Sunday, April 3, 2011

Over Today

Time out to refill my imagination and take a vacation from this blog. I'll be back, don't know where, don't know when.

Thanks for reading!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Risky Biz Preparing for Disaster

From Barbara Eggleston, retired Engineer.

At breakfast today, 2011, my husband Dick read to me from the Wall Street Journal of Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s disaster plans which called for one stretcher, one satellite phone and fifty protective suits.

After breakfast I felt compelled to write this story. I was an older kid in Indiana. My father and I were at the small train station in Lafayette waiting waiting for my grandmother to arrive. She would have taken the train from Los Angeles to Chicago and from there to where we lived. A train was racing through the station, a freight train.

All a freight train meant to me was that it had to go by before my grandmother’s train would arrive. I didn’t see the train as an integral part of a great nation’s industry. I only saw the large, black and exciting train taking many minutes to go by. Then it stopped.

Dad took me on a walk along the tracks to the end of the pavement. It was to relieve our boredom. As we turned around and walked back to our car he looked at a freight car that was open exposing large cardboard boxes inside that held televisions. He started to talk.

“I wonder if any of the boxes have damaged televisions. The problem is that you can’t afford to pack the televisions so well that none of them get broken. And at the same time you can’t afford to break a lot of televisions. So the manufacturer has a decision to make: just how well should he pack the televisions. This decision process is very important in industry….Do you understand?”

I nodded, yes. As I have gone through life, I have very often recalled his little lecture. And I have added other things he said which amount to: mistakes will happen. You can’t avoid that mistakes will happen. Mistakes don’t mean that you stop trying to do something.

You try to plan for mistakes. You try to predict mistakes. And you must also understand that you may not predict some of the mistakes. But you don’t stop what you are trying to do.

As I approach the ebb of my life I feel more keenly the significance of what he said. Dad got into emergency preparedness soon after The War. I have a copy of one of the invitations. It was from the White House.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Damn, Goats on a Dam!

You won't believe your eyes when you open this site. Goats with very sticky hooves indeed.

Many thanks for this little jewel to my cousin Bobbi Tucker, She of Many Political Opinons. Got this one right!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Tortilla Flats

Waste not, want not, Ben Franklin says. Spaghetti in a taco? Carbs in a carb wrapper? Why not? Just go for a walk before dinner.

It's all about the left-overs. Corn tortillas have more calories than flour tortillas and they don't bend so I take the frozen flour tortillas out of the bag, pry off two, 100 calories each, no worse than bread, slather them with the left over beans and cheese from a recent supper, top with that last inch of cheese and heat 'em up.

There's bound to be a bottle of hot sauce in the fridge.

Clean fridge shelves, ready for the next action.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Return on Investment

If you had purchased $1,000.00 of Nortel stock one year ago, it would now be worth $49.00.

With Enron, you would have had $16.50 left of the original $1,000.00.

With WorldCom, you would have had less than $5.00 left.

If you had purchased $1,000 of Delta Air Lines stock, you would have $49.00 left.

But, if you had purchased $1,000.00 worth of wine one year ago, drunk all the wine,

then turned in the bottles for the recycling REFUND, you would have had $214.00.

Based on the above, the best current investment advice is to drink heavily and recycle.

Thanks to Britt Schroyer!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Quake Moves Japan Closer to California

When the Pacific tectonic plate dived under the North American plate, The United States Geologicall Survey reports, Japan moved about 13 feet closer to California. And shifted the earth's axis by 6.5 inches, shortened the day by 1.6 microseconds, and sunk Japan downward by about two feet. When Japan's eastern coastline sunk, the tsunami's waves rolled in.

Eryn Brown in the LA Times, March 14

Saturday, March 12, 2011


December 8 6:00 PM
It started to snow. The first snow of the season and the wife and I took our cocktails and sat for hours by the window watching the huge soft flakes drift down from heaven.

It looked like a Grandma Moses print. So romantic we felt like newlyweds again. I love snow!

December 9
We woke to a beautiful blanket of crystal white snow covering every inch of the landscape. What a fantastic sight! Can there be a more lovely place in the whole world?

Moving here was the best idea I've ever had! Shoveled for the first time in years and felt like a boy again. I did both our driveway and the sidewalks. This afternoon the snowplow came along and covered up the sidewalks and closed in the driveway, so I got to shovel again. What a perfect life!

December 12
The sun has melted all our lovely snow. Such a disappointment! My neighbor tells me not to worry-we'll definitely have a white Christmas. No snow on Christmas would be awful! Bob says we'll have so much snow by the end of winter, that I'll never want to see snow again. I don't think that's possible.
Bob is such a nice man, I'm glad he's our neighbor.

December 14
Snow, lovely snow! 8 inches last night. The temperature dropped to -20. The cold makes everything sparkle so. The wind took my breath away, but I warmed up by shoveling the driveway and sidewalks. This is the life! The snowplow came back this afternoon and buried everything again. I didn't realize I would have to do quite this much shoveling, but I'll certainly get back in shape this way.
I wish I wouldn't huff and puff so.

December 15
20 inches forecast. Sold my van and bought a 4x4 Blazer. Bought snow tires for the wife's car and 2 extra shovels. Stocked the freezer. The wife wants a wood stove in case the electricity goes out.
I think that's silly. We aren't in Alaska, after all.

December 16
Ice storm this morning. Fell on my ass on the ice in the driveway putting down salt. Hurt like hell.
The wife laughed for an hour, which I think was very cruel.

December 17
Still way below freezing. Roads are too icy to go anywhere. Electricity was off for 5hours. I had to pile the blankets on to stay warm. Nothing to do but stare at the wife and try not to irritate her. Guess I should've bought a wood stove, but won't admit it to her. God I hate it when she's right.

I can't believe I'm freezing to death in my own living room.

December 20
Electricity is back on, but had another 14 inches of the damn stuff last night. More shoveling!

Took all day. The damn snowplow came by twice. Tried to find a neighbor kid to shovel, but they said they're too busy playing hockey. I think they're lying. Called the only hardware store around to see about buying a snow blower and they're out. Might have another shipment in March. I think they're lying. Bob says I have to shovel or the city will have it done and bill me. I think he's lying.

December 22
Bob was right about a white Christmas because 13 more inches of the white shit fell today, and it's so cold, it probably won't melt till August. Took me 45 minutes to get all dressed up to go out to shovel and then I had to piss. By the time I got undressed, pissed and dressed again. I was too tired to shovel.

Tried to hire Bob who has a plow on his truck for the rest of the winter, but he says he's too busy.I think the asshole is lying.

December 23
Only 2 inches of snow today. And it warmed up to 0. The wife wanted me to decorate the front of the house this morning. What is she, nuts?!! Why didn't she tell me to do that a month ago?

She says she did but I think she's lying.

December 24
6 inches - Snow packed so hard by snowplow, I broke the shovel. Thought I was having a heart attack.. If I ever catch the son of a bitch who drives that snow plow, I'll drag him through the snow by his balls and beat him to death with my broken shovel. I know he hides around the corner and waits for me to finish shoveling and then he comes down the street at a 100 miles an hour and throws snow all over where I've just been!

Tonight the wife wanted me to sing Christmas carols with her and open our presents, but I was too busy watching for the damn snowplow.

December 25
Merry f---ing Christmas! 20 more inches of the damn slop tonight - Snowed in.
The idea of shoveling makes my blood boil. God, I hate the snow!
Then the snowplow driver came by asking for a donation and I hit him over the head with my shovel. The wife says I have a bad attitude. I think she's a fricking idiot.
If I have to watch "It's A Wonderful Life" one more time, I'm going to stuff her into the microwave.

December 26
Still snowed in. Why the hell did I ever move here?
It was all HER idea. She's really getting on my nerves.

December 27
Temperature dropped to -30 and the pipes froze; plumber came after 14 hours of waiting for him, he only charged me $1,400 to replace all my pipes.

December 28
Warmed up to above -20. Still snowed in.
The BITCH is driving me crazy!!!

December 29
10 more inches. Bob says I have to shovel the roof or it could cave in.
That's the silliest thing I ever heard. How dumb does he think I am?

December 30
Roof caved in. I beat up the snow plow driver, and now he is suing me for a million dollars, not only for the beating I gave him, but also for trying to shove the broken snow shovel up his ass.
The wife went home to her mother. Nine more inches predicted.

December 31
I set fire to what's left of the house. No more shoveling.

January 8
Feel so good. I just love those little white pills they keep giving me. Why am I tied to the bed?