Friday, December 29, 2006

Happy New Year



Wishing my friends a Happy New Year!

I will be gone for a few days enjoying some much needed relaxation. There is plenty of archive material to read here and if that bores you, there's plenty o' links to fulfill your reading needs.

Happy New Year!

"Every man should be born again on the first day of January. Start with a fresh page. Take up one hole more in the buckle if necessary, or let down one, according to circumstances; but on the first of January let every man gird himself once more, with his face to the front, and take no interest in the things that were and are past." ~Henry Ward Beecher

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

A Year in Review

There are many traditions and history surrounding the celebration of New Years Day. Food seems to be the popular choice for many as its believed that certain foods bring you luck. These certain foods involve cabbage, beans, black-eyed peas or simply a pot of homemade vegetable soup. Whatever your "luckiest" food tends to be, make sure to indulge a plenty New Years Day. Why indulge you ask? Simple, so you can honor your resolution to lose weight.

New Years eve can be considered the greatest party of the year. Naturally because its the last party of the year but more importantly, it brings forth a new year. Whether you stay at home and watch the festivities on Times Square or venture into the frenzy of festivities at your local bar of preference, a good time is awaiting. I find it amazing that no matter where I am, I'm always in the company of friends.

And singing...Oh my goodness. Nothing like a chorus of drunks singing Auld Lang Syne. The song, "Auld Lang Syne," playing in the background, is sung at the stroke of midnight in almost every English-speaking country in the world to bring in the new year. At least partially written by Robert Burns in the 1700's, it was first published in 1796 after Burns' death. Early variations of the song were sung prior to 1700 and inspired Burns to produce the modern rendition. An old Scotch tune, "Auld Lang Syne" literally means "old long ago," or simply, "the good old days."

This years resolution is quite simple. I decided since my list was rather long and somewhat boring(and trivial to most people), I am making a general resolution. My resolution this year is to live a better life. That resolution seems to cover all the topics of resolutions and keeps it simple.

I also take time each year to review the things I'm thankful for. Years past has been materialistic things and family along with friends. This years I've trimmed the list to just family and friends. As the old saying goes, "There's only two things in life you are required to do; Pay taxes and die." As many of you know, I almost completed the circle of requirements this past September. I realized my own mortality is real and at any moment can be delivered without just cause or warning. I also found that its not always materialistic things that make our lives more comfortable. Its the people you surround yourself with that really determines how comfortable your life can be. While my life hasn't been all rainbows and butterflies, its been my family and friends that help me navigate through my tribulations. And its been my family and friends that have carried me on their shoulders these past few months. Whether they've not realized it or I've not told them, its being said now.

I am thankful for being allowed a second chance to see my son grow into a fine young man someday. I know I whine and rant about his behavior sometimes, but I'd not trade one second for immortality. Many have told me he is the likeness through and through of his Dad. I wish I could see that but I'm not going to debate the subject. His love is never-ending and his compassion for those who are less fortunate, whether by financial or health, is immense.

I'm also thankful for having the second chance to see that my wife receives the love she deserves. And thats all I have to say about that...

Folks...someone asked me recently what I meant when I stated, "I see things in a different perspective now". I've always had the ability to look from the outside in, even relating to my own scenarios. So I'm not surprised that this person found the statement a little bewildering. I can remove myself and analyse the situation and state what others cannot see. Sometimes my statements compound the problem because I forget that open minds don't jive well with closed minds. I've struggled for many weeks trying to compose an effective explanation. I've since relinquished all hopes of ever composing such an explanation. However, I recall a scene from a TV Sitcom that brings to light this newfound perspective. The Mary Tyler Moore Show episode where Ted Baxter, played by Emmy Award Winner Ted Knight, suffered a severe heart attack. Upon his return to the News Station, he was wandering about when he comes screaming into the newsroom proclaiming the video newsreel of the century was right outside the window. As everyone scrambled to view the scene, he proclaimed that everyone should look at the sunset...he'd never seen one quite as beautiful as before.

I look at things from a simplistic viewpoint now. I try to cherish the simpler things life has to offer.

This is Ted Baxter reporting from the Newsroom of WDZD...Goodnight and Good News!

Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated. ~Confucius

Woohoo...4 Day Weekend!

Wheeeew! What a 4 day weekend! I looked forward to work today just so I could rest. Last Saturday was spent shopping and folks, I set a new record. I was done a day BEFORE Christmas Eve. Yes...I know its tough to believe but its true. And truthfully, the shopping crowd wasn't all the bad. I think the longest check-out line wait was 15 minutes. We even found a few bargains that a couple of weeks ago would've been expensive.

Christmas Eve we spent at my parents. And we had our traditional Christmas Eve dinner. This tradition started back when I was a kid and has continued on even after the passing of Grandma. Every year we have chili. Yes....you read that correctly, we have chili. Easy to make, everyone likes and hardly a drop is left from the pot. Dessert consists of homemade fruit salad and homemade cookies. And of course my favorite cookie of all, no-bake cookies. Ok, a Google search of no-bake cookies has enlightened me of the many varities. Hmmm...chocolate oatmeal drop cookies might be a better explanation. I left the table after my hunger was satisfied and my sweet-tooth appeased. Stoked with plenty of sugar energy, it was time to open presents. It's amazing how we left with more then we brought yet nobody had to ride atop the vehicle. We wouldn't want any of the presents to get ruined, now would we?

Do you have a family tradition for Christmas dinner?

Friday, December 22, 2006

Merry Christmas to my Blog Friends



Wishing you and yours a Christmas full of Love and Happiness.
May your wishes come truth this Holiday Season.
May God bless and keep you always.
May the Joy and Peace of Christmas
Be with you now and through the New Year.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Help

engtech

Ok folks...I've found a new link, the above link, and I'm puzzled. No no no...I'm not puzzled by the site. I'm puzzled where it fits into my grand scheme of link sections. Obviously it's not a Military or Cooking site, so that counts those out. It sort of fits the Blogging Helpful Hints section and I don't think it really fits the Link Compilation.

So I am asking my daily readers(the 1 or 2 of you)to submit your ideas on exactly how I should display this link on my site.

And please visit the site in question...it's worth the "techie" reading.

Thursday Meme

Shamelessly stolen from DNR by Dragon and MrsJ so I borrowed it. That makes me an accessory not the actually participant, right? Receiving stolen goods...

Tagging anyone who actually reads all my bolded items. Tag your it!

Rules – copy the list and bold face the items you’ve done. Wait for some comments then answer the questions.


01. Bought everyone in the bar a drink
02. Swam with wild dolphins
03. Climbed a mountain
04. Driven anything over 100 MPH
05. Been inside the Great Pyramid
06. Held a tarantula
07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone
08. Said “I love you” and meant it
09. Hugged a tree
10. Bungee jumped
11. Visited Paris
12. Watched a lightning storm at sea
13. Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise
14. Seen the Northern Lights
15. Gone to a huge sports game
16. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa
17. Grown and eaten your own vegetables
18. Touched an iceberg
19. Slept under the stars
20. Changed a baby’s diaper
21. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon
22. Watched a meteor shower
23. Gotten drunk on champagne
24. Given more than you can afford to charity
25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
26. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
27. Had a food fight
28. Bet on a winning horse
29. Asked out a stranger
30. Had a snowball fight
31. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can
32. Held a lamb
33. Seen a total eclipse of the moon.
34. Ridden a roller coaster
35. Hit a home run
36. Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking
37. Adopted an accent for an entire day
38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
39. Had two hard drives for your computer
40. Visited all 50 states
41. Taken care of someone who was drunk
42. Have amazing friends
43. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country
44. Watched wild whales
45. Stolen a sign
46. Backpacked in Europe
47. Taken a road-trip
48. Gone rock climbing
49. Midnight walk on the beach
50. Gone sky diving
51. Visited Ireland
52. Been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love
53. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger’s table and had a meal with them
54. Visited Japan
55. Milked a cow
56. Alphabetized your CDs
57. Pretended to be a superhero
58. Sung karaoke
59. Lounged around in bed all day
60. Played touch football
61. Gone scuba diving
62. Kissed in the rain
63. Played in the mud
64. Played in the rain
65. Gone to a drive-in theater
66. Visited the Great Wall of China
67. Started a business
68. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken
69. Toured ancient sites
70. Taken a martial arts class
71. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight
72. Gotten married
73. Been in a movie
74. Crashed a party
75. Gotten divorced
76. Gone without food for 5 days
77. Made cookies from scratch
78. Won first prize in a costume contest
79. Ridden a gondola in Venice
80. Gotten a tattoo
81. Rafted the Snake River
82. Been on television news programs as an “expert”
83. Got flowers for no reason
84. Performed on stage
85. Been to Las Vegas
86. Recorded music
87. Eaten shark
88. Kissed on the first date
89. Gone to Thailand
90. Bought a house
91. Been in a combat zone
92. Buried one/both of your parents
93. Been on a cruise ship
94. Spoken more than one language fluently
95. Performed in Rocky Horror
96. Raised children
97. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour
99. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
100. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over
101. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge
102. Sang loudly in the car, and didn’t stop when you knew someone was looking
103. Had plastic surgery
104. Survived an accident that you shouldn’t have survived
105. Wrote articles for a large publication
106. Lost over 100 pounds
107. Held someone while they were having a flashback
108. Piloted an airplane
109. Touched a stingray
110. Broken someone’s heart
111. Helped an animal give birth
112. Won money on a T.V. game show
113. Broken a bone
114. Gone on an African photo safari
115. Had a facial part pierced other than your ears
116. Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol
117. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild
118. Ridden a horse
119. Had major surgery
120. Had a snake as a pet
121. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon
122. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours - Good Drugs
123. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states
124. Visited all 7 continents
125. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
126. Eaten kangaroo meat
127. Eaten sushi
128. Had your picture in the newspaper
129. Changed someone’s mind about something you care deeply about
130. Gone back to school
131. Parasailed
132. Touched a cockroach
133. Eaten fried green tomatoes
134. Read The Iliad - and the Odyssey
135. Selected one “important” author who you missed in school, and read
136. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
137. Skipped all your school reunions
138. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language
139. Been elected to public office
140. Written your own computer language
141. Thought to yourself that you’re living your dream
142. Had to put someone you love into hospice care
143. Built your own PC from parts
144. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn’t know you
145. Had a booth at a street fair
146. Dyed your hair
147. Been a DJ
148. Shaved your head
149. Caused a car accident
150. Saved someone’s life

Monday, December 18, 2006

Military Monday

Back on Novemeber 1st, I posted about LCPL Joshua Ryan Bleill. LCPL Bleill is making tremendous progress and his sprits and attitude are high. Stop by and check on his progress.

As a member of the Patriot Guard, I'm constantly on the lookout for posts concerning missions. Just so happens that two of my daily reads posted about their experiences. Please visit Chromed Curses as she describes her first mission. And go visit DNR who portrays his 21st and 22nd mission. You'll see the similarities between the newcomer and the veteran.

And as always, I try and find interesting reading material that captivates the audience. In following the Military Monday theme today, I invite you to read This is Your War II. Sunday's post gives a unique perspective and I found it intriguing as I related in a non-military sort of way. I distinctly remember catching this moment during my first viewing. That moment gave me a miniscule understanding of the sacrifice.

The Holidays are upon us and I hope everyone has their shopping done. In typical male fashion, I've yet to start. I may start a day early this year since December 23rd is Saturday.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Public Service Announcement

Here are some notes I've created that I want to share with everyone. These notes are an overview of what it takes to survive the aftermath of a crisis situation, in my respect, surviving a heart attack. I wrote this as a guide for anyone enduring a crisis situation, whether its heart attack, cancer or muscular dystrophy, its still a crisis situation.

Be Patient:
This is good advice for any family member, but it’s hard not to expect someone to switch to healthy choices or lifestyle adjustments overnight. Still, they will do what they will do. The best way to influence them is to tell them and to remind them that their choices affect others lives. If they still choose unhealthy dieting or lifestyle, that’s a chance that you’ll take with dire consequences.

Dietary Needs:
Their diet is a personal decision not worth sacrificing your relationship or marriage. Your spouse, after all, will eat what they want one way or another. Find some cool restaurants that cook within their dietary needs. This will allow for some much needed, and desired, time outside the homestead. Also gives the person a goal to work towards. If your spouse is interested in surviving and thus motivated to eat healthfully, they will be a godsend and make for a relaxing date night.

Find cookbooks with foods they enjoy that pertain to their dietary needs. There’s no reason a person should relinquish their favorite foods. Yes, it obviously won’t taste exactly the same but at least you’ll be enjoying your food.

Sex life:
Have low expectations and consider anything regarding this as a bonus. Sex will be different in some aspects.

Medication:
I currently take 7 tablets every morning and one at night. Talk about a nightmare keeping track of them. So if your spouse takes an abundant amount of medication a pill box is a necessity. There are many different types available so chose the one that works best for them.

Education:
This condition happened to you both. Learn what you can independently and accept that both of you will have a totally different lifestyle. Read not only about the condition but the medications. Medication can sometimes cause side effects and it’s very important to realize the signs so they’re not mistaken for symptoms. Be prepared for mood swings, even if they didn’t have them before. That’s normal. This was/is a life altering event and possibly dredges thoughts of ones mortality. They may be in denial about their physical abilities, the number of medications they need to take, their physical appearances, embarrassment of their condition, etc. It’s not easy. No excuses…it’s just not easy. Be patient.

Medical Care:
Don’t settle for less in this area. Try and surround yourself with excellent health care practitioners. Make sure they know one another professionally and not just a “Yes I’ve heard of him but never met him”. If you’re fortunate, you’ll have a great doctor who understands the role of preventative medicine through diet and exercise, not just surgery and medicine. If she/he doesn’t, find a new doctor. Specialists won’t do much good if your regular doctor isn’t familiar with their practices.

Make sure you have adequate health insurance now. Pre-existing conditions won’t necessarily be covered and could cause a denial of coverage on future medical issues. Be prepared for the bills! This won’t be cheap and can leave a financial devastation.

Trust your instincts with their condition. Whether you’re right or wrong, it’s a decision you may regret later on. If you don’t trust the answer or diagnosis, find a second opinion.

Your Emotions:
They have their own issues to deal with regarding their condition, and how their life will altered. You will have endured many changes and possibly more in the future. It takes a special spouse enduring these changes who will be strong enough emotionally to support you too. Otherwise, that’s what your God, friends, supportive family and professionals are for.

Close family and Friends:
The children will have their own reactions as well as other family members. Make sure you discuss most everything with your children PRIOR to any changes. Regardless if they’re children, teens or adults it’s critical everyone stays well informed. This applies to close family as well. Real friends are there in a crisis. This condition, whether short term or long term, will be a sorting through period for both of you. You’ll be closer to your real friends afterwards, your wannabe friends will either fade away or become background shadows.

Professional, Social, and Family Commitments:
They have a great excuse now and can relinquish those commitments that are either stressing, trivial and only keep those that are really important. You can use this excuse as well, as your spouse needs more attention to work their way through their condition. So many times we overstress and overextend ourselves with activities outside the homestead that we inadvertently cause our condition to ferment into a crisis. Last thing you both need is another condition developing with you!

If your spouse still works, they need allot of rest and downtime after returning. You need to realize the person went from 100 mph to 10 mph overnight. And now it’ll take time to get back to even 50 mph.

Be in good shape:
You will need to be able to do the physical things they aren’t strong enough to do. Including, perhaps, being able to mow the yard, help them in and out of the car and up and down the stairs, etc. Also any of the house chores they normally did you’ll have to assist in picking up their portion. Prepare for this daily with your own exercise routine. Even if its just briskly walking for the mail or around the block. This gives you “Me” time and will help relieve any anxiety or tension.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Holiday Philanthropy

Jay over at Kill the Goat has a very heart felt post. Go read it here first and come back.

Tissues anyone?

Thats one thing I truly love about my missus family. No one at Christmas time ever goes without. Regardless if its a meal or presents all-around, no one goes without. You call and inform us they'll be extra people attending, you're promptly asked names and ages. Then the word goes out for Christmas presents and extra food. One year, in ancient history, the missus and I both gave up all of our presents just so the adults wouldn't go without receiving presents that day. I know what you're thinking, "Oh boy all of your presents...selfish bastard". But honestly, when you limit you're exchange presents to "X amount of dollars" it becomes significant. Now I'm not talking spending obscene amounts of cash on one another. Modest amount and its not on frivilous crap.

And the children...well they got gifts that day as well. It sure warms your heart when a childs face brightens from receiving gifts at Christmas. What could be better then that? Well let me tell you...Christmas shopping the day after spending whatever money you had leftover. Making sure groceries were plentiful, making sure clothing needs were met, making sure everyone all around got something they needed and most of all receiving hugs and handshakes from the recipients. Why did they deserve this VIP treatment? Fire...2 days before Christmas. Didn't even know the family but they were friends of a family member.

And not just because its Christmas. Since I've been apart of this family for over 15 years now, I've participated in this unselfish act more times then I can count on my fingers. There's only three rules that apply to this act of kindness:
1. It only happens once
2. You need to be making an effort
3. Pay it forward
We will all need help once in our lifetime. You're living in a fantasy world behind rose colored glasses if you believe anything different.

So did you venture over and read the other article yet?

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Holiday Cheer


What do you get when you cross a reindeer and a pickle?

A Dill Doe!

Thank you. I'll be here all week. Two shows on Saturday. Try the veal; tip your waiters.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Obscure Objects with Names

AGLET - The plain or ornamental covering on the end of a shoelace.
ARMSAYE - The armhole in clothing.
CHANKING - Spat-out food, such as rinds or pits.
COLUMELLA NASI - The bottom part of the nose between the nostrils.
DRAG√ČES - Small beadlike pieces of candy, usually silver-coloured, used for decorating cookies, cakes and sundaes.
FEAT - A dangling curl of hair.
FERRULE - The metal band on a pencil that holds the eraser in place.
HARP - The small metal hoop that supports a lampshade.
HEMIDEMISEMIQUAVER - A 64th note. (A 32nd is a demisemiquaver, and a 16th note is a semiquaver.)
JARNS,
NITTLES,
GRAWLIX,
and QUIMP - Various squiggles used to denote cussing in comic books.
KEEPER - The loop on a belt that keeps the end in place after it has passed through the buckle.
KICK or PUNT - The indentation at the bottom of some wine bottles. It gives added strength to the bottle but lessens its holding capacity.
LIRIPIPE - The long tail on a graduate's academic hood.
MINIMUS - The little finger or toe.
NEF - An ornamental stand in the shape of a ship.
OBDORMITION - The numbness caused by pressure on a nerve; when a limb is `asleep'.
OCTOTHORPE - The symbol `#' on a telephone handset. Bell Labs' engineer Don Macpherson created the word in the 1960s by combining octo-, as in eight, with the name of one of his favourite athletes, 1912 Olympic decathlon champion Jim Thorpe.
OPHRYON - The space between the eyebrows on a line with the top of the eye sockets.
PEEN - The end of a hammer head opposite the striking face.
PHOSPHENES - The lights you see when you close your eyes hard. Technically the luminous impressions are due to the excitation of the retina caused by pressure on the eyeball.
PURLICUE - The space between the thumb and extended forefinger.
RASCETA - Creases on the inside of the wrist.
ROWEL - The revolving star on the back of a cowboy's spurs.
SADDLE - The rounded part on the top of a matchbook.
SCROOP - The rustle of silk.
SNORKEL BOX - A mailbox with a protruding receiver to allow people to deposit mail without leaving their cars.
SPRAINTS - Otter dung.
TANG - The projecting prong on a tool or instrument.
WAMBLE - Stomach rumbling.
ZARF - A holder for a handleless coffee cup.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Lurkers Anonymous

Harvey has a great post On Lurking and their respective definitions. While we all agree there are obviously lurkers within the blogging community, Harvey had the courage to speak up and bring into the spotlight this unique syndrome.

The New Age media resource has created this syndrome. Other medias prior to this have all had their resources of viewer/reader methods of popularity. Television has its Nielsen Ratings and the advertisers willingness to dish out huge amounts of cash. Printed media such as newspapers and magazines have their subscriptions to base their reader base. And also, once again, the advertisers willingness to dish out the cash. I'm not exactly sure how radio achieves its rating of listener base but maybe Disgruntled Truck Driver can provide that information.

I rate my own site by two methods. Method number 1 reflects on how I think my wrting and posting are progressing or regressing. Did the post make me laugh, cry or move me(or other faculties best not noted here)in any way, shape or form? Yes, selfishly its all about ME ME ME. I write my blog for me and spend little effort worrying about what others think. We're all entitled an opinion and who am I to say your opinion sucks? As far as I am concerned, if ya don't like my blog don't return. Easy enough... Method number 2 is even simpler...how many hits per day I achieve from readers.

Now what I find interesting is this article on Blogging and Economics and the comments left by readers. And while I'm typing this and your reading this on a Friday afternoon...shame, shame, shame.

And yes I'm a Lurker...and proud of it! In fact, I'm also President of Lurkers Anonymous. Altho I'm not sure how many members belong since we really don't let each other be known to one another. But let me tell you, if I started applying membership fees of $1 a year, I'd be a billionaire.

So if you're a fellow Lurker Anonymous member, please comment and that way I'll know you're still around.

Also...how do you rate your blog site?

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Weird...

Warts & All and The Coffee Table have both tagged me with the same meme.

"Here are the rules: Each player of this game starts with the "6 Weird Things about You." People who get tagged need to write a blog of their own 6 weird things as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names. Don't forget to leave a comment that says 'you are tagged' in their comments and tell them to read your blog!"


1. When I eat a meal, I eat one thing till its gone then move on to the next item. Example: I'll eat all my chicken, then eat all my veggie that nite, then eat all my salad.
2. I cannot go to sleep at home until everyone else is in bed. Unless I'm sick or exhausted and pass out.
3. I still enjoy eating black licorice and washing it all down with a glass of milk.
4. I cannot comb my hair until after I've put my shirt on.
5. No one except me is allowed to touch my toes.
6. I've been told "You know things most normal people don't."

And following the rules, here are my six tags:
KeesKennis
Cool Single Mom
Walrilla
Lemonade Stand
Getting to Maybe
Crazy Uncle

Great Christmas Stocking Stuffer

I have toiled many hours searching high and low, browsing the Internets far and wide and spent many sleepless nights worrying if I'd ever create a suitable list for my daily readers. This collection of books happens to hold the record for the shortest written publication known to mankind. And what better time to share this list then Christmas time. Have that someone who always skimps on your present, for let's say the last 10 years, when you always go out of your budget for them? Or maybe you just wanna fill your bathroom with quick reading material so no one loiters? Well here is my collection of great short stories that would make the perfect gift!

French War heroes - Jacques Chirac
How I Served My Country - Jane Fonda
My Beauty Secrets - Janet Reno
How to Build Your Own Airplane - John Denver
My Super Bowl Highlights - Dan Marino
Things I Love About Bill - Hillary Clinton
Things I Cannot Afford - Bill Gates
Things I Would Not Do For Money - Dennis Rodman
My Wild Years - Al Gore
Amelia Earhart's Guide to the Pacific
America's Most Popular Lawyers
Detroit: A Travel Guide
A Collection of Motivational Speeches - Dr. J. Kervorkian
All the Men I Have Loved Before - Ellen de Generes
Guide to Dating Etiquette - Mike Tyson
Spotted Owl Receipes - EPA
The Amish Phone Directory
My Plan to Find The Real Killers - O.J. Simpson
Establishing a Lifetime Friendship - Judas
Skiing for Beginners - Sonny Bono

Have you found any great short story titles? Leave a comment...

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Parts are Parts

Ever had your car serviced and find out something interesting?

Today after I dropped my son off at school, I stopped for some gas and coffee. As I was exiting the station I noticed my brakes felt funny. Funny how? Funny as in it made me laugh? No...funny as in I wasn't stopping! I had no brakes, none, nada, zilch. Lucky for me there wasn't anyone coming and I wasn't too far from home. Emergency brakes are a life saver if used correctly in times of emergency. I checked the brake fluid and while it was a tad bit low it shouldn't have caused the brakes to fail. In fact, while applying the brakes the brakes resisted any movement. Not consistent with being low on brake fluid.

I was able to drive to the mechanic without much difficulty although the brakes were touchy. Upon inspection of the brakes, nothing could be found that caused my brake failure. They inspected, cleaned and adjusted the entire braking system so I'm confident its not mechanical related. Maybe its computer related...cars these days are chocked full of electronic gadgets that makes my head spin. What happened to the days when a simple person could work on their vehicle. I remember my '68 Mustang and rebuilding everything excpet the engine. Simple and with allot of hard work anything on that car could be replaced.

Anyway...what I found out interesting? I found out that my rear suspension springs are both broke. And here I thought all this time I needed new struts. The back springs snapped at the base and its been that way for quite awhile, so I'm told. I inspected them and yes they're broke. Cost to repair? Outside my budget at this time but the car has performed for how ever long with broken springs. Whats a few more months?

And here I was joyous of getting my heater repaired just in time for the cold snap.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Saturdays Thought

It sure was cold this morning here at Dazd Central. A chilly 19 degrees with light wind. What a preface to the winter coming. The neighborhood was quiet and a heavy frost covered the ground. This scenic wonder brought back some fond memories, some of which I'll try and share today.

Growing up in a rural community offered many chances to enjoy nature. Winter will always be my favorite season. I grew up sledding down the hills on a runner sled. We later progressed to a plastic roll-out sled. And when money allowed, we had a huge round sled. We always used wax paper and waxed the bottoms for maximum glide across the snow. Our second house we grew up in sat atop a hill. It was a pretty steep slope of about 30 degrees and man could we get those sleds moving. Although it was a short run of 50-75 yards, at the young age of 10 this was daring enough. The next door neighbor lived further up the hill and had a run of 150+ yards and a gentle slope of 20 degress before bottoming out on flat land. Only obstacle was the wooden fence that kept the horses in. But, when the snow was just right a person could scoot underneath this fence as long as you sprawled out on a plastic roll-out. One time we weren't too sure if we could fit since there was more snow. So we convinced my brother, who was 3 years younger, to go first. So after a good running start he headed down the hill and realized 10 feet from the fence he wasn't gonna make it. He tried desperately to stop but to no avail. Thump! And the sled slid out from underneath him and continued its journey downhill. He got up, never said a word and walked home. Mom and dad took him to the hospital to check for a concussion. He had a headache for a few days but was fine other then the cyclops like bruise on his forehead. After that accident, the neighbor put up a fence in that area so us boys could sled and not kill or maim one another.

I'm hoping we get some snow this year. I sure would like to take Lil Dazd sledding this year. Now to find somewhere...