Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Bad Day At the Beach

The retired FDNY firefighter who generally leads the charge for anything 9/11 related, who is also a Red Knight member, lost everything to a fire in his home 7/5/11. All the boys and girls are lining up for the heavy lifting.

His wife and five kids are pretty much homeless, but cared for, and sheltered.

One who gives so much up front deserves to get some of it back.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Busy, Busy, Busy

Sharpening the knives,

Test the alarm system,
Clean and load the guns,

Nothing serious here, but there was a murder a block away, with no motive and no suspect.

Awkward, that is.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Something bigger than myself....

/Yesterday I took a little ride of about 360 miles to escort the National 9/11 Flag to the oldest Fourth of July Celebration in the country. Seventeen of us rode to Raleigh to meet the flag and escort it to the Celebration. We were joined by about four hundred friends I have never met and returned to our area in one long line. We had Police escort the entire trip and various fire departments along the way saluted the flag as it passed. A great trip, with great company. Including Iron Mutt, coolest dude on the trip.

I wanted to tell TLOML how many bikes came, I looked in the mirror, and the headlights were out of sight, on the Interstate. A fellow Red Knight stood up on the bike (on the road) and couldn't see the end of the line.

I consider it interesting that the "dirty old bikers" that so many look down on, were the very ones who love this country enough to endure the ride. 95F for eleven hours. I almost collected a heat related injury at 70mph, that for the record, would be a bad thing.

I had so much fun that this morning when I got up, I felt like I had spent the night face down in prison with my cell open.

Orators and such

I have been told that in the time of our country's founders, the man who needed notes to speak from, sort of like a dead tree teleprompter, or who didn't know the passion to speak from his heart about his subject,

was deemed a liar or mentally defective.

Just sayin'.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Democratic Dragons

If you have ever read dragon lore, you know that they are: old, powerful, greedy, conniving, treacherous, and generally a pain in the rear.

Does that sound like some politicians in the news?

At first glance the Congressional Minority might look like they are trying to help those less fortunate than themselves, don't be fooled. The congress critters are buying votes with our money. They are falling into the trap of allowing the indigent voting themselves unlimited benefits. Historically this has been the end of Democratic government.

I know this argument has been made before, but in your household, when do you stop borrowing? Would you borrow the money to party the weekend away, and then borrow to make the payment, and then borrow to refinance the loans, and so on.

That's exactly what the US government is doing.

Note to Congress: You can't borrow your way out of debt....ever!

Giving people those things to people that they should provide for them selves is a disincentive to productivity. I have friends who have a house hold income above 150k, who are waiting for Obama Care for insurance. The "he" of the pair looked at me with a long face, with a voice like he was talking to a child, and asked "Don't you want everyone to have insurance?". My reply was, "Sure, if they pay for it!".

All my life I have known people who wouldn't work tasting pies. They would rather pay for a party than a dental appointment or checkup. Self described victims of some system that hates a poor man. I have lived and worked around people who would rather by a beer, and party all night, rather than care for their children. The children, by the by, are produced accidentally and required to do the house work.

The "victim class" have a sense of entitlement partially because they are bone deep lazy and also because they are taught the life style by the liberal government.

The worst thing the government can do is feed the "hungry man", because he will sit down at the food source and wait for the next meal. He will not feed himself, because it's easier to let some one else do it for him. I'm not condemning the hungry, I'd do the same, most likely. Giving someone something, however, makes it less likely they will search for other opportunity.

The Democrats sing the song "if you have more then you should pay more", how is that logical? That's class warfare, this country was founded on the premise that there are no classes. If you want more, do more. Since the beginning of humanity the most productive have had the best lives, providing the incentive to the rest of the culture to work harder or smarter, to secure those blessings for their loved ones. Unfortunately there have also been the "I want that and you should give it to me" crowd.

The point?

The political elite are mortgaging our children's future to secure their future. They have no need of good financial policy, they, for the most part are already rich. Rising interest rates will make them richer. We on the lower end of that scale will get poorer. They are the lenders, the rich who can invest for a return, we are the borrowers who have to borrow to have a place to live and a way to get to work.

There is enough empirical evidence to guide the decisions in this country. There is enough history to prove what will happen. We are no smarter than the leaders of old, quite the opposite, there is none so blind as he who will not see. Witness Jordan, Syria, Egypt, and Iranian upheavals.

There is an end, and we are rushing toward it like a train wreck.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Dude!!!! What are you thinkin"


4 suspects dead in police shooting in Miami area

Published - Jul 01 2011 07:06AM EST

MIAMI — Authorities in Miami-Dade County say police shot and killed four suspects during a confrontation after they got out of their vehicles wearing ski masks and carrying guns.

Miami-Dade Police spokesman Alvaro Zabaleta says the robbery bureau was investigating Thursday evening in the southwestern section of the county when they learned of suspicious activity.

Several suspects were identified and due to their criminal history, Zabaleta says the department's special response team was called in.

According to Zabaleta, the suspects arrived in the area wearing ski masks and carrying guns. A confrontation occurred as the men got out of their vehicles. Shots were fired and four suspects were killed.

Zabaleta says none of the police officers were injured.

No other details were immediately available.

Who needs details? Idiots confront cops with guns wearing masks.

Idiots get shot lots.

Cops reload, take pictures, get garbage off streets.

Normally, I don't carry a gun, though after my time in Florida City last fall, I do now. Scary place, don't leave anything in your car, don't fill up at a stop and rob(the name fits) after dark, don't go to Walmart unless you are of Cuban decent. I know of one guy stopped for driving the speed limit, then advised to drive like everyone else (speeding) or get shot for being a gang banger, or pulled by every cop in Dade county for suspicious behavior.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

From a while back,,,

I filled my truck the other day and set a personal record of three hundred and seventy five dollars ($375) with three quarters of a tank left in the back tank. Thank the good Lord I only drive that monster when some one else is paying for the fuel.(Old truck, I now travel in a motor home that gets 7mpg)

As you can easily imagine I am more than slightly tired of that.

There fore, as whining with out a proposed solution is &itching, my proposal!

Barter; raise the price of food and technology to oil producing countries. Make a barrel of oil currency or more firmly tie it to the markets. The royalty that is getting rich from oil while their subjects are living in mud huts needs to hear the growl of their peoples stomachs. When the growl gets to the throats and the volume is sufficient to shake them awake. Things might get a little better. (Libya, Jordan, Syria, Iran, Saudi, are you listening?)

Another proposal needing a close look is ACTUALLY becoming self sufficient, rather than just talking about it. A recent study, (through a crystal ball perhaps, I have no idea how this was done) says we have more undeveloped oil reserves than the rest of the world put together!!!!! Let’s stimulate the economy by building refineries, and perfecting technology to recover this oil without destroying the environment.

We are the supposed greatest nation in the world,

time to prove it again.

If we can put a man on the moon and build the Interstate System (technology and engineering), surely a profit producing national project isn’t beyond us.

This may be a repost, I didn't look back, but in light of recent events, it looks like I was right.

Whoda thunk it.

Trying to live....

and getting by far.

When people ask me "how are you today?"

I generally answer, "I woke up this morning."

The nice folks are generally confused by this response, or answer "that's a good thing". They are correct, it is good, in fact, it's a requirement. I tell them that as long as you don't open your eyes to bright lights and concerned faces in the ER, it's a good day.

Everything else is gravy.

All of us will come to that day when we don't wake up, and that is the natural end of a long life.

Yes, there comes an end.

Be sure it doesn't get there before you have told your family that you love them, and you affairs are in order so as not to be a burden. Move on as an honorable person, and leave as good a memory as you can.

Presidential Dragon

Here we go fans, is the POTUS ready to tell us all to "shut up and drink the cool aide" ?

It seems that way.

Daily we hear of errors in names, birth days (his daughters), statements about the economy that are later reversed because he is confused. Sounds like he doesn't care enough anymore.

Big surprise, right.

Not really, he didn't care to start with. He cares about himself more than anyone else, followed by his family. The family part is NOT a criticism, that is as it should be. He uses the words: I, me, my, more than anyone in office should. I had hoped to see the POTUS be someone who cares more about the country and the Constitution than himself.

Not happening.

HE doesn't do it all himself, he didn't kill bin Laden, the SEAL's did. HE actually does very little, his team does the heavy lifting, he just takes the credit.

Remember when I said I thought he was actively trying to destroy this country? Look at all the change, dollar lousing reserve status, government spending up (not just because of war), telling congress that he can engage in war on his own.

We, as a nation will be climbing out of this hole longer than I will live.

I find myself fondly remembering Jimmy Carter, we survived four years with out a President while he held office, we could have done better with out this twit.

The long road a winding

I have noticed a few things lately; most of the folks on my blog list have quit posting, my motivation to do more posting has waned, the political arena is full of the "usual suspects" who are depressingly predictable.

All that being true, I don't have to stumble, I only have to step over the obstacle and go on.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

New Grill... mount

We went to the local building supply the other day and saw a tailgating grill as above. The only thing I didn't like was the price, $300!

I immediately went to conniving mode and started running the idea through my mind. I took advantage of the first opportunity to visit a local muffler shop (run by friends) and get a little pipe work done.

We, the entire family, are beach engineers. We carry a load of things with us to make the ocean side more comfortable, tents, large coolers, grills and enough food for a small army. All this takes space and it's nice to have it outside and easily available rather than in the bed of a truck or back of a jeep. The answer to the problem is a cargo carrier, that can be used for other things as well. Like fishing, for example. The thing about fishing is the rod, long spindly thing that is easily broken and terribly awkward. The solution is a rod rack or rod holders.

My cargo carrier has long been modified to carry fishing rods.

Now, it has additional duties. I took a little trip down to the pipe bender boys and in short order had a tube bent to a right angle with a piece of tubing welded to the long side perpendicular to the tube. A short piece from the scrap bin that would insert into the welded tube would be the base for the grill. A short drive to Harbor Freight for two PTO pins and a trip to a fab shop for a 1/8 inch steel plate was all I needed to finish the job.

I slid the tube over the top of an existing rod holder and drilled a hole for a pin to hold it in a storage position, rotate it and drill it for a cooking position. Weld the plate to the mounting tube and repeat. Place the grill, one that I already had on the plate and drill the feet to bolt it down, and you have this.

It has had a field test that worked out well, and is about to get another. Cost, a little over $36.

Does it look as cool as the other? Only if you look into your wallet first, then it looks better.

The next question is.... what next?

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

DAV Ride

One of the things I missed this last job was riding the bike. I didn't have a good way to haul it (working on that), so it didn't go along. Eight weeks with no scoot, sucks!

Howsomever, I am riding a lot more and have located the Facebook site that allows me to find out who is riding where.

Saturday the local DAV was having a fund raiser, a poker run from a local bike shop to a local dealership, via the scenic route.

TLOML didn't care to ride so I asked the youngest to ride, as a healing for a difficult time. She agreed and after getting her up early, for a Saturday, we went for breakfast and then signed up for the day.

The total was about 116 miles with an eclectic group of folks that only have one thing in common, motorcycles.

I didn't win anything, at least I don't think so, we didn't hang around to see. We were tired, sunburned, and ready to go home, so I gave my tickets to someone who would donate anything I won back to the fundraiser and called it a day.

Now it's time to check on the next one

Sunday, May 8, 2011


I went to the village torture chamber, uh, excuse me.... Dentist for an overhaul the other day. You know, the usual, fill the cavities, clean the roots, and replace the crown that disintegrated when I chewed a french fry.

Yep, bit down on a semi crispy potato stick and developed a mouth full of eggshells. I took the gross mass out of my mouth and tossed it out the window. No problem, after all, I'm not going to save it for several weeks and a four hundred mile trip for show and tell when having it repaired.

Wrong! That would be exactly what the warranty on the crown requires!

Notably, I had never even considered that there was a warranty on one of these things, or that it is only good for five years, not to mention that it has to be inspected every six months. Now lets toss in the idea that the insurance company doesn't want to cover it unless it is over five years old. The highly trained medical professional that I pay for all this, failed to mention any of the above.

Must have been a busy day.

This device will cost $982.

I've driven cars that cost less, and they lasted longer. Interesting to me is the crown adjacent to the expensive hole in my head has lasted for thirty years with no problems.

Let's see, I have no input to the choice of suppliers, no information regarding the warranty, no idea that this isn't a permanent fix, and no idea that the "lab" has had quality control issues.

However I am financially responsible.

As expected no one will assume responsibility for the failed component, by default it comes to me.

Imagine that!

The remaining pleasure was the "deep cleaning". Deep is a relative term, African gold mines are deep, some oil wells are deep.

Digging in my gums with sharp metallic objects is deep when I walk into the room.

Six or so syringes of numbing later,a very nice young lady spent an hour scratching under my toenails from inside my mouth. I thought I was going to have to clean blood out of my boots.

The cavities, I hardly noticed, a little drilling a little probing and four hands in my mouth at the same time, no problem there.

At the end of the morning, a bill for $1600 and a small bag of floss and toothpaste.

Don't you just love our health care system?

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

New title

I am now a full time employee, salaried and sitting at home, for a short while.

I just finished a stint at a plant in the south, testing their primary containment. I had eleven techs working with me, and supposedly for me.

Supposedly, because the little dears seldom accept the authority of any human living or dead.

It's a good thing they don't let me carry a club, or frustration might have led me to make a mistake. Not really, but I can dream, can't I?

We were testing the leakage from primary containment at design pressure in Loss of Coolant Accident conditions. The testing itself is pretty simple, put air in a pipe and see if it stays, if not, it's a maintenance problem.

The complexity comes with the accuracy required. We are testing in Standard Cubic Centimeters per Minute, and the Leak Rate Monitors are very expensive and accurate. The effects of temperature and changes in pressure will drive you to distraction. You can actually warm the plastic test line with your hand and change the leak rate. The leak rate tech needs to be able to understand the changes and decide when the leak rate is stable enough to take data.

All my problems were due to the personnel who were on the job. Slippery individuals that they are, some want to wander around when they should be available, that would be with out communicating with me. Not to mention, I had a few who were actively trying to undermine me as supervisor. Don't forget the one who didn't show up, or the one who showed up to get a badge, and get paid mobilization money, per-diem, and hours for getting a badge, just to "drag up" and go to the next job. We were staffed at sixteen techs, and ended with twelve.

The name of the game is roll with the punches, and we pulled it off. After several painful, for me, conversations with the little lambs, we got settled in, did the job, and left a good memory behind us.

Now I have to see if I can build a team and find us some more work.

Bin Laden dead?


Seal team six, one of the most storied and best trained spec ops groups in the world, who have been refining the "smash and grab" for forty years, have strolled into a compound and whacked the highest value target around.

The body is respectfully buried at sea, so there can be no shrine, and coincidentally no body.

Very convenient, don't you think?

It might have been better to grab the bad guy and wring him dry then bury him at sea, the end result would be the same, except Al quida could be disassembled from the top down.

If I can think of that scenario, I'm sure the pros can too.

Sorta' makes you think doesn't it?