Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Big City Wing and a Prayer

Just like every other EMS unit, we had the chance to do transports. Now, good old Stump Water General Hospital can deal with a lot of things, but sometimes it's just a good idea to send folks to the next larger facility.

The Regional Hospital and Valet Parking Lot has a cardiac wing. It's brand new and has some high powered doctors there. When a patient gets a little too aggravating we would carefully haul their mouthy butts to the big city, and drop them (not literally) at the Cardiac Wing and a Prayer. Problem solved.

On this particular day we had a large man with a whiny attitude and four IV pumps. If I am in bad enough shape that I need four IV's going at one time, I think I'll just shut up and do as I am told. Not this dude, complain non stop, I don't want to go there, I want to go home. I want this, I want that, we all want something.

A little silence would do me good about now.

You folks can deal with whiny boy I'm driving, how big of a hurry are we in?

Not much?

I Thought so.

Off we go on our relaxing little trip to the big city, whiney boy is nonstop complaining. By the time we got there we were ready to do a drive by and just roll him out the back. We can't, so we actually park, roll him through the ER and down to the Wing and a Prayer.

This new wing has a cool layout, the nurses station is in the center with all the rooms laid out like spokes on a wheel, with the monitors duplicated in the nurse’s desks. Every patient has his or her own nurse assigned for individual care. WOW!

We bring in whiney boy, move him to the bed, and start removing the IV pumps; he's still running off at the mouth. About the time I get really fed up, in the door cruises a lingerie model with two pumps in each hand.

Heh!

I know what picture just popped into your perverted little mind, but no, she was wearing scrubs.

Long blond hair, blue eyes, beautiful skin, athletic figure, and a smile fit to give you sunburn. I never missed a beat, I told him, "All right killer, you drive back, I'm staying with her!" The poor dear wasn't expecting that, she turned so red she blushed to her wrists.

I had to drive back anyway.

My Apologies to One Rough Diamond

I have just posted RD's link because I was stupid and forgot for a while. Nightshift I think. Anyhoo: That's my story and I'm stickin' to it.
DW

They forgot the Southern Republican,

Are you a Democrat, Republican or Southerner?Here is a little test that will help you decide.The answer can be found by posing the following question:

You're walking down a deserted street with your wife and two small children.Suddenly, an Islamic Terrorist with a huge knife comes around the corner, locks eyes with you,screams obscenities, praises Allah, raises the knife, and charges at you. You are carrying a Glock . 40cal, and you are an expert shot. You have mere seconds before he reaches you and your family. What do you do?................................................

Democrat's Answer:
Well, that's not enough information to answer the question!Does the man look poor or oppressed?Have I ever done anything to him that would inspire him to attack?Could we run away?What does my wife think?What about the kids?Could I possibly swing the gun like a club and knock the knife out of his hand? What does the law say about this situation?Does the Glock have appropriate safety built into it?Why am I carrying a loaded gun anyway, and what kind of message does this send to society and to my children?Is it possible he'd be happy with just killing me?Does he definitely want to kill me, or would he be content just to wound me?If I were to grab his knees and hold on, could my family get away while he was stabbing me?Should I call 9-1-1?Why is this street so deserted?We need to raise taxes, have paint and weed day and make this happier, healthier street that would discourage such behavior.This is all so confusing! I need to debate this with some friends for few days and try to come to a consensus.................................................

Republican's Answer:BANG!................................................

Southerner's Answer:
BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG!BANG! Click..... (Sounds of reloading)BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG!BANG! Click
Daughter: "Nice grouping, Daddy! Were those the Winchester Silver Tips or Hollow Points?"
Son: "Can I shoot the next one!"
Wife: "You ain't taking that to the Taxidermist

The Southern Republican:
He (or she) knows those cowards travel in packs, and doesn't waste ammo.
A Glock .40 holds from 9 to 17 rounds depending on the model, plus one in the chamber and, no one carries a clip half full.
He also is conversant with the Marine Gunfight Rules, anything worth shooting is worth shooting twice.
He will have taught his daughter that Silvertips (and there is only one Silvertip) are Hollow points.
He will likely have weapons to arm the children, can't have too many backups.
He will remember the words that go with "shoot" are "move and communicate".
He will be covering while the family moves laterally to a place of safety and the second in command,,, uh, wife calls for reinforcements,,, uh,,,uh,,dials 911.

This turned up in the files a while back, author unknown, the last part is mine

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

The Love of My Life


I think of my wife as the greatest love of my life all the time. Simply because she is, and always will be.

She is vertically challenged, blond, with the most pleasing curves and cushions. She is meticulous in her dress, make up, and hair. She has a girly love of shoes and jewelry. I think there has to be some bird in her 'cause she is mesmerized by shiny stuff.

She can be hard as steel and cold as ice when she has her back up, but normally she is so sweet sugar won't melt in her mouth. I think sometimes I could eat her with a spoon.


She is a little more cautious than me in most things. A little less cautious with money than me. She can cook, but allows me to prepare anything I want, almost. She has soft hands with steel in her grip. I think a foot rub does things for her that I won't go into here.
She is a city/beach girl, who is way too cute to be married to a mountain troll like me. She is Mimi to the grand babies and of course Mom to the kids. She can be more than a little stubborn, I don't have a stubborn bone in me of course. *sniff*


She is an enigma surrounded by a puzzle. She has a light trigger and a clean break. She is charming, but can quick freeze with a word and one eyebrow can change your life without changing her tone.
If I tell her "don't do that", consider it done.

We're working on that.

Monday, January 29, 2007

The New York Slimes

The New York Slimes took two Internet pages for this article, and the last paragraph was, "on the other side"


http://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/28/washington/28protest.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

Worms!

John Frickin' Big Mouth Kerry

Who the mortified Hell does he think he is? A nonproductive, lying, two faced gigolo, supported by a gold digger. They don't even pay taxes, for cat's sake, and he is critical of every thing he knows nothing about. I wish I had enough money to invest in tax free bonds so I wouldn't have to pay taxes. I also have high confidence I would be smart enough to keep my yap shut, cause if you ain't pickin' up your part of the tab, the only thing you are entitled to is a great big cup of shut the F**K UP! Freedom of speech doesn't keep anyone from thinking you're an idiot!
Voltaire said "I disagree with what you say, but I would fight to the death for your right to say it!" He's right, I agree completely, and with that right comes the responsibility for what you say. This French wanna be is, as we say here, puttin' on airs. He is a failure elected by ghetto rats looking for a hand out, who presumes to have insight into the working of this country. He needs a job for the summer, drive a cab, work retail, just learn what work is, and what a dollar is really worth in sweat and back aches. He needs to find out what happens when you give a hungry man a hand out, in stead of a hand up.

Moron!

Expensive toys

About fifteen months ago the love of my life caught the biggest fish of her life. It was the maximum length allowed for a Red Drum, and you would have thought it was going to drag her tiny butt in the ocean. She got her picture in the local fishing paper and everything. On the way home I stopped to buy some fishing stuff, and found a replica that matched her fish, we now have it on the wall. We filleted it and blackened it for dinner, I thought the woman was gonna need a cigarette when she was done.
A little later I engaged in a risky behavior, I started thinking. I conceived the, not too original, idea of getting her hooked into something really big. I have played big fish until my arms were limp and had to hand them over to the crew. I have also seen folks get an unexpected hit while bottom fishing and almost go over the side. I plan to tie her and the rod to the boat so as not to lose either. I don't know why it appeals to me, but I want to see the look on her face when she drags something big and toothy into the boat. I am thinking King mackerel, or Cobia. She can't bottom fish because she heaves when you stop moving, so trolling may work. We'll see.

The end result of the thinking was to buy a boat. I am now the sometimes proud owner of a center console fishing boat. GPS, fish finder, VHF radio, maps, more fishing rods and tackle. I love gadgets, the GPS is way cool, and the fish finder is great. Looking forward to the fresh protein this summer, see you there.

On Any Sunday Morning

When you belong to an emergency service organization you have to do things that most folks just never think about. That's a good thing in most cases.

Every one watches some TV and it's hard to avoid picking up, what appears to be, useful in the real world. People should remember these programs are, for the most part, entertainment. They are allowed to take liberties with facts and reward the good guys with results that are far beyond the real world. CPR is a good example, I do it when needed, but I don't believe it to be effective. When I say, "I do it", I do it exactly as I have been trained.
Most cases of CPR that I have been unlucky enough to observe or participate in, we saved a turnip. No brain function, just a pulse. Then a few days later the family gets to kill the loved one when they have to decide to pull the plug. Ugly at best.


I got one of the calls that we all hate. Possible cardiac arrest, nonemergency, children can't wake their mother. At this point we are doing the funeral home a favor. Drive the speed limit to the station, pick up a unit, drive to the address, at the speed limit. PD is there, walk in check a pulse, absent. The body is starting to cool, it's most obvious at the top of her head. She was under heavy covers and the house was warm. We went out to wait for permission from the coroner to move the body.

A pretty upset officer came out to say, "You have to come in and explain to them why you can't revive her." The children were in their sixties and had some interest in medical programs. They absolutely knew we could shock her and bring her back. There was no way to know how long the children had been trying to wake her, but I knew we had taken way more than four minuets to get to the house.

The next time you get bored, get up before you really want to, then go down to the hospital and explain to the loved ones that momma is graveyard dead, and nothing anyone can do will bring her back. Oh, and while you're at it, don't make anyone cry.

It was just like in the old movies, everyone walked away and then looked back at me.

Goody, I get all the fun jobs.

I try to leave my heart outside, but it always follows me in. I explain to the children, where to check a pulse, why she is still warm. I tell them about the lack of oxygen to the brain. I tell them that the shock only works on a heart that is beating too fast. I have them touch her head to feel how cool it is. The overall effect is a loving goodbye.

Yes sir, EMS is glamour and saving babies, the patients are all starlets, that would be in your district brother, not mine.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

RULES OF THE SOUTH

I have no idea where this come from originally, sent to me by a guy raised in Harlem

A friend just moved from Southern California to South Carolina and he e-mailed this. He said they gave it to him at the state line.
If you are going to live or visit in the South, you need to know these rules:

1. That farm boy you see at the gas station did MORE work before breakfast than you do all week at the gym.

2. It's called a gravel road. No matter how slow you drive, you're going to get dust on your Navigator. Drive it or get out of the way.

3. The red dirt -- it's called clay. Red clay. If you like the color, don't wash your car for a couple weeks -- it'll be permanent.

4. We all started hunting and fishing when we were seven years old. Yeah, we saw Bambi. We got over it.

5. Go ahead and bring your $600 Orvis Fly Rod. Don't cry to us if a flathead breaks it off at the handle. We have a name for those little 13-inch trout you fish for -- bait.

6. Pull your pants up. You look like an idiot.

7. If that cell phone rings while a bunch of mallards (ducks) are making their final approach, we will shoot it (the phone). You might want to ensure it's not up to your ear at the time.

8. No, there's no Vegetarian Special on the menu. Order steak. Order it rare. Or, you can order the Chef's Salad and pick off the two pounds of ham and turkey.

9. Tea - yeah, we have tea. It comes in a glass over ice and is really, really sweet. You want it hot -- sit it in the sun. You want it unsweetened -- add a LOT of water.

10. You bring Coke into my house, it better be brown, wet, and served over ice.

11. So, you have a sixty thousand dollar car. We're real impressed. We have a quarter of a million-dollar combine (it's farm equipment) that we only use two weeks a year.

12. Let's get this straight. We have one stoplight in town. We stop when it's red. We may even stop when it's yellow.

13. We eat dinner together with our families. We pray before we eat (yeah, even breakfast). We go to church on Wednesdays and Sundays and we go to high school football games on Friday nights. We still address our seniors with yes, sir and yes, ma'am, and we sometimes still take Sunday drives around town to see friends and neighbors.

14. We don't do hurry up well.

15. Greens - yeah, we have greens, but you don't putt on them. You boil them with salty fatback, bacon or a ham hock.

16. Yeah, we eat catfish, bass, bream (pronounced brim) and carp.. You really want sushi and caviar? It's available at the bait shop.

17. They are pigs. That's what they smell like (money). Get it -- pig farms -- income -- money? Get over it. Don't like the smell? Interstate 77 goes two ways Interstate 20 goes the other two. Pick one.

18. Grits are corn. You put butter, salt, and maybe even some pepper on them. If you want to put milk and sugar on them, then you want Cream of Wheat -- go to Kansas. That would be I-20 west.

19. The Opener refers to the first day of deer season or dove season. Both are holidays. You can get pancakes, cane syrup, and sausage before daylight at the church on either day.

20. So every person in every pickup waves? Yeah, it's called being friendly. Understand the concept?

21. Yeah, we have golf courses. Don't hit in the water hazards. It spooks the fish and bothers the gators...and if you hit it in the rough, we have these things called diamondbacks, and they're not baseball players.

22. That Highway Patrol Officer that just pulled you over for driving like an idiot...his name is Sir, no matter how young he is.

23. We have lots of pine trees. They have sap. It drips from them. You park your Navigator under them, and they'll leave a logo on your hood..

24. You burn an American flag in our state, you get beat up. No questions. The liberal contingent of our state legislature -- all four of them -- enacted a measure to stop this. There is now a $2.50 fine for beating up the flag burner.

25. No, we don't care how you do things up North. If it is so great up there, why not stay there?

26. And no, down here we don't have an accent, you do.

In God We Trust.
YA'LL COME BACK!

The Season Approaches

I suppose there are a lot of people who plan their lives around some regularly occurring cycle. Farmers, retailers, teachers and in the coastal southeast everyone plans around hurricanes. I am not the old hand some folks can claim to be. I have only experienced seven or eight direct hits and several sideswipes. Now that I think about it, that’s quite a few. We have hurricane preparation stuff on TV, and Radio. We have tracking maps in the news paper. In season we watch the coast of Africa with the corner of the eye, so to speak, for six months. This is all very low key, but we're paying attention. There is advice a plenty for the novice storm watcher.


All the hoopla about getting ready is misleading. The best way to get ready, is to never be, not ready. Have the water (or plans to get it), batteries, food, and what ever it will take to see you through a couple of weeks available, always. Sound pretty ambitious, not really. Major cities below sea level are a special case, so we won't address their problems. In our bailiwick most areas are above the one hundred year flood plain. After a couple of recent years complacency among emergency planners isn't a problem. Most folks on my street have generators, gas grills and lawn sprinklers, and chain saws (I have three). I have a hand pump. Unless there is a massive strike that floods major roads, and we have had those, getting food and fuel in can be done. If there is fuel, then we will have the ability to cook, wash, communicate, and live fairly normally. We may be a little weird, but most people I know have their stock piles, and only have to rotate a few things.

There are lists available of things to lay in, meds and money are very important. In this age a stock of batteries is in most homes. I will have fifty gallons of gas for the generator, it's in the boat. The Bronco holds twenty four,and I have six five gallon cans. I keep six or so twenty pound LP tanks, and one forty pounder. The camper will hold the stock of foods and be strapped to the truck. If that blows away, ten thousand pounds, we have other problems. Something that we will do is cover the front window. If the windows blow in it will pressurize the house and take the roof off. The weather service always gives the max sustained winds and gusts, those numbers come from about two hundred feet up. Down on the ground, it's always much less, thank goodness for that. The trees and buildings provide turbulence that reduces air velocity at ground level. The unknowable that will kill you is tornadoes, most wind fatalities come from small twisters.


If you wait to get ready just before the storm hits, expect to suffer. The store shelves will empty as people who aren't ready, or even thinking about it, rush in to stock up. The gas lines will be long, ATM's will run out of money, and inevitably prices will go up. I will go soon to replenish stocks of staples, canned goods, toilet paper, all the essentials.


Part of my family is an object lesson in "What you should never do" in storm response. First and most important, a cat five storm is the wrath of God. If it is coming, run away, very far, as fast as you can. Which way? Use the lesson of the runaway train. If you must run from a runaway train, don't run down the tracks. It will catch you. My brother in law, God bless him and keep him, decided to run away. He took my daughter, my mother In law, his wife and two daughters, two yapping dogs and two cars. He ran down the storm track to another brother in law's house. This poor unfortunate had his wife, mother in law, a couple of daughters, and two more yapping dogs. You can total that up, I don't think I can stand it. Most of these ladies, and I love them all, have never seen a truly well day in their lives. They are Southern ladies and though they tolerate each other, it's just hard to get along. Trouble on the horizon, as I live and breathe, and that's before the wind starts to blow.


Fortunately for one and all, the storm didn't make land fall as a five, three I think. There was enough rain to make you look for animals pairing up, and think seriously about looking for gopher wood. The waters rose,,,,,and rose,,,,and then rose some more. I started to worry some when the Coast Guard started to round up coffins that had come out of the ground, and two hundred pound hogs were drowning while hanging in the tree tops. Back at the brother in law's house the fun began. A very large tree fell on the house and a couple of cars. The lights went out. The river cut the town off from all exits, trapped like rats they were. The next disaster was courtesy of the city, the water failed, and to make life just a little more fun, they ran out of toilet paper. No matter all the other little inconveniences, never, never, never allow the toilet paper to run low. About this time they started to miss the visiting brother in law, he had found out the dude next door was really prepared, tons of beer on ice. God love him he was willing to share. They were trapped in that little slice of perdition for almost a week. The girls, wanting to share their burdens with the brother in law, made sure to keep him close by, out of reach of the beer. If the brother in law had committed suicide, we would have all understood.


I am so glad the love of my life is more than a little muley, she will not leave the area for any storm. That may cost us one day, but it kept her out of that melee.
I'm going tomorrow to get a case of toilet paper.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Just when you think no one is looking, Someone is looking

As a lesson to all the young and over confident, let me relate the following cautionary tale. The story starts a long way back in my history, about thirty four years ago. I was about to be married for the first time, and a couple of my "buddies" wanted to party one last time before the big day. On this Friday night we jumped in the hot rod of choice, and drove to the Queen City of the South, there being a larger collection of places to get foolish than in our section of the sticks. Boy! Howdy! I have been around the block a time or two since then and still couldn't find a better place to go stupid by the numbers.

The helpful twosome who carted me off were the kind of friends that give your mom gray hair and high blood pressure. When we went out around home, these clowns would buy a half gallon of whiskey, open it and throw the top away. There are way too many nights that are a blur, with only a few flickering pictures. There was that girl in the pool room wearing not enough to be called demure, sitting on the edge of the pool table within pinching distance. Before you make any hasty judgment, no I did not touch her, else she probably would have killed me with a pool cue. I did think about it, and I still remember after all this time.

Needless to say we had quite the time. I wasn't allowed to spend any money so the beer flowed freely. I wasn't paying a lot of attention to how many, I just didn't want to run out. We all know that when you drink beer, very soon you have to dispose of the processed liquid. The facilities were arranged to accommodate a crowd, that is there was a long wall with twenty seven or so stand up fixtures, one sink and one sit down fixture. Everything was in use except the sink and sit down fixture. The wait is about to come to an end one way or the other, not wanting to wee in my pants, I have to go now. One of my guys started for the stand up, you guessed it I got the sink. Trust me no was going to wash his hands in there, so here we go, and as I go, the guy at the stand up starts to squall. His leg is getting wet, someone has removed the j trap and I am weeing down his leg. Big laughs all around by the twenty six not in our party.

Fast forward seven years. I am in the men's room of the training building at Stump Water Nuclear Power Station. The facilities are fully occupied, thinking nothing about it, I make the off the cuff remark about using the sink. From behind me a voice says "I thought I had seen you before.", and proceeds to tell me the time and place, and the name of the bar.

Always remember, when the IQ pionts melt away and you are about to commit a basic error in judgement, just when you think no one is looking, someone is looking.

An Island of Calm,,,,most of the time

I was reading over at "A Day in the Life of an Ambulance Driver" where he mentioned that EMS generally doesn't save lives, we package and transport mostly. 90% of the calls are BS, 5% are illness, 4% injury, 1%real emergency. The function of the EMT is data gathering and support, so the real life savers can keep them breathing for the healers. He did mention being an island of calm in the whirlwind of emotion surrounding the unfortunate. That takes concentration.

I have seen the result of an elderly woman dying in the presence of her friends in the nursing home. There wasn't an IQ point to be found in the room, until I closed her eyes and started giving orders. I'm sure that later I was thought to be a complete and perfect ass, but order was restored, and needful things were done.

I have had other departments comment on how calm and professional I sounded on the radio. Little did they know, the panic below the surface was fighting to get loose. On one notable occasion I was confronted with an MVA with three vehicles and four PI's, one unit and driver, me! That will make you reconsider a lot of things. Thank the good Lord that people with other departments just crawled out of the wood work and pitched in.


I have blundered into a cardiac arrest, in a gas station, and had to verbally throw cold water on everyone who arrived on the ambulance, to keep them from injuring all of us on the ground.


Sometimes you get to indulge in an emotional reaction. In a small town you tend to know everyone, so when you arrive at an accident you know some of the injured. I distinctly remember ripping the compartment door off of the crash truck to get the Hurst tool, when a friend was pinned in a crash. It was the old seventy pound titanium monster, not that I noticed until the next day, nope too busy turning a car inside out to release a friend. Sore as if I had been in the crash.

Most of the appearance of calm is a deliberate effort to not sound stupid in front of the world by pushing the button on a high powered radio and proceeding to go bat s**t on the air.

Nobody would believe how many times I have wanted to just scream for help and run for the hills, but you just can't do that, because you are there and you have it to do. The idea of me shrieking like a school girl and running for cover is hilarious anyway.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Marine Gunfight Rules

These are ubiquitous, I would give credit but I don't know the author. They are fun but true, any Marines seen these before, in training perhaps?

1. Bring a gun. Preferably, bring at least two guns. Bring all of your friends who have guns.

2. Anything worth shooting is worth shooting twice. Ammo is cheap. Your life is expensive.

3. Only hits count. The only thing worse than a miss is a slow miss.

4. If your shooting stance is good, you’re probably not moving fast enough nor using cover correctly.

5. Move away from your attacker. Distance is your friend. (Lateral and diagonal movement are preferred.)

6. If you can choose what to bring to a gunfight, bring a long gun and a friend with a long gun.

7. In ten years nobody will remember the details of caliber, stance, or tactics. They will only remember who lived.

8. If you are not shooting, you should be communicating, reloading, and running.

9. Accuracy is relative: most combat shooting standards will be more dependent on “pucker factor” than the inherent accuracy of the gun.

9.5 Use a gun that works EVERY TIME.

10. Someday someone may kill you with your own gun, but they should have to beat you to death with it because it is empty.

11. Always cheat; always win. The only unfair fight is the one you lose.

12. Have a plan.

13. Have a back-up plan, because the first one won’t work.

14. Use cover or concealment as much as possible.

15. Flank your adversary when possible. Protect yours.

16. Don’t drop your guard.

17. Always tactical load and threat scan 360 degrees.

18. Watch their hands. Hands kill. (In God we trust. Everyone else, keep your hands where I can see them).

19. Decide to be aggressive ENOUGH, quickly ENOUGH.

20. The faster you finish the fight, the less shot you will get.

21. Be polite. Be professional. But, have a plan to kill everyone you meet.

22. Be courteous to everyone, friendly to no one.

23. Your number one Option for Personal Security is a lifelong commitment to avoidance, deterrence, and deescalation.

24. Do not attend a gunfight with a handgun, the caliber of which does not start with a “.4”

Bonus Navy Rules to Gunfighting
1. Go to Sea
2. Send the Marines
3. Drink Coffee

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

The victims aren't always on the stretcher

I have belonged to several volunteer rescue organizations and several fire departments over something like twenty five years. I always liked the idea of helping people, and I won't lie about it, I love to drive fast. The bigger the truck, with lights and music, the more I like it. Air horns are just over the top.

Some of those departments would actually give you money for running calls! I always found someone who needed those checks and donated them to who ever was needy and handy. I can say, honestly, that I have never accepted money for my service. Strange, I know, but there you have it.

Every medic, regardless of their level of certification, has a few calls that will make them cringe to remember.

The local area is a retirement community, lots of people with medical histories and frailty. Some are around long enough to become friends and neighbors. Some become frequent fliers, while others just become memories. Some of then I can see with my eyes closed.

One gentleman known to us had a lengthy history of heart disease and disability. His home, where he lived with his wife, had the only stair elevator I have ever seen. He was apparently an active man until his later years,and disability did not sit lightly with him. I met him while he was in ICU wired up with every monitor known to our local hospital. When I saw him first he was asleep, and not looking to well. He woke up and we chatted for a while, until I had to leave, and he went back to sleep. The next time I saw him he was dead.


The nice old man was sick and tired of being sick and tired. He felt he didn't want to be a burden, and would never be better. His answer was to put a shot gun in his mouth and make a statement. It's been eleven years and it just occurred to me the heart rending discussions he probably had with the woman who will miss him until she dies. His wife was in the kitchen and heard a sound like slamming a door, and went to check on the noise. She found him in a condition that left the medical examiner doing shots before going to the morgue.


The squad got a call, possible suicide, and the address was really close. I rolled the unit to the corner, the detective asked us to wait at the street until called. Can't argue with them, so we took the unit to the rear drive and waited. All you LEO's know the drill, document everything and take pictures, statements, bag it and tag it. While all this was going on four of us were waiting at the lower level.

One of the county tech's looked around the yard, flinched and said "My god is that what I think it is?" I am afraid it was, she told the detectives, and then went and gathered up the debris. I went later and found the missing parts of the skull. About this time we got close enough to see the blood. It is startling to see how much blood a person has in them. It's been a few years now, so the memory of the delays have faded, what transpired has not. Those of us on the scene, with the acquiescence of the police, decided his wife should not have to deal with the cleanup. The old gentleman was in the screens, on the windows, driven into the eaves, out in the yard and down on the patio. We rinsed, bleached, soaped and washed like crazy people. We never got rid of the smell of blood. One of the ladies went automaton on us and scrubbed the wall until it had to be re stained. I tore out the screens and made certain nothing of him was left to stumble upon. The house was never the same. It was sold shortly after.

Stories like these never have a happy ending. The morning will come but it rains the next day. If you can believe it we had an event shortly after this that was worse, it almost trashed the entire Fire Department. We went through a Critical Incident Stress Debriefing, I'm not sure what that accomplished.

There is a thing we should all watch for among ourselves, battle fatigue, the chronic form of shock. That's us, walking wounded, it only shows in the eyes.

No Comments?

All the stuff I have posted must be exactly right! That's because I get no comments. Actually I'm not that ignorant, I know most people don't comment. Most of us read and move on, can you imagine what it would be like if every visitor had a rebuttal or "that reminds me of.." for every post.
A lot of kids will leave some kind of barb on every picture of Paris Hilton, Brittney Spears or other celeb. The one's I will most often comment on are the stories closest to my own experience.

Those are the posts most likely to bring like minds together.

The media attacks!

Does anyone have any confidence in the big three channel's news? I am reasonably sure the propaganda spouted daily has a negative effect on every facet of American life. The attitude and spirit of each and everyone of us is beaten down by the constant barrage of negative blurbs. They give comfort to our enemies, and motivation to continue their struggles against our way of life. They attack the lifestyles of moral Americans and the religion of everyone except the the groups who want to destroy us. What's up with that? Their spews aren't about ratings, their ranting is lowering their viewership, and yet they continue. I'm really confused.

Tried to watch GMA 'cause the wife likes it, can't do it.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Rocky Mountain Medic

This is some of the best writing I've seen it a while. Having been down some of those roads it all rings true.

http://rockymountainmedic.blogspot.com/

Go and see!

It's official, Al Gore is a monster...Confused Dragon

Climate scientists might be expected to bask in the spotlight after their decades of toil. The general public now cares about greenhouse gases, and with a new Democratic-led Congress, federal action on climate change may be at hand.

Problem is, global warming may not have caused Hurricane Katrina, and last summer's heat waves were equaled and, in many cases, surpassed by heat in the 1930s.
In their efforts to capture the public's attention, then, have climate scientists oversold global warming? It's probably not a majority view, but a few climate scientists are beginning to question whether some dire predictions push the science too far.
"Some of us are wondering if we have created a monster," says Kevin Vranes, a climate scientist at the University of Colorado.

I thought Al was a cardboard cutout, now it appears he is an android.

Just 'cause you can, dosen't mean you should!

I am working today, it's rainy cool and windy. The perfect day for hypothermia. My hands got wet and really cold. I figure I could sneak up on the wife and grab her little booty, and she would climb the tallest pine in the county. How ever yours truely, would NOT be there when she came down.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Comments from the "staff"

Dogs have owners, cats have staff.

I am staff for a six pound alien empress. I found her one night when I straddled her with my truck. Some person unknown to me had set her out in the middle of the road.

Bastard.

She has ordered me around for fifteen years I think. She gets around really well, particularly when the Basset hound is giving motivation. She is snooty in her choice of rations, whines to get her way, and when she has to go out, she tells me. She can't quite get the "t" sound, but close enough. She will also knock on the window to come in. She drools when she is happy, like when you scratch her ears. Her squinty eyed, hairy little face, with the whiskers pushed forward, would make Scrooge smile. She plays pitiful and comes around to reach up and touch you with a paw, as if to say "I need some love, but it's just too hard for little old me to get up there." Bunk, if she wants to she can do five feet straight up, and twenty miles an hour forward or reverse. She will only sit on your left side, and loves a warm lap. When we build a fire I swear the heat slut is going to crawl in.

She is really a griping hissy thing when the pup comes around. The dog would Hold her and squeeze her and love her and lick her all over. But the princess ain't havin' it, nosireebob, hisses fit to blow a gasket. She doesn't have front claws, so she just pats the pup on the nose at the speed of kitty. Dawg don't get the message.

I am fortunate indeed to know my place in the world, as long as I have thumbs to open the daily manna, she will tolerate me.

Bad Media,, Stupid Media, No Biscuit

Read this over at Villainous Company, it explains why the reinforcements are worthwhile. Hat tip to Badgers Forward.

http://www.villainouscompany.com/vcblog/archives/2007/01/the_hopeful_vs.html

Our lame stream media again determined to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Don't these saps know that to achieve their goal will mean the end of their business and way of life also? Talk about your short view!

The Chinese Dragon

Missile strike a message to US
The Australian - 1 hour ago CHINA signalled yesterday that its first ballistic missile strike on a satellite was aimed at bringing the US to the negotiating table for a treaty to prevent a space arms race.ALP leader criticises China weapon test NinemsnChina's tactical shot Melbourne Herald Sun.

Since when did the heirs of Sun Tzu negotiate in good faith? They are our ideological opposites, except when copying us. The Empire has seen us as a target for way too many years.
Some one convince me I'm wrong.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Deer in a Pond, or How I found out we have Beavers

I'm a deer hunter, when I am able. In this part of the world we hunt with dogs. Still hunters say it isn't sporting, dog hunters say still hunting isn't sporting. I've done both and still don't know. I do know it's way harder to hit a deer running across a narrow road than to ambush one in an opening. Oh, bythe way, don't think the deer is scared. The deer knows it can easily run away from the dog at any time. I've seen them just play along, or believe it or not , stop and wait for the dog. Our state has more deer now than when the state was settled, so the manner of taking shouldn't be an issue. In areas where hunting is forbidden the deer are the size of big dogs. If anything in this story sounds cruel, it is no more cruel than starvation, disease, and death by motor vehicle. I know people who have hit two deer in one night, on the way to work. When predators are not tolerated, overpopulation is certain. A heard of deer will strip a bean field in a night. Farmers can't raise enough to live and feed the deer too.

Down east, if you are hunting in the bays, best have a dog if you plan to eat venison. The swamps and thickets are impassable to anything taller than a Walker hound, and sometimes a Beagle will have to back track. There are ways through, but a man can't use them.You also have to contend with the frequent peat bog. A peat bog is a morass with no bottom, that occasionally turns into a pond or lake, black water. The only place to put a road is on a sand ridge, the forestry almost lost a bulldozer in Red Run, trying to cut through to Big Bay. We lease pine plantations for the hunting rights. Our club has eight to ten thousand acres, which isn't as big as it sounds. It does back up on a large nature conservancy, what that means is the bog couldn't be developed, planted, or otherwise generate income, so someone sold it to the state. It's thirteen or so thousand acres of hard ground to cross, and as far as I know, no one goes in there but me.

The paper companies plant trees, ditch, drain and other wise turn the land to their use. Pines of the fast growing type can't stand too much water, so ditches are dug to drain to creeks and water ways. Some of these ditches can be fifteen to twenty feet deep. Keep that in mind.

On the day in question ,November 26, we were hunting a block of land on the edge of the club. The dog guys had found a good track going the right way, and things were looking good for my stand. Then the deer crossed around the curve from me. I jumped in the truck went around the block, stopped on the next stand and got out in time to see the buck about to jump into the pine field across the road. He was on the edge of shotgun range and I fired one time before he was gone. I saw him flinch and knew I had hit him. The dogs were behind him and pushed him through the pine field and across the creek, or so I thought. I could hear them running up and down the creek, and then they stopped. The deer must be down, so off I go through the briar's and broom sage. I soon noticed water, getting deeper, to the tops of calf high boots. While I am standing on a tussock of grass looking for anything moving, I see a chewed off stick. Beaver? I've seen them before, but not here. Then the dogs start a fight with something.

We have bears, big ones, four hundred pound plus bears. I carry a .44 mag with eight inch barrel just for them. I stopped worrying about water then, the guys think of their dogs as tenderly as I think of children, and really don't want to spend a lot of time stitching up the pups.
It's off into the water at a run, until I feel my feet start to slide down an incline of unknown depth. Thanks to the down home engineering skills of the beaver.

I had just finished cold water rescue training, so I know exactly what is about to happen, and it ain't lookin' good for the home team. I had time, about a blink, to run through the etiology of cold water drowning. Not enough time to panic, just enough time to think about it. At this time I am wearing insulated coveralls, pistol belt and pistol, and carrying a pump shotgun, wearing rubber boots. Not what the well dressed swimmer would choose. Then my feet hit bottom, that's how you spell relief. Wow! I am now up to my armpits with the shotgun over my head, just like in the old movies.

Now I can see under the brush, and find that the deer is dead and the dogs have torn into it and are fighting each other. Well, shoo the puppies off and make my way to the deer, except the first deep water was the creek, and now I step off into the ditch. It was just as cold as the other one and just as unexpected. I didn't panic, I just wanted to pee in my pants to warm up, too late the plumbing has frozen up. Then climb out on the hill and pour the water out of all the guns, kick a dog or two, and get ready to drag the deer out.

Then I hear someone shouting my name, it's one of our older men. He's come to help get the deer, as long as it doesn't involve getting wet, I don't blame him. He is insisting that I bring my shotgun to them so I won't have to carry it. It's back in the ditch, back in the creek, out on the hill, give them the gun. Now back in the creek, back in the ditch and out to the deer. Now to drag him out. I mentioned the thickets, did I mention the hurricanes? We have those, frequently, sometimes several a year. They blow things over and don't pick up after themselves. Most of what they knock down is now in front of me. Oh well, I've got it to do and no help. I drag the deer, one hundred twenty or so pounds of him along the finger of high ground, to find that some clown has dug a square ditch, and I am on an island! Back in the water again, I'm getting really tired of this by now. Then the fun really begins, dragging this lump of uncooperative deer (just because I shot him) through a juniper thicket. That would be over, under, around and through blow downs tossed like pixie sticks in my path. When I finally got to the road I was talking to the deer like he was going to answer. I finally sat down at the edge of the road to wait for a truck to come around, and one of the dogs came up and growled at me cause I got his deer. I very calmly pulled the pistol and told him to come on.

When I finally got home I stripped on the back porch before going in and used all the hot water in the shower. The rest of the club, who didn't bother to help drag the deer, all showed up at the share out to get a little meat to take home. The bums.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Build your house on the corner.

I know my children are part of the party generation. These young folks will cut up at the drop of a hat, or any other reason they can make up. I'm talkin' every weekend, all weekend, and go to work so hung over they practically spray blood out of their eyes. No thanks. There are times that the party will, sort of, slop over the sides, where we step in it and have to clean up the mess. One of those times the "X" and I had been in the nearest town with room for more than horse, and on the way back at 0 dark thirty, we rounded a corner, to find every emergency vehicle for the southern end of the county in the road.

Well! Can't get home, might as well help.

Both of us were EMTs at the time, and on the local squad. So, off we go to find out what happened. 10-50 one vehicle, ten or so patients, plus three in the house? One infant, Ok, babies first. The parents and the child were in the house across the street. We ran over and gave them the A,B,C's to X,Y,Zs no problem, except all I had for a light to check pupils was a five cell Mag light with a high out put bulb. I can make you turn your head from across the street with that thing. I bet that child still blinks spots away, his pupils didn't contract, they slammed. Then we stroll back to the scene, to find a dude really making a scene. I haven't heard that much screaming in a while. The heart rending tune of "MY LEGS, MY LEGS!!!" would make the most hardened SHP officer tear up with compassion, except the SHP on scene didn't buy it for a second. If you have any idea that the ambulance ride to the hospital will put beyond the reach, or even out of sight of an LEO, forget it. Ain't happenin'. About now, with nothing to do I'm getting a little bored, so I start to look around, and see a bashful little guy with lot's of scratches. I ask him who he is, and he answers "I'm the driver, is he gonna be alright?".
Well, Well, son you don't look too well, why don't you sit right here on this fire truck, I think I know someone who wants to chat with you.

He sits.

I went to the nice officer and recounted the testimony. Oh, Really, sez he, and strolls over to the kid. Distress calls will bring 'em every time. The kid heard his bud wailing and walked in to find out how bad it was. It turns out that after impact anyone sober enough to navigate had run down to the creek (think water moccasin, black mud, and cat claw briar) through an electric fence, and into the water, to hide. Now with the perp we get the story. Big party, everyone wants to go to a bigger party, everyone piles into the nearest pickup truck, four in the front, six or so in the back, and off they go. Down the Green Lewis road toward the Half Hell road. The driver is making good time down the straight stretch, and discovers way too late that this isn't a cross road, there is a house in the way. All he has time to do is close his eyes and they are airborne.

Big Air.

The family residing in the soon to be rubble house is in the front room. Daddy is holding baby, momma is standing by the door, when the lights from the truck at the stop sign just keep coming. On impact Daddy and baby are thrown through the doorway into the kitchen. Momma is bouncing around the front room like a tennis ball. When all come to rest, Daddy doesn't know if he has been teleported, or just kicked to the kitchen. Baby is ready to do it again, and Momma is about to wet herself. I don't blame her.

When we started to look at the truck it was still crammed under the porch, kind of. Boards from the front porch were crammed in the radiator, front tires flat, and the whole thing with a squashed look. That's when we realised the house was off the foundation. Great time of day! We measured the paint line to the chimney and found he had driven the house three feet off the piers. This was not a mobile home it was stick built frame construction.

The most amazing thing about this tale is no one died, on was even seriously hurt, God Does smile on stupid people.
There are lots of morals in this story, but first and foremost, don't build in front of a road.

Build your house on the corner.

Lovely Weather, for Ducks, Geese and other water loving birds

That's why they call it foul weather, right? Probably not but it's hard to tell from here, rain ice and all. The last few weeks it has hovered between 65f and 70f, well no more. 30s to 50s, not as bad as some places, I am sure. Uncomfortable though. Better this weekend, probably windy enough to fly the dog like a kite though. Sounds like hot tub weather to me.

Being Thankful,,, and showing it.

If anyone noticed my age they will know I am a Vietnam era vet. I am not a veteran of the Vietnam War, I enlisted at the end of the Vietnam era. No 'wannabes here. Never the less, I served with lot's of career vets and endured a lot of the attitude reserved for "baby killers", I am glad no one was stupid enough to use that term to my face. I could still see it in peoples expressions. Funny thing about that, when you are 195 lbs with a 24 inch waist loud mouths tend to hold their comments.

My dad was a WWII vet who landed with the fifth wave at Normandy, my uncle Franklin died in Korea, my uncle Ralph was in the Pacific theater. I consider that to be a family history to be proud of. That being said I have a vague idea of what the current military is sacrificing to serve our country and preserve our liberty. We, I and everyone I know, are profoundly grateful to those brave service men and women.

I have resolved to show my gratitude to those wonderful people when ever I can. When the opportunity presents it's self, I will shake their hand an say it to their face "Thank You!" So far all have thanked me for noticing.

Shortly before the New Year the love of my life and I were at a local provider to gather some snooty snacks (caviar, pate, crackers and Champagne) for the celebration. While wandering around the store I saw a couple. She was small and cute as a puppy with a wet nose, he was a long way from small and had the haircut and carriage that said "Marine". They were behind us at the check out, so I turned around and asked him, "Marine?" Yes Sir, was the answer. Do you drink Champagne? " Yes sir, again. I told the cashier to wait a second, walked to a display and snagged a bottle of passable bubbly, paid for it, handed it to the Marine, and told him thank you and have a Happy New Year. I hope he enjoyed getting the gift as much as I enjoyed giving it. I could tell the thanks meant something.

My invitation to all is shake a hand and give a personal thanks to all who risk all so that we may be free.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

CSR

One of the sixteen pages of things I am required to be able to do is remove the clumsy and unfortunate from the depths or heights of their point of impact.

In my profile I mentioned; EMT and a few other helpful things. When I was a Boy Scout I found an enjoyment of knots. I guess you can say I am a knotty person. The highest compliment I have received (work related) was when a coworker said, out loud and in public, " I'll go anywhere if he rigs it, but I ain't tying the knots!"

The definition of a confined space in our place is; some place that can admit a person, has one way in or out, not meant for continuous habitation, and lacks adequate ventilation. All that sounds good, but the definition fits the top of a telephone pole as well as the inside of a tank.

We have an area we call primary containment, or the drywell, which is a pressure vessel designed to hold seventy pounds per square inch, and all the pipes, pumps, and valves that you can imagine. Its never well lit, always hot, always Hi Rad and severely contaminated. The overall impression is "Dungeon, where are the chains and bones?" It is a very large place and very full. You have to climb over stuff and up and down ladders. All in all, the best you can say is it's very cramped.

I got a call one day saying "Joe Blow the engineer has fallen from fifty two ft elevation to thirty eight elevation, down the ladder."

Oh damn!

I know him. He weighs about three hundred pounds. Please call the world, or at least the fire brigade. After a rapid scurry to the entrance, and a world record dress out for contamination, I scampered through the air lock, around the inside of the 'well, and twenty feet up a ladder to find Joe in a fetal ball with his back to a steam line. Joe being an EMT also, and quick on the uptake is refusing to move. So I ask him, "What up?" He gave me a laundry list so bad I almost cried. Starting with crushed vertebrae topping the list, with bleeding and broken bones in there somewhere.

Now for the "BAD NEWS", we don't have any hi angle rescue equipment. What we have is some slings and shackles I signed out on long term, some braided line I stole from the refuel floor and some pulleys one of the guys bought out of pocket. We could hang him or drag him, but not very well. I was the only one with any rescue training. Well Now!

The next man up the ladder was a provisional paramedic.

Thank You God!
Hey Dude, He's yours, here's what you got, I'll start the rigging for the lowering, see ya! The five man fire brigade showed up and said "What?".
Have you ever tried to train five people, in a high noise area that just happens to be a high radiation area? I thought not. Let me 'splain to you Lucy, their are no explanations, just a lot of bellowing and pointing.

We were in the hole for a while, by now the Uh-Oh squad is on scene. Those are the people who show up to look at the poor hurt guy, so they can later strike a pose and tell an audience how screwed up the unfortunate victim is. They were in the way, so one of our more independent thinkers, not too lovingly known as 'Capn Snappy, strolled up and told the mob, "If you ain't helpin' get out!" They grumbled, but they went. Now days, we point Security at them and say 'sic 'em! Think pit bulls with guns and no sense of humor.

Our secondary containment is equipped with a railroad car airlock (large building) and the idea was talked around about bringing the ambulance in the reactor building. That would have made the national news. Fortunately we got Joe out of the 'well before that point.

Meanwhile back in the 'well we had secured Joe to a back board, stood him up, and pushed him into space. I had rigged a line to the top of his board and to an overhead pipe. Keep in mind the first fall, if he was ever going to have heart failure, it should have been then. I would have peed my pants, but not a peep from Joe.

Did I mention the board wasn't meant for lifting? Joe being the extra fluffy sort started to sag in the bindings, what I mean is I thought we were going to pull his head off. Still, not a squeak from Joe, now I'm really worried. If you hurt please scream at me, that lets me know that you are alert and have an open airway. When we got him to the next elevation down, head still attached, every one who had a clue breathed a sigh of relief. Joe included.

Remember the three hundred pounds, the pipes and stuff? We carried him, or if needed slid him on the deck under equipment, to the air lock. Not as easy or quick as that sentence makes it sound. There are four steps up to a landing and inner door that is only wide enough for one to pass. I had the heavy end, and half way through had to set him down or drop him. At that time I weighed in at about two fifteen and ran six miles a day, so you can estimate how much fun that was! After a stretcher ride and a hand off to EMS, we went back to work.

The next day Joe was back at work, broken scapula,compression fractures of the spine and all. I have no idea where the broken limbs and blood went. It could have been blood sweat or tears.

Slow posting

I'm in training this week and posts are light. Every five weeks I get "Care and Feeding of a Power Plant", "Neutron Polishing" and lots of management opinion. Still, in my more bored minutes, I scribble something to remind me of another story.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Democratic Dragons (Probably Green)

I listened to the lame stream news today, stupid I know, but one must know the enemy to defeat him/her. The constant stream of blather from the Dems. is maddening or funny depending on how seriously you take the junk. They are manning the ramparts (?) against anything that might improve conditions in Iraq. All of us have heard the party of the seriously incompetent argue on both sides of every fence until our heads are ringing. When will they bring something to the discussion other than negative input and lies. I will not bore anyone with repeats of the Dems. various reversals. Most of them are separated by a few years and are mostly snotty whinings for media sound bytes.

We all know this. So, what is the point?

The point is they know it too, and they know the damage done by divisive, treasonous, back biting. Every defeat rendered to the US Military has been delivered by to them by politicians saying whatever it takes to appeal to radical fringes. For as long as I can remember, the interference in fighting a war, by politicians, has resulted in defeat. Teddy Kennedy, John Kerry, Barak Whatsisname, Hillary Clinton, who died and made them generals? When I was in the military, people of Kerry's rank opened doors for career soldiers, not pontificate about how to win a war. Please remember Barak Whosit is a FRESHMAN congress dope. Where does he get off trying to sound like he knows anything. I just won't get started on the Dems. leading socialist, she has a bigger set than her hubby, but what does she know about anything having to do with guns, bombs, or diplomacy?

Why are they evil dragons?

They have the power to do good or evil. It's a choice we all make, the more power we have, the greater responsibility comes with it's use. This lot has chosen to use their power to further their personal goals, inflate their egos, and line their pockets. What they risk is nothing less than our, that's yours and my, way of life and freedom. The enemy we face has proven for literally hundreds of years how we will be treated. These saps just don't get the picture, they are just as vulnerable as we are, for their money and power will make them a target more than anything else.

These three and all like them who would sacrifice our freedom to be reelected are evil and should be shunned and cast down by all good men and women.

And that's all I'm going to say about that. (for now)

Walkin' the Dawg


The Love of my Life treats all the pets better than me, probably appropriate. This means she is very careful to see that they get plenty of exercise (cats?), among other things. Therefore the Basset Hound gets walked daily, unless it rains. The FESLGP (Flop Eared Short Legged Gas Passer) loves to "walk" because she gets to smell every pile of processed dog food for three miles. The FESLGP is also a better than average processer of dog food, so you are required by decency and statute to recover the stuff and properly dispose of same. I think I get invited along for this chore.
Honored I'm sure.
I am also the chauffeur because claws and leather upholstery aren't compatible, and my 4X4 wouldn't notice a flock of bears, never mind a small dog. While on our outing today I remembered something that the ignorance of my elder sibling brought to pass.


My sister always has more pets than money or brains. I mean she would adopt a T-Rex if she thought it would irritate someone. The adoptee in question was a large, hairy, overweight, black thing of questionable usefulness and heritage. She was driving daddy's mini pickup and had to secure the big black thing in the back. So the brain trust ties the dog to the bumper. All is well and the hairy thing lays down in the back of the truck. Now sis is stylin' cause all her transportation is on the run down side. She is cruising through our small town, and notices everyone staring at her as she drives by, must be the truck.


Luckily she didn't get over twenty or so cause the big hairy thing had jumped out of the truck and was doing a fair job of keepin' up. I guess the locals thought she was walkin' the dog. The big dummy, the dog not the sister, learned the lesson, no more trouble keeping him in the truck, no sir. I mean that dog wouldn't get up 'till you set the parking brake.


It's a good thing she didn't make the Interstate.


Comet McNaught

The love of my life and I got up at O dark thirty the last two days, to see the best comet for the next thirty years. It is low on the horizion, due east in the morning, and due west in the evening, the only star with a tail.
First I go out and check the stars to see if they are clear, then we get dressed, make the coffee, and then drive to the beach where there aren't so many lights. If you stand on the dunes you can see the sky where it meets the water. You get to see a really nice sunrise, and the ocean is as flat as a lake these last two days. You can stand and watch the boats heading out for Blue Fin Tuna. When you are done then hop over to the local grill for breaking of the fast. Then off to the all night grocery store ahead of the crowd.
Did you notice, I didn't mention how impressive and beautiful the comet was? Thats 'cause we are in the middle of a hole in the clouds, I haven't seen the comet yet due to a bank of low clouds just off the beach. When I check the sky, I can't see the clouds because they are below the trees.

Rats!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

The Uncles

I had the pleasure to grow up with a grand gaggle of goobers who understood that boys will be boys. There were a group of them, all about a year or so apart, all of them as good to children as a Santa convention. All of them about as mean as they come, if you cross the family. That doesn't mean that if you did a bad thing and got your little fanny whipped, they wouldn't give you a stripe or two for stupidity, Oh! Yes indeed!

The lot of them would fight like cats and dogs among themselves, until you crossed the line and put your nose where it didn't belong, then they close ranks and turn on you. Later, when you were clutching your nose you would remember to not do that again. My Daddy truly hated a bully. By his own account he had fought until he thought his clothes would fall off, to defend what he thought was right.

I learned a lot from that crew.

Don't start something you can't finish.
You can get mad, but you don't have to stay mad.
Just cause I'm whippin' your butt, doesn't mean I don't love you.
If you got food, shelter, and family, you got a lot.
Family sticks together, even if it's dried blood providing the adhesive.
Stand up for right.

I saw a scar on daddy's arm once and asked him where he got it, his reply was that his brother had thrown a kitchen knife at his head and he had to block with his arm. Then we looked at a few more. "This one a brother tried to cut a finger off with an ax." Why? "I asked. "Because I put it on the chop block and told him he didn't have the guts." Bad choice, he did have the guts. I believe there was one resulting from a rock with significant velocity, on the forehead. He didn't mention all the little nicks and scratches he gifted to the others.

Daddy said on weekends they would hitch to the nearest town and go to the movies, or just to town, where there were other people. Many nights, according to him, he would be walking down the street and hear something down an alley. He would slip through the dark and start applying a slap jack to unobservant types until he pulled a brother from under a pile. You see no one would take them on in a fair fight. They were all men and only feared God and their mother. I was afraid of her too.

With this lot, walk in and ask for a gun, and they hook a thumb at the one by the front door and tell you to be careful. After that if you shoot your self, when they find out about it, you are really in trouble. They expected you to act with a little sense and you did, so they wouldn't look at you "that way". We all know "that way", it says "How am I going to tell your mother?", and nobody wants that!

Daddy was raised in the mountains in the late Twenties to early Thirty's when there was nothing there, or at least way less than now. When he was about ten, he found a twenty dollar bill on the main road, actually the only road, and bought enough groceries to feed the whole clan for two weeks and still had enough money to go to the movies every night. Why every night escapes me because I am reasonably sure there was only one movie and it didn't change every week.

His oldest brother was living "up the holler" with the family of his girl friend, and being brothers and all, felt it was perfectly alright to come down to daddy's house and haul all the food to their house. Bad idea, hacked daddy off. When the girl in question walked by, daddy was a little ill, and bounced a rock off her head. She, understandably upset, ran home and tattled. Older brother came down to avenge her lump. Daddy was chopping splinters to start fires in the kitchen stove, with a razor sharp double bitted ax. The discussion progressed rapidly on to fists, feet, firewood, tripping, choking, and finally to the ax.

Daddy came up with the ax and his brother being quick on the uptake made a rapid retreat. That means he ran like the Devil was chasing him, cause the look in daddy's eyes told him there wasn't much difference. I've seen that look, running is the only reasonable thing to do, because BAD THINGS are about to commence. Daddy being the short one couldn't catch up, so he threw the ax. The older brother was just a little out of range. He was looking back and reversed to grab the ax. Not quick enough, daddy got there first, another reverse, short chase, another throw, and so on until the older brother got there at the same time and tackled daddy. Now when you are older, heavier, and stronger there is an advantage. They were soon on the ground with older brother choking daddy, and pounding his head on the ground. Daddy was getting tired of the exercise and felt around on the ground until he found a flat rock, and applied it to brothers head. Game over. It's a good thing they were too tired to party by then or someone would surely have gotten hurt.

Hurt?

Remember they were brothers, and hard as it is to understand considering the foregoing, they really loved each other, and we like to think would have stopped short of anything permanent. I hope.

Saturday, January 6, 2007

Wheelin'

Anyone who reads this blog will now know more about me than my mother, she doesn't care anyway.
So moving right along.
One of the things I enjoy immensely is four wheeling. A several years ago I felt my lovely bride, a city/beach girl should travel to where my family roots started, to help in understanding a few things that she found odd. We left the coastal plane and in a short six or so hours we stopped in Mountain City Tenn. for the night. My comment to the effect of "we'll be in the mountains tomorrow" got me a dry look and a raised eyebrow. Sure enough another three hours or so put us at the home place. It's a few acres on a creek where most of my still living relatives reside. It even gets a couple hours direct sunlight a day...... most days. Daddy used to claim that they hauled sunlight in with a wheel barrow. That's only a slight exaggeration, they did haul corn out in a jar I know for sure.
All of my cousins, and their dogs acted as though the intervening twelve or so years were only a day or two, the wife was a little befuddled by this welcome. The cousins are fairly flexible and forgiving. I showed her the land I own, six acres so steep leaves slide off, and decided to take her up to the family graveyard. As I said, I like four wheel drive. To get to the top of the mountain you first have to turn around and back up the road from the end of state maintenance to the strip mine road,then you can resume normal navigation. It's an easy climb and a half mile or so of flat dirt road, which brings you to a three way branching, the center branch goes up but hasn't seen much use, for years. Engage the front axle, tighten seat belt, the climb puts you in the recliner position. The bride started muttering, prayers can't hurt, and all the down is on my side. The first thing we do is go under a downed tree. Did I mention that the road didn't get much use?
The climb was fairly secure over rocks and a few slick places, and the mud on top was a little less than hub deep. The house on top looks a lot like the cabin in the cartoons. When we got into the yard to say Hi, about an Ark full of Gods little creatures came out to see who was visiting. No humans, turns out that might have been good because I heard that lately the residents have been shooting at strangers, and they know my family, not me. We walked up to the graveyard and had a peep at the final resting place of the cousins. It's good the graveyard is on top of a mountain, every where you look is down, 'cause that's as close to heaven as some of those folks are going.
The real fun started on the way down. Remember the recliner position? Reverse that, now I am virtually standing up, using engine braking, easing down the road. Did I mention that the love of my life is vertically challenged? She was muttering again and all the down was on her side, she was visibly sizing the trees to see if they would catch us did we slip over the side. Then her feet slipped and she was hanging from the seat belt. My! My! That was an upset little woman. I don't believe I have ever seen any thing kick and scramble quite that way, all to no avail. I am sure the coughing and choking covered the snickering from my side. I swallowed a bug, that's my story and I'm sticking to it. That's not our last time on the trail, but that's another story.

News hounds... or possums

Is there a liberal bias?

I don’t really know, though it would appear that there is, given that any liberal position is presented as gospel and any conservative position just short of demonic rites. You would think that fair reporting would include all sides of a given issue, facts taken from diverse sources, and a presentation that would allow the recipient to form an opinion. I have to say I haven’t seen much of that lately. Quite a lot of what I hear tells me an opinion, and then tries to prop it up. I can’t think of a single case of “on the other hand” discussion. Reporting, to me, is a rendition of facts. What we often see is selected facts combined with innuendo, suggestion, and rhetoric, painting a picture all to easy to see.
I suggest a simple exercise for the evening news, turn the sound all the way down, and watch the anchor’s face. How much acting do you see? Are the facial expressions telling you anything about the opinions of the speaker? A good example of the leaning of an organization might be any supportive comments they might make about an organization. The assumption would be: positive comments for an agenda the source upholds. The converse is also true, with the caveat that an organization with a conflicting agenda would get no positive comments, or no air time at all. Any group that has no redeeming qualities, no positive influence, no moral imperative, would be unlikely to survive long. If we tally the pros and cons of these groups we could soon form an opinion regarding the stance of the reporting agency. Another interesting omission is good news, I know that somewhere, someone did something that would bring a smile to the face of even the most hardened news dog. I haven’t seen that lately either. I know that the media is intended to make money, and I know sensational disasters make great headlines. I feel as though the world is in a constant slide to some terrible end. A little feel good news would help relieve the depression. If, perhaps, yesterdays bad guys were today’s heroes there would be more hope. Constant reporting, spinning, slanting, and presenting only one side of an issue, or group, will tend to make them always good or bad. No one is always just bad, no matter what the issue.
The media should not be activist. They should encourage activism, and supply information to act on. I don’t feel the media should drive the activist. If you feel the media is an elite group entitled to dictate to the great unwashed, this is of no interest to you. If you are offended by the assumption that you should have your opinion fed to you like a baby bird, that is predigested and stuffed down your throat, a little observation and feedback to those outlets may be in order.

No answer from the congress critters

To My representatives,
Good morning, I would like to impose on your time to let you know where I, and many of my peers, stand on issues important to us.

First- unequivocal support of the liberation of the Iraqi people.

Second- unqualified support for the tax cuts recently allowed. Tax cuts were the brain child of John Kennedy (D-Mass) and have historically resulted in greater tax revenues, not smaller.

Third-The enforcement of current laws regarding gun ownership, and enforcement of laws that put violent criminals in jail. The Second Amendment to our Constitution is unambiguous. The unslanted statistics show an armed public is safer. I have had to protect my self and my family three times in my life, and would have failed had I not been armed. I was never the aggressor, neither did I have to shoot the assailant, they knew what would happen if they continued.

Fourth- we believe in personal responsibility, for our families, communities, our jobs. No one gave me my job, I worked for it. My job is not a right, I work for it every day. I expect if I do not perform to the standards set for me by my employer I will be required to make other arrangements. Personal responsibility carries through in our lives, if we make bad choices, consequences flow from those choices. Those consequences are mine I worked for them and I expect them to be delivered. Currently none are pending. People in general have the power in this country to be what ever they want to be, what they become is the product of those choices.

Fifth- Our Constitution is a complete, unambiguous, document. There is no clause or intent that would allow a casual abortion, or any abortion. I am a firm believer in a woman’s right to choose. Any woman can choose not to have sex, or use contraception, or adopt behaviors that do not place her at risk for rape. In the event of pregnancy as a result of criminal behavior, why punish the child who was the issue worse than the perpetrator. There are a surprising number of families who adopt on the other side of the world, maybe they would adopt at home if babies were available.

Sixth- our laws are not guidelines, they mean what they say, not what some special interest group would like them to say. Our laws apply to every one. No exceptions, this includes illegal aliens. If some person or group would care to come here to live with in the law, and assimilate our way of life and language, then welcome. However they are coming to us, not the other way around. We owe them nothing, they get to work just the same as the rest of us. Those who just expect to waltz in and not play by the rules should be invited to reside elsewhere, firmly. Abiding by the rules should begin at the start of their journey, not some unspecified stopover in the distant future, or when caught. Education or need is not an excuse, the rules are simple enough.

Things to change

These are some things we as a nation should change.

In these times porous borders are a fool’s indulgence. We can talk all we want about safety and security, and then look at the terrain that the Afghans and Iraqis live in, compare that to the Sonora desert. It looks a lot alike to me. The point being, people trained there are very capable of making it through a tough passage. The military can’t legally enforce criminal law, they could however, patrol, and train in areas that would make a smuggler remember some appointment elsewhere.

There have been many tragic examples over the years, of humanitarian disasters. What we should have learned from them is simply, if you feed a starving person, they will sit down and wait for the next free meal. As Robert Heinlein stated “there ain’t no such thing as a free lunch”. The welfare rolls should be come workfare rolls. A person with any pride doesn’t want a hand out, they want a job. Help them learn a skill by on the job training, grounds care, street maintenance, or any job that a municipality has to pay some one to do. Pay a fair wage, or any wage, if you don’t work, the checks stop. I would not be at all surprised to find more people finding their own work. I have some experience
in this area, I have hired winos and homeless people off the street and paid them $10 an hour to run a weed eater. When it got hot, or dirty, they got real hard to find. They would rather draw free money than work. In short, remove the incentive to be unemployed.

Appointees, managers, supervisors, and any other brand of government employee should have a standard to work to. It should lead to a quantifiable, auditable, positive change. The rule of thumb is people will perform to the expectations you give them. If not, then expect to be encouraged to pursue other interests. The corporate world does it, and it works. Government waste, cost over runs, insane prices for mundane items are legend. When we know these things why do we allow them?
If federal contracts are fair and competitive why do so many look at them as a pot of gold and a rainbow.

The image of the oppressor in the minds of many people is a middle aged conservative, marginally successful, white male. It is not a felony to work with in the law and rise in the community. I have never owned slaves, hired or fired anyone on the basis of anything except availability or performance. The availability thing is because if you can’t come to work, I can’t pay you. Many of the supposed white devils have created jobs, donated time and money, trained, paid taxes, lived as role models, and supported our families. While being vilified as the good ole boy network, or facing the implication that my only worth is the color of my skin.

There is a perception that morals, ethics, laws, or just plain right or wrong depend on whether you got caught. It doesn’t count if the referee didn’t see. Unfortunately some parents have taught their children, it isn’t wrong if you don’t get caught. Most victims don’t feel that way. I can’t recount all the weird explanations I’ve heard for why stealing isn’t stealing. (If you walk up and look the man in the eye, that’s TAKEING, sneaking is stealing)

The most common thing I have heard in regard to the forcible immigration of indigenous peoples to this country is “my people didn’t ask to come here”. Ok, well, the door is open, have a nice day. If those folks who support reparations for involuntary servitude were to consider the current infant mortality rate in the country of their origin, the literacy rates, available medical services, housing, nutrition, and the tremendous number of things that we take for granted that define our standard of living. Perhaps they would sit quietly and hope no one noticed they didn’t pay for the ticket. Another conveniently overlooked datum is that most of the suppliers in that trade were Arabs (dare I say Muslim) or the tribe down the road who wanted the victims possessions. The British actually put an end to the trade in country, against serious opposition, actually. My ancestry is Irish. In New York in 1861, the Irish immigrants were herded to induction centers for the Union Army. Fighting in a Napoleonic style battle involves dying, not plowing someone’s fields for no pay. That’s the only time “no Irish need apply” would have been welcome. Not to mention the many who sold themselves into servitude just to get here, indentured it was called.

There is a feeling in some circles that people who are rich have somehow cheated to get there. The government annually fines those people for no other reason than “they can afford to pay more”. Well I suppose that’s true, but they also earned more, and that implies that they made good decisions somewhere to reach that level of income. I would like to be rich, good or bad, and I promise to pay my taxes. I cannot quote a source, but I have been told that the top 10% of taxpayers pay 90% of the taxes.
Poverty is not a virtue, wealth is not a sin. One may lead to the other, but virtue enforced by poverty is merely an absence of choices.

The unproductive view the government as an endless entitlement. The cradle to grave care of the entire population, with the collection and redistribution of wealth by the
government is Socialism. In Russia, China, Europe, and various mud holes in between, Socialism is a Train wreck. If the incentive to work is removed, production drops. Those countries that are opening up a market economy are starting to recover from 50years of arrested development. With those examples, why are we moving steadily down the tracks to the same train wreck? What logic says that the government should do for me what I can’t or won’t do for myself. I want an airplane, but I can’t afford it, should the Feds’ give me one? I would be much happier, and I promise to keep my room clean.

Many well intentioned people all over the world see the death penalty as cruel and unjust punishment. The perpetrators of heinous crimes are also against the ultimate penalty. That should give you a hint at where we should be. Unless the person involved is loony as Daffy Duck, they should be at risk. The victims of violent crimes probably feel their loss was not fun either. The death penalty is not revenge, it is self defense on behalf of society. If it were revenge, it would work better. Give the evil ones to the family of the victim, televise that and I bet the crime rate would drop.

Where I stand on Iraq

I have listened to the debate about the “price of victory” in Iraq, and I believe this focus is basically wrong. America considered the price of victory in Somalia, and with drew because of the loss of eighteen lives. As a direct result of this action by a cowardly President, the Islamic radicals of the region decided the U.S. was a paper tiger. Thousands of lives were lost, in New York, and in Afghanistan. The price of victory against terrorists will be high; the price of surrender will be nothing less than the loss of our way of life. There are millions of common men who have faith in God and trust in their religious leaders and believe those leaders are teaching the word of God. The teachers are spouting the propaganda that will bring them power and recognition. That propaganda insists that we as a nation are the enemy of their beliefs and their way of life.
I believe the terrorist who claims a high principal is a liar. The goal of powerful men is more power, the life of a terrorist is built on the most basic power. The power to cause fear and hatred and escape the consequences of his actions. His life and in some cases wealth are built around the conflict. If the conflict is resolved then how will the terrorist live and gain in power.
The common man in the street is not our enemy, the power hungry barbarians who would destroy the world are the enemy.
The Sheik, or Caliph is a autocratic ruler, therefore no elections and no accountability to the people. Mulla Omar’s cattle lived better than the common man in his country. The law is from the time of Suliman the Lawgiver of the 1400’s, and allows for beheading, dismemberment and disfigurement. Recently a local council in Afghanistan directed the rape of a woman who consorted outside the tribe. They have no welfare, no public charity, don’t work; don’t eat. Women in a strict Islamist world are chattel. No vote, no education, no rights, no freedom. The height of fashion is a garment that allows only the eyes to be seen. If any other skin is seen any man may beat her as punishment. They may only go out when escorted by a male relative. A man may have more than one wife, and as many mistresses as he cares for. He may, if I am correct, repudiate a wife at any time for any reason. The women of this country should be rioting to be sure no effort is spared to confront this menace

Who is intolerant

In the world today I see many groups, people, and individuals who receive much empathy because they are offended. They might be offended because the actions or speech of one crosses some previously unknown line, to the rationalized, seldom actual, detriment of another. The fact that the party of the first part may not have known of the party of the second, or their sensitivity, has no bearing on the issue. The offended person may now with no consideration for any consequences berate and belittle entire nations. The spleen once vented will be trumpeted around the world to the endless multitude of other offended parties. Those parties may declare war, or more realistically, blather about how some equally horrific slight was inflicted on them.
I seem to remember that if you throw a rock into a pack of dogs, the one that yelped is the one that got hit. Most likely the loudest of the chronically offended lack the tolerance they demand of others. Those that have the most power, cannot be defeated by those that have no power. They can however, drive the world before them by their shrill whining.

Still more things to think about

Some folks act like speed laws and traffic rules are just annoying suggestions.

It's a bad idea to pick a fight with something that can, and will, kill you.

Given a choice, remain anonymous to authority.

If lawyers are arguing over your fate, you lose, no matter which one is on your side.

The surest way to avoid learning is to act like you already know.

Life is complicated, things happen, random disasters are just that, random.

No matter what it feels like, most people don't hate you, they don't even know you're alive.

If a man says he understands women, watch him, he'll lie about other stuff too!

If a woman loves you for who you are, fine, that will last until she gets her list of things to change complete.

If you shouldn't be acutely aware of your body parts.

Why do practical jokers never find it quite as funny when the joke is on them.

You can often tell who you love the most by how easily and badly they can hurt you.

Most women don't dress for men, they are in competition with every other woman on the planet.

I've never met a woman who was happy with her hair, figure, shoes, or anything in between.

Be careful what you wish for, it might get you.

Faith in another requires their consistent efforts. Trust in another requires transparency in actions.

Sometimes the hardest work goes unrecognized.

As before, please give credit where needed.

More things to think about

Leaders are in the front, directors are in the rear. Directors don't do well in combat.

Nothing focuses the attention like a near miss.

The barbarians always win, civilization could win, they just lack the will. The barbarians are persistent.

If I perceive a problem, it is not automatically my fault, nor even my responsibility to fix it. That falls to the person who caused the problem.

Never let other people decide how you will feel.

No one can "make a fool of you", unfortunately we can do that with no help at all, some of us are just talented that way.

Your job is not a "right", you have to work for it regularly.

Never own a pet that is smarter than you.

Who is on exhibition at the zoo, depends on which side of the bars you're on.

In the end you are only protein.

When you step out of the town limits you are no longer the top of the food chain.

If you can't see their eyes, they're just targets.

Don't waste your breath telling someone they're a liar, they already know.

The climb to success is long and difficult, the return trip is shockingly quick and easy.

Love might bring people to together, but if you really want to get people behind a cause, give them somebody to hate.

The only thing you get from sitting on the fence is possibly some splinters.

The reason Dad's are so suspicious of boys around their girls, is we remember what we were up to when we were boys.

You don't see many fat old rebels, what you see are a lot of skinny people trying to take a short cut to the top.

It's hard to get motivated to change the world when your stomach and bank account are full.

The people with the most guns or money make the rules.

The most common answer to the question "what was he thinking?" is of course, nothing.

Never lend anything that you need back.

Never tell someone to "treat this like it's yours" 'cause if he was going to treat it right the dirt bag would have his own. Tell them "Treat this like it's mine and I want it back!"

All the above are original to the best of my knowledge, prease don't use without giving credit.

Things to think about

Pray for mercy, not justice.

When a magician does a trick, he or she will get you to watch something else, when people talk about you, the misdirection is to keep anyone from looking at them.

An old man dating a young girl is like a dog driving the car he caught, he might get it moving, but it's going to be a short ride and a bad wreck.

If there 's no fool like an old fool, maybe we shouldn't practice so much.

If you have trouble laughing at yourself, don't worry, other folks will take care of that for you.

Shoulder to the wheel, back to the wall, nose to the grindstone, getting a leg up, pulling your self up by the bootstraps, no wonder nothing is getting done. Look at the position you're in.

Immovable object? Irresistible force? No such thing to a teenager behind the wheel of a car.

With the exception of death, everything is recoverable.

The complete list of what "everyone knows" takes a lot of paper, the corrected list of what they actually know, doesn't.

I find the worst part of most jobs is finding the motivation to start.

Murphy (of Murphy's Law fame) lives, but just till I find him.

The just man doubts himself, the coward doubts everyone, the fool doubts nothing.

An accident is bad enough, but it really hurts when you have time to think about it before impact.

Finding out who your real friends are can be very disappointing.

If you feel like you have too many friends, start borrowing money, that should take care of the problem.

If you think you are a good listener, mention it to your spouse, they'll take care of that misconception for you.

Reality is what happens when you act on wishful thinking.

If you over hear someone mumbling about controlling their breathing, relaxing, squeezing slowly, they're either having a baby or arranging your last surprise.

If you want to know who really has your back, call them up and ask them to bail you out of jail, or hide a body.

Beer goggles don't help anyone see more clearly.

You can drink 'til she's cute, you can't drink until you're smart.

If your first thought is an assumption, your last will likely be an error.

With aircraft, automobiles, and love affairs, the takeoff is important... but at the end, you don't want to crash any of them.

Do you live today like you will face God tomorrow? Why not?

You can do anything for twenty minuets on adrenaline alone, then sit down before you shake apart.

Most heroes are just too busy to be scared.

Bravery is what happens when you know what the consequences are, but you have to do it anyway.

If you think you are the center of the universe, you need to have a teen age girl correct that perspective.

God made all men, and then put the women in charge. Argue and suffer.

Think you're so important? See what your cat thinks.

People were a lot more polite when rudeness was addressed on the spot, now most people want to get in the court room.

It takes a village to raise a child, and that's just to rat the little bums out to their parents.

Any parent stupid enough to say "my baby wouldn't do that" needs to spend Saturday night in the trunk of the kids car.

Loyalty has a price, that price would be loyalty. How you pay it determines if you build it or destroy it. Leaders go first.

All the above are originial to the best of my knowledge, please don't use with out giving credit.

Some Things to think about.

It's a great day if you wake up, if you get over that little hump, every thing else is icing on the cake.

Money won't make you happy, poverty is not a virtue, life is what you make it

If I can make it through the day unpublished (no error entered in the public record) I have succeeded.

God takes care of fools and little children, I don't know which title I fall under, but I'm grateful none the less.

Love easily, cry easily, feel deeply, hate slowly, work hard, do right, and if another finds fault with you, you are not the one with the problem.

In vino veritas, may be true, but wisdom is found elsewhere.

Don't make decisions when you are very tired, or very angry, better yet don't speak.

If you want justice ask God or your mother, better ask your mother, if you ask God you might get justice, but you won't like it.

Reside on the moral high ground, the rent is exorbitant, but the comfort is priceless.

If philosophy is the art of wondering, then certainty is the wisdom of fools.

No one can make you any of those wonderful things in the Boy Scout creed, or take them away from you; it's really all in your hands.

The arrogant are convinced of their ability, the rest of us would like to see the proof.

Lies are like cockroaches, they keep coming back, and they multiply.

The most common way to trip is to raise your foot and stick it in your mouth.

God knows. Perhaps the rest of us should shut up and listen.

If I should live to be a thousand years old (I think it unlikely) I will still be making mistakes.

Ignorance is cured by education, stupidity is a choice.

Life presents us with choices, from choices flow consequences, good or bad, you earned it, accept it and be proud of it.

Courage is what happens when you keep doing what you know is right, even though everyone is telling you to take the easy way.

If you make it hard to tell the truth, you encourage lies.

A happy man can't be tempted.

Being tempted is not a sin, wallowing in temptation can certainly lead to sin, particularly if you enjoy it too much.

The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence; however, there are usually some poison ivy and sand spurs in there too.

Pray for the best; expect the worst, cuts down on surprises.

Don't bargain with God, he will keep his end, you'll wish you did.

If you use your faith like a spare tire, only remember, sometimes the spare is flat too.

What goes around comes around, and then everyone piles on.

If you step on fingers going up the ladder to success, those hands will be too sore to catch you on the way down.

If everyone assumes, then no one really knows.

When you find that your mouth has dug you a hole, stop digging and put the shovel down.

Not everything is funny to everyone, be sure the other guy gets the joke.

Laughter may be the best medicine; personally, I would prefer a doctor who takes my illness a little more seriously.

A good carpenter will measure twice and cut once, a smart man will think twice and maybe not speak at all.

Be sure you know the question before you give your answer.

All the above are original to the best of my knowledge. Please don't use them with out credit.