of Bin Laden's sons.  Why was he not captured alive and given a fair trial?  His burial at sea was a purposeful slight to Islam.  His wives should be released immediately.  and so it went, blah, blah, blah.  Omar, his son, thought that his father should have been afforded the same right to trial as Saddam Hussein of Iraq and Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic. 

Dude, those guys were nasty actors for sure, but they were leaders of real countries that at least pretended to follow real laws.  Your dad was a thug without a country and deserved to be shot down like a mad dog.  He received much more respect than I would have given him. 

Which brings me to our president.  My internal polls regarding Barack Obama had been inching down these past few months as I watched him give ground to the ever increasing domestic stupidity coming at him from the Right.  But his ballsy call to go through with this mission just raised him back up in my eyes.  There is definitely steel in this man's backbone.  It appears to be high grade spring steel.

Well done, Mr President.

And to Seal Team 6 and all the military and intelligence people involved..... Excellent job guys.  Just excellent.


Saturday, May 07, 2011

The Perfect Ride

There are situations, points in time, lyrical moments that cry out for whiskey.  Some incidents and accidents insist on massive, almost intravenous infusions of good Kentucky or Tennessee sour mash.  Other circumstances, temporary moments of altered states lean to maybe sipping lightly from a recently  filled stainless steel flask pulled out new from the Quality box full of bike parts early in the day when Life was hectic and I needed something special to look forward to in order to keep me on an even keel as the world in my immediate vicinity threatened to spin out of control.

Smiling my way through the rest of my day's labor, I  eagerly anticipated this moment when I could enjoy my first sip from that brand new Stanley commemorative 8 ounce flask and consider a job I hope is well done.  Finally finished and more importantly, hoping what I have constructed will bring a smile to the man who will soon throw a leg over this "perfect ride".

I sit here wondering how to impart the pleasure of constructing something that was once but a concept of many parts coming together, coalescing in my mind so many weeks ago.  I pondered as I hung, draped, and installed the many and various parts, my feeling of ownership or maybe responsibility for this pinnacle of civilized machinery as it slowly evolved with each gee whiz part I screwed on and adjusted.  This bike was a thoroughbred, a A flirtatious filly that would need the right jockey to push her to her limits.  And this jockey would only be able to push her limits if I had done my job.

Building such a fine machine caused delays as I anguished every little thing.  From making sure the saddle was level to creating the best chain line possible.  I used emery cloth.  I used almost every tool I own.  I wished for tools not in existence. I sweated details like I almost never do.  And I cussed like I always do.  I refused to let it go until the clock had literally run out.  I have to hook up with the infamous John Fox on the Turnpike tomorrow to pass my handiwork off as he heads south of the Mason-Dixon line to deliver this 18.6 pound beauty into the eagerly awaiting hands of it's new owner, Dave the Punk.  And while all our backs are turned, Bike Shop Jim finds that first limit in the parking lot out back.

Suddenly the Presidents of the United States swing into gear and with the knob turned up to wow, rock hard with "Mach 5" ......Drive with the top down.  Or tip back, sit back,  throw back some fine spirits and ...................................Grin.

Monday, May 02, 2011

What I missed

Far out.  The planet spins whether I am paying attention or not.  Events ripe for commentary unfold without my knowledge and when I finally touch back down to Earth, I am overwhelmed by sensory overload.  Lost in my own little world this past month and a half, I have missed out on being there to see important events unfold, finding out about them only after the dust has settled.

I had heard about the Tornadoes of last week, but only now, as I peruse the still images of the damage and the casualty count am I able to comprehend how devastating the events were.  My reaction is probably the same, but damn if I don't feel like the guy who shows up after the beer run to find out Cal Ripken Jr. just hit a grand slam and I missed it because I was not there.

I just watched a video of Obama's speech at the recent White House Press shin dig.  Made me laugh out loud.  Barack got some pay back for the recent stupidity from the Right side over his birth certificate.  I loved it.  But it makes me wonder why he let it fester so long?  And then I remembered how I would have handled it had it been me.  It would still be unreleased.  I did really enjoy the hits on the Donald, who apparently is now complaining the President's remarks were "inappropriate".  That just makes it funnier.  You go Donald, you da man.

The one event I was almost on top of was waking up to the breaking news of  Bin Laden's death in Pakistan.  Turns out while we thought he was hunkered down in some uncomfortable cave in northern Pakistan, he was really living the high life in a mansion 35 miles from Islamabad, the capital.  Hmm.............. It took us 10 years to find him?  And the Pakistan government did not know he was kickin his heels up poolside in their back yard? ..................................... The fact we did not bring the Pakistan government in on the mission is interesting and disturbing at the same time.  There will be some fall out.............Well I guess it's a good thing he is dead.  But the victory has a bit of a hollow ring to it.

Because I have been so out of touch recently, I took at least 2 minutes this morning to find a site that wraps up the important news from around the World on a weekly basis.  Seems to be an objective site in that all they do is offer links to the stories themselves.  Of course their picks could be construed as manipulative and in the end they really want the reader to join some secret group hoping to overthrow some government somewhere just because..........well just because that's what secret groups do.

The story that caught my eye was that Superman renounces his US citizenship in the 900th issue from Action Comics.  What?  The man of steel is turning his back on the USA?  Why big guy, why?  Damn, I hope he is not emigrating to China. 

Now that Obama's long form birth certificate has been released, there are several Birthers (Fox & Friends, etc) who were very quick to point out the problems with this "real" certificate.  Apparently though, their new standard bearer, Donald Trump is satisfied.  Now he wants Obama to release his college records.  What's next?  Permission to view bedroom habits inside the White House?.........................Oh yeah, the Right has already been there, done that.  Never mind. 

It'd be nice if the Right, the Left, and the Press treated us like we have a brain and focused on events and issues that really matter.  But as long as we continue to focus on stupid stuff, they will always be there to feed it to us.

Stay sane, or as close as as you can get....................................