Monday, August 02, 2010

That's Crazy

Heard on the news that sobriety check points in California process 800-900 cars when set up. They also boast removing 8-10 impaired drivers.

My math tells me that is about 1%.

Can it really be that many? In a city of over 14 million, that's a bunch of drunk drivers.

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Sunday, July 04, 2010

The Last Airbender

Ok... July 4th weekend. Spending it alone in Long Beach, CA. Thought I'd see a movie or two.

I spent $21 bucks. 9 on the movie (thank God for matenés) and 12 on popcorn and a drink.

The special effects were ok.

The water effects reminds me of The Abyss and that was how long ago? But then again how much can you improve on water effects.

The fire was nothing exceptional either. Except when the uncle made fire on his hands. The close up was cool.

3D... am I missing something? You can't watch the movie without the glasses, so I don't know but it really doesn't seem all that spectacular. Maybe it is because the movie was transferred to 3D and not shot in 3D. Time will have to tell.

The not so special effects... The benders tattoo seemed to move. Anything from the bridge of his nose to almost a half inch above his eyebrows. I would think since his tattoo was a major part of his identity, everyone would be on making sure it DIDN'T MOVE! Sheesh!

'We have to go' was the drinking phrase of the movie. And a big part of the mellow drama/over acting.

Do yourself a favor. Wait for the DVD. A buck on Red Box and 20 on you favorite cocktail will make a better evening than what I did.

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Friday, June 11, 2010

I Just Got Slapped In The Face


Not really. Figuratively.

All my life, I always hated the fact that 'old' people resisted change.

"why do you need to be in the internet so much?","why do you have to have a pager", "I'll never use a cell phone and you don't need one" were just some of the jewels I grew up with.

Sometime there in my past I swore I'd always embrace new things… I've had a SLR digital camera for years. Cell phone, got it. Get a new one every time I can and always use the early upgrade. Camera phones, blackberry, full internet access. DVD recorder, got 2. Blue-ray, got it. 2-terra byte external storage hard drive, got one!

Today, I was asking for assistance in Word… 2007. I hate it, it's different, why did they mess with my WORD?! I could use MS Office products like nobody's business. Linking OLE objects, nesting data and graphs in Word then linking that to P-Point.

I was a Pro.

As I was grumbling about damn MS and changing the software, someone here quipped, 'damn MS for evolving!'

- - SMACK - -


I'm getting old . . . time to accept the new MS Office and stop resisting change.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Speedway Bill

A friend died last weekend. I am sadden by the loss and heartbroken that I could not return to Indiana for the funeral. The funeral was today.

I was there in spirit...

I've been thinking about him and his family all day.

I first met Bill in the summer of 2006. Memorial Day weekend. A 'come one, come all' invite had gone out to all Indiana Patriot Guard Riders to come on down to Speedway for a BBQ. For those that don't know, the Indianapolis 500 is actually not held in Indianapolis. It is in a small land locked town inside Indianapolis city limits called Speedway.

Bill and his family have lived there many years, 15 if I remember correctly. As I rode in on my '83 Shovel, making enough noise to wake the dead, Bill took notice and smiled. I walked over and introduced myself and immediately I was welcomed. "There's the food, the hog will be done about 6. The beer is in that cooler, soda in that one. Pull up a chair. Welcome." The same welcome happened several times and many new friendships were started.

We sat and chatted, under a checkerboard sign that read "Welcome Scuzy Mucks". A nick name given to the regulars that attended Bill's BBQs. I still smile when I say that name. I don't know that I ever fully became a 'Scuzzy Muck' to the other guys but to Bill, I was one of them.

Bill Mummert a.k.a. SpeedwayBill, was laid to rest today. His smile and selfless service for veterans and the Indiana Patriot Guard (IPG) will be greatly missed. Bill's family honored the IPG and invited us to attend his viewing and memorial service.

Rest in peace Bill and God's peace be with the family.

Monday, May 03, 2010

I'm Allergic to Sea Food

Shell fish specifically.

I can eat and do love fish and chips.

Tonight I had the halibut and chips at El Segundo Fish Co. In, go figure, El Segundo, CA.

If you should find yourself in the area, give them a try. Portions are good, service was friendly and the price was reasonable.

Including a beer, my dinner was $21.

El Segundo Fish Co. I will be back!

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Why The Gun Is Civilization And the Real Author

I do not really assume myself to be a writer. I do however appreciate good writing and do get rather irked when credit is not expressed correctly. I often spend hours looking for proof of authorship to articles and emails I am sent. I do this usually hoping to find other articles written by the claimed author but sometimes I find that the email has been mis-attributed. The below was emailed to me and "Why The Gun Is Civilization" is one of those ‘mis-attributed’ works. In my feeble effort to have those that may search for Maj. L. Caudill USMC (Ret) find the correct author, Marko Kloos, I have posted both names here. And reposted the full article... AND links back to the original and a discussion on plagiarism and attribution.




Why The Gun Is Civilization

Written by Marko Kloos 23MAR07 link

NOT Maj. L. Caudill USMC (Ret) link

Human beings only have two ways to deal with one another: reason and force. If you want me to do something for you, you have a choice of either convincing me via argument, or force me to do your bidding under threat of force. Every human interaction falls into one of those two categories, without exception. Reason or force, that’s it.

In a truly moral and civilized society, people exclusively interact through persuasion. Force has no place as a valid method of social interaction, and the only thing that removes force from the menu is the personal firearm, as paradoxical as it may sound to some.

When I carry a gun, you cannot deal with me by force. You have to use reason and try to persuade me, because I have a way to negate your threat or employment of force. The gun is the only personal weapon that puts a 100-pound woman on equal footing with a 220-pound mugger, a 75-year old retiree on equal footing with a 19-year old gangbanger, and a single gay guy on equal footing with a carload of drunk guys with baseball bats. The gun removes the disparity in physical strength, size, or numbers between a potential attacker and a defender.

There are plenty of people who consider the gun as the source of bad force equations. These are the people who think that we’d be more civilized if all guns were removed from society, because a firearm makes it easier for a mugger to do his job. That, of course, is only true if the mugger’s potential victims are mostly disarmed either by choice or by legislative fiat–it has no validity when most of a mugger’s potential marks are armed. People who argue for the banning of arms ask for automatic rule by the young, the strong, and the many, and that’s the exact opposite of a civilized society. A mugger, even an armed one, can only make a successful living in a society where the state has granted him a force monopoly.

Then there’s the argument that the gun makes confrontations lethal that otherwise would only result in injury. This argument is fallacious in several ways. Without guns involved, confrontations are won by the physically superior party inflicting overwhelming injury on the loser. People who think that fists, bats, sticks, or stones don’t constitute lethal force watch too much TV, where people take beatings and come out of it with a bloody lip at worst. The fact that the gun makes lethal force easier works solely in favor of the weaker defender, not the stronger attacker. If both are armed, the field is level. The gun is the only weapon that’s as lethal in the hands of an octogenarian as it is in the hands of a weightlifter. It simply wouldn’t work as well as a force equalizer if it wasn’t both lethal and easily employable.

When I carry a gun, I don’t do so because I am looking for a fight, but because I’m looking to be left alone. The gun at my side means that I cannot be forced, only persuaded. I don’t carry it because I’m afraid, but because it enables me to be unafraid. It doesn’t limit the actions of those who would interact with me through reason, only the actions of those who would do so by force. It removes force from the equation…and that’s why carrying a gun is a civilized act.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

I Have A Question

I had the privilege of dinner with my boss and his son this evening. We went to watch the Lakers play and as fate would have it the game was a blowout. For me, being one of the first times I actually went someplace to watch a basketball game, it was kinda boring.

Now, just for the record, this was not a baby sitting father and young son night out. Mark and Michael are both adults. They are co-managing the company as the elder imparts years of wisdom in the younger. Their conversations are varied and often passionate.

I can't help but smile at the struggle I know they have as the wisdom doesn't quite hit home for the younger and the unbridled passion to jump in with both feet escapes the conservative nature of the elder. I know my sons and I had these same struggles and I wonder who in my life was watching and smiling as I do now.

As the three of us sat half not watching the game the conservation took many paths, work, the people there, LA, the mid-west... politics.

The younger says to me "my dad wants to ask Obama a question. Has he told you? Dad, tell DNR what you want to ask President Obama."
The elder says to me, "Why do you want to change this country? I hate communism [socialism]. He is trying to make this country into a social state. Take my money and give it to people that have never worked. Not poor. Never tried. This is a wonderful country, you can be anything you want, you want a lot of money, you can make it. You want to be President, YOU can be President. When I left my country they were bringing about change. We were a strong country. Our currency was accepted all around the world... now &%€@ [cursing in another language]. My question for my Obama is this, 'what did you have when you were eleven?' [looking at me with great passion in his eyes] What did Mr Obama have when he was eleven?"
"Nothing." I replied. Half expecting an 'ah-ha' gotcha. But he simply asked "what does he have now...? He is President. Why does he want to change this country?"

So, Mr Obama, we have a question. After nearly 50 years, you have gone from (by all accounts) nothing to President. If it worked for you, Why do you want to change this country?
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Saturday, April 17, 2010

1.2 Miles

Not 1,200 or 2,400 like it used to be.

Life finds me now living one and two tenths miles from the beach. Today is my second or third trip to the place where sand meats water. Since the kayaus that was my life recently has subsided I took time this visit to look, to see.

Remember back in the 70s, there was a PSA commercial where an American Indian would stand someplace and observe the trash blowing up at his feet and we would see a tear fall down his cheek?

Today I watched the tattered remains of a gallon milk jug wrestle with the surf. Ten feet out, two feet, stuck in he sand, lifted back up and taken another six feet out. Ultimately is settled on the shore, partly stuck in the sand. I'm guessing it will stay there till next high tide, then be pushed further up on shore.

Where I sit right now, maybe 20 feet from the water, there are cigarette filters galore, packing peanuts, foam coffee cup scraps, a literal plethora of plastic bits and pieces AND too many other things to mention. I know on the coasts they don't necessarily use landfills as much as us inlanders do. They use ocean dumps. Now, I don't know if the stuff here on the beach with me is just trash from last years beach crowd or if it is the ocean returning to us what is truly ours but I do know it's shameful.

I know why coastal living folks are so pro recycle. This 'stuff' is literally in their back yard.

As conservative as I am, I, personally, need to do a better job reusing the stuff that I have.

As for the milk jug...
I put it in a trash can but I can't help but wonder, will it be back?

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Sunday, February 21, 2010


Sitting in a LA area Starbucks, some things occur to me.

I couldn't help but smile at a young Asian couple with their very young daughter. Speaking Chinese (I'm guessing) they chatted. Mom would giggle and chatter something while pointing at the little girl. Dad would smile and look at her in his lap and she would beam with a child's innocent smile. Absolutely the most precious thing I've seen in days.

This are has a lot of Asians. LA is the new mixing pot of America.

Four young men are sitting. outside chatting in their language. I can only imagine it is politics. Heh, maybe they are talking about the fat white guy typing frantically in his BB. LOL!

Outside there is blazing sunshine, palm trees, snow capped mountains, and thunderstorm clouds hugging some of the lower peaks. Truly an amazing place.

I could learn to like LA.

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