Saturday, 20 June 2009

Recent readers of this blog, geographical analysis

United States [68%]
United Kingdom [14%]
Germany [4%]
South Africa [2%]
Canada [2%]
Sweden [1%]
India [1%]
Poland [1%]
Iraq [1%]
Portugal [1%]
Israel [1%]
Moldova [1%]
Hungary [1%]
France [1%]
Japan [1%]

Friday, 19 June 2009

Big fat juicy hamburgers, and other stuff

When I was in the work world I was well organised. There were tasks at hand, and by and large I would accomplish them in an orderly and prompt way. I would often make lists of “things I had to do” the next day.

In retirement there is always “tomorrow”. So I have become a bit of a procrastinator where tidying up, doing dishes, ironing etc. are concerned.

Penne my dog takes longer to find the perfect place to poop than some humans take to choose a life partner.

Adelaide, the junior cat, loves to be outdoors. I watched her this afternoon as she rolled over and over on my driveway, in apparent bliss to be in the great outdoors. Later she came to the back door, mewing to be let in. As soon as I opened the door she ran away - just to annoy me.

Ada, the senior cat prefers to eat and sleep. Or sleep and eat.

It seems that debit card readers at gas stations and supermarkets may be too clever by half. Gas station readers demand my zip code, ask me whether or not I want a receipt, and when I think that they are done, ask me whether or not I want a car wash. At the supermarket the readers ask me first for my pin, then whether I want “cash back”, and then if I will accept the amount. I have never dared press “no” to this last question.

This being done the clerk tells me that I have saved 40 cents. I always want to say “no I didn’t save that amount” it’s simply that I did not spend it.

“Not spending” and “saving” are two different matters.

I think that the use of debit cards has slowed transactions.

There is a house on 17th Street which bears homemade signs advertising articles for sale. One of the signs reads “Golf Ball’s”. If 17th Street were not so busy I would stop and get rid of that apostrophe.

Yesterday I was walking with Penne around the lake. I saw a stray dog, some 20 yards away, on the other side of the lake. Another (dog less) walker approached me, and pointing to the stray asked “Is that your dog?”


I couldn’t resist my naughty impulse. Pointing at Penne, at the other end of the leash which I was holding I said “no, this is my dog”.

I wanted to say “what a stupid question

“Lust” is one of the seven deadly sins. I have been filled with lust today. Lust for a big fat juicy hamburger with cheese and bacon, and a huge side of fries. I ate salad for lunch and a tiny sirloin steak with steamed cabbage for dinner.

But Ben and I have agreed to go in search of the ultimate hamburger for lunch tomorrow.

I love being a cranky and inconsistent retiree!


Penne upside down

Penne and Adelaide

Political Apology

Dear Constituent,

I regret having the affair, taking the bribe, lying to the committee, sitting on the report, raiding your trust fund, hiding the evidence, fudging the numbers, cooking the books, blocking the investigation, leaving the filthy voice mail message, spilling the beans, fabricating the facts, sending the inappropriate email, granting the crony special favors, dodging the question, violating the ethics code, missing the deadline, blowing off the meeting, circumventing the proper procedures, throwing the tantrum, leaking the classified information, covering up the money trail, accepting the unlawful gifts, destroying my opponent's reputation, playing the race card, egging on the crazies, making the crude analogy, deleting the files, cutting off the funding, violating the protocol, starting the bar fight, speeding through the red light, shouting obscenities during the commencement speech, and kicking the cat.

I assure you it was all just a simple misunderstanding.

[Name Withheld] United States Congress Washington, D.C.

P.S. Please donate to my re-election campaign. Together, we can make a difference.

Thursday, 18 June 2009

Thunderstorms: G-d and me

(Image from NASA)

My good friend Ben invited me to dinner tonight, and I was glad to accept. He is a funny and truthful pal. He is also a good cook!

As I sat on his Lanai before dinner I heard rumbles of thunder in the distance. I enjoyed this sound. It brought back some good memories.

English children of my generation were told that the sound of thunder was caused by the delivery of coal in heaven. I s’pose we were told this so as not to be afraid. In fact, I (and probably most other children) knew that this was a silly tale, and we sensed that we should be nervous in the face of thunderstorms cos our parents were nervous.

I wonder what English children are told these days. They have never seen or burned coal, let alone witnessed its delivery.

I learned to enjoy thunder and lightning storms. I remember cuddling in a car with my girl friend Jan back in about 1965. We were in rural Worcestershire, and had stopped in the face of heavy rain as a massive thunderstorm. As we cuddled we revelled in the sights and sounds of the storm.

(Jan was a wonderful woman and I loved her greatly. But I knew that we could never be married as I would ever be tempted to be unfaithful - but with a man.)

My lovely dog “Penne” is totally unafraid in the face of thunder and lightning. For that I am grateful.
And I truly enjoy thunderstorms! We had a massive one on Wednesday night (bringing much needed rain)

English children of my age were told about the delivery of coal.

A much earlier generation saw violent thunderstorms as a sign of the majesty of G-d. One of the most poetic descriptions of such a storm is found in the Psalm below. It is one of my favourites.

Thunder and lightning storms are like sex. They are a fabulous mixture of beauty and danger.

Psalm 29 (Book of Common Prayer version)

Ascribe to the LORD, you gods, *ascribe to the LORD glory and strength.

Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his Name; *worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.

The voice of the LORD is upon the waters;the God of glory thunders; *the LORD is upon the mighty waters.

The voice of the LORD is a powerful voice; *the voice of the LORD is a voice of splendor.

The voice of the LORD breaks the cedar trees; *the LORD breaks the cedars of Lebanon;

He makes Lebanon skip like a calf, *and Mount Hermon like a young wild ox.

The voice of the LORD splits the flames of fire;the voice of the LORD shakes the wilderness; *the LORD shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.

The voice of the LORD makes the oak trees writhe *and strips the forests bare.

And in the temple of the LORD *all are crying, "Glory!"

The LORD sits enthroned above the flood; *the LORD sits enthroned as King for evermore.

The LORD shall give strength to his people; *the LORD shall give his people the blessing of peace.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

A change of tone, with a bit of silliness

On the first day of school, a first-grader handed his teacher a note from his mother.
The note read, 'The opinions expressed by this child are not necessarily those of his parents'.

A woman was trying hard to get the ketchup out of the jar. During her struggle the phone rang so she asked her 4-year-old daughter to answer the phone. 'Mommy can't come to the phone to talk to you right now. She's hitting the bottle'.

A little girl was watching her parents dress for a party. When she saw her dad donning his tuxedo, she warned, 'Daddy, you shouldn't wear that suit.' 'And why not, darling?'

'You know that it always gives you a headache the next morning'.

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Another reason why the G.O.P. makes me friggin' angry

This picture was sent out by a staffer at the Tennessee G.O.P. Here's the story

It purports to be a chart of American Presidents.

Do we believe that racism is dead in these United States?

Do you understand why I am pissed off at the G.O.P.?

Do you remember in which State the Revd. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr was assasinated?

Monday, 15 June 2009


The G.O.P. is launching a series of attacks on the President’s health care reform plan by labeling it as “socialist”.

This begs a few questions!

First: What is so implicitly evil about socialism? Have G.O.P. members never read any history – and therefore do they not understand that there have been versions of democratic socialism in western Europe which have been hugely successful.

Second: When Republican administrations bail out failed Saving and Loans, or failed Banks, why is this called “prudent business” and not “socialism”?

Third: Would every honest and fair minded Republican please henceforth refuse to receive Social Security or Medicare health benefits. If Republicans are so opposed to “socialism” it seems fair to ask that they refuse to benefit from these “socialistic programs”.

Sunday, 14 June 2009

Summer Classes for Men ( thanks to my pal Elizabeth Kaeton for this)

Summer Classes for Men at

by Friday, August 17th 2009

Class 1
How To Fill Up The Ice Cube Trays--Step by Step, with Slide Presentation.
Meets 4 weeks, Monday and Wednesday for 2 hours beginning at 7:00 PM.

Class 2
The Toilet Paper Roll--Does It Change Itself?
Round Table Discussion.
Meets 2 weeks, Saturday 12:00 for 2 hours.

Class 3
Is It Possible To Urinate Using The Technique Of Lifting The Seat and Avoiding The Floor, Walls and Nearby Bathtub?--Group Practice.
Meets 4 weeks, Saturday 10:00 PM for 2 hours.

Class 4
Fundamental Differences Between The Laundry Hamper and The Floor--Pictures and Explanatory Graphics..
Meets Saturdays at 2:00 PM for 3 weeks.

Class 5
Dinner Dishes--Can They Levitate and Fly Into The Kitchen Sink?
Examples on Video.
Meets 4 weeks, Tuesday and Thursday for 2 hours beginning
at 7:00 PM

Class 6
Loss Of Identity--Losing The Remote To Your Significant Other.
Help Line Support and Support Groups.
Meets 4 Weeks, Friday and Sunday 7:00 PM

Class 7
Learning How To Find Things--Starting With Looking In The Right Places And Not Turning The House Upside Down While Screaming.
Open Forum
Monday at 8:00 PM, 2 hours.

Class 8
Health Watch--Bringing Her Flowers Is Not Harmful To Your Health.
Graphics and Audio Tapes.
Three nights; Monday, Wednesday, Friday at 7:00 PM for 2 hours.

Class 9
Real Men Ask For Directions When Lost--Real Life Testimonials.
Tuesdays at 6:00 PM Location to be determined

Class 10
Is It Genetically Impossible To Sit Quietly While She Parallel Parks?
Driving Simulations.
4 weeks, Saturday's noon, 2 hours.

Class 11
Learning to Live--Basic Differences Between Mother and Wife.
Online Classes and role-playing
Tuesdays at 7:00 PM, location to be determined

Class 12
How to be the Ideal Shopping Companion
Relaxation Exercises, Meditation and Breathing Techniques.
Meets 4 weeks, Tuesday and Thursday for 2 hours beginning at 7:00 PM.

Class 13
How to Fight Cerebral Atrophy--Remembering Birthdays, Anniversaries and Other Important Dates and Calling When You're Going To Be Late.
Cerebral Shock Therapy Sessions and Full Lobotomies Offered.
Three nights; Monday, Wednesday, Friday at 7:00 PM for 2 hours.

Class 14
The Stove/Oven--What It Is and How It Is Used.
Live Demonstration.
Tuesdays at 6:00 PM, location to be determined.
Upon completion of any of the above courses, diplomas will be issued to the survivors