Friday, December 30, 2011

1%’ers Rule … literally

“What is clear is that members of Congress are getting richer compared not only with the average American worker, but also with other very rich Americans.
The median net worth of members of Congress jumped 15 percent from 2004 to 2010, the net worth of the richest 10 percent of Americans remained essentially flat. For all Americans, median net worth dropped 8 percent, based on inflation-adjusted data from Moody’s Analytics.” ~ excerpted from Dvorak Uncensored.
We are thinking of removing the office from the front bedroom and returning the room to what it is supposed to be; a bedroom. We will have to store much of the living room furniture so that my desk and junk will have room. We darn sure need an extra bedroom; Sammy will be wanting one of his own soon enough.
Have a good weekend!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Mice, television, and wild, crazy sex

Two mouse-free nights; two nights with no lamp on beside the bed; two nights without “them beady-eyed bastards” (Carolyn’s words) rattling around in the trash can.
I gotta do something about a bedroom TV; SHE is driving me nutty. Carolyn was as happy with the 11 local channels as she was the 200 channels on Directv; but now all she has is Netflix and all she wants to watch there is old-old westerns which she is getting bored with and she is driving me nuttier. Ah, I remember the good old days when her just getting in bed with me provided a full night’s worth of entertainment. Time marches on … and takes no prisoners.
Have a Thursday to remember … in a good way.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Life is a Gas … don’t strike a match!

As threatened, here is my Sammy post-Christmas update. Our jolly little Elf enjoyed opening his presents; in fact he took more enjoyment from the colorful wrappings than from the presents themselves. He now has two teeth all the way through his gums, therefore there will be no more using my knuckles for further teething. He was a bright spot for all of us on Christmas day.
RA doc appointment went as expected. She said my blood work was showing hardly any signs of RA which is very unusual for someone who has it as bad and has had it long as have I. She claimed the blood was more like a healthy 20 year old man than a decrepit 67 year old geezer. She also had my last heart doc tests and said my heart was like that of a healthy 40 year old man. I have also lost another four pounds in the past four months. All this together is too much encouraging news; must be something wrong somewhere. We wound up talking about my mental health and we both agreed there was much room for improvement in that area. She wrote me a prescription for a different sleeping pill, Ambien, and took me off my Xanax. I still have a order for Xanax tucked away in case of emergency. Maybe the mouse wars will not be so disturbing if the new pill works well.
Carolyn 2; mice 0! No mice disturbed Carolyn last night and she didn’t disturb me.
Have a wise Wednesday, my friends.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Post-Yule mutters

No internet for most of the day yesterday; somehow my router got hacked and I could not access it to fix it. Took a long time just to figure out the router was physically ok but had been tampered with.
Have to go to RA doc later today; no wonder I am grouchy.
The Escape is still not fixed; it did good for a few days but is back to the same problem once again.
Both our TV’s are broken; the one in the living room seems to overheat or something and cuts itself off and the one in the bedroom no longer shows our eleven local channels. That leaves us with nothing but Netflix and that is why it was imperative to get the router back into working order; no router = no Netflix. God, I would hate to have Comcast cable TV again. They are the most uncaring and arrogant company I have ever dealt with. I wish Charter had cable out where I live. Our local power board is supposed to have internet plus TV in the near future but I don’t know how near future.
Sammy was over Sunday afternoon and my blahs and blues magically disappeared. I hope to write more about his first Christmas later.
The mouse wars continue.
Have a Tuesday!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

A day may be a lifetime

I am hoping everyone is having a wonderful Christmas.
I am trying not to be sad today, but as I think about holidays of the past and the people whom were so familiar and are no longer with me, my eyes are moist as my soul openly weeps my thoughts. Family, friends, and special acquaintances are smiling through the ages as a flood of beautiful Christmases of yesteryear sweeps by; each of them continuing to lighten my heart and brighten each day.

I also miss Jeremy and Courtney and Remy and Bubba; I miss Keegan in faraway South Korea. I also miss not having an opportunity to see baby Sammy open his presents on his first Christmas eve. There will be more Christmases I suppose, but as the years string out behind me I more and more realize that a day may be a lifetime.

I am dedicating this Christmas blog to Sammy, hoping he will continue receiving the love he needs and giving all the love he has. Merry Christmas, my little friend and may they be merry for plentiful years to come as you live a full and happy life.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Mouse wranglers wanted

Sammy and Sock Monkey from Tammy
Thursday 1:45am: The mouse (mice) renewed his attack against Carolyn's sanity. I tried my best to be an innocent bystander but when one of the critters is only inches from her nose, Carolyn is not going to let me be. She left an empty snack wrapper on her nightstand and little mouse was investigating it; loud enough to wake her up and make her lay awake for three hours with the light on. Of course, I wasn't allowed to go back to sleep until after she finally dozed off. Yesterday, she bought and set eight traps, four of them in our bedroom. To compound that, she left her nightstand light on all night. I took two Xanax and was able to get through the night undisturbed. Apparently, little mouse didn't show up in the bedroom but I noticed this morning that he left a calling card on my desk.

The world will surely miss former Czechoslovakian President Vaclav Havel. He was a true Freedom Fighter for Eastern Europe and an inspiration to the world. Hopefully the next generation of Havels will rise from the Arab Spring movement and the Occupy Wall Street Movement.

Mark, if your garden area is close to deciduous trees, try adding some lime to the soil to sweeten it; the leaves and tree sap are highly acidic and some lime will help the balance. Best to work it into the ground in fall or early winter but adding in spring will help.

Have a good weekend and Merry Christmas, my friends.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Christmas Mouse

I don’t sleep well most nights but last night began as an exception; I put my book down at 11:30 and was soon gone. Suddenly, I felt something hit my knee a good, hard blow. I quickly awakened to find a bedside light on and the missus sitting up in bed. “Wayne? Wayne! There’s a mouse in the trash can!” When she came in from work, she made herself a sandwich and brought it to the bedroom to eat. It must have not been a good meal because she stuffed half of it into her nearly empty potato chip bag and and told me to toss it into the trash can which is on my side of the bed. The mouse must have appreciated her generosity. “What time is it?” I asked. She replied it is one twenty-five and time for me to get up and catch or kill the mouse. I listened for awhile and never did hear anything from the trash can so I grabbed my huggy pillow and put it over my head, intending to go back to sleep. “Wayne! I can’t sleep with that mouse in here!” Apparently I can’t either,” I replied. After nearly a half hour of listening–I damn sure wasn’t going to inventory the trash can; I’ve been mouse bitten before–I convinced her to turn the light off so I could go back to sleep. In a few minutes I heard “I have to go to the bathroom.” “Go!”, says I. “I’m afraid I’ll step on the mouse,” says she. So we both turn lights on and she tiptoes to do her thing and makes a mad dash back to the safety of the bed, in as much as an out of shape old woman can dash. She eventually turned her light out and dozed off, leaving me wide awake and staring at the ceiling. When I did go back to sleep, I had a nightmare about a giant red-eyed Christmas mouse wearing a Santa hat between its antlers and sporting huge, gnashing canines chasing me through some woods. I woke up in a sweat and tossed around for awhile before once again snoozing. I didn’t wake up again until the alarm went off at seven-thirty. Every bit of the sandwich she did not eat was missing from the chip bag in the trash can, along with the chips.
Carolyn has gone to the hair dresser and is threatening to buy some mouse traps on the way home; I hope she doesn’t until after Christmas; even a mouse should be respected and tolerated during this holiday season of good will toward men. Maybe a nice tiny red ribbon on a piece of sharp cheddar cheese behind the tree where Carolyn can’t see it? Merry Christmas little mouse; Merry Christmas everyone!
Today is the shortest day of the year in our earthly hemisphere; at 30 minutes past midnight tonight local time, the sun will begin its slow return toward the equator, eventually carrying spring and summer along with it.
Have a great last Wednesday of Autumn, 2011!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

For the birds

Our bird feeders are attracting a decent crowd of small diners. Plenty of chickadees, tufted titmice, white breasted nuthatches, hairy and downy woodpeckers, and finches are using the facilities. On the ground are mourning doves, cardinals, blue jays, and starlings. The fringes support sparrows, mocking birds, and wrens. There are probably more which I haven’t seen yet, and there will surely be some additional varieties come spring. There are also the ubiquitous squirrels; we are now up to at least four head roaming the back forty.

Except for sore knees and some foot swelling, I feel better today than I have in a week or more. Late Sunday and part of the day yesterday I had chills, a bit of nausea, and a lot of quality time on the throne. I suppose I am just acting my age like my granny always told me to do when I was a little boy acting like a littler boy.
Life consists of three distinct sections: Optimism of youth, caution of middle age, and W.T.F. of  the elderly.

Have a good Tuesday all over the place.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Lover excerpt

Another piece of my Lover story:
I made quite a bit of money during harvest time, and the work left me strong, tanned and a bit wiser, ready to face whatever the winter months decreed. I gave the money to Mama, but she refused to take it for herself. She instead deposited in a savings account she had opened when Daddy first left home and until then, she hadn’t told me about. I returned to school that eighth-grade year a different man. I was myself beginning to find a few scraggly hairs under my armpits and down below where I thought  nothing would ever grow, but growing was happening there and all over my body as muscles began to replace baby fat and my voice almost overnight went from a squeak to nearly baritone; I found I could carry a tune but vowed no one would ever hear me sing it. Instead of looking much like an oft-used soap stick, I had broadened my shoulders and was beginning to resemble an adult human. I wanted so much for Darla to be there so I could show off my muscles to her. During all that time, I heard nothing about her and didn’t know if she was well and as happy as possible or if she was pining away for the lights of Paris, or worse, found another boyfriend which was a soul shattering thought. Then one day in mid-September as I returned home from school and checked the mailbox, in it was a postcard addressed to me. On it was a pretty photo of Virginia Beach and the Atlantic Ocean. It was postmarked in Salem, Virginia, the town they had moved to. On the back Darla simply wrote ‘Wait for me. xoxoxo’.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Five days until midwinter solstice

There was a puddle full of bathing, fat and sassy looking robins across the street this morning; probably late south-migraters. Anyway, I was happy to see them.
Finally got the Escape engine problem fixed; it needed spark plugs. It is doing ok now but it has some other age problems that have to be dealt with.
Carolyn is going spastic; she has lost or misplaced her key and remote door lock for the Escape. Also the mailbox key is with it. It will cost $50 or more to replace the car key and remote; I can do without a remote but she constantly loses the car in the Wal-Mart parking lot and has to toot the horn with the remote so she can find it. I told her the best cure would be to stay away from Wal-Mart and any other place that has “Mart” or “Mall” as part of its name.
I didn’t sleep well and lay awake reading a Perry Mason mystery: The Case of the Runaway Corpse.
Have a splendid weekend!

Thursday, December 15, 2011


Sammy was here yesterday; he tried to smile and laugh but I think the new teeth are causing him problems. It doesn’t take much to set him to crying. I hope he gets to feeling well enough to make a Merry Christmas video so I can post it on Youtube.
I spent the morning working on business stuff but my brain is still out of gear and its motor only idles. ‘Tis the Season … tax season.
We’ve been having our December warmup where the temps moderate to near shirt-sleeve tolerable; now a cold front is about to move through.
Ten years ago, I celebrated my last Christmas with my Mom and 40 years ago I celebrated my last Christmas with my Grandma. You will find them both in my stories from time to time and you can always find them in my heart.
Have a thankful Thursday, dear Friends; all of you are in my heart, too.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011


Jingle bells ring and small coins ting
Birds don’t fly when baked for a king
It’s Christmas time and I ain’t got a dime
Broke in The Season is so a crime
Trees hardly shiver
When cold winds come hither
Hams don’t bake and chickens don’t fry
Pecans are just nuts in a gooey pie
Santy ain’t here; never has been
The manger is took by a laying hen
Beasts of the fields and birds of the air
All they got is feathers and hair
Place your orders ’cause the day is Black
Havin’ a sale for the lord’s haystack
Peace on earth and good will to men
Totin’ a gun to cast out sin
I was wrong; Santy is back
In the chimney with his big ol’ sack
Bendin’ over the tree is a timeless fact
“Dude, you’re showin’ your crack”


Mark's Christmas Porch
I suppose Donald Trump now realizes just how unpopular he is; even his gobs of filthy money can buy but two Republicans. Buy me Donald; I have no scruples whatsoever.

Love Facebook? Read this.

I read that 49 percent of Americans think President Obama is a dud. The myopic electorate is finally catching on to what many of us have known since before he supported Bush’s and Geitner’s T.A.R.P. I hate to think that Obama and whatever slime ball the Republicans come up with is our only choice until 2016; déjà vu all over again.

My advice to Europe’s sovereign countries; unless you are going to become a united nation of nation-states, get as far away as possible from the Euro standard currency. The Euro was created to support the European and international banking industry and resulting in the general populace receiving only trickle-down benefits. Ask the average American worker how well ‘trickle down economics’ works.

Have a good’un!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

On the first day of Christmas my true love sent to me — A partridge in a pear tree.

Jeremy sent me several photos of him and Courtney and I will post some of them on the blog from time-to-time. They are both photogenic as all get out.

Thank you Alice for the lovely Christmas card. Thank you Tammy for the soap for my yearly bath, cards, pistachios, and the sock monkey for Sammy. Thank you Jola for the beautiful cards and coaster from Warsaw. I will try to make photos later on. These cards and gifts mean a lot to Carolyn and me.

I’ve been dealing with an RA flareup for several days and have been on the net but little. I am behind on blog reading and writing. I am feeling a bit better today and need to get back to Lover; I am at more than 11,000 words into it and have a lot to add yet. I’m nowhere near half-way through with unedited text.

Sammy may come over today; I hope so.

Have a Tuesday!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Happy Birthday, Maggie!

Happy Birthday, Maggie!
Mark placed some of his photos in a gallery and he has announced via his blog that some of them are selling. Congratulations, my friend.
Have a good Worshday!

Friday, December 09, 2011

Happy Weekend!

Sammy was over yesterday; he has two teeth coming in. We thought there was only one until he nipped the end of Carolyn’s nose.
Didn’t sleep well last night; Carolyn and I both have scratchy throats and coughs. Of course, eye allergies are making the day miserable for yours truly.
I am trying to find a Christmas present online for Carolyn; it is difficult to buy for a woman who wants everything.
Time for more eye drops; have a great weekend!

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Thank You

V.F.W. Honor Guard preparing to fire 21-gun salute for Carolyn's uncle Haskel
Carolyn and I thank everyone for the kind condolences. The graveside service had to be held inside at the cemetery chapel; it was raining when we got there and snowing when we left.
Carolyn and I have been sick for several days; we are following Sammy’s lead. He has already had everything we are experiencing but unlike we old fuddy-duddys, he keeps on smiling.
I ain’t trusting Russian politics anymore than I trust United States politics. Just beneath the surface of Russian power lies the vestiges of communism which seems to still be fairly strong and a Putin dictatorship is a possibility, too.
Thursday already? Have a good one.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011


Just this morning found out Carolyns nearest relative died Monday. We will be at the cemetery in Bristol, Virginia this afternoon.

Sammy’s first tooth is coming through.

Have a good day, my friends.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

In Passing ...

Spots of age blemish once youthful green
gray skies crown waning days
The year has become long in the tooth
its life quietly passing away

Heavens cry in cloudy multitudes
though not with tears of grief
As days hastily conclude
embracing a last falling leaf

Rains are as jewels of renewal
when new beginnings near
Nature sings her timeless hymns
hinting of an awaited new year

Virgin is the wakening world
ripe with fertile seed
Bursting with life unspoiled
which naught may impede

Life may go on without us
fragile humans which we be
All things become a distant chorus
in this universal symphony

Saturday, December 03, 2011

Dodge Charger R/T 440 vs. Ford Mustang 390 GT 2+2 Fastback = Bullit Fun

If you watch this clip. notice that during the chase the cars pass the same green Volkswagen Beetle at least three times: @ about 4:12 then @ about 4:40 then again @ about 4:50 into the chase. Don’t tell me I’ve nothing to do.

Friday, December 02, 2011


Yesterday, Carolyn took two of her prescriptions to the new Walgreen’s Pharmacy in Jonesborough; she had been using Wal-Mart Pharmacy in Johnson City but Walgreen’s is closer to our new abode. Fortunately, she asked the price before buying at the new place and it was $225 for three months supply of generic medicine. She told the man that she could get the same thing at Wal-Mart for less than $25 and he only shrugged and handed her prescription orders back to her. She drove the extra three miles to Wal-Mart where, for the inconvenience of having to go into the store and wait for a few minutes instead of using Walgreen’s drive-thru, she got both prescriptions filled for $20.
I was listening to National Public Radio yesterday when they interviewed an award winning poet. Well, I liked her work ok, and I figured if she is an award winning poet, then I am a pretty damned good one too.
I have almost decided to incorporate myself. My entity will be known as The Mother Duck Project and I have already begun using it to watermark my photos on Megashot. The corporation will cover my photos and writing efforts.
Will Santa bring Tammy a white peacock for Christmas?
Have a great weekend!

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Red Clay Ramblers

One of the Best Bands in the USA

Seems like both Iran and Great Britain are itching for a fight. Have a good one, boys and girls.

I still say Obama is a hypocrite and more than likely will be a worse president than W. Bush. I wish the Democrats had someone to put up against him but it looks like politics as usual will win again. I can’t see any Republican who is now running that can beat Obama; J. Bush might have a chance in the hunt because he is pedigreed with papers, blue ribbons, rabies and distemper vaccination, and all other conservative requirements.

Sammy spent much of the afternoon gnawing an arthritis knot on my knuckle; all I could do was grin and bear it. For a man who has never had a tooth in his head, he has some mighty hard gums.

I’m officially done with winter for another year; come on Spring!

May your Thursday thrum be insignificant.

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