Thursday, September 25, 2008

Since retiring my need for new clothes has greatly diminished. I am content to wear casual clothes and jeans on the porch and to the places I usually frequent, like the post office and grocery store. No one even dresses nicely for church anymore. The church has become a little like the military when I was doing my time. I was stationed in Washington DC when I was in the army. In the summer we were permitted to wear the short sleeve khaki summer uniform. After Labor Day we were required to switch to the army green with coat and tie.

The church is now somewhat like the army I knew. Everyone, including the preacher, wears casual dress during the summer. In the fall, some of us old guys and the preacher switch to a coat and tie. It seems like, more and more, people are staying casual all year long for church. Some of the folks wear stuff I would be embarrassed to wear for yard work. It seems like it is the “in” thing for teenagers to look sloppy all the time. The faded jeans with holes is even popular at church. Of course the belt line is just above the symphysis with the Y cleavage of the buttock shining through. My mother always told me we should look our best for church. She just wouldn’t be able to stand it today and the modern praise music would also send her out the door.

Anyway, my partner decided that some of my undergarments and pajamas were looking pretty ragged. She wouldn’t even allow them to be used for cleaning rags. This prompted us to make one of my rare visits to a clothing store. After visiting a half dozen stores to obtain my simple needs I finally had to get back to the porch before I suffered a stroke. None of my favorite brands or style of pajamas are to be found in the major department stores. I used to buy prepackaged combined pajama tops and bottoms. These are no longer found. There are some of these satin looking things hanging on racks. I don’t think men wear pajamas anymore. Most must be taking Vigra, so they just go to bed ready. I discovered that the word pajamas is no longer in use. The proper term now is sleepwear, as shown in the model above.

The style of briefs I once loved has been replaced by some other rag of inferior material from the orient. Young folks who have majored in marketing and other such things are now employed by the chain stores. They have decided they will make their mark by changing the styles with cheaper stuff and displaying it in cute ways for a greater price so the CEO can get a larger bonus.

To make matters worse, I simply couldn’t find anyone to help me in any of the stores. The friendly salespeople who used to help you select clothing have long ago disappeared. Even in relatively modern times there was always someone at a checkout stand ready to take your money. I couldn’t even find those people during this shopping experience. I really believe I could have pulled up an 18-wheeler and loaded it with their inferior merchandise and no one would have stopped me. The merchants don’t have to worry about thief because no one wants the stuff anyway. When I finally found someone to take my money they knew nothing about the merchandise because they were not familiar with that section of the store. It takes about 30 minutes for the sales transaction because the store representative (not salesperson) has to punch around on the computer long enough to copy “Gone With the Wind.” I realize they are entering data to keep up with their inventory but the amount of punching on the keyboard is ridiculous. It’s more computer activity than required by NASA to send a man to the moon.

Boy, was I glad to get back to the porch and put on my in style blue jeans that are faded with holes in the knees. Because of my expanding midsection they now fit comfortably just above the symphysis. I think I will wear them to church next Sunday.

From now on I’m going to order my stuff out of the Vermont Country Store Catalogue. Another thing I noticed in the stores was the paucity of customers. I wonder why? The few employees I did see were installing Christmas trees and it’s only Sept 24. I must be in a time warp. Since Christmas is now starting at the end of simmer, I will just pretend it’s winter and throw another blanket on the bed since I don’t have any pajamas.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

When I was in Junior High, I raise three pigs. They grew up to be very greedy hogs. It was my job to feed these animals every day. They became very aggressive the older and fatter they became. The meanest and most aggressive one, I called Greedy Gut. He would actual try and attack me and knock me down when I brought his pail of food into the pen each day. The pig pen was adjacent to the garden and we had to have a very secure fence or they would have destroyed everything. I’m sure if an infant or young child had fallen into the hog pen they would have been consumed.

Today’s Wall Street tycoons remind me of my hogs. They are just as greedy and care about nothing in their path except their own lust for money. They are like my hogs without a fence. They have had no restraints or regulations and are just driven by their unbridled greed. We are all now paying the price and the government must step in to apply restraints and save our garden, which has been largely destroyed by these gluttons. As a result we will now have a nationalized banking system.

Andrew Jackson was strongly opposed to a federal bank and when he was president there was a run on the banks, which caused a great panic and a deep depression. Thanks goodness, we have a federal banking system today that will, hopefully, bail us out and prevent another depression and stimulate the economy and make it possible for people to borrow money to buy homes and run a business.

We may survive this ordeal if our Congress will only act. They need to quit blaming each other for the debacle and pass some legislation before the stock market goes to zero and all the banks close. One thing I hope they regulate is how much the bank executives can make off with for doing such a bad job.

The experience of raising hogs was a good one for me. It taught me that the world off my porch is full of greedy pigs. It also made me thankful that I have a porch; I just hope that now Congress will let me keep it.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Galveston has been severely crippled by Hurricane Ike. The place was already a partial slum, but I, nevertheless, have many great memories of the island. It’s where I went to medical school and where my partner and I spent the first two years of our long journey. It was completely destroyed by the 1900 storm and has weathered many hurricanes since. Ike has wiped out many of the famous landmarks, but I hope most can be restored.

We go back for a visit every two or three years, just to reminisce. We drive by our old dwelling on 16th & Ball and usually eat at Gaido’s. It’s just fun to drive down Seawall Blvd. This year we spent three days there with three of the grandkids. The water is so grimy we just walked on the beach and picked up a few seashells. We spent most of the time touring Moody Gardens, which is for grandkids and seniors. The aquarium is fantastic and of course the rainforest is a great attraction.

Fortunately, Ike did minimal damage to Moody Gardens. The pyramids remained intact and they are apparently running with an emergency generator. The penguins almost died when the temperature rose to 58 degrees, which is just within two degrees of the maximum they can tolerate. A few cold-water fish died but the word is that most survived including the seals. The snakes and other critters are said to have made it because they were caged and remained above water.

Most humans didn’t fare as well as the Moody Garden animals. One group of folks who were on a cruise ship out of Galveston had their parked cars destroyed by the hurricane. My question is why does anyone go on a cruise in the Gulf of Mexico or the Caribbean during the middle of hurricane season? What do you expect? That’s like going hunting for Dracula at night. If you are going to hunt Dracula you should go in broad daylight and be home by the middle of the afternoon. It’s a little stupid to go on a cruise in the Gulf during August or September, which is right at the height of hurricane season.

More and more, the porch proves to be the safest place. It has even been a safe haven from the recent financial crisis where all I did was worry and listen to the news. During the financial meltdown we just stayed on the porch and ate soup trying to get in shape for the next Great Depression. Hopefully, this has been averted by the action of the Feds. I just hope my grandkids can afford a porch with the taxes they will have to pay for the current bailout. I also hope with the price of gasoline and high taxes in the future they will be able to make an occasional trip to Galveston, provided it is still there. If they do visit Galveston in the future, I would recommend June as the best month.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

We have had nothing but bleak news for the past several days. Wall Street is in turmoil with the threat of collapse of more financial institutions and further chaos in the world economy. Even more bleak news was the devastation associated with Hurricane Ike. Galveston is virtually destroyed and Houston remains paralyzed with the lack of power. The political candidates continue to fight and blame each other for everything. Greedy CEOs continue to salt millions away while the rest of us are on our knees and ready for the bread lines.

The only glimmer of good news was that the world’s shortest man met the woman with the world’s longest legs. The Chinese dwarf He Pingping, age 20, met the leggy Russian Svetiana Paintretova, 36, in London this week. He is a mere 2ft. 5 inches tall and her legs measure an incredible 52 inches in length. The upper torso of Svetiana is apparently normal and her height is only 6’4’’. She is more like a giraffe. If these two find romance and marry they can travel as one. She will be able to smuggle him into most places under her skirt. Svetiana will always be wearing a skirt because they just don’t make the legs of pants long enough to accommodate her elongated extremities. She can only find mini skirts, which are normal length skirts for the average woman.

These people are for real and will be listed in the Guinnes World Record Book for 2009. Sometimes we see fake stuff that can be created with computer programs. You can place heads of famous people on other folk’s bodies and do all sorts of things. Even with my amateur skills I created a picture of my grandson sitting next to his hero Spiderman. I have also completely eliminated an unwanted person from a group picture. There are no fakes in the Guiness book and these two will take their place with some other extraordinary and sometimes freakish people.

I’m thinking about trying to set a record and get my name in the famous book of world records. I might attempt to set the record for the longest sitting time in a rocker on the porch without the TV turned on. Now is the time for me to try and set this record so I won’t have to listen to the bad news about Wall Street and all the political bickering.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The news this week has really been scary. It’s like the world is going crazy. I have never seen anything like it. The Presidential race seems to be second page news. The latest in that debacle is that it seems like the Presidential candidate of the Democrats is running against the Vice-Presidential candidate of the Republicans.

The other big news was Hurricane Ike that devastated Galveston and paralyzed Houston. We will be feeling the effects of that one for a long time and it may be as bad for Galveston as the 1900 storm. This whole thing just gives a hint of what it would be like in the event of something like a nuclear attack on a big city with the lose of thousands of lives and many more injuries. We wouldn’t be able to handle the problem.

The big news happened this week with the shakeup of the world economic situation. It’s even a bigger thing than hurricanes or the presidential race. The giant banker Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy. Next came the news that the mega-insurer AIG was about to crater. This sent shock waves through the world threatening to trigger a global collapse of world finances and the global economy. The government decided to bail AIG out with an 85 billion dollar loan. This means the government now owns the company and they are moving to own everything. The Feds recently bailed out the mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Health Care and Education are next, so we will eventually be no different than the Government of the old Soviet Union or the one in Cuba. There is really nothing we can do because we are suffering the ills of capitalism brought on by greed. Unfortunately, a government run society is only another form of greed as we have learned from history with people like Stalin and his gang.

Our current financial mess is due to the greedy Ivy League crowd on Wall Street who uses us like pawns to get their multi-million dollar cut. They are in the same group of thieves as CEOs, and professional athletes. The greed of these folks is after the money of the little guy like me and the recent set of events on Wall Street even threatens to take my entire retirement.

The government is my only hope for salvation and I am becoming more like Gollum in The Lord of The Rings. Our new savior, the government, will soon be altering the dictionary to eliminate words like myself and me and replacing them with words like we and us. I’m certain they will want my sanctuary, the porch. I’m sure the porch will disappear, like my retirement, with no input from me. It will also disappear with absolutely no resistance from me because I don’t even know where to resist. Sadly, we are living in a world that, like the Old South, is about to be Gone with the Wind.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

The TV on the porch has been off for several days. I finally turned it on to watch the progress of Hurricane Ike. For two days I have been glued to the tube, switching between the different channels to get every shred of information possible about the hurricane. Ike was a terrible storm. It’s going to be very costly and take a lot of time to rebuild Galveston and the damaged Gulf Coast. I’m very lucky to be in my safe shelter on the porch, but watching the ordeal on TV was almost as bad as being there, especially being subjected to the barrage of commercials.

I got a little sleep after the eye went over Galveston, then woke at dawn to find out about the damage. Morning TV is almost solid commercials. Over half the commercials are for drugs. No wonder prescriptions are so expensive. Every drug advertised has a million disclaimers. My favorite is the Viagra commercial where this man and woman are dancing around in their house and they finally dance into the bedroom where they close the door and then leave it to your imagination if the Viagra works. They warn you to call a doctor if an erection last over four hours. You might need a heart transplant if that happens. When I was a kid I looked at National Geographic as my source for pornography. Now it’s on the TV commercials. The one for Celasis is also neat about the time being right. It shows a shot of this man and woman sitting outside in separate bathtubs looking out into the sunset. That’s a little strange.

The lawyers are doing a lot of advertising. The most popular lawyer ad is to get help if you have mesothioloma from asbestosis exposure. There is one about contacting this firm if you have had problems taking Digitex and the latest is about contacting a specialized law firm if you have kidney failure resulting from the contrast used in MRI scans. There is one drug advertisement after another from Lipitor to Tylenol. The drug companies are sick.

My favorite commercials are for the Geico and Aflac Insurance Companies. I love the cute little reptile mascot and the Aflac duck. The latest neat ad is the baby with the voice of the adult. He is so cute I don’t even pay attention to what he is advertising.

Anyway, it’s one commercial after another and it’s one of the reasons I don’t watch much TV. Ike was a horrible thing but the only good that came out of it was that it kept the networks from boring me with Obama and McCain and their quest for change. I had almost forgotten they were running for something and had come to think that Sarah Palin was now the one running for president.

I’m glad things are settling back down and just hope that they can rebuild Galveston again. I consider myself very lucky to be on the porch rather than the Gulf Coast.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Believe it or not I have friends who are liberals and conservatives. I receive quite a bit of e-mail from both camps and a lot of stuff that circulates around the internet, bad-mouthing and making fun of each other. Much of the stuff tries to make out Obama to be a Muslim and unpatriotic and even mocking the Bible. Much has been made about his inexperience. There has also been much about McCain being senile and a warmonger. Most recently, Sarah Palin has been the target of the Obama camp with remarks like “you can put lipstick on a pig.” Palin has been accused of being a bad mom because her 17 year old daughter is pregnant and some have said her Downs syndrome baby really belongs to the daughter.

There is nothing new about all this mud slinging. I admire Thomas Jefferson for many things but he was a jerk with some of the slanderous remarks he made about Washington and Adams. Andrew Jackson’s wife was literally destroyed because of the damaging remarks made about her not being divorced when she married Jackson. It goes on and on through the Presidential elections.

As usual the media is on the side of the liberals. People like Larry King and Oprah are very open about it. CNN is far to the left and Fox is the only one leaning to the right. Of course Hollywood stars are all liberal because they want to follow in the footsteps of their heroes Henry Fonda and Gregory Peck. They actually think people really care or pay attention to what they say. It’s interesting how any of the Hollywood people can say anything about Palin’s daughter, because having babies out of wedlock is the norm out there. But, like Mark Twain says, “that’s okay because they do it themselves.”

All of this is very disgusting to me. I’m just happy I have an off and mute button for my TV and a delete key on my computer. I long for an orderly and peaceful world where everyone gets along. I long for a world without politicians, dictators, lawyers, and the like. I guess I’m referring to the hereafter because it will never exist on this planet. The closest place I have found is the porch with the TV turned off, my head in a book and the iPod playing my favorite tunes. When I’m off the porch, I’m like the children of Israel and the politicians, bad-mouthing those I oppose. In my case, the ones I oppose in the political world are the hypocrites, which means almost everyone. My vote for number one hypocrite of the year is former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer. The liberals weigh in real heavy with the hypocrites, but the conservatives have their share. From the porch to my computer I often feel like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. More and more with the election stuff, I’m staying like Mr. Hyde.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

To keep friends, it’s best to stay away from the subjects of politics and religion. On these two subjects everyone has their mind made up and they are always right. I’ve had relatives and good friends look me straight in the eye and tell me I’m going to hell because I didn’t belong to their church. It’s sure hard to remain friendly after that but I have done so. I decided long ago to try my best to keep and open mind about most things in life, but it’s difficult when you are dealing with fanatics and minds controlled by emotion rather than logic. I will just follow in the footsteps of my hero Mark Twain and remain a comic critic of everything; Democrats, Republicans, Communist, Socialist, Christians, Jews, Muslims, Atheist, Thieves and the like.

Here is what my hero Mark Twain had to say about it: “In religion and politics people's beliefs and convictions are in almost every case gotten at second-hand, and without examination, from authorities who have not themselves examined the questions at issue but have taken them at second-hand from other non-examiners, whose opinions about them were not worth a brass farthing.
”- Autobiography of Mark Twain

As the political season heats up, it’s time for me to just keep quiet and smile. On my blog I will just poke fun, criticize and praise everyone because I don’t back anyone. To make things clear, I will state my position as the season gets underway. John McCain is a great hero but he is my age and heaven forbid me being president. I have a hard time finding my way to the bathroom. If McCain were younger perhaps he could be another Theodore Roosevelt and the kind of President America needs, to be unafraid of big business and to walk softly and carry a big stick. Sarah Palin is terrific and a pit bull. She is a maverick but it would be like throwing a lone piranha into a sea of sharks. She also might push a nuclear missile button when she begins to have hot flashes. Obama is an articulate, arrogant self-serving guy who only wants to be President because of self and race and lead us into Armageddon as he surrenders America to the Middle East and makes us a welfare state. Biden is only full of words and short on deeds. His transplanted hair has penetrated the skull into his cerebral cortex and unleashed his tongue with meaningless rhetoric. All of these people bad-mouth each other and make it sound as if the other is un-American and out to destroy the country. I know they want to get elected but I hate that confrontational approach to solving our problems with the economy, energy and making peace in the world. There is no one for me.

Why am I so indifferent about the Presidential election? It probably doesn’t matter who is elected because little can be done about the demise of Western civilization. All we can do as Democrats and Republicans is blame each other for what is happening on the world stage. As the Middle East and China emerge, we along with our European neighbors are declining. Russia will probably ally with Iran. All this is to fulfill prophecies in which we will only play a minor role because we are to be a minor player as a world power. It may not matter how we achieve minor significance. McCain will get us there by slaughter of our population and Obama by surrender. My guess is that Obama will be elected because he fits better into the plan of demise as I see it.

That’s enough of politics. As for as religion, I will continue to go to church and listen to the repetitive verses of praise music and poorly organized sermons and then do most of my worshiping on the porch. It does little good for me to try and convert anyone in religion or politics because their mind is already made up. Their opinion is right because they made it themselves based on second-hand opinions from those they have deemed to be authorities even though these opinions are not worth a brass farthing. A brass farthing is a coin worth nothing.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

In my past few blog entries I have poked a little fun at Sarah Palin. I take everything back. Her speech was great and she is one tough independent lady. The only difference between her and a pit bull is the lipstick. She has taken a lot of abuse from the press in the past few days and tonight she let everyone know that she is not concerned about what they think but cares most about serving the American people.

I have been wondering how she will survive a debate with Joe Biden. Now I am wondering how he will survive with Sarah Palin at his throat. His transplanted hair may fall out.

She got to the truth about Obama’s position regarding taxes. Taxes will go up for businesses, and for those earning a living. The tax increases will be necessary to support his many entitlement programs. I am far from rich but I will be paying more taxes and my meager savings will further dwindle.

What I liked most about Palin’s speech and delivery was her poise, humor, appropriate sarcasm and clarity. Her facial expressions were priceless as she ripped Obama. Her PTA and Soccer Mom training paid off, it sure beats a Harvard MBA or Law degree. I now wish it was a Palin/McCain ticket rather than McCain/Palin. Palin is young enough that she may be ale to make a run for it after Obama has surrendered to Al Qaeda in his first term as President. It may be harder for her to take back over from a Muslim dominated America but I think she can do it.

It’s impossible to get a flight into Alaska this week because all the seats are taken by investigative reporters descending on the place. They are looking for anything in Palin’s past to discredit her. The latest bit of dirt is that her hairdresser got a parking ticket a couple of years ago. It’s also rumored that her father received a ticket in 1964 for jay walking on a Boy Scout patrol day in her hometown.

The Washington elite set is infuriated because she isn’t a Harvard or Yale graduate and doesn’t have an MBA or law degree from one of those places. Even the Hollywood crowd is speechless after the bold self-introduction of this pit bull of a maverick. She is as close to an independent as we will ever get and that makes die hard Democrats and Republicans very uncomfortable.

God may have sent Hurricane Gustav to spoil the beginning of the Republican Convention but he also sent Sarah Palin to shakeup America and those who want to destroy us. To borrow a few words from JFK, let the word go out that the torch has been passed to a feisty young lady.

Meanwhile, on the porch, I have even turned the TV back on. I want to watch Sarah Palin and also be able to mute Larry King. Everyone is shocked about Palin’s 17 year old daughter and her pregnancy but no one says anything about Larry King divorcing Shawn Southwick his seventh wife. That’s okay because he is a man and a liberal. I have to end the blog with that so I can go throw up.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

It doesn’t take but one stupid remark to lose an election. Clayton Williams, the loud-mouth oilman and cowboy, was a shoe in for Texas Governor a few years ago until he made a remark about women and rape. He said, “as long as it’s inevitable you might as well lie back and enjoy it.” Even though he apologized, Ann Richards became Governor.

The recent remark by Don Fowler, former Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, about hurricane Gustav was almost as stupid as the one made by Clayton Williams. Gustav spoiled the beginning of the Republican Convention and Fowler said this demonstrated that God was on the side of Democrats. I wonder if Fowler prays that God will let his team win football games and other such things. I went to Baylor, a Christian school, and I don’t think God has ever been on the side of that football team. I often wonder whose side God is on and even which church Jesus would belong to if he were around in the flesh today. I suspect if he watched some of the actions of the Democrats or Republicans at their conventions he would throw up. I hope we don’t really believe that God sent Gustav to support the Democrats anymore than he supports a particular football team.

I suspect that God is not on the side of either the Democrats or Republicans. At one time he was on the side of America but that doesn’t seem to be the case anymore. The Dallas Cowboys under Tom Landry was as close to being God’s team as you can get in football. God gave up on the Cowboys when Jerry Jones took over. He probably doesn’t back any team today because most of the players are drug crazed millionaire thugs.

All this politics stuff is really interesting. We learned today that Sarah Palin’s unmarried 17 year old daughter is pregnant. Palin’s daughter Bristol is shown above holding her brother. Boy, the Democrats are going to have fun with Bristol. Of course, it would have been okay with the Democrats if the girl would have had an abortion. Palin also tried to get an Alaskan State Trooper fired who divorced her sister. We also learned that Palin’s husband was arrested for drunk driving a couple of years ago. It’s looking like McCain is going to have a tough sale with his choice of Palin as a running mate. His choice may have been as stupid as the remark by Fowler about Gustav and God.

I have been thinking about staying home on the porch on Election Day in November. It may turn out that everyone may get to stay home. Why even have an election? McCain should just go ahead and throw in the towel if Palin reveals anymore of the skeletons in her closet. It’s turning out that she is just as wild as her 17 year old daughter. Palin may turn out to be another Paris Hilton. Paris may have been the best running mate for McCain. A most interesting ticket would have been an Edwards, Hilton combination. God would have a big kick with that one. He might have even decided to end the world and get us out of our misery rather than just sending another hurricane to New Orleans.