Thursday, June 28, 2007

Conservatively Speaking........

Things are not going very well if you like freedom, fairness, and liberty. Little by little, in ways too complex and subtle for the average American to notice, we are losing our personal freedoms in this country. Here's the latest steps backward at the hands of our government officials:

Who Needs Diversity, Seperate IS Once Again Equal

Thanks to our incredibly stupid Supreme Court, public schools are no longer able to allow their districts population to be moved around to ensure racial diversity. Make no mistake about this, today's decision is a very real threat to Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka KS. There is a reason that decision was reached almost 50 years ago and it's only a matter of time before this current "Bush" court allows for this law to be repealed.

The Constitution Is Play-doh

Once again our sovereign leader---oops did I just say that?---has chose to ignore the tenants of our Constitution and invoke the joke clause, otherwise known as executive privilege, and refuse a subpoena. I don't mind challenges to the Constitution, no true fan of our government should, but this guy uses the document like a sculptor uses clay. You don't like the shape? Just change it or ignore it.........what, you can't do that because your benefactor says it's wasteful? Then just get a specialist to come in and razzle-dazzle them until they forget what they wanted and agree to it under different verbage. Yeah elected officials, no wonder you half-assed supported education reform to make it look like you cared, but secretly set in motion a system to create thinkers to stupid to see what your little gang is doing!!!

It's just so nice to know how closer this country is slipping down a spiral towards a kleptocracy. I can't wait to get my GPS chip!!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Of Interest

Some of the things I've learned today from just a slight perusing of today's headlines:

In a pinch, you can use a mixture of toothpaste and pancake batter to conceal a "booty call" tunnel.

Apparently there is trouble in Scott City Missouri, inmates used a crude digging tool fashioned out of common prison materials ala' MacGyver, then cut a cement block out of a wall in order to allow a female prisoner to enter the cell of a male inmate, probably to recite Russian poetry and proper shiv technique. To avoid getting caught, they created a mixture of tooth paste and pancake batter to cover the hole and prevent it from being detected.

Canadian petro companies are considering using nuclear energy to pump oil.

Does anyone find it ironic that a company that exists to gain profit from burning fossil fuels, is considering using a competitive form of energy to perform their business? It's almost like Bill Gates using a Mac. Makes me wonder how the environmentalists are thinking about this?

If you shave off all your hair and cover your bald head in racist tattoos, you might be able to "blend" back into society.

Another white supremacist kills someone to escape prison. Normally someone that escapes from prison tries to hide; avoid being discovered; let's say "blend-in" regardless of the methods they use to effect this. I don't think its a stretch to say that. The guy here on the left that you're looking at is that guy. I'll let the photo do the talking on this.

Giant-Ass Penguins Roamed Ancient Peru

I know most people could care less about news of this type, but it has always fascinated me. It always takes me back to my childhood and allows me to look at life as a child once again. Think about it, wouldn't the world be a much more interesting place if 5 foot tall penguins wandered through the equator? Sometimes if I'm walking in a nature preserve or wooded area and stumble upon a goose, it hisses and startles me, sending my heart racing. Just imagine yourself in only Bermuda shorts, flip flops, and suntan oil laying on a Caribbean beach and a giant bird only slightly shorter than Sylvester Stallone appears out of no where? It would scare the living crap out of me. Just check out the picture of the fossil with this giant beak and I think you'll understand.

That's all I've got for today.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

The Week That Was..

It's been a pretty active week around here for me lately, so where do I begin?

I've decided to put off the surgery on my hand for the time being. As much as it hurts and as much as I'd like to get it done, I just don't feel good about having myself basically operating on just one hand. When I have the surgery I don't think I'll be able to use that hand for a few weeks at least, but most likely it will be closer to 2 months. With that kind of recovery schedule ahead of me, I think it would be wiser to wait until we sell the house and move into the new place.

Speaking of the house, we had another open house today. I was at work for it, but Meva said we had a handful of people stop by with some mixed feedback. A few liked it, a few said it was too much money for them (don't ask me why they came if that's how they felt) and we had one neighbor who wanted to check us out because she's planning on putting her house on the market soon and she wanted to see what she had to compete with. It's not what I had hoped for in results, but we'll have to wait and see what happens.

Friday is my kids 1 year birthday. In some ways I can't believe that they're already going to be a full year old, but then in other ways it seems so much longer. It goes without saying that my life is completely different than it was a year ago, and I can't even imagine it without my three beautiful children. I can't wait for the next year just to see how they grow.

Meva and I are planning on taking the kids to Ohio next weekend for the 4th of July holiday so her mother can see the kids for their birthday. It will be nice to see Meva's family again and visit with everyone, but if it's anything like last time, this means even more work for me and less sleep since the kids will be off their normal schedule and very cranky. It will all be worth it though.

IN a completely unrelated note I just want to say that I can't stand Bernie Mac at all. I don't know what he's like in person, but when I see him on TV giving interviews or talking, I just want to cringe and look away. Something about the way he talks or acts just makes me feel uncomfortable.

That's it for now, I've got to figure out what I'm going to do for my wife tomorrow since it will be our 7th wedding anniversary.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Elmo is going to get me killed

Lately I've been spending my precious free time managing pain and trying to devour The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon. The pain isn't that bad, but with it located in my offhand thumb, it does make simple household chores a bit of a problem, and on busy days I find it aching to the point that I don't want to even use the hand.

The reading of AAKC has been a true joy for me, and the farther I get into the book the more it pulls me in. That's the kind of statement you want to say about anything you read, and I can see why this book won a Pulitzer Prize. I have Brain K. Vaughn to thank for recommending this to me. In a very brief email exchange with me he suggested I read the book and remarked that he was jealous of anyone picking it up for the first time because of the sense of wonder and energy you get. I've probably got less than 100 pages left, but I can already agree with him there.

Yesterday was a bit surreal. If I were to give it a headline, Man Threatened With Death Over Missing Elmo. Seriously. That's the type of bizarre crap that you really can't make up.

In a nutshell, I spent just under $20 on eBay to get my daughter a stuffed Elmo doll, because she truly loves that little red muppet. I pay on time, but it never comes. I pay for priority shipping, but it's sent media mail. When I inquire about this, the seller refuses to acknowledge that and says she will refund my money when I send the box back to her.

I don't have the box or the Elmo!!!!, that's the problem.

She still doesn't get it.

After going through more emails, more patience, and the resolution processes of both eBay and Paypal (through which I paid) I am finally forced to try and contact her on the phone. Let's just say she's nicer in her emails than in person. She's not home, so I leave a message and say I'll call back later. Approximately 5 minutes later she calls me from her work and proceeds to yell at me about how big of a jerk I am and then hangs up on me. I tried calling her back (her number came up on caller ID) but I was gettng a voice mail system and hung up in vain. She immediately calls me back and condemns me for harassing her at work, calls me a bitch, and threatens to "whip my azz."

Did I mention she lives in Baltimore and I live in Illinois?

Now at this point I get a bit ticked off and I decided I would call her work and let the top person there know about her behavior and how she uses company time and resources. I make approximately 6 calls and get nothing but the automated voice mail. Turns out she's the top dog, must be one hell of a company.

But it doesn't end there, oh no. That would be far to easy.

I get another phone call, this time from the woman's husband. Among the many fallacies and ridiculous statements he made was
  1. that he "listened" to me harass his wife 8 times on the phone (yet we only talked twice)
  2. that I had no right to call her at work (although she called me from there)
  3. that he was a law enforcement officer
  4. that my house was going to be ransacked (for what, he never really could explain)
  5. that he would personally come over to my house and beat me up
  6. he wasn't just a law enforcement officer, but a Federal Officer
  7. as such everything is within his jurisdiction,
  8. he couldn't name the branch of federal law enforcement he worked for
  9. and finally, that he was coming over to my house to "bust yo muthafuckin head in and keel yo azz," and then he hung up on me.

I'm not making any of that up. That's what he said and how he talked.

Although I am a bit embarrassed to admit it, just to be on the safe side, I did file a police report. I don't really expect anything to happen, but on the off chance that this knucklehead actually travels for his job or something, through eBay he does have my contact information. The last thing I really want is to end up as part of a special report of Dateline NBC or something.

All this because I love my daughter and wanted to buy her a stuffed Elmo doll.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Slow News Day

On a day of events that are of serious importance to this country and the direction we may be headed in our involvement in what has become an Iragi Civil War, namely the replacement of the chairmen of the Joint Chief of Staff and news that the US is arming Iraqi nationalists to fight al Qaeda, the same nationalists who were fighting the US just two months before.

Instead of important coverage of these important events, the nation was bombarded with coverage of Paris Hilton being forced from her home and back into court and told she had to return to jail. Much was focused on her screaming and crying as she was led out of the court room, obviously in tears.

It is an absolute blasphemy to every US citizen that this was the focus of the media world today. The only redeeming quality of the whole ordeal is that it's a strike against the rich and famous getting special treatment by our legal system. Horray! Let's just hope that it's not a momentary lapse of logic and common sense that slipped in between political special interests and old-boys club networking.

On a personal note, I just loved hearing that she broke down in tears and cried for her mom! I love comeuppance.

On a more personal note, I really got hooked on a subparly written TV series called Jericho, that was canceled by CBS. I've just hear word that they've since been picked up as a mid-season replacement for next year with the ordering of 7 new episodes.

By the end of July I will have made two trips to Ohio, had two birthday parties for the triplets, one major surgery, two separate medical procedures, and countless other projects to complete around the house as I keep it in condition for all the showing we have. I'm also still going to try and work every weekend that I possibly can during this time. There's a full plate if I've ever seen one.

In the meantime I'm going to try and write as much as I possibly can before I am unable to for a few weeks.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Still No Cause For Concern

It's been over a month since I last posted here. At the risk of sounding cliche, it's been extremely busy for me. I have some sick relatives who are fighting for their lives, my wife and I am trying to sell our house, and then there is the old standby---we're raising 11 month old triplets by ourselves. So to be sure, I've got a full plate.

In addition to the above, I've been undergoing occupational therapy for my thumb joint. Forgive me if I mentioned this in detail before, but my problem is that I have arthritis in my joint that connects my thumb to my hand. The picture to the left there shows the joint that's been causing me trouble for the last 4-5 years. Near as my doctor can figure out, I broke my hand a few times over the last 15 or so years and never had it treated. The result is that I no longer have any cartilage between that joint, causing the lovely sensation of bone rubbing on bone.

We tried the long shot of trying to improve the pain management with the therapy, but that was more to appease the insurance I have because let's be honest here--- how in the hell is moving my thumb in circles going to grow more cartilage?? It's not, but logic isn't something that is always used in medical decisions. So after three weeks of therapy sessions my thumb hurts worse and is less flexible than it was before. Thank you HMO of Illinois.

What happens next is going to be surgery. Usually this type of situation happens to the elderly, not someone under the age of 40 like myself. I think the most common type is to remove one of the bones in the joint, thus alleviating the pain. The other type is to fuse the joint together. The latter is the surgery I will be having. It's going to restrict some of my mobility, but I won't lose nearly as much strength as I would if they removed a bone. I'll meet with that doctor next week and I should have some better idea of when everything will come into place.

My wife also thinks that I might be having some difficulty with stress management, so she's scheduled me to undergo a thallium stress test. I don't know all the specifics of this test, but my wife seems to think this would be a good idea for me to do considering my age and other health factors. The basic gist I've gotten from this is that I'll be running on a treadmill hooked up to a bunch of monitors that basically checks to see how well my heart pumps blood and how the flow of blood to and from my heart is doing. Damn thing will take three hours supposedly. If they think I'll be running for three hours, I can already tell them that isn't going to happen no matter how hard I try. We'll see how that goes.

In other news, my sister is getting ready to move from Arizona to Kentucky. She's getting the normal pangs of doubt at the moment, but it's a good idea for her and she knows it, so I don't expect her to change her mind. Although she'll be away from her grandson, she'll be a lot closer to me and my kids, which will be nice.

That's it for now, the kids are up from their nap and wanting to eat.