Kelly Clarkson rocks!!
Check out her cover of
Walkin After Midnight.
Patsy Cline is still one of my favorite artists and
Video is no longer up.... if anyone knows where this can be located let me know!!!!


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

It's that time of the year.....

Merry Christmas. Feliz Navidad. Frohe Weihnachten. Nadolig Llawen. Buon Natale. Gl├Ždelig jul.

The first two are pretty obvious. In case you don't speak a foreign language, or several for all that matter, the next is German, then Welsh, followed by Italian and finally Danish. I must point out that I don't even speak my native language all that well (American English if you didn't know) so don't think I knew those. My thanks to Google Translate for the help.

So what do they all mean?

I suppose that to each of us, while there are certainly some commonalities, it means something different. Parties, gifts, decorations, things, stuff, crap.

I do not like Christmas. I am a self-described Grinch, Scrooge, lump of coal.

"Why?" you may be asking yourself. That is a valid question with a seemingly simple answer.

Christmas has become a season.
(I am not going to get in to the religious meanings or the pagan celebrations over which Christmas was actually layered in order to bring more converts in to the church.)

Listen, I don't pretend to be anything other than who and what I am. That does not change during this particularly horrid time of the year. It is a month long shopping blitz where retailers try harder and harder to separate people form their money. Sadly, the vast majority of our population are sheeple and gladly follow the shinies in to the slaughterhouse. Stop bowing to the pressure placed on us to "spend, spend, SPEND!" and instead focus on what is important.

Friends and family.

What about a visit to that aunt or uncle in the old folks home? Take them a book or a sweater and just spend some time with them. What about that grandmother or grandfather you have not spoken with since you got that birthday card? Give them a call and catch up. What about your brother or sister? When is the last time you just sat and talked about anything? Thought so.

In the end, people don't remember the fancy gifts, or the huge meals, or the decorations (Except you Mom, you remembered all of that stuff!!). Some families have lost loved ones this year, people they will never get the chance to talk to again. Some families have loved ones in far away lands and no clue if they are going to make it home. Some families just don't have anyone other than themselves.

Do not forget that this holiday is not about all the shit you can buy and give and get. It is about the people, the same as it is every year.

Merry Christmas everyone!! Now get off the damned computer and go call a random relative (No, chatting on Facebook doesn't count).

Mike








Monday, November 22, 2010

Life happens....

First, let me start out by giving my condolences to Weeble Girl and her family. She lost her father quite recently as well. I can honestly say I know what she is going through and it breaks my heart. The passing of a parent is so hard because deep down inside every one of us is that little kid that will always believe that parents live forever.

Life happens.

Oddly, she and I have a couple of other things in common. Diabetes. A very evil disease. My love for all things sticky and sweet was hampered by my need to not go blind, fall in to a coma, or have to go pee every 90 minutes (Which can be especially tough on someone who likes to sleep).

Life happens.

And not to sound like some sicko but she and I have at least one more thing in common. Anyone care to guess? Yep. Multiple Sclerosis. Oh brother.... and here I thought diabetes was bad enough. I know, lets tack on a disease than has many of the same symptoms as well as some exciting new ones (Falling down because I lost my balance is not so much a symptom, in itself, but it is certainly exciting to watch me flail around helplessly as I crash to the ground).

Life happens.

I would tell Weeble Girl welcome to my hell but to be truthful.... I would not want anyone to experience what I go through daily. Sadly, there is a great many of us who do. As I type this I am sitting at the dining room table staring out the window. Well, not actually AS I type... I'm a hunt-and-peck kind of typist. Let me show you what it looks like if I type WHILE looking out the window.

sjrIs pt ekay ur koops lohr,
Translation: This is what it looks like.

Well there you have it. My uber typing skills. Wait a sec, I nearly got the word 'looks' right. For any of you that have read some of my older posts you know that I have trouble typing correctly when I am looking at the keyboard so that should not have come as any type of surprise.

The window. Yep, a nice fall afternoon. Sadly, all I see are the leaves under the fig trees, the tree debris (sticks and pine cones) in the yard, and the fact I missed the last cutting of the year. Oh, and the window is dirty. And the picture next to the window needs to be dusted. And the curtains need to be washed. And, and, and.

Does this mean I am one of those people who has difficulty seeing the forest for the trees? Thought so.

So the holidays are once again bearing down on us like an out of control freight train. Thanksgiving is a few days away, Christmas is a month from then, with New Years riding in on Saint Nick's coat tails. I think I am just going to skip them all this year. No dinner, no parades or football, and no drinking.

Yea, that's what I am going to do. I will have fried Spam this Thursday, Ramen noodles (Oriental Flavor, whatever that is) for Christmas, and sleep through the New Years celebration. Well, actually, for the last 5 years I have been asleep by 9 or 10 so that's nothing new.... but dammit I am going to plan to sleep through it this year... in my bed... with a pillow... and my blankie!

I have one more thought on my mind and I certainly debated if I should bring it up. After much thought and consideration I have decided I will. It concerns people. All people. I don't care what color or sec you are, what religion you practice, or which way you lean politically.

Warning: Some of the language in the following statement may be considered offensive. Deal with it!

I have had enough of the constant bickering, fighting, name calling, and finger pointing. If you can not, or will not, act in a civil manner, towards your fellow human beings, then please get the fuck out of this country. Unless we start working together, and not the kind of working together our politicians do, then everything we love and care for is going in the shitter. I appreciate the fact you have your opinions but so do I. They are not right or wrong and they are certainly not black and white.

Just because we don't agree on everything doesn't mean we can't work towards the common good. At the end of the day, we are nothing more than a reflection of how we treat those around us. If you lie, cheat, and steal you are no better than the thugs on the street or in our jails. If you only care about yourself then you are undermining the very basis of what it is to be human. If you can't see past your own needs then all you do is make the situation worse. Get your head out of your ass and pay attention.

I am not perfect, not by any measure of the word, but I try to be a better person every day. Some days I succeed and others I don't. Can you say the same thing?

Ok, that is all for today. I have a lot of things I have to get done around here. Laundry is at the top of the list. I might even take a stab at that window. Maybe.

Toodles!

Mike

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Kenneth Frankovich 1934-2010

Dad passed away last night, quietly, just after 2am. Once a Marine, always a Marine.... he fought to the very end. He was surrounded by family and I believe he knew we were all there.

He lived a long life and lived it on his terms, his way, his rules. It is one of many reasons why he was so loved and respected.

As it is with all things, death is a part of life. My father was never one to shy away from that fact, especially after mom passed in 2006. He didn't like it, not one bit, but he accepted it... hell, he even embraced it. He talked about it often.

The last time we spoke about his death he told me there was one thing he wanted...

He did not want his death mourned but, instead, wanted his life celebrated. I promised him it would be, and it will.

Dad, I will always love you. I thank you for being there when I needed it, for instilling in me the drive to be a good man, a true friend, and most of all a great son. You are the measure by which I hold myself. I fear I may never live up to it but god dammit I will not stop trying.

May your new path always lead to the arms of your true love.

With love and devotion,

Mike

PS: The next round is on me Dad.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Sadness and happiness

This post will not mention Multiple Sclerosis a single time.

Dammit.

Ok, this is going to be a little short but long on info.

For those of you who may have been reading this thing called a "blog" for any length of time you will know that I have been taking care of my dad. Things took a decidedly ugly turn and he is back in the hospital. To make a long story short things are not going well. I am not a very religious man, more spiritual than anything, but I am going to ask that if you read this then please say a prayer for him. Thanks!

Now on to some happy news. Again, short but whatever....

I have met what I can only describe as the perfect woman. As most of you who read this are women, no slight was intended. Just in my eyes she is. We have fallen very hard for one another. To be honest I think this is the first time I have ever truly been in love.

Yea, yea, yea. I know I wasmarred for nearly 17 years once before. That is my point.

The way I feel about this woman goes light years beyond anything else. I never thought I would find a true companion, friend, and lover ever again. In fact, I had just stopped looking. I guess that is why I found it. I don't want to get all gooey-eyed all over your monitor so I won't.

Just suffice it to say that this is the real thing. Emotional, psychological, and physical. I love her very much and she loves me back just as much.



Ok, done for now. Hope to be back soon with good, and/or, great news.

Toodles everyone!!

Mike

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

BOO!

It's not as scary in print as when someone sneaks up behind you and shouts it in your ear.


So Halloween is upon us. I have to be honest and tell you this is my favorite holiday of the year. Does that make me strange? Nope. I was strange long before I placed Halloween at the top of my list. Trust me on this.


What do I love so much about this spooky holiday? Oh, I don't know. Could it be all the goodies? Mmmmmm, could be. Could it be the costumes? Mmmmmm, could be. Could it also be the chance to dress up in outrageous costumes and to scare the living crap out of people without being committed to a mental hospital? Oh, most definitely!

In years past (i.e. when I lived in a major metropolitan area that had a costume shop that sold special effects make-up and supplies) I used to love to dress up and hand out candy. Ghouls, zombies, general monsterly things. It was all in good fun. Most every place I worked had some type of costume contest so that gave me the chance to dress up for the entire day. Ahhh, the memories.

The best one I ever did was a motorcycle crash victim. I had road rash down one side of my face, a huge bloody gash across my forehead, a broken node, black eye, ground up cheek on the other side.... it was quite gross. I had even gone out to the street and picked up some gravel and embedded that in my 'wounds'. I used a fake blood substitute that remained gooey and red. That way the wounds always looked fresh. I was pretty impressed with my work. It took me about 4 hours to get it just right. Happy with my work I jumped in the car and headed off to work.

You know, I really never actually though about it until I pulled up to the red light. I caught some movement out of my peripheral vision to my left. I glanced over and saw an elderly lady staring, mouth wide open, and flailing at the gentleman who was driving. He looked over and his eyes popped. I politely, and calmly, waved. When the light changed he took off like Mario Andretti at the start of the Indianapolis 500. I could not help but laugh.

Once I got to work it only got funnier. One of the doctors (I worked at a clinical trials research lab at the time) had a minor freak out when he saw me. He thought it was real and upon closer inspection gave me high praise for the job I did. Too good of a job as it turned out. First, they would not let me eat in the cafeteria that day. Too many people complained. Secondly, they would not consider me for the costume contest. They said my costume was too gross. Oh well, I didn't do the costume for the prize (As I recall, it was like a $25 gift card to the company store...). I did it because I could.

That night was Halloween. I redid my make-up as a ghoul. I had a cape, with a hood, and a large staff. I opened the garage door and hung some blankets and sheets across it about half way back. I then put on a CD of spooky Halloween sounds and set the wife up in the back with the candy. I then set a chair at the entrance to the garage and planted myself there. The kids had to pass right by me to get to the candy. I took a pose that made me appear to be some kind of mannequin and waited. It did not take long. I would wait for the kids to go by me, and many stopped and looked at me first, and then while they were collecting their spoils I would quietly get up and stand between them and the exit out of the garage.

Hilarity, of the highest order, quickly ensued. Most of the kids would turn around to leave and find me standing there and totally freak out. The older kids were the funniest through. Several dropped their bags and made a break for it. One even dropped to the floor and curled up in the fetal position screaming. Fun times. I did, as a matter of point, not move when small children came up. I didn't think making them pee in their costumes would be very nice.

Except for one kid. He was probably 6 or 7 and before he got his candy he stopped to look at me. He started poking me, I suppose to see if I was real, really hard. I groaned and simply reached out for him. He dropped his bag, started screaming at the top of his lungs and bolted for the street. Before his mom could even stop him he made a hard left, at the bottom of the driveway, on to the sidewalk and proceeded to run as fast as he could down the street. I really felt bad about that. While I can not say for sure, I think I can safely assume that his costume was ruined.

Fun, fun times.

Halloween is fun. It also falls on a Sunday this year. The local religion mongers want the trick-or-treating done on Saturday night. Meh. That is an argument I really don't want to get into. Suffice it to say it's a stupid idea.

Halloween. My favorite time of the year. Candy, costumes, and general spookiness. Fun times I tell you.... fun times.

Toodles all!!

Mike

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Snack foods and me (I, me, I, me..... whatever).....

Well hello out there. Once again I am way behind on a new post and no one thought to remind me. Sorry about that but September got crazy right after my last post. I will cover the two incidents, ever so briefly, and then move on to the main reason for posting today.

First: Fall semester started. It has been wacky funness (and yes, I know that's not a real word..... sue me already!). Made it through mid terms with nary a scratch.

Second: Dad is back in the hospital, and has been since September 20th. He has beeen moved in and out of CCU twice. He is doing ok, not real well and most certainly not great. Stable. That is a good way to put it.

Ok, now that I have that out of the way, lets get on to Snack foods.

It is no secret that I harbor a secret infatuation with the most noble of food items. The lusciously delicious, the salty, crispy goodness that is.....



BACON!

Who doesn't like bacon?

I mean come on, bacon makes everything better. Burgers, sandwiches, seafood, steak, tacos, salads, ice cream....

I know, I know. You are asking yourself, "ice cream?!" but I'm telling you it's good. How can it not? On with the listing.

....bbq, pork chops, and you get the idea. Bacon makes everything better.

What's that? Does bacon make veggie burgers better? Well lets apply the rules of logic and see how it works out.

First, and perhaps, most importantly, veggie burgers are normally eaten by people who are afraid to act carnivorous. As such they would not consider adding bacon to that particular food product. With that being said I think I can say, with utmost confidence, that any food product designed for the herbivore set can only be improved, and quite vastly I might add, by the inclusion of fried strips of pig flesh. Lots of strips. In fact, so many should be applied as to utterly eliminate any taste other than that of the bacon itself.

Secondly, and nearly as important as the first reason, why the hell are you buying veggie burgers AND bacon. For the love of all that is holy and right in this world, if you are buying bacon then you should also have many packages of ground up bovine tissue waiting to be liberally seasoned (salt, pepper, garlic powder, Lowery's Seasoning Salt, worcestershire, and some finely grated onion), formed into medium sized patties (about 1/3 of a pound is good), grilled over an open flame until medium well, topped with cheese, lettuce, tomato, and the bacon (fried to a delicate crispiness and drained of all fat).

Anymore silly questions? I thought not. Moving on.

Bacon goooooooooood.

...which brings me to something I found at the store today. I am not sure how long this product has been around but I just found it today so it's new to me. It is a dedicated snack item chock full of a salty deliciousness all its own. Planters Peanuts. And everyone loves peanuts. Well, perhaps not those with an allergy but I am sure if they could survive the eating of peanuts they would love them to. Just my opinion.

"WTH!? Peanuts? have you lost what's left of your minuscule, and so obviously warped, mind?", you must be saying.

Relax. Take a deep breath. Go get a drink of water. All better now? Do you really think, for a single instant, that I went in to that whole discussion of bacon goodness for no reason? Silly you.

Not just any peanuts. Planters Smoky Bacon Peanuts. Allow me a moment of reflection.

.
..
...
I remember it like it was yesterday. I was walking down the snack isle looking for something to snack on tonight. I bent over to snag a bag of Nature Valley Granola Roasted Almond Nut Clusters when I noticed the familiar mascot, Mr. Peanut, staring at me from the next hanger over. It was as if he was calling out to me.

Michael. You have not tasted heavenly scrumptiousness (I know, not a real word either) like my new nuts (Insert your own awkward joke here. Too many for me to pick from).

...
..
.

So I bought them. I mean really? I was going to ignore two of my favorite things? Peanuts AND (by the gods) Bacon!?!? Fat chance of that. The odds of me not buying that package are about the same as Miley Cyrus not turning out like Brittney Spears. Somewhere between very slim and nonexistent.

What can I say. they were GREAT! Fantastic! Out-friggin-standing! Peanuts that taste like bacon. Shoot me now. Life could not possibly get any better at this point.

Well, there was the point at lunch today that the sushi chef told me I need a woman. It was the end of a conversation about a young lady who had come and had lunch with me one day a week or so ago. I knew her when we were both kids (Her parents and my parents were friends) but we had lost touch before our teenage years got rolling. Turns out, she is in my History class this semester. So anyway, Brad, the sushi chef asked if I was going to date her. I informed him she is going on 5 years with someone and I do not, knowingly (funny story on that point, ask me about it sometime), mess around with someone's significant other. That led to a conversation with one of the waitresses, who is not only very good at her job but quite the comedienne as well, which led to something else and so on. Don't take it the wrong way, out of context it sounds mean but it was not intended that way. Brad, and all the people at the restaurant are great people. We spend a lot of time laughing and joking around.

So, bacon flavored peanuts. It's like manna from the heavens. Just don't eat them without some type of drink handy. Water will not cut it. Soda, beer, or perhaps even whiskey. There is more salt, in each package, than 5 large tubs of popcorn at the theater.

Well, this is it for the time being. There is a facebook catfight going on between a couple of friends so I really wanna get back to that. Later everyone and remember what Calvin always says:

Reality continues to ruin my life.

Later taters!!

Mike

PS: I refrain from accepting responsibility for any speeling, grammactical, or punktuachun, errors. If my spell check doesn't flag it then it's not wrong. (Note to self: It may be most beneficial to turn the spell checker back on at some point).

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Like sands through the hourglass.....

so are the days of our lives.

To be totally honest, that line, borrowed with great affection from Days of our Lives, has absolutely nothing to do with this post. I just happened to catch the theme last night and I like it. Back when I was in high school, or to be more correct; should have been in high school, I used to watch the show as often as I could. The whole Bo and Hope thing was just too much to resist.

It could have been the fact I spent a lot of time partaking of medicinal herbage and/or the fact that the actress playing Hope,Kristian Alfonso, was just so bloody hot. She was certainly not your typical representation of women on TV at the time. But I so do not want to go down that road in this blog.

(Editors note: She is still an amazingly beautiful woman though she seems to be running on the far side of thin.)

So just what the hell is on my mind today? A lot really.


Politics:

I have been watching the news a lot in recent months and find myself both angered and saddened by the bull I see. I do not think there is enough room on this blog to cover all of that. Suffice it to say that all of the politicians are still talking out of both sides of their mouths, mainstream media is still touting Obama as the second coming (Strictly technically speaking, would it not be the third coming? I mean he was born, then died, and then resurrected three days later. By my count he is already up to two......), networks like Fox and MSNBC are still allowing their talking heads to preach fear and hatred instead of presenting real facts. In the end, they are all a bunch of lying, cheating, hate-mongering bastards who all deserve to be locked in a room together for a month. While they are busy tearing out each others throats perhaps the rest of America can get down to the business of fixing what's wrong.


Ground Zero Mosque:

So If I don't want to talk about politics, what else is there? The Mosque near ground zero. Listen, I think what they want to do is perfectly legal and certainly allowable under our constitution. After all, the country was founded on the basic principle of freedom of religion. Don't believe me? Check up on your history. You might find yourself surprised to find that some of the first, if not the first, organized governing bodies were all about the right to practice religion as each person believed. Does this mean I am in favor of the Mosque? Not quite. While it is certainly legal it is also just as certainly in poor taste.

On this same subject, I have heard many people say that they will be ok with the Mosque when Muslim countries allow Christian churches to be built and Christianity openly worshiped in them. Since when do we do adhere to the tenets of our constitution based on what other countries do? Just as I thought. That document is not there to be used only when it suits us. It is there for the times it doesn't. When we start selectively supporting our constitution then this nation is done.

Like I said, it is in poor taste. Of course, I am not a religious person so all this is, for the most part, meaningless to me.


Burning of the Qur`an, or Koran, or however you want to spell it:

What can I say about this. Moronic. Stupid. Pointless. Asinine. Extremist. Did I mention moronic already? Yep. So If I am not religious why should I bother mentioning it? Just because I am not doesn't mean Muslims aren't. In fact, many are serious about their religion, deadly serious. Is the burning of their holy book going to serve any real purpose? Yep. It will further inflame the radical Muslims, who really do not need another excuse for killing Americans, and only serve to further alienate those moderate Muslims who only want to live their lives in peace. Sure, there are a lot of extremist Muslims out there but that's because the is a boat load of Muslims period. I have not read their holy book, nor do I plan to, but I have read enough stories, reports, op-eds, and news articles to feel certain that some are misinterpreting portions which has led to many of the problems we have. Can this be to blame for all of the hatred spewed at America? Nope, but it goes a long way towards explaining that hatred. Like the Mosque, is it illegal to burn it? Nope. Is it in poor taste? Yup.

And now for something completely different.

(Shamelessly lifted from Monty Python!)


I went to Tampa for a get together with some of my cousins and it was a blast. I have not seen them in years and was also glad to meet their spouses/significant others. I just have to mention Friday night.

It was just Tina and myself, as everyone else was not due in until Saturday, and she wanted to go out for a drink and something to eat. She told me we would go to a real laid back place, sit on the patio (so we could smoke), listen to the DJ, and just catch up in general. Then, once everyone was there, the following day, we would hit up a dive bar. Sounded like fun, and it did start out that way, but later in the evening it got a bit hairy. Some biker punched one of the regulars and bloodied his face. I am not sure what precipitated the fight but that's not important. The biker was thrown out. I told the manager, jokingly that her place was a little too violent for me. I just didn't have a clue. About, oh I don't know, thirty minutes later the bouncer, who had thrown out the biker, shows up on the patio telling everyone to get inside immediately.

That did not sound good.

Turns out, the biker had come back with a rifle and was threatening to kill everyone there. YIKES! The cops were called and no one was hurt. I am not sure if the biker was caught/arrested or what but I do know that we left. I told Tina that if this was her idea of a laid back bar, then I did not want to know what kind of place she considered to be a dive. In her defense, she said she had been going there for more than four years and had never once seen even so much as a fight. I attribute it to the fact that it was the beginning of Labor Day weekend and that perhaps the drinking had started way too early for some people.

The rest of the weekend was uneventful and we did not go out Saturday night. We stayed in, drank too much and just sat around talking and catching up. I was a great weekend and I really should make plans to head down to Florida more often. Maybe after I graduate.


So that's it for now. Life is still going. I try to take it a day at a time and I can't complain.... much. Not that it would do any good. No one would listen and if they did, the would not care so why waste the energy.

I will end this post on a humorous note, since after reviewing many of my past posts and seeing that people really enjoyed the humor.

Once again I resort to the wisdom of Calvin and Hobbes:

A little rudeness and disrespect can elevate a meaningless interaction to a battle of wills and add drama to an otherwise dull day.


Later Taters!!

I know return you to your regularly scheduled internet.

Edit: Grammar, spelling, and clarity.

Monday, August 30, 2010

I have been absent.....

First, let me apologize for the lengthy delays between posts. It seems many facets of my real life have grouped together and are, at present, conspiring against me. As a result, very little of my time is spent doing many of the things, online, I really enjoy. meh.

Lets play catch up, shall we?

Fall semester has started with a bang. I spent more than three hours standing in line to get my books. It must be pointed out that at least 2 hours of it was spent standing in the hot Georgia sunshine. I was sweating like a pig and by the time I was done I really just wanted to lay down and die. The heat took its toll and I bet it took me a week to fully recover from that experience. Assuming everything works out right this will be my last semester,

As far as school goes, I have a heavy load this semester but I will push through it. The computer classes (Network+, Server 2008 Administration, and Networking Infrastructure [B Term]) are information filled balls of stress. Yay me! (With all credit for that comment going to London Tipton) I am having to take a second history class, which I almost did not get in to, because the first one I took was used as part of my college prep course requirement, whihc I did not find out about until my graduation audit was sent to me.

Do ya think I should have been informed about that requirement when I enrolled?

Never mind the fact I have not been in high school since the mid 80's. Oh well, I got in and the one bright shining part of the whole deal was that I have no Friday classes.

So, we are a couple weeks in to the semester and I bet you are wondering how things are going. Splendidly. Fantastic. Wonderful.

Could ya pick up on the sarcasm there? Thought so.

Not that it is going bad, cause it's not, but I am feeling a bit overwhelmed. A lot of it has to do with my dad I think. That is a post for another time. So could school be going any better? Sure. Is there anything I can do to change it at all? not really. Should I keep worrying about it? Certainly not.

I just need to relax and let go of the things that are out of my control and focus on the important stuff.

I got a call from the NMSS a few weeks ago. They wanted to ask me a few questions about my diagnosis, problems I had getting diagnosed, and my general thoughts on assistance, financial and medical, for patients today. I gave them my two cents on the subjects. Then the young lady i was specking to asked what they could do to better help the community. I told her the one thing they should be doing is finding ways to support the online community. Bloggers, information websites, and those people who, every day, lay themselves out to the world and let people know they are not alone and a MS diagnosis is not the end of the world.

Like I told her, if it wasn't for the support of the community I found I am not sure how well I would have made the adjustment from newly diagnosed to normal (ok, I know normal is a stretch for me but cut me some clack on this one point) life again. It is not the medical professionals that are doing a lot of the community based work but the average person. Someone that has MS or has a loved one or close friend with it. These are the people that every day do what the medical community as a whole is unable, or unwilling, to do.

Perhaps that is a symptom of the problems with the health care industry as a whole, I just don't know. What I do know is that I have been fortunate to speak to people about my disease and, if nothing else, gave them resources they did not get from their doctor. In a similar fashion to the help I got when I found my first MS blog.

These are the people that deserve the support of the NMSS. These are the people that are making a difference, every day, not only in their lives but the lives of everyone they touch.

Ok, feel free to take a moment to dab that tear from the corner of your eye. Done? So anyway, don't think for a moment that I have forgotten about anyone, because I have not. Life just has a funny way of being not-so-simple-as-we-would-like at times.

In the final analysis, it is what it is. Deal with it and keep looking forward.

Can we really afford to do anything else?

Ok, off to work on home work. Two chapters to read and about 8-10 hours of lecture video to start reviewing.

Later taters!!

Mike

Friday, July 9, 2010

The summer, MS, and moi!

No, I really don't speak French..... unless you count french fries.

So has it really been nearly two months since my last post? Where has the time gone. Oh! I remember..... freakin' summer semester. I have done more work this semester than in the previous two combined. They are really trying to kill me. Well, not really. At least I don't think so.

Yes, summer semester has been that bad. The work load is back-breaking and mind-numbing (Already had a head start on that). The online classes are worse than regular ones. I'll be damned if I am going to do that next semester.

Speaking of next semester... assuming things go like they are supposed to, it will be my final one. Yay! Then I have the tremendous good fortune to start looking for a real job. I don't actually know which is worse at this point.

As tough as classes have been the weather has been ten times worse. here in glorious Southwest Georgia we have had the great luck of having an early run on high temperatures. Simply walking from the backdoor to the truck seems to sap my will to remain upright. Please note this is perhaps a 25 foot walk.

Yes. I said 25 feet.

For those few of you who do stop by you are very likely the grand prize winners of the MS lotto, like myself, so you understand what I am saying. If, by the grace of he-who-shall-not-be-named, you didn't win the lotto then you know someone who did. Ask them.

Walking across campus, as small as it is, can be daunting in the middle of the day. The heat, humidity, my right legs ever present desire to head off on its own, the bag of books on my shoulder, and the myriad of things running through what's left of my mind do tend to have me leaning hard to the right and having to work really hard to keep the ship from capsizing.

I ran in to a door the other day. Not hard but enough for me to look around and make sure no one was watching. I think I got lucky. Of course, with my vision being what it is anymore that 'tree' could have actually been a living being trying not to be seen noticing me. Who knows.

So, the world is still turning, there is still tension in the Middle East, and my MS is really getting the better of me this year. I will get through it (Like I really have a choice here) and do what I need to do. Now all I have to do is remember what I did with that paper that's due on Monday.

Anyone seen a 4 page essay on "Biometrics and the Modern Security Challenge"?

Damn. Thought not.

I am truly sorry that it has been so long since I posted. It has been hard going this semester and my focus is more there than anywhere else. I have got to get that GPA up from 3.46 to 3.5; maintain my Dean's List streak; Get ready for finals in two weeks.

Cya all after finals!!

Toddles!

PS: Would it be possible that we take the executives and the Board of Directors from BP and put them to work cleaning up the beaches? I bet if we did that they would have this problem solved in no time. Just a thought. How about public flogging? I really like that idea better. :)

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Poke, time for an update

I have been politely informed that I should be posting an update. I do not disagree with that notion, not one iota. The problem is that I do not know what to write about. I can hear the collective eye rolls already so don't start with me. Politics, immigration, oil spill, terrorism, economic recovery, multiple sclerosis, diabetes, and the list is never ending.

I do not really feel like ranting today yet I fear that is where this is going to end up. In defense of myself, SUCK IT!

I must apologize for that last outburst. It seems I have been, as of late any way, suffering from a rare case of Tourettes Lite. It's a lot like regular Tourettes, just without the extreme profanity. To be honest, given my penchant for using profanity, much like Michelangelo used paints, I suppose I have the full blown affliction. So hard to tell sometimes.... but I digress.

So what should I talk about?

I was going to touch on immigration but that is such a hot button topic. Given that the people that are in position to fix the problem are so cravenly P.C. I highly doubt the problem will be solved in a manner that is consistent with protecting our sovereignty. Instead, lets just hand the country over to every illegal with the icy stones to cry racist because I want to send them back to their country. I have no problem with immigrants, so long as they come here by following the rules. If you had to sneak over in the dead of night, or in the back of some tractor trailer with a few dozen of your own countrymen, then as far as I am concerned we should tag you with a GPS implant and set you free on your side of the border. If you get close to the border again, the implant should explode. *SPLORT*

Yea, I know what you are thinking already. It is mean, inhumane, and otherwise illegal under some treaty we signed back in the 40's or some such. Perhaps we just annex Mexico and turn it in to one giant parking lot.

I would strongly suggest, if you have not already done so, do a little research on illegal immigration (and no, Wikipedia is not a truly reliable source). The information you find might be a wee bit interesting.

So now that I have offended every illegal immigrant, as well as nearly all bleeding heart liberals, what else can I touch on for you? Politics is too obvious. How about the Middle East? Nah, too likely to end up on someone's death list. Though, I think if we just carpet bomb everything between Israel and Japan we should put an end to a lot of that crap. Just don't forget, you have to break a few eggs to make an omelet.

Holy crap! How could I forget. I was talking to a friend of mine today, who I have not seen in quite some time I might add, and we touched on something that I think would work. Dunno why I didn't think of this before.

We, the United States, are constantly sending aid to other countries, right? It exists in the form of money, food, medical supplies, troops, housing, and all sorts of stuff like that. We have people, troops mostly anyways, building schools and hospitals and housing for the poor suffering people of these third world countries, many of whom that are content to take advantage of the less fortunate and weak among them. All the while, we are always hearing about the homeless, the hungry, the unfortunate bottom rung on the ladder of American society. I have an idea that solves two problems.

Why don't we redirect those resources back inside our own borders. Why don't we send these legions of people spending our tax dollars in Bumfuckt, Slovenia to the most desperate areas of our own country? Why not build that housing in locations that would be a benefit to our own citizens? Why not build build schools in places that don't have them? Why the hell don't we take all of these tons of food and medical supplies and provide it to the citizens of this very country? Why in the fuck are we taking something from my table and sending it to some lazy-ass somewhere on the other side of the world when my fellow country men, women, and children are suffering every day?

You see, we are so busy helping everyone else in the world that we have blinders on when we look at the plight of our very own citizens. How dare anyone get on television and cry for money for the starving children in Indonesia, or where-the-hell-ever they are at, when we have children right here in the good old U.S. of A. going to bed hungry. How dare someone point out the horrid living conditions in Bolivia when we are children living on the streets right here in the richest country in the world.

I say we return those resources home and take care of our own first. Once we have our own house in order then, and only then, should we spare what we can for everyone else. Exceptions can be made for unforeseeable disasters (Haiti comes to mind) but I have had enough of the word suckling at the teat of the U.S.A. and not giving anything back.

Do you suppose that might piss off one or two people? I hope so.


Homework must get done. Later all!

Mike

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Spring semester is over

Well I did it. I survived spring semester. Two A's and two B's gave me a semester GPA of 3.55 with a cumulative 3.45. I am satisfied with that. Sure, I would like to have had straight A's but I am not too greedy. So what does this have to do with anything? Nothing really. I just wanted to toot my own horn, as it were. :)

The last couple of months have been kind of rough. My personal monkey has been quite troublesome and active. Constant fatigue, all over aches, foggy & muddled mind just for starters. The heat and humidity, here in South Georgia, is doing nothing to help. When you add in the stress of semester finals it just goes over the edge. Summer semester begins on the 25th. I have three online and one live class. The one i will have to be at every morning is Public Speaking. I am not sure how i feel about it but I have to take it for my degree so I will have to work especially hard on it. Luckily I have a few weeks to rest up for it.

The few days following finals were quite nice. The stress was all but removed and I got to stay indoors, for the most part. It was a wonderful few days. I didn't have to think about much of anything. ahhhhhhhhh. Well now that all of that is over I have a house to get cleaned up for my aunt, who is coming to visit next week, and yard work to get done. I am certainly not looking forward to the yard work but at least I can do that early in the morning when it is cooler. Yay?

I went to see Iron Man 2 last Friday. It was an ok movie but not as good as the first one. It just seemed to me like they were trying to do too much all at once. Great action, certainly, but the story was just too jumpy. They could have done a better job but for the most i was not disappointed.

Speaking of movies, this summer is going to be filled with must see movies. Prince of Persia, Killers, The A-Team, The Karate Kid (Well this is not so much of a must see but it has Jackie Chan), The Last Airbender, and Despicable Me. There may be a few others i would like to go see but these are at the top of my list. I foresee a lot of flossing out of popcorn kernels this summer. It's an ok trade-off.

Well, I think I will go get me some more coffee and relax a bit more, while I still have time.

Happy Mothers Day.

Remember to appreciate your moms everyday while you can. And remember, you don't need one day of the year to do that.

Toodles everyone!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Time moves forward

Well, I had not realized how long it had been since I posted something. I feel a little ashamed for that. Just a little. :)

Things are what they are. America is up in arms over the direction of the country. The world is waiting for the other shoe to drop in the Middle East. Earthquakes are happening with a frequency that has me more than a little worried. A volcano is disrupting air travel across the globe.

I suppose I could spend a large portion of my time worrying about these things but the truth is there is nothing I can do to change any of them. Time moves forward and events unfold, yet we must continue on.

Dad is having a rough go of it. Good days and bad days, more bad than good anymore. He is a tough old Marine though. He does what he can and tries to shrug off the rest... can't ask for anything more. I worry about him though. I guess that's my job. I am his son, after all, and his caretaker. More than that, I am human with the associated conscious. When people are not doing well I worry about them and it is no less true with dad.

School is going well. I am struggling with my Cisco class. It's a little tough to separate out the new material from the two case studies they (Cisco that is) have incorporated in to the class. I am holding on to a low B. I am not at all happy about that but all I can do is keep trying. Finals are coming up in a few weeks. That will be the real story, for me, in that class.

On the upside, I got invited in to the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society. My grades and scholastic accomplishments were good enough. That invitation meant a lot to me. The recognition of my scholastic accomplishments says a lot about my desire to succeed despite my MS symptoms. It also provides me with yet another incentive to continue to do well. Of course, I can't deny that it will look good on my resume as well.

It seems that some of us cousins will be having a mini-reunion over the Memorial Day weekend. I am really looking forward to that. It should be a lot of fun. It will also be nice to get away from my day to day problems for a few days. We are meeting at my cousins place in Florida. Sunshine, family, and good times await!

Ok, I need to get back to my homework. I have a few essays that need to be rewritten, reading for my Cisco class, and some other stuff to finish for my English class. Later everyone!

Mike

Monday, March 15, 2010

The taxman cometh!

One month and your taxes must be filed. Unless, that is, you plan to file for an extension. I already have both my state and federal refunds back. My dad finally got all of his stuff so I dropped it off, to be done, this morning. I hope he gets something back this year. Hell, I hope he breaks even but we shall see.

The reason I mentioned that is, well, I don't really know. My mind tends to work in spurts anymore. I have taken, as of late, to just writing down whatever pops in to my head. I am truly afraid that if I don't then I will never think of it again. I know that is not absolute fact but this MS collar worries me at times. I will let you in on a secret. The other day it took me several minutes to remember that I needed to shave, while I was standing in the bathroom, looking in the mirror. The razor never got wet, if you must know.

So back to taxes. I was thinking about the state of things while I was filling out my 1040-EZ. Where do my tax dollars go? Well, not so much mine as I am still drawing unemployment while I attend school. Wait, yes mine since they withhold both state and federal from my pittance.

Ok, focus. Breath in through the nose..... out through the mouth.



Ok. Where do our tax dollars really go. Well it is a complicated issue that I am not going to clutter up with verifiable facts. That would just make for a boring read. If you are really desperate for that info I am sure you can find it all from various online resources.

I think what makes me so angry, about our tax system for purposes of this discussion, is that some fat-cat politico in Washington managed to get his hands in my pockets to take about 25% of what I worked for. Nancy Pelosi did not pull a single 12 hour night shift for me. Hell, she very likely doesn't even know that Cooper closed their plant here resulting in the layoff of somewhere around 2200 people. Despite this she still got a chunk of change out of my wallet. I do not recall Harry Reid ever loading a creel for me (Ask me sometime and I will describe, in painstaking detail no less, exactly how horrible of a job that was). Somehow, he still managed to pull money out of my bank account for his own nefarious needs.

All in all, they mugged me. No, they didn't stick a gun in my face and all that but it's still the same thing. Actually, I probably would not feel so bad if Barney Franks actually held me up. At least then I could say, with a straight face, that he worked for what he got. At the end of the day I still feel violated. Hells bells people, I didn't even get a reach around for my troubles. I am fairly certain that if I had feelings they would be seriously compromised right about now.

So they took my money and, in all likelihood, some of yours as well. Don't you wonder where it goes? Yea, there is the obvious places; Defense, government salaries, Social Security, blah, blah, freakin' blah.

By the way!

I saw a story today that the Social Security Administration is going to start calling in those I.O.U.'s our leaders have been giving them. That should be a fun. One, broke, government agency trying to collect from another broke government agency. Oh what I wouldn't give to be a fly on the wall at those meetings.

We are also aware of the all the wasted spending that goes on. Pork barrel is the right phrase. Money wasted on stuff just because... Oh sure, our Representatives and Senators tell us it's to help their constituents but the cold hard reality is that they use it as a tool for reelection. It is the most obvious form of wealth redistribution there is. So because stupidity like this is allowed to continue the people in Alaska get part of my paycheck to start building a bridge to an island with three people on it. Yay! That sure helps me out, how about you?! Personally, I think it would have been far cheaper to just relocate the people off the island.... or perhaps just euthanize them for being dumb enough to move to the island in the first place.

Anyway, the problem is that they want more of our money. Yes, I know, President *Stalin* Obama said he would not raise our taxes. But then how does he expect he is going to pay for this alleged health care reform, all the bailouts for the people who don't really need it, as well as the fact that they are now saying that the special deals for Kansas and Louisiana may be extended to the rest of the country? All the aid he has promised also needs to be paid for, unemployment extensions, cash for clunkers...... Oh, and as I mentioned earlier, the fact that some really huge I.O.U.'s are about to be called in. Hey, lest we should forget all the other special deals, backroom shenanigans, and what not that continues to go on.

So everyone should stock up on the KY and prepare to assume the position. The best we can hope for is maybe we will get dinner first but the bleak reality is that we won't be able to afford the KY much less have time to use it.

So in closing, my fellow Americans.

We need to return to our roots, to a simpler time. One where people still believed in taking care of themselves, helping their neighbors when times were tough, and not waiting for a handout from the government.

We need to remember that we must be self-sufficient, willing to make the tough choices, and in the end.... accept responsibility for ourselves. Personal and fiscal responsibility are more than talking points, despite what our leaders suggest.

A nation is strong because of the citizens and not because of the officials they elect. They, the politicians, are stewards and have ceased being responsible to the nation.

No, instead they have become short-sighted, narrow-minded, consumers of our liberties, our efforts, and our lives. They believe themselves above us, better than us, more knowledgeable of individual needs.

They no longer care for the people of this great nation. It is for this reason that the account must be called due in full. If they are unable to listen then they are inept. If they are unwilling to listen then they are fools. In either case they must be replaced.

Thomas Jefferson is quoted as saying:

"We in America do not have government by the majority. We have government by the majority who participate."

If we do not place ourselves within the process then we can not change what is broken. We are fast approaching the edge. Do you have the courage to be part of the solution?

Just something to think about.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

To walk the fine line between sanity and mental shutdown!

WOW!

That's a helluva a title to live up to, but I sometimes think that is where I am. Dad is really sick. He spent four days in the hospital last week. Diagnosis; congestive heart failure. It's like at the beginning part but still.... He still has a lot of pain (stomach he says but it is more like a gastro thing). So dad is back home but still suffers good days and bad. He ended up in the hospital because of a ton of fluid aorund his heart and lungs. They gave him high doses of some med that ended with a rash on his right arm. I have seen severe cases of poison ivy that looked tame compared to this. As of yesterday he has some more of hit creme, ointment, or whatever it is and that is helping.

Ummmm, school. The last month has been really bad, what with dad in and out of the hospital and other things. My grades started sliding. I am sitting at a high B in my two computer classes and this has me greatly distressed. By golly I want A's (except for College Algebra last Summer but I am/was thrilled with that C). It's a nit-picky thing I suppose. But it's all mine!!! MUWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Ok, enough of that silliness. So things have just been a little off kilter. I was ahead on all my assignments but I ended up getting behind and now I am paying the price. A-term comes to an end this weekend and I have finals, and papers, and unfinished assignments, and homework, and you see the dilemma. At present, I am in the midst of a break.

Life in general. Women suck. Men are turds. Everyone is either crazy, going crazy, or long since finished their trip to Looneyville. In either event I am just tired of dealing with morons, idiots, and sycophants. Occasionally, I meet this bright spot in an otherwise dim existence only to find out they are using some form of artificial light.

But... but... Mike? Could you be a bit more specific? It sounds to us like you have something you want to unload!

Well, I suppose I could but, to tell you the truth, it would not serve any real purpose. Oh sure, I could point out how someone, whom I thought was a friend, turned out to be a two-faced, lily-livered, gutless wonder but that just doesn't accomplish anything. The urge to strangle this one was strong. Instead, I ran over a random road sign (Not really, it was already down but it did make me feel a little better). Just a note for those of you who know people that are teetering close to the edge of being a TFLLGW, lose them.... it's not worth the stress and trouble.

Politics. So now all of a sudden the president wants to work with Republicans? Riiiiiiiiight. In truth he wants to make it appear he is trying to take the high road but the simple truth of the matter is that it is all a political stunt. The Democrats really see the writing on the wall and want to try to appease their base prior to the mid-term elections. I just want to say that I don't trust a single damn one of them, Democrat or Republican. For all that matter I am having a hard time putting any faith in all the talking heads. I don't care what side of the debate they endorse, they all have an agenda and it is certainly not to help me. Can we just pack them off to a deserted island, ala Survivor, and let them sort all this crap out amongst themselves? In the meantime we can elect a new group of legislators that will put the American public ahead of their own personal grab for power.

Religion. Is it wrong of me to say i don't know if I believe in God? At least as it is shoved down our throats by organized religion. I don't mean to say that here is nothing after this, not at all. I just mean to say that I can not believe this is the way it is supposed to be. I mean come on, killing each other in the name of religious zealotry? If that is the way it is supposed to be then I certainly don't want any part of it. I think it would be safe to say that if, and that's a big if, there is a single god out there not a single one of us has it right. The following question was posed to me once; How do you know what is good or evil without God?

Well, I dunno genius? Could it be if it causes someone great pain or suffering then it's probably evil and if it cause great happiness and celebration it's probably good. Bad hurts, Good feels ok. We don't like pain so it should be common sense to not make others feel pain.


I see no reason, whatsoever, to bow to the will of some all-knowing, all-powerful being, that leaves us to suffer and rot despite his call for love, when simply by exercising simple common sense we can accomplish the same goals. On this same vein, I do not tell you what to believe so sure as hell don't get in my face and tell me what to believe. If your faith dictates that you should annoy, pester, or otherwise inconvenience people then buddy, your faith is asking you to be an idiot. Oh, and if your faith says you should kill someone because they don't believe what you do, stop drinking the kool-aid and learn to think for yourself. That is all.

I had a conversation with my English instructor today. some of her other students joined in and it was quite fun so I am going to relate, to you, the basics of the conversation and ask you to join in.

We read Herman Melville's Bartleby the Scrivener in class this week. It is a hard read only because of the language. If you like Shakespeare then you will love this. In any event, if you have not read it then go do it. It's not long at all. The rest of us will wait for you.

So how is everyone doing?

Hey Bill! You get that door fixed? Yea? Good job.

Oh Susan? Yea, can you send Margaret a copy of that meatloaf recipe? Her boys loved it.


Back? Ok. So you read it. I hope you liked it. Well we were talking about who we might like to see play the key parts. Now we never really got past the lawyer (narrator) and Bartleby himself. I suggested Robin Williams as the lawyer. I think he could certainly bring the character to life. And I do expect it to be played with the seriousness that the novella imparts, and most assuredly, deserves. Everyone agreed that was a pretty fair choice. The next step was to figure out who could play Bartleby. That was a toughie but I suggested Tom Hanks. My instructor said maybe Hanks from 20 years ago and that made sense. One of the students from the next class said it should be played by Johnny Depp. That made perfect sense. Since he is known for taking some of the oddest roles this would be perfect. Sadly, that was as far as we got but I think I want to push this one when we meet on Friday. If you have any suggestions then let me know and I will pass them along.

I think that is more than enough for today. I have to get back to my schoolwork. If I don't make headway today I am so going to fail my finals.

Toodles all!!

Mike

Monday, February 8, 2010

Old Blue Eyes

Ok, I have to mention it (if I didn't then I would be the only one not talking about it)....

The Colts just blew that game. Really the tipping point was the dropped pass by Garson late in the first half but the slide had already started. The team just did not seem to be in the game. Sloppy attempts at tackling, slowness off the ball, half-hearted routes, and a general sense of malaise. I think Manning summed it up in the post game interview: disappointing.

Don't get me wrong. I am a huge Colts fan, and I do not wish to take anything away from the Saints. The Saints played a near perfect game and certainly looked like they wanted it more. Congratulations to the New Orleans Saints. You guys deserve that win and your dedicated play showed that.

Ok, now that I have that out of my system lets move on.

I am just chilling out at the coffee shop listening to some tunes and surfing around the net. I am not sure what caught my attention but I had the urge to hear some Frank Sinatra. The song, Fly Me To The Moon, was featured in Space Cowboys (If you have not seen it, go rent, borrow, buy, steal it. You will not be sorry). The movie was on the other night and something on the yahoo home page just got me humming it in my head. So I went to iTunes and bought it. It was better than I thought it was going to be, so it is now officially in my rotation. I am presently look at some Dean Martin (Another Rat Pack member). I will have to see what catches my eye (That's Amore will most certainly end up in my collection I am sure).

So what does all this have to do with anything of any importance?

Well, nothing really.

For some odd reason it made a connection to a poem I read for English the other day (Powwow at the end of the world by Sherman Alexie). As I have a profound respect for Native Americans (American Indians, or whatever you choose to be called) I found the poem very touching. I will not spoil it for you but I would urge everyone to find it (It can be found online in many places) and read it... in fact read it a couple of times. Then look up the information about the Spokane tribe and the relationship they have with the Grand Coulee Dam. For those, amongst you, that have a soul you might find this enough to bring, at the very least, a tear to your eye.

Now, how about this connection. I can't tell you. The two things are so far apart one might as well be here and the other on the, ummmmm, moon. My mind makes the strangest of tie ins these days. I suppose I could blame it on the MS but the truth is that I have always managed to group together the most dissimilar of things at the oddest of times. Kind of like strawberry ice cream and okra (ewww, right?). I have, and always will.

So why Sinatra, and not someone more contemporary? I dunno. I have always liked the old stuff. Sinatra, Martin, Crosby, Webb, Bennett, Cole... the list could go on. Sadly, we just don't have singers like that anymore. I suppose I could try to make a comparison to people from the last 20 years or so but there just aren't that many that I like that much. There are songs here and there that I enjoy but looking at their body of work as a whole, nothing stands out.

So here I sit, listening to Frank sing his heart out. Nearly in tears (Read the poem). Wondering about my life and how will it be affected 5, 10, 20 years from now. The MS seems to be pretty much hanging back (for which I am eternally grateful, as you all might already know) but it never leaves my waking thoughts. Hell, recently I had some disturbing dreams but I really don't want to think about them to much.

I did have a funny dream though. They perfected the ability to transfer the consciousness of a human into robotic bodies (I read an article a few months back along these lines, heh). It was decided that I should have the chance to live forever so I opted to have the procedure done. I picked out a suitable platform, one that was spiffy looking and very sturdy, and went in to have it done. When I woke up though, there had been a small glitch. As a result, I ended up in a toaster and there I was stuck. Want to talk about a horrid existence? That would be it.... forever spitting out toasted bread for other people. hahaha

So there you have it. I talked about the BIG GAME, snuck in something about my english homework, got to talk about Frank Sinatra, and recounted a silly, and oddly funny, dream. Oh, I did mention MS. Just an all around odd day today.

I suppose I could have just skipped posting any of this since, upon rereading, it seems to ramble on, with no real point, and otherwise lacks anything that even remotely approaches memorable. Oh well, I never promised that everything I would write would be witty and/or insightful.

In the final analysis, it is just what was on my mind. Go look up the poem Powwow at the end of the world. It is short on words but god awful long on meaning.

Later taters!

Mike

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

44 years later....

Today is my birthday. 44 years ago today I entered this world kicking and screaming. Well, I would like to think I was kicking and screaming but as I recall what my mother told me, I was a quiet baby. Not really a stellar start to my life but by golly it's my start.

So I spent some time just thinking about the where's. You all know them.... were ya been, at, and going. The been part is super easy. Not a lot to discuss on that but easy stuff to catalog. Some of it excruciatingly good (e.g. the day I got married), some of it on the exact opposite end of the spectrum (e.g. the day my mom passed), and off course all the stuff that falls somewhere in between the two. It would be foolish to waste a lot of time wondering about things that might have been different had I made other choices but it never hurts to put a little energy in to it.

Marion. THAT job. The new refrigerator. Divorce. *sigh*

Ok, enough of the past. Where am I now. Certainly not where I saw myself 20 or 30 years ago. I think all told i am pretty happy. Well, except for the MS and other inconveniences but I still have met some very mice and interesting people so there is still some good that has come of it. I am not sure I would trade that for anything but there is a significant part of me that would like the opportunity. Who the hell am I kidding... I would jump all over that one change. Since that is not an option, I just have to suck it up and deal with it.

Out of work. Back in college. Family. Dad. *le sigh*

So that brings me to the final where. Where the hell am I going? To tell you the truth I am having a hard time telling. Now don't think I don't have goals, plans, and a desire to get there but, I had all of those things 5, 10, 20 years ago and look how that all turned out. I guess i am just afraid that despite putting in the effort isn't going to get me where I want to be. There is too much in life that I have no control over and all that shit directly affects me in one way or another. That knowledge is getting to be quite the burden.

Graduate. Get a job. Take care of my MS and Diabetes. Take care of dad. *le frickin' sigh*


I have noticed that with each day it takes me a bit longer to find the will to get up and do what I have to. Oh no, I don't mean it like that. For the record, THAT is never an option. What I mean is that I know what is expected of me but it is getting harder to want to meet those expectations. I get angry fairly easy, usually over the silliest of crap. I just don't care about the things I used to care deeply about. I am tired of being alone.

I think, having just read that last paragraph, it amounts to one thing.

I am just tired.

Nothing fancy. Just worn to a nub. As in the "sick and" variety.

44 years.

When I was 14 I had the world by the short and curlies.

At 24, it was grab everything I could get.

34 rolled up and it was all about the party.

Then the visit from the age-fairy. Have the last 30 years of my life gone by already? I do not think I can put in to words just what feelings that knowledge brings. It is hanging around my neck like an anchor and the water is rising fast. The issue, at hand, is whether or not I want to struggle to free myself or just succumb to it. Hell of a question, don't you think?

Sadly, I do not have an answer. Not for myself and certainly not one for you. Maybe I will wake up tomorrow and the sun will be shining a little brighter, the coffee taste a smidgen smoother, or my feet hurt just a little less. Of course, with my disposition of late I fully expect the sky to be on fire, the coffee to be rancid, and both legs missing.

I suppose there is no where to go but up. Anyone have a ladder they can spare?

Happy birthday to me. BITE ME!

Later all! Tip a cow for me.

Monday, February 1, 2010

That's not my name..... (or stupid is measurable)

Just sitting here at the coffee shop, listening to The Ting Tings (go ahead... guess which tune!), waiting for word from the hospital on dad. I dropped him off this morning at 5:45 for a procedure. He has an Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm. According to his cardiologist its not a big deal.

Oooooooooookay.

Personally, anything with the word aneurysm in it can't be all kitties and sunshine.


The doctor says its normal for someone his age and it is an easy thing to fix.

Oooooooooookay.

Lets see, what else is going on. Taxes. Just waiting for the W2's from the state for my unemployment and I can get filing. I fear I will owe this year and that worries me. I am just praying to break even at this point. We shall see.

School. It is hard this semester. Tons of homework every night. I finally got to the break even point. I am hoping to get a little ahead this week. It is tough to be sure. My MS is being a stubborn mule and making my brain flutter and twitch. Not good given the level of the material for both of my computer classes (Cisco IV and Maintaining/Installing Windows Server Active Directory).

Pussycat Dolls, 'When I grow Up' just queued up. Hmmmm, I guess I will let it play out.

I think I will do ok in both classes but I am not looking for ok. I want the A. I need the A. I... must... get... the... A!

To borrow a line from Monty Python,

And now for something completely different...

Do you ever wonder what people are thinking about. Lets say, for example, you see a girl sitting in the lounge, at school, and just seems to be staring off into the dark corners of her mind. You could assume that she might be thinking about her grades or possibly her financial aid, but that is just to easy. I like to take a less congenial approach.

I like to think she is worried about the fact missed her period, or that she woke up that morning laying next to someone she doesn't even recognize. Maybe, just maybe, that boyfriend she just crushed still has naughty photos of her from that last spring break trip.

Yea, I know, why would I wonder about such happy thoughts?

(Warning: Rant incoming - and this is friggin' long!)
{Consider yourself duly warned!}

I have been watching way too much reality television lately. Jersey Shore on MTV (Moron TeleVision if you don't recall) has become my latest excuse for railing against humanity. I only heard about this show because some Italian-American group (some of you may recall how I feel about hyphen attaching lineage and citizenship, if not then ask.... I could rant all day long about it) had a public hissy fit about it. They claimed that it put Italian-Americans in a bad light because they do not act that way.

Seriously? No, I mean it... SERIOUSLY?

Well if the particular group of people, from the show, do not act that way then MTV managed to subvert an entire community into acting for the show. Honestly dude, STFU. They are moronic bimbos, bastards, and boneheads desperately grasping for their 15 minutes of fame. Already the nude photos are cropping up, they had a look alike contest (do I really need to comment on the fact there are retards [no disrespect intended for the developmentally challenged] who choose to act like that??), and I recall reading that a few of them are looking for careers in Hollywood. Yea, they should fit in nicely with that bunch of attention whores.

My point, if you didn't pick up on it already, is that we, as a civilization, peaked about 100 years ago and are already on that short slide to the apocalypse. We no longer care about where we are heading. In fact, we do everything in our power to get behind the cart of humanity and push it that much closer to edge. Sadly, I am right there pushing it along.

The fecal matter thrust down our throats, called modern television programming (aka Reality TV), is only the result of what the general public thirsts for. The rise, to a station of semi-credibility, of tabloid papers, websites like TMZ, and people like Perez "Fucktard of the Decade" Hilton only shows how simple minded the public at large has become (Of course, this point is only further made by the number of people who bought the load of rhino rocks the President dumped on them allowing him to become the President - That is a rant for another time since that one is deserving of its own special entry).

I think I have finally given in to the 'bright shiny' and as such have joined the masses as they, much like cattle to the slaughter, mindlessly follow along to their eventual doom. Oh, don't get me wrong, I know the bright light at the end of the tunnel is only the oncoming train of ruination but my foot is trapped under the rail so all I can do is wait for the inevitable. Oh, it would be easy to blame other people but the truth is far more simple and undiluted, I am at fault. For myself that is.

As for the rest of the brainwashed masses, well I have one recommendation: Forced sterilization. These people should not be allowed to procreate. The gene pool is shallow enough already without further diluting it with the dregs of society. If dinosaurs walked the earth today, or more aptly a few hundred years ago, these people would have never existed, for long at any rate. Through stupid laws, poorly considered regulations, and the advent of the lawsuit we are no longer a self thinning herd of carnivores. We allow the weak, sick, and just plain stupid to survive into adulthood thereby passing their imbecilic genes on to a new generation. It does not take long for the influx of those SG's (Stupid Genes) to mate up creating a rapidly deteriorating situation. I found the following information on a site that I will not name (Since I wasn't supposed to be there in the first place but I did receive permission to duplicate the basics). (My algebra sucks so bear with me):

SG = Stupid Gene
NG = Normal Gene

SG1+NG1=SG/2 (Meaning the recipient would be half as dumb as donor SG1)
SG1+SG1= SG2 (Meaning the recipient would be twice as stupid as either SG donor)

Now you would think that if one donor SG2 mated with another donor SG2 you would get a donor SG4 but that is not the case. The problem is that Stupid Genes grow exponentially. Sadly the rate of growth is dependent on the level of the donors. Each generation is actually a multiple of the primary donors. It works out like this:

((SGn^(x)+SGn^(x))^((y+z)x.25)x.35
n = the value of the SG's
x = the value of the n multiplied by 1.17
z = 1/4 of the sum of (SGn+SGn)
For statistical accuracy, go out to 4 decimal points rounding using standard rules

So assuming both are SG2 we get this:

((SG2^(2.34)+SG2^(2.34))^((2+2)x.25))x.35
((2^2.34)+(2^2.34)^1)x.35
((5.063+5.063)^1)x.35
10.126x.35
3.5441

If one is an SG2 and one is SG3.5441 we get:

((SG2^(2.34)+SG3.5441^(4.1466))^((2+3.5441)x.25))x.35
((2^3.34)+(3.5441^4.1466)^1.386)x.35
((5.063+189.9247)^1.386)x.35
1492.6226x.35
522.4179

So as you can see, the level of stupidity gets out of hand rather quickly. Now there is some debate as to the correct measure of a level 2 versus say, a level 522.4179. It is generally accepted that a level 2 just does minor things like forgetting your wallet or where you put your keys on occasion (Less than a once per month average). As for a level above, say, 100mil, well many believe that rises to the level of women who were on the Flavor of Love or Real Housewives of Orange County. Recently, however, there have been strides made towards quantifying those numbers into a more standard nomenclature (I do not have access to that information but I am looking).

So as you can plainly see, Forest Gump's mom hit the nail on the head.... Stupid is as stupid does and I have the math to prove it. Now if you want to know how to accurately measure your SG value I can't help you. I do not have the tools, or training but hey.... if you can't remember if you ate dinner last night, it's a safe bet that you are in the upper tier.

Ok, enough of this complete nonsense. If I spent as much time on my homework as I spent on the above formulas I would be ready for my finals already (Still a month off, so don't worry).

I have to go. The hospital called and dad is in his room.

Later taters!!

Mike

Edits:
- Fixed formula errors (SG^(x) is not the same as SGn^(x)) - Without the base value of SG you would not know how to calculate x or y
- The final total for SG2+SG2 was right, I actually mistyped the 2.34 (2x1.17) as 3.34 - This was only an entry error and not a calculation error
- Some grammar issues and one spelling error

Thursday, January 7, 2010

It's that time again

Well the new year is upon us. What else needs to be said? A lot actually but I will spare you the soap box.

Despite my strong desire to be a grinch abut things.... I sincerely hope that everyone had a great holiday season. No, really. I mean it from the bottom of my three-sizes-too-small heart. For the official record, the Grinch is my hero and when I grow up I want to be just like him. The pre-Whoville-Christmas-morning-sing-along-guy and not the sap that was carving up the roast beast for tiny Cindy Lou and her freakish band of ne'er-do-wells.

So on with the blog.

With the coming of the new year comes an annual rite for most of the people in the world. Resolutions. There are as many resolutions made every year as there are grains of sand on the beach in Bermuda (In case you don't realize it.... that's a lot).

I am sure some of you out there have made the same ones. Lose weight, stop smoking, be happier, love more, bitch less, and the list goes on and on. Ask yourself this. How many times have you made the same resolution year after year? Like many of us, and I do include myself in that list, we tend to start the year with the same grand designs on changing our lives. I am in no way saying this is a bad thing, quite the opposite, but to our dismay we do not follow through.

We can justify this with any number of well thought out, and logical, excuses. I am as guilty as anyone on this point. Years ago I came to the conclusion that regardless of how we might feel the morning of January 1st, we will quickly lose focus as we get back to the normal routine of our lives. I would wager a guess that many people stick to a couple of their resolutions for more than a few weeks but in the end we all tend to forget about them by the time March rolls in. I am not trying to chastise anyone so don't get upset with me (Remember, bitch less). So I pose this inquiry to you.

Why bother doing it in the first place?

It seems like a waste of time and energy to say you are going to do something to start the year. Until you make the decision to actually change something in your life it is pointless to make the pledge in the first place. Just as importantly it is just as pointless to do it to start the year. If you were really dedicated to making some life altering change then why wait? As soon as it comes to mind just do it. The more often you put something off the less likely you are to follow through. By you, I mean we.

Be it something small like bitching less then just make the change. If it is a little more difficult, like weight loss or stopping smoking, then go see your doctor and make a plan and get your ass in gear. It doesn't seem too terribly difficult a concept.

Yea. This coming from the king of procrastination. Listen, if I can put something off until tomorrow you can just about bank on me putting it off. Sometimes, however, even I get the juices flowing and make the change. Returning to school was a huge change. It was fairly easy and fortunately for me I had a great number of supporters who helped me with that. It made the transition from working stiff to student a lot easier to handle. The whole weight loss thing is proving much more troublesome. Not because I can't but because I have not convinced myself to do it. Sure, I lost a few pounds since the beginning of 2009 but lets be honest, if I had really put forth the effort I would be 30 or 40 pounds lighter right now.

In conclusion, do not wait until the start of the year to promise yourself that you are going to change. Just step up and make it happen. Don't make me come over there and smack you in the head (ala Jethro Gibbs). Ok you know I am going to procrastinate on that but you never know.

Oh, and in case you are wondering, I do make one resolution every year. Well, for the last 7 years I have and every year I do keep it. Some years were harder than others but I always manage to stick to it. What might that resolution be? I resolve not to strangle the life out of any idiots. It works for me.

You might be guessing, at this point, that this post should have went up on the 1st. What can I say.... I kept putting it off.


Later taters!!!

Mike


PS: In the highly, and almost certain, event there are some grammar, punctuation, or other typographical errors I blame it on global warming. I was just too tired to proof it properly.