Thursday, April 30, 2009

Just Listen To Yourself...!

I've been thinking about this for a long time and thought it was about time to bring it up for discussion.

You know, we all started with a dream of where we wanted to be. The dream slowly became a plan, then the plan became a passion! We lived very spare minute thinking about this passion, weighing of all the positives and negatives...trying to cover all the bases.

Finally, we started talking to some of our friends and family about our dreams, our plans, our passion. That's when the reality set in that most of our friends and family didn't see things the way that we did. They could not even begin to understand the passion and some even questioned our thinking about the whole thing!

Oh, there were some that would listen politely, nodding their head, but you could tell that they weren't on the same level as we were. They didn't understand the passion, the dream! How could they? Most were happy in their present lifestyles and situations, and thought we should be as well. No amount of logical discussion, no "what if" scenarios, or no explanations of well thought out plans could convince anyone that we were still in possession of our sanity.

Instead of becoming our supporters and sharing our dreams, friends and family ending up being the biggest nay Sayers we faced. No voices were raised in defense of the dreams and plans we had nurtured for so long. Many times, not a single positive voice could be heard !

That is, except for one! The positive voice deep down inside ourselves, caressing the original idea that became a dream, then a plan, then a passion! In other words, that's where the passion lives and prospers...deep within ourselves!

There will always be times when we start to question our plans, giving in a bit to the well intended nags and warnings and negative talk. There will many times that the temptation to give in to someone Else's vision of what our future should be will appear too strong to resist. That's only human nature. However, the strength to resist that temptation can be drawn from the same place where the dream lives...from deep within ourselves!

In the end, what it boils down to is that no one else knows our dreams and plans and passions like we do! What we all need to do is to look deep within ourselves and ask a couple of very simple questions.

How much do we really believe in the dream? How badly do we really want the dream? Are we ready to ignore all the advice, all the concerns, all the misdirections of others and remain true to ourselves and our dream?

In a word, YES! I know that I can, I know that you can...I know that we all can! Just follow the old adage "To thine own self be true!" Just listen to yourself...that's all!

So let's get another cup of coffee, sit at the patio table, and quietly think about our dream, OK my friend?

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Weather Could Change History...

. Because of the really bad weather we have had for the last couple of days here in Houston, I found this a pretty interesting article.

Thanks to The Old Farmers Almanac , seven examples of how weather may have changed American history are presented here. Interesting bit of information...

If It Hadn't Rained . . .
Norm D. Bloom

If it hadn't been so cold in 1604 ...

New Englanders might speak French. French explorers under the Sieur de Monts were the first to establish a colony on the North Atlantic coast, on an island in the St. Croix River in 1604. But the winter was so "cold and dreadful" that the little group decided to move to a more sheltered spot in Nova Scotia. The first English settlement, near the mouth of the Kennebec River in Maine, was also abandoned after the fierce winter of 1607-08.

If it hadn't been so warm in 1620 ...

The Pilgrims might not have survived their first winter in Massachusetts. That winter of 1620-21 was described as "a calm winter such as never seen here since," with mild temperatures and only one substantial snowstorm. Even so, only 50 of the 102 settlers lived until spring.

If it hadn't been so foggy on August 29, 1776 ...

George Washington and most of the Continental Army might have been annihilated at the Battle of Long Island. After British troops won a smashing victory on August 27, 1776, the Americans were trapped at the western end of Long Island. Washington managed to save his army by crossing the East River to Manhattan Island under cover of a thick fog on August 29-30. Though he had suffered a defeat, Washington had reserved his army as a fighting force.

If it hadn't been so stormy on October 16, 1781 ...

British commander Lord Cornwallis might have escaped from Yorktown to prolong the Revolutionary War. On the night of October 16-17, 1781, Cornwallis proposed to evacuate his trapped army across the York River estuary on flatboats, then fight his way north to join British forces in New York. But in the middle of the crossing, a violent thunderstorm dispersed the flatboats, pushing some of them five miles downriver where they were captured by the French. The crossing had to be abandoned, and thus expired "the last hope of the British army," according to one of its officers. Cornwallis surrendered on October 19, assuring American independence.

If it hadn't rained on July 4, 1863 ...

General Robert E. Lee's Confederate Army might have suffered worse losses, or even been destroyed, in the aftermath of Gettysburg. The great battle took place July 1-3, 1863, and on the last day, Pickett's Charge, the Confederates' final assault on the Union lines was repulsed with enormous loss. Lee expected Union General George Meade to counterattack, but Meade hesitated. Rain began to fall on the night of the third and continued throughout July 4. Under cover of the rain and darkness that night, Lee began his retreat to Virginia. Despite President Lincoln's frantic urgings, Meade was slow to pursue the battered rebels, and the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia escaped intact to fight on for another 21 months.

If it had snowed harder on November 7, 1916 ...

President Woodrow Wilson might have lost his reelection bid in 1916. In one of the closest elections in history, Democratic incumbent Wilson defeated Republican Charles Evans Hughes and went on to take the United States into World War I in 1917. Wilson won the state of California by less than 2,000 votes on a day when heavy snow kept Democratic turnout low in mountain counties. Had the storm been worse, Hughes would have won the state and the national election. America probably would have entered the war anyway; Wilson had been regarded as the peace candidate. But as historian Paul F. Boller Jr. said, Wilson "made world pacification ... the primary objective of American foreign policy," a position that has shaped our history and the world's ever since.

If there hadn't been a freeze on January 28, 1986 ...

The Challenger disaster might have been avoided. The space shuttle exploded shortly after takeoff from Cape Canaveral, Florida, killing seven astronauts, including Concord, N.H., schoolteacher Christa McAuliffe. Investigation showed that a sudden temperature drop the night before the launch had caused a-rings sealing the joints between segments of the solid-fuel booster rockets to become brittle and fail.

Now, what say we make our on little bit of history by seeing how many cups of coffee we can drink on the patio before the rain sets in! OK, my friend?

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Repost About Plan "B"...

I wanted to repost this piece because I have the real need lately for a plan "B".
Hope you don't mind!!!

My friend Blondie said something yesterday that got me to thinking. She said “Time for plan B”. Plan B ? Do I have a plan B? Do I even have a plan A? I mean, I must have a plan A! If you have any plan at all, then by default it must be plan A, right?

How many plans am I supposed to have, anyway? I mean, I plainly need a plan A and a plan B. Plan B must be very important because people are always talking about it. They say things like “Time for plan B” or “What's plan B?” or “ If something goes wrong, then we switch to plan B!”. I don't ever remember anyone saying anything about a plan C. Usually if plan B doesn't work out, then someone most likely says “ Now what?” least that's what they do in the movies!

And what about the Secret Plan? I get the impression that only the Bad Guys have a Secret Plan, as I only see Bad Guys ever talking about the Secret Plans. I guess the Good Guys are sticking with the plan A and plan B routine. Maybe that's what they teach in Good Guy School!

I get confused about the Secret Plan because if I have this figured right, the Bad Guys nearly always have a gang. At the very least, they seem to have a flunky or right hand man. Now if the Bad Guys share the Secret Plan with the other Bad Guys in their gang, then the plan can't be secret, right? I mean, the very act of sharing the plan seems to do away with the secret part. At least that's how it seems to me.

I'm pretty sure that I am a Good Guy, because I don't have a Secret Plan. If I do, it's so secret even I don't know about it! I think that I must have a plan A, even though I never really called it that. But the fact that most of the things I do in life seem to follow some sort of plan, then I must have plan A.

It's this plan B thing that has me baffled. I am determined to find out if I have a plan B, and if I have plan B where would I have put it? Do I have a file somewhere marked “Plan B”? I would think that plan B should be very easy to get to since it seems to be so important.

Do you see why I'm a little confused? I think I'll just get some fresh coffee, sit on the patio and enjoy the morning. Whadda ya think...sound like a plan?

Monday, April 27, 2009

This Is Interesting...!

Although this is all conjecture, it still makes for an interesting video.

With the news focused on the swine flu, this makes for an interesting look at a possible time frame of events. It could happen just this fast!

Again, let me just stress that we should all keep our heads, and don't over-react to the situation. Always remember, the Preppers prepare for the worse...and hope for the best!

Now do you see the importance of just being ready all the time? Some of us do! Please, won't you come and join us?

Now, c'mon my friend! Let's get another cup of coffee and talk about as better future for us all!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

I Think I Needed This...

I had some things get me all negative yesterday.

I don't like to carry any negative thoughts, because negative only attracts negative! On the other hand, positive thoughts attract positive energy, so I picked this piece to play. Think some positive thoughts while you listen, OK?

The music is very calming, the scenery is beautiful, and the message says "Peace" to me. Let's get another cup of coffee and listen to it again!

Go ahead and pull up a chair...always room for another friend at my patio table!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Something New For My New Location...

I found something today that I hadn't seen before, but I'm sure that some of you have.

This is a picture of a collapsible rain barrel or water storage barrel. Now to me, this seems like a very practical item. It would only need to be set up when needed, and could be stored out of the way when not in use.

At 30 gallons each, several of these could help make the difference in the supply of water. The fact that it has a built in screen on top is a plus. The price is certainly a BIG plus, as it is about as inexpensive as you can find anywhere! Cost at Harbor Freight is $17.97 each!

Just seems to me that it would be a lot easier to move when empty as well! I'm thinking that living in a small space, this could be very handy!

Anyway, that's about all I had for now...except to say that I am starting to get rid of all my unnecessary stuff and have actually started the packing process to see what I actually need to take with me.

Might as well get ready now instead of waiting, don't you think? Now let's go get a fresh cup of coffee...OK, my friend?

Friday, April 24, 2009

Let The Old Guys Take Care Of It...!

A friend sent me this, and I thought it made a lot of sense in a weird sort of way!

I am over 60 and the Armed Forces thinks I'm too old to track down terrorists. You can't be older than 42 to join the military. They've got the whole thing ass-backwards. Instead of sending 18-year olds off to fight, they ought to take us old guys. You shouldn't be able to join a military unit until you're at least 35.

For starters: Researchers say 18-year-olds think about sex every 10 seconds. Old guys only think about sex a couple of times a day, leaving us more than 28,000 additional seconds per day to concentrate on the enemy.

Young guys haven't lived long enough to be cranky, and a cranky soldier is a dangerous soldier.. 'My back hurts! I can't sleep, I'm tired and hungry' We are impatient and maybe letting us kill some a**hole that desperately deserves it will make us feel better and shut us up for a while.

An 18-year-old doesn't even like to get up before 10 a.m. Old guys always get up early to pee so what the hell. Besides, like I said, 'I'm tired and can't sleep and since I'm already up, I may as well be up killing some fanatical s-of-a-b....

If captured we couldn't spill the beans because we'd forget where we put them. In fact, name, rank, and serial number would be a real brainteaser.

Boot camp would be easier for old guys. We're used to getting screamed and yelled at and we're used to soft food. We've also developed an appreciation for guns. We've been using them for years as an excuse to get out of the house, away from the screaming and yelling.

They could lighten up on the obstacle course however. I've been in combat and didn't see a single 20-foot wall with rope hanging over the side, nor did I ever do any pushups after completing basic training.

Actually, the running part is kind of a waste of energy, too. I've never seen anyone outrun a bullet.

An 18-year-old has the whole world ahead of him. He's still learning to shave, to start up a conversation with a pretty girl. He still hasn't figured out that a baseball cap has a brim to shade his eyes, not the back of his head.

These are all great reasons to keep our kids at home to learn a little more about life before sending them off into harm's way.

Let us old guys track down those dirty rotten coward terrorists. The last thing an enemy would want to see is a couple of million pissed off old farts with attitudes and automatic weapons who know that their best years are already behind them.

***How about recruiting Women over 50 ...with PMS !!! You think Men have attitudes !!! Ohhhhhhhhhhhh my God!!!

If nothing else, put us on border patrol......we will have it secured the first night!

See what I mean? Lot off truth in this piece...

Now what do you say that we go get a fresh cup of coffee, my old friend!!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Learn That Nature Is The Boss...

Mother Nature usually does things her way!

If you live in a rural area, you already know this little fact! If you are contemplating a move to the country, there are a few things that you need to think about, if you haven't already.

Any place rural, and a LOT of places in the city, are home to a wide variety of bugs. I mean, bugs in abundance! Some are big, some are small, but all exist in really large numbers, believe me!

Most people that camp out have experienced the fun such as ants in the food supply, crawling critters in the sleeping bags and down shirt collars, flying bugs such as June bugs that somehow end up in the frying pan along with the fish or potatoes, that sort of thing. Go ahead and eat them...won't hurt ya at all, especially fried.

One of the most effective fish baits you can find, are the bugs that live next to a stream or creek. The fish are already familiar with them as a food source, and like I said, they usually exist in abundance.

In the city, most folks deal with primarily two kinds of bugs. Spiders and roaches! Roaches, especially in moist areas, will seemingly live forever! On the coast, we have what we call "tree roaches " or "water bugs", but no matter what the name it still looks like a house hold roach on steroids! You could make a decent B Horror movie with these bugs, and I believe that some folks have already done that many times!

The other bug common to the city is the spider, which comes in every shade and size you could possibly imagine! Big ones, small ones, poisonous ones, non-poisonous ones, fast ones, slow ones...the city pretty much has them all. I could learn to get along with most of the out of sight spiders except for one thing. The WEBS...!

One thing that will break your concentration for sure is to be walking somewhere and run into a spider web across the face! I have seen grown men act as though they were under attack by mutant zombies, as they attempt to wipe away the webs across their mouth and nose! They slap at the air like swatting at a fly, knowing full well that the spider is tucked away in a corner somewhere, just waiting for you to finish destroying his carefully built web so that he can go back and rebuild it. And he will rebuild it, probably in the same spot where you ran into it the last time! And you will likely find yourself walking into it again! Trust me on this!

The biggest problem for me and spider webs, is that some of them are really, really small! Guess they are trying to catch really small insects, I don't know. They hang down from the ceiling, sometimes right in the middle of the room, and often you just flat can't see them to avoid them, no matter how hard you try!

Webs are very effective at what they do. They catch a lot of little flying critters that might have otherwise found their way into the frying pan with the fish and potatoes, or might have been found in your morning coffee cup, doing the back stroke. On the downside, they also attract and hold onto a lot of dust and cat hair...which makes it a slight problem for my situation.

I will give the spider one thing. Many of the spider webs I find outside are really pretty! Especially when the early morning dew glistens on them. They sparkle like a collection of small diamonds in the sunlight! Their designs and symmetry are a wonder to behold, and can be very beautiful to look at...considering how ugly their makers are!

Spiders are definitely ugly! I don't think I have ever seen a pretty spider...and I've seen a LOT of them! I'll even go so far as to say that my ex-mother in law was not as least on the outside! However, that's stretching things a bit, I know!

The main point is that city or country, especially in the country...Mother Nature has scattered a lot of really fascinating creatures. Some are things of beauty and wonder, while others are just about as ugly as you would want to see. That being said, we must keep in mind that Mother Nature put them here and that they all have some purpose, even the ugly ones! Don't believe me...? Take a good look at some of the folks around you sometimes! Better yet, take a good look in the bathroom mirror under a fluorescent light. Kinda makes you rethink the whole ugly and beautiful thing, doesn't it?

Now, having said all that...what say we grab a fresh cup of coffee and sit at the patio table, my friend! We can sit and watch as Mother Nature does her thing!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

All Fixed Up And Safe Again...!

Just in case anyone was wondering...

All problems were taken care of and all is now well again! Don't you just love a happy ending...?

More coffee anyone...?

Strange Days Are Happening...

Hey folks...strange stuff going on!

I'm taking the day, or at least the morning, off! I've had several unwanted incidents on the old P.C. today. It affected the whole home network, so I have to see if I can find it, fix it, or kill it!

Whatever it is has taken down my spyware software and made it inoperable. It's giving the anti-virus a fit, so I'm gonna get real serious here about finding it.

I'll get back as soon as I can!

Meantime, have a cup of coffee on me!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

I Have A New Slogan...

I'm not even sure if I even had an old slogan, but now I have a new one!

This all came about by the simple gift of a T-shirt given to me by my sister. The shirt is white, and on the back in the middle of a stylized Texas flag, is the slogan "Don't Mess With Bubba!"

Now it's my guess that Sis meant the t-shirt as a joke because I am always talking about moving to the country! However, she could have meant it as a warning to all the possible people predators that live in this city!

Maybe she feels that it's only sporting to give these types a fair warning, just in case they happen to get close enough to actually read the back of the shirt without me noticing. I did notice, however, that the slogan (or warning) is in large type and printed in easy to read letters, just in case some of these bums are not well educated!

I like the way that the phrase kinda rolls off the tongue...and I don't mind a bit if someone wants to call me a "Bubba". Even if they think they are being disrespectful somehow, to me the term "Bubba" means someone that can make do with the materials at hand. It calls up images of someone that can build a cabin from scrap, make booze out of grain from scratch, grow his own food, and even kill and then skin a critter, thus putting supper on the table for his family.

I see a person that can continue to keep a vehicle running long after all the car lots and auto parts houses say it can't be repaired anymore. If "Bubba" can't buy the part, steal it from a junker somewhere, or scrounge one up in a junk yard, then he uses his brain and ingenuity to fashion something somehow out of almost nothing! Good person to have around, I'd say!

Some folks think the term "Bubba" is slanderous. Some say it is cruel. To many it calls up an image of poor folks, maybe too lazy to work. Tell that to the old boy working in his shed or barn, making a part to keep his Ford or John Deere tractor from many decades ago running. Tell that to the old boy's wife that can make and repair clothing, make a beautiful quilt from scraps of material others would throw away, and create a wonderful Sunday dinner from that old rooster that finally just got too old to do his job! Tell that to the young boys and girls that are not glued to the T.V., but are outside making and playing with their own toys like forts, tire swings, and wooden weapons like swords or rifles. They might even be down at the local swimming hole, having a good time with an old inner tube that dad just can't patch any more. For anyone that has never had that kind of fun, I feel sad for ya!

The whole point I'm trying to make here is that the term lazy is a very, very bad choice and is more of lie than a description! Besides, it shows the world just how ignorant you are...and I have a feeling you would rather that be kept a secret, right?

Anyway, I've decided to make this term "Don't Mess With Bubba" my new slogan. It's a term that doesn't hurt my feelings a bit, fits me and a lot of my friends pretty well, and sisters call me Bubba as a term of endearment and that means a LOT to me!

Oh, and one more reason I'm making this my new slogan...I already have the T-shirt!

Now, c'mon with me, my friend and we'll get a fresh cup of coffee and sit a while on the back porch...that's another thing that a "Bubba" can do pretty well! Share with his friends!!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Start Of A Beautiful Day...

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This is a picture of Independence Park in the town of Gonzales, where a few of us met and re-affirmed our oath to the Constitution.

A beautiful day, a few good friends, some heartfelt oaths repeated, new commitments made to our country and constitution...what more could a person ask for?

I'll post the rest of the pictures when we get them all sorted out. Thanks to all of you for your support and the nice comments.

Coffee is ready, and I am getting used to having friends let's share a cup.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

The Road To Gonzales...

The nephew and I are on the road to Gonzales to meet with some of our fellows at the Oath-Keepers gathering.

In keeping with the whole spirit of a road trip, here is a cover of Willie's great traveling song. Hope you enjoy it...

I'll see ya when we get back! If possible, we'll bring some pictures back with us! Help yourself to the coffee, my friend!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

I Don't Like Labels...

To put it simply, I don't like to be labeled.

I don't like to have a sign hung around my neck by someone who doesn't even know me! There are those in this old world that are not happy unless they are running around helter skelter putting labels on folks.

Maybe our view on politics are not the same, maybe our views on religion, on lifestyles, on history, on heroes, on just about anything you can imagine are not the same...but still, don't put a label on me!

Look, here's the thing. Freedom of speech is alive and well, and while I may not agree with what you say, I will defend to the death your right to say it. However, that does NOT include the right to label folks. Labeling people is counter productive. Labeling people is falling into the trap that government and politicians want you fall into. Besides, it is just plain rude.

I don't want to be called a democrat, a republican, a liberal, a conservative, a separatist, a loyalist, pro government, anti government, militia member, terrorist, religious, non religious, left wing, right wing, communist, socialist, Maoist, radical, pacifist, or protester! In fact, I don't want to be called any of these.

There's nothing wrong with people choosing these labels for themselves if that's what they want. That's their right! Any one and every one has that right...the right to choose, to be what they want to be, as long as it does not violate the rights of others.

So , don't label me because you think you know me. You don't know me, not the real me! Even the people that think they know me, don't really KNOW me! Can you understand what I'm trying to say? Am I making any sense? Does any of this ring true for you as well?

So, what am I? How do I think of myself? I think of myself as a simple man, a seeker of peace. a believer! If I had to choose a label for myself, I would say I'm just a common man with many of the same wants and needs and desires and dreams as most other common men.

I guess if you really want to label me, I can't stop you. Maybe I don't even have the right to try. All I can ask is that you label me something that is not negative, but positive! If you don't mind a suggestion, why not just do away with the labels all together?

Now, why don't we just get another cup of coffee, sit on the patio, and talk a bit. Maybe we can just call each other Friend! That's a label I'd be proud to wear!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Feeling My Age A Bit...

Do you ever get the feeling some days that this is more true than we would like it to be?

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Most days I don't think about it. I mean, I would probably feel it more if I did, ya know? However, here lately the weather has been really one day, rainy the next. Sometimes in the morning when I first get up, it seems to take me a little longer to get to the coffee pot. The creaks and moans I hear are coming from my joints, and even the roomies know enough to stay out of my way until I get that first cup in hand!

But I have finally figured out how to beat this early morning problem. In the mornings, I now jump out of bed before my eyes are completely open, stumble quickly to the coffee pot before the screaming from my joints has time to register in my aging brain, and softly say "good morning" to the roomies before they start running for cover!

Now that I have got this routine down, why don't we get a fresh cup of coffee, my friend? We can sit at the patio table...getting down is not a problem. Sometimes getting back up is!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Wisdom Speaks Out From The Past...

Sometimes men make statements not truly understood until they are gone.

I think that Dwight D. Eisenhower was one of those men. I respect most all of his quotes and I find them to be very applicable to our times.

Here in America we are descended in blood and in spirit from revolutionists and rebels - men and women who dare to dissent from accepted doctrine. As their heirs, may we never confuse honest dissent with disloyal subversion.
Dwight D. Eisenhower

I like to believe that people in the long run are going to do more to promote peace than our governments. Indeed, I think that people want peace so much that one of these days governments had better get out of the way and let them have it.
Dwight D. Eisenhower

There is nothing wrong with America that faith, love of freedom, intelligence, and energy of her citizens cannot cure.
Dwight D. Eisenhower

See what I mean? Now, let's get some coffee, my friend!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Observations At The V.A....

I made my monthly visit to the V.A. hospital for my blood test.

I only go so they can test and see if the dosage for the blood thinner is correct. While sitting in the waiting room at the blood lab, I started noticing things all around me.

First thing I noticed was that there was a LOT more people than normal waiting. I don't know if the economy is causing an increase in people using V.A., or if all the sudden there are more vets getting checked. One of the blood techs did say that there seemed to be more patients than usual lately.

Secondly, I noticed that there was a wide range of ages. Young guys, old guys, and all the in-between guys! There were guys that looked healthy, and others that didn't look that good. Young and old, all were either fast walking, slow walking, walking with canes and walkers, and some not walking at all, but were riding in wheel chairs.

You see all races in the waiting room. Black, White, Latin, Oriental, and Native American. There is always a good number of women as well. I think that we sometimes forget about the number of women that proudly served in the Armed services, nearly all were volunteers.

The guys sitting there were dressed in a varied manner as well. Some wearing suits and ties, some in khakis, some in jeans, some in very obvious clothes from thrift shops and even those in very ragged, worn out garb. But the clothing was clean, regardless of it's condition.

Probably the main thing that stood out the most was that all of these vets were sitting there with their heads held high. They sat there PROUD. It didn't matter what their financial status was, they were there in the company of fellow Vets! Men and women that shared some of the same experiences, the same ups and downs, the same weaknesses and strengths that can only come from situations that would never be understood or lived by anyone but a vet!

Suddenly, I was both humbled and proud to be in that waiting room with all those vets, those warriors from past battles, both long ago and recent. Most of the battles were physical, but some were fought in the memories and minds of a few vets.

Most faces, both young and old, were lined with the map of the emotions often felt. Lines that traced the joy and happiness, as well as the sadness and sorrows. More importantly, the lines were very obvious on nearly all of the faces I saw, told me the story of smiles...many smiles. In fact, there was no shortage of smiles in the waiting room as we sat there.

Amazingly, as I sat there I was overcome with a feeling of peace, taking comfort in just being in the company of these men and women. Even though none of us had met, we were friends! Even though we had never met, we were BROTHERS ! I only wish I had the words and the ability to share that feeling. I don't...

Some of you will understand, some never will ! Again, I'm sorry...

Now what do you say to a fresh, hot cup of coffee, my friend? Oh, and please bring your smile, OK? OK!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

I Love Taxes...!

Now you know that's a lie, right?

First of all, I don't pay income tax anymore. It seems that even the government realizes that folks like me, living just above the poverty level, couldn't pay taxes if we wanted to! Luckily, I fell below the "have to pay" mark when I retired.

It's really a little more complicated than I make it sound, but I like things that's how I think about it!

You know, taxes have been a problem for a long, long time. Thanks to the "Old Farmer's Almanac" I have a little bit of tax history to pass on to you. (I just love the Almanac, ya know?)

Tax Day’s around the corner (April 15 for U.S. residents; April 30 for Canadians).

Here’s something to think about: In the 1730s, all “U.S.” residents paid a 6-shilling tax for a “night watch” guard.

Benjamin Franklin circulated an essay decrying “the inequity of this tax . . . since a poor widow housekeeper . . . paid as much as the wealthiest merchant, who had thousands of pounds’ worth of goods in his store.” This led to a reform law.

Ben's proportional tax resembles the U.S. federal income tax, enacted in 1913, with its progressive rate.

In the spirit of thrifty Ben Franklin, here are a few tips on saving money:

• Plant your own veggie garden.
• Collect rain off the roof with a water barrel.
Compost in the backyard.
• Heat your home with a kitchen wood stove.

I hate to bring up such an unpopular subject as taxes, but a little history never hurt anyone, right? Right! Now...let's get a fresh cup of coffee, my friend. OK? OK...

Monday, April 13, 2009

Resting From Doing Nothing...

Sorry, folks...but I'm worn out from spending Sunday doing nothing.

Well, actually I did do something! I watched the nephew, Cygnus, working on his garden. Of course, I did my part as the typical older, pot bellied, white bearded guy and offered a LOT of unsolicited advise.

The nephew, being a fairly easy going young man...did his part by courteously listening and feigning interest, occasionally nodding his head and grunting to carry out the illusion that he really heard me, and allowed me to falsely believe, if only for a moment, that I had a hand in the labor. This was done , of course, to make the old man go away happy in his fantasy, and to let the actual work in the garden continue without the unwanted or unnecessary guidance. A true win-win situation!

We work well together that way! I pretend that I am giving some useful, well received information...and the nephew pretending that the information I'm giving is useful and needed.

But you see, we're family and that's what family does! We allow the folks that want to, offer their version of what should be done and how it should be done. We do this while acting interested, even if we aren't just so we don't hurt any one's feelings. The people offering all this free advice, do so with the understanding that they will be listened to as long as they only offer once, then leave well enough alone and not nag! All is done without raising our voices and while wearing a smile!

Maybe that's just how things are supposed to be on a holiday like Easter...Peaceful! It would be nice if each and every day were that way, but I suppose that is asking too much.

Anyway, why don't we just get another cup of coffee, sit at the patio table, and peacefully enjoy the beautiful Spring morning and the company of understanding friends, OK?

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter, Everyone...

What with the food and eggs and family...let's not forget the true reason for the celebration of this special holiday.

Whatever you do to enjoy the day, I wanted to reach back into my fast diminishing memory and play something for you that I remember from my childhood! Believe me, that's reaching a LONG way back!

I'm sure your kids know this song. If not, then it's a fun song to teach them. If you don't know it, you're just a kid...but I love ya anyway! So here it is, Eggheads...enjoy!

Now, let's grab a hard boiled egg, get some more ham, and go sit on the patio table. Don't worry, I brought the coffee pot!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Saturday Morning And You Know What That Means...

That's right, boys and girls...Cartoons!

Ever notice when my little bit of mind has gone completely blank, then I use that as an excuse to have cartoons on? That's my story and I'm sticking to it!

My dad always liked road runner cartoons at the drive in theatre, if you remember those. He also liked Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis! In fact, about the only time I ever heard him laugh out loud, was watching Martin and Lewis...

Anyway, I thought you might enjoy this little bit of cartoon history this morning. I know that I did. Pour another cup of coffee, grab some more Cinnamon toast, and let's watch...OK?

Now wasn't that better than me spouting off a bunch of doom and gloom? I mean, it's Easter weekend, right?

Now, let's grab one more cup of coffee and go to the patio table. OK, my friend?

Friday, April 10, 2009

Now This Is Real Survival Food...!

I have something to tell you about today that could be a really important addition to your preps!

Thanks go out to Angela at Adventures In Self Reliance for the information about this product. I've researched it a bit and it seems to be the real deal.

A product like this could quite possibly save your life, or the life of your family in an emergency situation. Watch this video and see if you don't agree...

The link for this product is I am not associated with this site, but probably should be!

Now if you are on the road, caught in an emergency, or for any reason you can't get back to your supplies...then this might be the answer!

Anyway, it's something to consider. The price is right, and I know that these were given out at Galveston after Katrina. Many people said that they were the difference between doing good or going hungry.

I'm thinking that this would be a good investment, ya know?

I'm also thinking that now would be a good time for us to get a fresh cup of coffee, my friend!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Just Outside Of Houston...

What comes to your mind when you hear the word "Prairie"?

This is a few of the wildflowers growing in a prairie just out of Houston. If you were expecting a blank, desolate area with maybe a few grasses and scrub brush then you are in for a surprise.

For those that are still dealing snow on the ground, then please enjoy a little of a typical Spring in Texas.

Now...let's get a fresh cup of coffee, sit at the patio table, and enjoy the flowers in the garden. C'mon, my friend!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Let's Do Some Egg Art...!

With Easter coming up, we should talk about egg decorating...

As a kid, I always liked hunting the brightly colored eggs hidden for me and my sisters. When we got older, Mom taught us to decorate eggs, but being typical teens, our interest waned.

Instead of decorating eggs, hiding eggs, and enjoying the old fashioned fun...we all became more interested in dating, going out to eat, me chasing the girls and my sisters being chased by the boys.

At that age, you start to lose the love of the magic moments young children seem to appreciate. The only times you find that magic again is when, as a parent with your own children, you get the opportunity to once again grab a bit of that wild eyed wonder! Of course, you get another chance with the grand kids after your brood is grown and married.

So anyway, just in case you want to have a little fun with the kids, the grand kids, or even by yourself...take some time and try decorating an egg or two, and see if maybe...just maybe, a little of the old magic comers back.

Hey, it's worth a try, right?

Here are a couple of creative ways to dye Easter eggs.

Marbled Design

Save brown onion skins. Wrap raw eggs in the dry skins, then tie on a layer of cheesecloth to secure them. Hard-boil, let the eggs cool, and then unwrap for a beautiful, marbled, golden design!

Tie-Dyed Easter Eggs

Create uniquely interesting eggs with a tie-dyed look that uses simple rubber bands or strips of cloth. See how to tie-dye your eggs.

To reduce cracking, remove eggs from the refrigerator about a half hour before boiling and, using a needle or pushpin, puncture the shell at the broad end.

Homemade Egg Dye Color Suggestions

Red: red onion skins, pomegranate juice
Green: spinach
Blue: red cabbage
Yellow: yellow mustard, turmeric
Purple: grape juice, blueberries
Pink: cranberry juice, raspberries

Well, it's just a suggestion, but it might be something different and help pass the time in a constructive way while waiting for the thaw. Besides, we all love boiled eggs, right? Right! about some fresh hot coffee, my friend?

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

A Good Instructional Video...

Did you know that in 1942, the government not only encouraged the growth of hemp, but made a short film all about it?

Since one of the many uses of hemp was for cordage, or rope...the government encouraged farmers to replace other crops by growing hemp for the use of cordage and rope, mainly in Navy vessels. Hemp had been used for this purpose for many years.

Here's my question...why can't the farmers grow hemp for use in making biofuel, instead of using food crops for this purpose? I mean, I'm not very smart about these things, but it seems to me that we would be better off in using our corn and other food crops for FOOD , and finding an alternative for use in making fuel. Watch this short film and see if it makes any sense to you, OK?

Like I said, I'm not the brightest bulb in the pack, but I don't know why we don't utilize this remarkable plant as we once did! What do you think?

While we ponder this question, why don't we get a fresh cup of coffee, sit on the patio, and enjoy this beautiful Spring morning. OK, my friend?

Monday, April 6, 2009

More Wisdom From The "Farmer's Almanac"...

I know I should come up with something other than another bit of wisdom from the Almanac, but it is just so timely I couldn't help it.

This is some very good information and I hope you can use it.

April — Promise of Spring

April comes from the Latin word aperio, meaning “to open or bud,” because plants begin to grow this month.

Spring festivals around the world, from Easter and Passover to Arbor Day, celebrate the season’s renewal of life.

Weather in the Northern Hemisphere can be capricious—an optimist’s dream and a poet’s inspiration.

Mark this month by baking a rhubarb pie, planting peas and potatoes, and tossing the first green leaves of dandelions into a salad.

Naturalist Hal Borland wrote, “April is a promise that May is bound to keep.” With that in mind, plant shade trees now to please posterity and dwarf fruit trees, lilac bushes, and roses to please yourself.

Teach a child to fish; adopt a kitten; volunteer at your community soup kitchen; fly a kite; learn to throw a curveball. It’s April, after all!

Now, what do you say to a fresh cup of coffee, my friend ?

Sunday, April 5, 2009

New Financial Terms...

In keeping with my efforts to both inform and entertain my readers, I have decided to give you this new, easy to understand, list of terms used in the stock market. These terms make it easy to know exactly what all the so called "financial gurus" are really talking about. Ready for the truth?...

New Stock Market Terms

CEO - Chief Embezzlement Officer

CFO - Corporate Fraud Officer

BULL MARKET - A random market movement causing an investor to mistake himself for a financial genius.

BEAR MARKET - a 6 to 18 month period when the kids get no allowance, the wife gets no jewelry, and the husband gets no sex.

VALUE INVESTING - The art of buying low and selling lower.

P/E RATIO - The percentage of investors wetting their pants as the market keeps crashing.

BROKER - What my financial planner has made me.

STANDARD & POOR - Your life in a nutshell.

STOCK ANALYST - Idiot who just downgraded your stock.

STOCK SPLIT - When your ex-wife and her lawyer split your assets equally between themselves.

MARKET CORRECTION - The day after you buy stocks.

CASH FLOW - The movement your money makes as it disappears down the toilet..

YAHOO - What you yell after selling it to some poor sucker for $240 per share.

WINDOWS - What you jump out of when you're the sucker who bought Yahoo at $240 per share.

INSTITUTIONAL INVESTOR - Past year investor who's now locked up in a nuthouse.

PROFIT - an archaic word no longer in use.

I hope that these terms help you to see and understand a bit more about the confusing world of the New Finance now in place thanks to our helpful folks in the government!

Now, what do you say to a fresh cup of coffee, my friend?

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Now That Was Fun...!

I've heard the expression "a bug up his butt" and "ants in his pants", but I have to admit that I never had a full understanding of these two saying until Friday!

I always thought that the first saying had to do with someone being upset! You know, being impatient to get things going, maybe just a little angry...

And the second saying I always believed to be referring to someone that couldn't sit still, always in a hurry. Does that sound about right to you?

Well, maybe Friday was a day for omens and such! Here's what happened. I was sitting at the computer when I noticed a sharp little sticking on my leg, like a grass burr. Almost like a pin prick. Thinking that maybe one of the cats had brought in a grass burr on their fur, and that maybe it had gotten transferred to my pant leg, I got up and felt the back of my jeans but felt nothing.

Sitting back down, I was there for just a minute when I felt it again, only lower on my leg. As I stood up again, it became much sharper and seemed to be I dropped my jeans and looked, nothing!

Just as I was pulling up my jeans again, I was again attacked by this sensation! Now, in a near panic state, I came out of my jeans quicker than if they had been on fire! At least, what I imagined I would do if my pants were on fire as I have yet to experience that!

The minute I jerked my pants off, a big, fat, fast crawling June Bug fell out of the pant leg! Now, I have no idea how that rascal got got in my pants, but I have to admit that my knowledge of just how tough those creatures are was greatly expanded !

Evidently, I had been sitting on him and instead of being squashed, he was just trying to crawl away! Trouble is, these bugs have some wicked little stickers on their feet! That's what I was feeling.

Anyway, it got my attention! Got the old juices flowing, ya know? Just reminded me that nature has a way of working things out for all of her creatures most of the time...from the lowly June Bug, all the way to the big, dumb two legged kind like me. The message She was giving me? Pay attention ! Pay attention to everything! All the time!

Oh, and one more message...practise taking off my pants in a hurry! Message received, loud and clear!

Now, let's get a fresh cup of coffee, my friend!

Friday, April 3, 2009

I Give Up...!

No matter how hard you try and explain things to some people, they just don't seem to get it.

when I first retired, I tried helping some folks out by doing some things for them for free so they would not have to pay some one. Trouble is, when you are doing things for someone and nothing ever seems to be done to their satisfaction, then it doesn't take long until you stop volunteering.

Now when you stop volunteering, people refer to you as being lazy! EXCUSE ME...?? Lazy?? I'm over 60, have been working since I was 12 years old, and feel as though I have earned the right to do as I want!

I ask for nothing from anyone, pay my own way, keep to my self, and leave everyone else alone. That's all I ask from everyone be left alone!

Now, I have become not only lazy, but antisocial! I have yet to figure out what it is about people who value their solitude that leads others to brand them as "strange" or "antisocial".

Don't like crowds? You must be "standoffish"! Don't eat out? You must be "reclusive"! Don't work for free and then take well to being criticised for it? You must be "a know it all"!

I'm tired of being a target for folks that get upset because I won't let them run my life or have some major say so in my lifestyle! I'm tired of folks that think I should like what they like, do what they do, believe what they believe, and live like they live.

I think the time to disappear has come. Time to go elsewhere is here. Time to become just a memory to some folks is now. As of today, I'll be putting all my efforts into getting the truck in the proper shape for traveling. I have everything I need to become very separated from city life without much of a stretch at all. I figure that I can be gone in a month, or shortly thereafter!

Anyway, that is the new plan. I'll keep everyone posted, for sure. Now...what do you say to a fresh cup of coffee, my friend?

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Update For "Time to Man Up"...

Just so there won't be any confusion about the previous post, let me make some corrections here...

First, the meeting that we are talking about is going to be in Gonzales, Texas and NOT in Lexington.

A lot of us couldn't go to YeOldFurt thought it would be a good idea for us to try a little closer to home!

Second, I did not in anyway want to imply that only men were being included when I used the term "Man up". That's just a term, a figure of speech and is in no way meant to imply that women have not played a BIG part in the protection of our country.

Our Armed Forces and Law Enforcement organizations have a wonderful blend of men and women, who are putting themselves in harms way for us daily!

So I apologise if I misled or offended anyone in the previous post. If you want to let me do so in person, come to Gonzales on April 19TH...and I will be more than happy to stand face to face, shoulder to shoulder with ALL the patriots present as we reaffirm our oath to the Constitution and to the Republic!

Now lets get another cup, my friends!

Time To Man Up...!

On the serious side today...

I'm sure that most of you are aware of this group. Many of you may even be a member! Either way, I want you to do something for me as a group. I don't ask for much, but this is very important to me and to our country!

First, I want you to please watch this won't take but just a minute, however the message is very important!

Now, what I want you to do is to go over to a blog of a friend of mine and read the plan he is putting together. If you are not in Texas, I ask you to still go by and let him know that you support the cause, OK? Will you do this for me? Thank you, my friends.

Now, let me buy you a cup of coffee! You can get the next round...

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Foolish Frivolity For All Fool's Day...

Once again, the Old Farmer's Almanac comes through with some little gems for today...!

Although the origin of playing practical jokes and pranks on this day is hazy, many folklorists believe that it may go back to 16th-century France.

At that time, New Year’s Day was March 25, with a full week of partying and exchanging gifts lasting until April 1. In 1582, the Gregorian calendar moved New Year’s Day back to January 1.

Those who forgot or refused to honor the new calendar were the butts of jokes and ridicule.

Weather folklore states:

If it thunders on All Fools’ Day, it brings good crops of corn and hay.

On April 1, see both April and May weather predictions for your area—free.

In honor of April 1, we remind you of some very foolish things that have happened within this month.

• Any fool knows that tax day is April 15, but, fittingly, April is also the month in which the U.S. Mint was established, in 1792.

• Alec Guinness was born April 2, 1914, later gaining his fame by publishing every foolish feat that ever set a record.

• On April 7, 1857, snow fell in every southern state in the United States, just to make fools of the weathermen, no doubt.

• And finally, to cap off the foolishness, on April 29, 1848, Niagara Falls stopped flowing for 30 hours. Now that’s foolish!

To be a fool at the right time is also an art.

Now, Let's get another cup of coffee, my friend! It's fresh...NO FOOLING!