Archive for August, 2008

McCain/Palin? Bravo! (Oh! bomb awed)

August 29, 2008


Wow, will politics ever become more exciting than right now? 


Barack Obama, a presidential candidate with little or no experience chooses Joe Biden who has a truck load of experience as his running mate.  Then not to be outdone, John McCain, a presidential candidate with a truck load of experience chooses Sarah Palin, a person with little or no experience, as HIS running mate. 

This, folks… is better than T.V. and let me tell you why.

Barack Obama promises change, but then selects a Washington insider Joe Biden as his vice-president which leans towards the status quo of politics.  John McCain promises GOP stability, but then makes a historic choice by tapping Sarah Palin as HIS vice-president and thus creates a political breath of fresh air! 

McCain out obama’d Obama!  Let’s call it… Oh! bomb awed.

This just shows to go ya that truth IS much stranger than fiction and that this will not be politics as usual come November. 

I mean, the Obama camp can criticize Palin’s inexperience all they want to but isn’t that sorta like the pot calling the kettle… ah, you know.

I DO know that there may be some women out there considering voting Republican now that may not have before because many were disenfranchised with the choice of Obama over Clinton.  I’m not sure that those niceties we witnessed at the Democratic convention were all that sincere.  It isn’t too hard to imagine that everyone put on a “united” face for the service of their party.

Politicians will do ANYTHING to win, but McCain has gone out on a limb while Obama played it safe.  What the outcome will be is anyone’s guess but personally… I say bravo to John McCain. 

He truly is what he says he is, a maverick.  Madam Vice-President Sarah Palin has a nice ring to it and oh!… for your information, like Barack has pointed out about his own name… Sarah is Bible based, too.

The wife of Abraham in the Old Testament; Sarah means, “princess” or “holy one.”  She may not be Halle Berry  (as I suggested McCain choose a while back, see: Choosing a Running Mate.  McCain Can Win If… from 8/02/08) but she is close.  At least SOMEBODY listens to me…

And she is far better looking than Joe Biden.

Oh, by the way… today, August 29th, the day she was selected as a vice-presidential candidate, is also her 20th wedding anniversary!

Congratulations, Sarah Palin.

Also, by amazing coincidence, Happy birthday, John McCain… 72 years young today.


Way to go.


return of the dreaded sequel, part 1

August 29, 2008

Okay, it has been a while since I last posted Shades of Hemingway, Medium Exposure but I haven’t given up on it’s sequel.  I have been working diligently on it off and on for several months.  (admittedly more off than on)  The only reason I bring it up now is because September (yikes!) is just around the corner and I am not finished with it yet. 

There are a lot of distractions out there (which I am sure you are well aware of) that seem to occupy my time and mind.

Like making a living…

1)  It is tough making a living these days.  The economy sucks right now and quite frankly I did my best to stimulate things with my rebate money, but I’m afraid it just wasn’t enough… may I have more, please?

Another distraction was the Olympics…

2)  I enjoyed seeing China get all those gold medals, really I did.  (regardless of their age, *wink wink*)  But do I have to see advertisements on T.V. a week later showing China as a great place to visit?  Hey folks, we are in a recession.   I sure don’t feel like going to China is the top of the American people’s priority list.  Oh, and if the medals were minted there you can just about bet they’ll tarnish, crumble and fall apart just like all the other crap they produce.

The political scene has me intrigued…

3)  I was struck by one of the graphs I saw on the news the other day that said 90% of the black population in the U.S.A. plan to vote for Barack Obama.  Now is that because of the issues he stands for or is it because he is black?  If 90% of the white population said they were going to vote for John McCain we’d be labelled as racist.  I don’t get how that works in today’s politically correct society.

We have been having a lot of storm activity…

4)  We have had a fairly busy last couple of days (see: Spending the Day With Tropical Storm Fay) and it looks like more storms are heading our way.  We are smack dab in the middle of hurricane season and the next few weeks might keep us hopping.

Not only that but 5 months have passed since I married my French Canadian sweetheart and we are still working on co-habitation, which can sometimes be stressful but we are coping well.

and then there’s always the laundry…

So, without further ado I will be making a more pronounced effort in the coming days to finish what I started and begin posting it here, right here, for your enjoyment…

Meanwhile…. check this out.


kind of the flip side of an earlier observation (see: not your favorite cover) and yet another diversion… sheesh!

Really…  this is one of the worst?



spending the day with Tropical Storm Fay

August 19, 2008


I have lived in sunny Southwest Florida for over 30 years.  I have seen a lot of weather come and go.  One year recently we had 4 hurricanes blast through in the span of a single month.  Hurricane Andrew was one of the most costly hurricanes on record back in the 90’s and while Katrina gets all the recent publicity, few people recall that she blew through Florida first.  Tropical storms are no slouch either,  we get pelted with raindrops in monsoon fashion and have gusts of wind that cause all but the hearty (a.k.a. foolhardy ) to stay indoors.

We Floridians may not like the cold, ice and snow of the winter months up North, but we are hard pressed to allow a little wind and rain to keep us down.  (or indoors)  So this morning I was determined not to let the inconvenience of little Fay keep me from my appointed rounds, i.e. having breakfast at my favorite restaurant.

Like everyone else I had been following the news breaking reports of the impending spectre of swirling doom approaching us at 10 mph from the south and decided to call off work.  Last night as Fay sashayed into our area, we opened the windows and turned off the air-conditioning; allowing the cool, evening breezes to sweep out the musk of summertime stagnation.  Imagine my dismay of waking up in the middle of the night having the gusts of wind cause my Casablanca movie poster to come crashing down and also discovering rain blitz through my open bedroom window. Ah, such is life in the sub-tropics!

Anyway, so this morning I got to sleep in a little and watch the wind strafing H2O bullets through the palm trees.  I contemplated laying low as the Governor of the late, great Sunshine State had recommended or defying all odds and trying to find a place for tea and sympathy.  I chose the latter.

Some of the cool things about going out in an area the local weatherman describes as torrential:

1)  Finding an open gas station. 

I discovered too late that my pick-up truck was on empty so the first thing I had to do was to find a way to replenish the liquid that has become more valuable than pearls.  The Hess Mart people were good enough to get up and brave the storm in order to be there for absentminded souls such as myself who wouldn’t sit in line yesterday to fill up.  In the mid-morning of the mid-tropical storm there is virtually no traffic out on the streets except for: police cars, firetrucks, emergency vehicles, power company trucks and mail carriers.   So I didn’t have to wait, which made me feel very smug.

2)  Finding an open restaurant. 

So what else are you going to do on a mid-week day off, watch T.V.?  Not this cowboy.  After gassing up I braved U.S. 41 South and headed over the  Caloosahatchee (yes, that is the way it is spelled) Bridge towards downtown.  They usually close the bridges here when the sustained winds pass 40 miles per hour so I was confident that I could forge across without mishap.  Though the increased blasts of Fay were peaking at 60 mph, the key word here is sustained  winds.  Bravely and alertly I pressed on, imagining my favorite beverage (hot tea) being served up with a wink and a smile by a server who had defied the elements and shown up for work just to serve me.  Imagine my surprise when I found my sanctuary closed.  Ugh!  If I could be out why couldn’t they?  As I drove away broken hearted I consoled myself with the thought that they had lost an incredible sale consisting of eggs, potatoes and toast.  Miss too many of those and it will be hard to keep the lights on. 

It is always good to have a back up plan in these states of emergency and of course, I had one.  I found an open establishment which served me quite well and leads me up to the third cool thing about being caught in a tropical storm…

3)  Keeping the lights on.

When Hurricane Charley blew through I did the smart thing and followed the advice of local, State and Federal officials.. I evacuated.  Living in S.W. Florida and having the menace traveling North by Northeast I shot due East across the State and stayed in Cape Canaveral.  But Charley was hot on my heels and knocked the power out there.  I returned home the following day and spent the next 9 days without power.  Hurricane Charley struck August 13th (affectionately known as Charley the 13th amongst the locals because it was on a Friday) and that is the dead of summer.  No electricity means no A/C and the heat, humidity and the subsequent mosquitoes made life very testy.  So while there were incidents of power outages caused by Tropical Storm Fay here in S.W. Florida, our meter continued to spin. 

4)  Looking through a window, drinking hot tea and being glad you aren’t out in the nasty cavalcade of blown debris, biting rain and swirling anarchy of natures wrath.

You have to be careful in these situations because you never know what lurks beneath standing water.  With a tropical storm dropping 4 to 8 inches of water (or more) there are always “puddles.”  Puddles that can encompass the entire parking lot of Wal-Mart.  You’d be surprised how many people forget that off to the side of the highway are these things called “ditches.”  I don’t know how many times I’ve passed cars that have rear ends propped in the air and their noses buried beneath torrents of sheet flow because the driver missed a drive way and plunged into a culvert.  There have been incidents of standing water deep enough to conceal a Winnebago.

5)  Surviving a tropical storm can put you on the fast track to respect and admiration from your friends and relatives up North.

Something about the Weather Channel showing those circling bands of moisture on their radar screen has people outside our area thinking that the entire State is engulfed with a massive storm that is threatening to suck us off the map… which is, of course, ridiculous!  There are sections up in the Panhandle that won’t even get a drop of rain.  But seriously,  outer bands of moisture do not entail the brunt of the storm.  Following the eye and that immediate circle of say, 30 miles or so, is where the most ferocious winds lie, or blow… as the circle widens, the degree of wind velocity lessens.  So people in say, Orlando get much less wind and rain than we do when the eye is in the Florida Keys.

So… am I disappointed that Fay remained fairly calm and did not become a regular hellion?  No.  Nature’s wrath is not something to be taken lightly as everyone is well aware of.  When I spoke to my lovely wife up in Canada her concern for my safety was very evident and I assured her that I am not one to bravely press on when danger is eminent.  Some folks try windsurfing because of the increased swells out in the gulf waters, some throw hurricane parties, but I try to err on the side of caution.  (in small increments)

Much the way people live with the dreaded winter months, the tornado belts, the forest fires, the floods, the arid summers or any weather conditions conducive to their region; we live with tropical storms. 

Today was not typical but inevitable,  it is just one of the many ways that from June on into November, we try and reason with hurricane season.



you must remember this…

August 17, 2008

 You must remember this

a kiss is still a kiss

a sigh is just a sigh

the fundamental things apply

As Time Goes By.


And when two lovers woo

they still say “I love you”

on that you can rely

no matter what the future brings

As Time Goes By.


Moonlight and love songs – never out of date

hearts full of passion – jealousy and hate

Woman needs man – and man must have his mate

That no one can deny.


It’s still the same old story

a fight for love and glory

a case of do or die

the world will always welcome lovers

As Time Goes By.

                                …from the movie, Casablanca


Oh, I know it is unseemingly lame for a man to be caught up in the romanticism of love… but sometimes I cannot help myself.

I saw this little excerpt today:

and of course it got me juiced and I thought about some of the most memorable movie kisses I could recall… you know the ones with the fiery sunsets or the magnificent landscapes stretching off into the horizon in the background?

So… in no particular order:

The kiss John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara (na na na na nana na na… today is her birthday!) share in The Quiet Man after which he sweeps her in his arms and kicks the bedroom door open…

The kiss Jimmy Stewart gives Donna Reed after he tells her, “Listen, I don’t want no ground floor… etc.” in It’s a Wonderful Life and the very next scene shows them getting married…

The kiss Jack Nicholson gives Helen Hunt in As Good As It Gets right after he kissed her in the street the first time and then says, “I know I can do better than that!”  and does… 

The kiss Bacall gives Bogart in To Have and Have Not before telling him, “You know how to whistle, don’t you… ?”

The kiss Dustin Hoffman gets while playing Dorthy Micheals from the T.V. actor known as “The Tongue” in the movie, Tootsie…

The kiss Ronald Colman gives Jane Wyatt after chasing her through the hanging gardens of Shangri La in the movie, Lost Horizon …

The repeated kisses Marilyn Monroe gives Tony Curtis, (who claims he feels nothing) in the movie, Some Like It Hot…

The kiss Bob Hope reacts to from Jane Russell and requests more of in the movie, The Paleface

The kiss Omar Sharif and Julie Christie share when he returns from the Russian front in the movie, Doctor Zhivago…

The kisses Anna Chlumsky and Macaulay Culkin give to their arms while practicing for the real thing in the movie, My Girl…

The kiss Alex Cord gives Ann-Margret, who says she’ll follow him anywhere, in the remake of the movie, Stagecoach (one of my favorite Westerns)…

The kiss Elvis gives Juliet Prowse after singing, “Pocketful of Rainbows” in the movie, G.I. Blues…

and the greatest non-kiss?  When Bogart lets Bergman walk away on the airfield tarmac in the movie, Casablanca…


Is a kiss still a kiss?  Mmm… thankfully,  yes.


1984 is comin’ at your door

August 16, 2008

1984 Apple’s Macintosh Commercial

hard to predict the future then…

harder still today.


Shawn Colvin – Catch the Wind

August 16, 2008

Shawn Colvin Catch The Wind

good version of the classic by Donovan…


Not your favorite cover…

August 11, 2008


I am curious and so I read these “best of” lists with skepticism and some distain.  The one below did not disappoint.  Too many recent covers to be called the “best.”  If I am going to make a list of the “best” let the subjects stand the test of time.

I bought a book called “100 Best Album Covers” once, (see above) I still have it.  It is a great book with some selections I might agree with, but it omits some that I would have included.

Maybe you are like me with these “best of” lists, so check it out for yourself and see what’s missing.

Album covers I would have included in no particular order and by no means exclusively: 

1)  Moody Blues, In Search of the Lost Chord

2)  Pink Floyd, Ummagumma

3)  Neil Young, Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere

4)  Jimi Hendrix, Axis: Bold As Love

5)  Derek and the Dominoes, Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs 

6)  Led Zeppelin, Houses of the Holy

7)  Quicksilver Messenger Service, Happy Trails

8)  Alan Parson’s Project, I, Robot

9)  The Beatles, Revolver

10) Bob Dylan, Highway 61 Revisited

11) John Hartford, Aero-Plane

12) Traffic, Shoot Out at the Fantasy Factory

13) The Doors, Strange Days

14) Jesse Winchester, Jesse Winchester

15) Steve Miller Band, Sailor

16) Iron Butterfly, Metamorphosis

17) Captain Beyond, Sufficiently Breathless

18 David Bowie, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars

19) The Rolling Stones, Let it Bleed

20) Jefferson Starship, Dragonfly


I’m sure there are a jillion others out there, but the point is: a truly artful cover will compel a person to pick the album up and look at it whether you are familiar with the artist or not.  Most of these did that for me before I grew to love the contents.

I’d be curious to know what you think of this list, their list or make your own list and share it with me, just remember this…

most lists (including mine) suck.


P.S.  Wow, I woke up today and found out Akismet protected me from 19,999 spam comments!  Put that on a list somewhere…



don’t know much about the Hadron Collider

August 7, 2008

Don’t know much about John McCain

don’t know much about acid rain

don’t know much about global warming

I don’t know if killer bees are swarming

but I do know the account is true

and if science proves creation, too

what a wonderful world this would be.


Don’t know much about Barack Obama

don’t know much about the Darfur drama

don’t know much about Tibetan poor

I’m not sure what caused the Iraqi War

but I do feel there’s a Supreme being

and if everyone could share this feeling

what a wonderful world this would be.


Now I don’t claim to know fancy words

or every circumstance

Oh maybe, if we search for the answers

we might all give peace a chance


Don’t know much about the Hadron Collider

don’t know much about what works inside or

don’t know much about a God particle

don’t know if this is the geniune article

but I do believe our God is Love

and if we could get some help from above

what a wonderful world this would be.


Want to know more about the Hadron Collider? Check this out:


oh the humanity! and the cost of celebrity…

August 4, 2008 

I read this and thought to myself… where was the mother when all this insane desire for fame was being instigated by her ditsy daughter?

Gee, Mom… you can’t have it both ways.


Choosing a running mate. McCain can win if…

August 2, 2008

Recently the political scene has gotten slightly ridiculous but I still think it can be salvaged before the November 5th elections. 

Obama has had a slight lead over McCain and it looks like the Republican nominee has turned to some pretty far out accusations to try and win folks over.  Recently he has compared Barack to the Hilton I have refused to mention in this blog again and Britney Spears.  He has said in effect that we shouldn’t vote for Obama because he has become too popular?  Or because he is too girly I’m not sure which but I do know one thing… being popular has won a lot of elections, I mean… isn’t that what they call the “popular vote?”

That  Obama has charisma is not a valid reason not to vote for him, or that he appears too confident or presidential… isn’t that what we want in our leaders?  It would not be good if they shuffled along with shoulders drooped and a  fallen countenance, we want our leaders to display some measure of fortitude and forthrightness.   

McCain needs to choose a running mate, literally.  He is already battling the too old label, so why not tap a younger, hipper kinda groupie person to swing some of that younger vote his way?  As a Republican I don’t think he has a snow ball’s chance in a pizza oven to get elected unless he grabs someone that is a player with today’s under 50 crowd.  

Republicans are on their way out in droves.  Every one knows that Republicans (like Ted Stevens) walk arm and arm with Big Oil.  (who just posted record profits AGAIN!)  We had Congress run to their much deserved 5 week recess without doing anything about high gas prices when it was within their grasp to do so.  How long do they think people are going to hold on and believe their rhetoric?  There are some rumblings in the distance and they are getting louder… (I think I see torches and pitchforks being handed out to the peasants)

So John, you are in a pickle but there is hope here.  (I’m not trying to kick you when you are down)  First, you have an outstanding record of bipartisanship so why not use that in your favor?  Don’t go the expected route of choosing a running mate from within your party.  I doubt Jesus Christ himself could get elected on the Republican ticket right now but there may be a chance for you if you choose wisely… and sooner rather than later.

My recommendation?  Halle Berry! 

Imagine… she’s smart, attractive, young, (she won an Oscar) popular (tsk!) wealthy and a minority.  If (God forbid) something happened to you while in office she would be the first black woman president!  How could the Democrats top that?  Truth is, they couldn’t.  Even if Obama chose Clinton as his running mate their possibilities remain between the two of them separately. But YOU! John McCain would make history as putting forth the greatest bipartisan effort ever known in the political arena! 

McCain/Berry… it has a nice ring, doesn’t it?  and just think, they couldn’t label you a racist or make you appear unpopular any longer… (not that you actually WANT to be popular)

C’mon… you really DO wanna be, don’t you… John?