In Case You've Wondered

My blog is where my wandering thoughts are interspersed with stuff I made up. So, if while reading you find yourself confused about the context, don't feel alone. I get confused, too.

If you're here for the stories, I started another blog:

One other thing: sometimes I write words you refuse to use in front of children, or polite company, unless you have a flat tire, or hit your thumb with a hammer.

I don't use them to offend; I use them to embellish.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

I'd feel like a derelict...

...if I didn't write anything at this time of year, so I will.

The last year was full of pitfalls that were totally unexpected. My mother suffered serious health problems, I lost a brother and the total economic climate sucked. That was the bad part. The good part was that I feel I've endured some things that would have taken a greater toll in the past. Maybe that's what age and wisdom bring: Patience and endurance are far more than just important.

So, there's a new year creeping into our lives. I have no idea what it will bring, but I'll face it with optimism and hope. I have no real predictions, although I do feel the winds of change. What they bring will be important and life changing.

Happy New Year and may the next year be better than any you ever experienced.

Friday, December 30, 2011

A Suggestion

I have a suggestion for supermarkets. I'm sure they'll ignore the suggestion, but I think it's a very good idea:

Before anyone can take a basket, they are required to count to 20. After that, if they have more than 20 items in their basket when they go through the 20 item, or less, line, a trapdoor opens and they're whisked away (in a tube like at the bank) to the place where they first received their basket.

Of course, this would need to be videotaped so their surprised expression could be placed on the evening news for everyone to see.


I was looking at the search keywords that lead people to my blog, This one caught my attention:

define "gimlet ass"

I haven't found any definition, but if I do, I'll post it.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Today, I'm Irritated

I've been sitting and thinking about a few things that really piss me off:

-Politicians rarely do their job. Entrusted with money that's supposed to be only for what's absolutely necessary - as dictated by those that pay taxes - exorbitant waste is reported daily and the culprits are politicians. God has a special place in Hell for most of those critters.

-The Federal Reserve screws with the money supply, which lowers the value of the dollar, which reduces the spending power of my paycheck, which means all my efforts to improve my financial condition are wasted. God, in my opinion, should reserve them a place next to the politicians.

-I pay way too much for the gasoline in my pickup. Included in this cost are taxes (see politicians above) extra fees for ethanol (which is subsidized with tax dollars) and the unseen costs due to regulations by the jackbooted EPA.

-Food prices are steadily increasing. Part of these increases are due to the shifting of corn as a food product and allowing better prices for farmers through subsidies, which are paid by tax dollars, or tax breaks, which are directly attributed to the mandate of the use of ethanol, which wouldn't exist on the market without the crooked efforts of the government.

So, these things piss me off. Those and the fact that the government never trims their spending. Instead, they push their grubby little hands deeper in the pockets that are running out of money. In my mind, the government is the problem, not the solution. I don't think I'm the only person with this my opinion. In fact, I think the majority of the people that pay taxes in the U.S. feel the same.

Be Careful Today

A news report this morning described a terrible accident that happened yesterday. A woman lost control of her car, crossed the highway median and crashed head-on into a pick up truck. The driver of the truck was killed instantly.

Years ago, while working on a highway project, I needed to speak to the inspector about a problem. I stopped at the field office and was informed he was up at at the scene of a wreck. Part of his responsibilities were to make reports of such occurences, so he went to the scene to examine any traffic control problems or road conditions that might have contributed to the accident.

I found him standing on the shoulder of the access road. Emergency vehicles were still on site, but there were no ambulances, wreckers and only enough officers to control traffic. People were walking up and down the shoulder with plastic bags and latex gloves on their hands.

I asked what happened. He explained two college girls were killed. Their car crossed the median and collided head-on with another car. Both died instantly. Why they crossed the median was not evident, but it was later reported they were going back to school and had driven a long distance before the accident. It was assumed the driver fell asleep and lost control.

I asked what the people were doing with the plastic bags. He answered: "Picking up pieces". I then noticed one of the workers bend over, reach down and pick up a piece of bloody flesh. I told the inspector I'd find him in about an hour. He nodded and told me he'd be in the field office.

So, be careful today.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Continuing My Big Number Research With 10,000 Hits Daily

I'll see what that post title lures to my site. I'll know at 10:00 am tomorrow. That's the time when the Russian and Google robots seem to prowl.

Chasing Fiction

I noticed a television program that has a crew of experts that roam around the world looking for things such as the Loch Ness monster and elves. I'm a little mixed about the show.

 They were using a set of cheap walkie-talkies for communication on the show I watched. I know it was a short segment of the whole show, and there was probably an explanation, but give me a break. I've run into a box store and purchased the same set of walkie-talkies and had over fifty in change from a hundred. Where do they get their cameras? Walmart?

Monday, December 26, 2011

The Power of the Thermostat

Thermostats are switches. Nothing more; nothing less, although they're far more in most homes. The power wielded by the user is ruthlessly abused in the wrong hands.

I've had arguments with people over thermostats. They're uncomfortable, so they set the thermostat to a position that's unreasonably different than the current setting and then become adamant their relief will come faster than changing the temperature setting by only a degree or two. My logical explanation that this isn't true  falls on deaf ears. Anger arises and everything I've learned is dismissed. In some situations, I've been ridiculed. Otherwise, they don't want to be confused by the facts; my knowledge is useless and I'm foolish to think that physics, electrical engineering and common knowledge have proven that the thermostat is a switch and has no magical power to rapidly change the temperature in a room like a throttle on a powerful engine.

When you move the control on a thermostat, a circuit is completed, current is supplied to a contactor, a blower motor starts and either an air conditioning, or heating unit, starts. At this point, air is moved over a heating plenum or the evaporator coils on an air conditioner. Changing the setting to some ridiculous setting, such as 80 in the winter, or 60 in the summer only changes where the entire operation ends. It's not like there's some special extra part of the system that turbocharges the system and creates more cold, or warm air. I'm right about this. Do some web research or read a book or go to a technical school and take a course to become an expert. You can't prove me wrong.

Another thing: When you diddle the controls with your grubby little fingers, you change much more than you realize. In you effort to selfishly change the temperature of an entire house, the temperature of everything in the house will need changing to completely balance the system. Your little effort to become instantly comfortable may mean 24 hours of increased utility costs. Even then, the final effect may mean the changed temperature is uncomfortable for everyone else in the house and their frustration may lead to their diddling with the thermostat and starting the entire cycle over again.

So, why am I writing about this? I can't win the argument with many people, but I can complain in writing. That adds credence to my argument and, more or less, insults those foolish enough to argue with me about this subject. Call it throwing down the gauntlet. They're wrong and I'm right and the argument is over......I win!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas - and I hope Santa Has an Umbrella

It's raining and the forecast if for the rain to continue through Monday.

I think this is the first Christmas I can think of being a long rainy event. Considering the long drought, the constant wishes for rain and the fact that it is Christmas, maybe Santa is rewarding us for being good during the year. We'll take it, although some may not feel the same.

Somewhere, where it's a little colder, the snow will bring a white Christmas. I've only seen one, but it had a certain magic that would have been more memorable if I had been a child. Still, it was one of the best experiences in my life. With that in mind:

Merry Christmas to all that happen to wander into my little corner of the internet.

Friday, December 23, 2011

The Lament of the Concrete Sawyer

I learned to saw concrete by the method common in the late seventies: "Here's the saw. These are the controls. Get to work and don't screw up." It wasn't a completely new experience; I had watched the process, so I wasn't completely unfamiliar with sawing concrete.

We were pouring a new street. Four lanes of concrete was the final result, but it required long days of preparing for the eventual concrete pour on Friday. Usually, it was a single lane of concrete approximately a thousand feet in length. The pour started at daylight and lasted until around 2:00 pm, except for me.

Concrete is guaranteed to do two things: get hard and crack, which requires controlled cuts in pavement for the cracks. The cuts are usually around a quarter of the way through the concrete and an eighth of an inch wide. After the concrete is completely cured, the joints are cleaned, a backing rod is placed and the joint is sealed to prevent water infiltration. The sealant is flexible, so that the concrete can expand and contract without losing the seal.

After the first pour on the project, I was asked if I knew anything about sawing concrete. Young, fairly energetic and not really wanting to go back to setting paving forms, I agreed to place the saw joints in the concrete. The job, which is called "green cutting" required marking the proposed location of the joints with a chalk line and sawing the concrete, which due to the concrete thickness, was two inches in depth. Another hand helped me start the sawing process by helping pop chalk lines. Eventually, I learned how to remove the need of a helper; they could be unreliable and not hold the line in the right place.

The concrete at the first of the pour was set to the point I could run the saw on the surface without marring the finish. The saw, which was common at the time, was a 65 horsepower saw manufactured by Target. Self propelled, heavy, awkward and loud was the only way to describe the saw. The big Wisconsin engine had it's own peculiar bellow that was unmistakable. To this day, I could pick the saw out with my eyes closed. 

I propelled the saw to the first joint location. Stopping the engine, I placed the diamond blade on the arbor. The 14 inch blade was heavy, and had signs of wear. The diamond segments were half worn, but the blade would last for a few pours, if I insured the right amount of water was on the blade and didn't try to "bulldog" the saw. Low water, or pushing the blade would cause the blade to wear too fast, which meant hundreds of dollars were wasted by a negligent sawyer.

I hooked the water line to the saw, opened the valve on the water truck pulled next to the pavement, started the saw, adjusted the throttle and pushed the control to lower the blade to the pavement. I was not in line, so I wrestled the heavy saw back and forth until the blade was right over the line. I opened the water valve on the saw and lowered the blade to touching the pavement. Adjusting the gauge, I lowered the blade to two inches and eased the direction control forward. I was now a sawyer, whether I liked it or not. Considering I had 1000 feet of paving to saw, with the paving joints every 15 feet across the 12 feet of paving, it was time for me to get busy. I worked until dark and finished the next morning.

Over time, I learned how to speed up the process. The saw became more familiar and I learned shortcuts for sawing. The saw became a cumbersome appendage, which I would move without thought. The mindless repetition of sawing allowed hours of time to think, so the distraction of sawing was soon eliminated by instinct. I became an expert, which has it's good points, but it was tedious, which is not my strong point. Sawing became drudgery and the only thing I liked was the overtime. 

I eventually taught someone else to run the saw. There was a bridge to build and I had the most experience with such things, so my sawing days ended until years later on other projects. It's an honorable trade and the pay is good if you have the experience, but sawing always involves long, strange hours. I know some that relish the job and they're poetry motion while they saw. Me, it's not my favorite, but I know that it's a skill I can still peddle if required.  Hopefully, I never have to make that decision.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Over 10,000 visits

I'm still experimenting. So far, there seems to be a correlation with numbers in the title and site visits. I'll keep you posted.

Sand Trout

I could see the jetties from the main platforms when I worked offshore. They were a dark line on the horizon. When the weather was rough, the waves would break on the jetties and send plumes of spray dozens of feet in the air.

In the Winter, stong southeast winds will cause extra high tides, which will allow conditions where the jetties are right under the surface. Inexperiened, or ignorant boat skippers will find they've made a terrible mistake when they run their boats on to the jetties. The relatively shallow water allows most of the boats to be visible for years if they come to rest on the outside of the jetties.

I was watching the jetties on a January afternoon. A front had passed a few days before and the sky was  a sheet of gray, which signaled an approaching weather system. The wind was dead calm, which made the Gulf almost completely flat. If it wasn't cold, someone could think it was summer, when the Gulf was usually calm.

I could see a small boat approaching. It had navigated through the small boat gap in the jetties and was heading towards the main platforms. As it approached, I realized how small it was. This was odd, since it was an unwritten rule that small boats didn't head into the Gulf during the winter. The rapid changes, and strong winds could stir up swells over 10 feet high or a chop that was over 5 feet. Even in the summer, the guidelines dictated not heading to the Gulf if the wind disturbed the leaves on a tree early in the morning.

After about three quarters of an hour, the lone boater pulled his small flat-bottomed boat to the living quarter platform, dropped anchor and proceeded to rig his fishing pole.  Within a minute, he baited his hook, dropped it in the water and winched it a few turns after it reached the bottom. He slowly raised and lowered the bait which caused an instant strike. Quickly, he reeled the large sand trout into the boat, re-baited his hook and repeated the process.

Over the next hour, the fisherman caught around 30 healthy sand trout. Satisfied with his catch, he pulled his anchor, fired up his motor and was gone. I watched as he headed straight back to the gap he had come through only two hours before. Within the hour, he had passed through the gap to the safety inside the jetties.

I never saw that happen again while I worked offshore. Not that it didn't. Unless someone was really paying attention, they'd miss the entire episode. I'm thinking the fisherman knew exactly when and where to go, which allowed him to fill his freezer with another year's catch of sand trout. Still, he took a risk. If his motor failed, and the weather changed, his final lonely hours would have been fighting to survive the wicked waves and cold.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

10,000 Visitors and More

I had an abnormal amount of visitors today. Quite a few were from robot servers hunting for revenue. I'm thinking there is something about placing large numbers, such as 10,000, and adding "visitors" to the title that  tickles a search function in the code.

If I can't figure out a way on making money on my research, Ill let you know if it worked.

Reading the Instructions

We were wrapping up a project, which was building a small pre-engineered metal building in an industrial facility. The only thing left was the roll up door. The building was a kit, so unlike many buildings we built, the roll up door was our responsibility. I preferred a subcontractor for this task, but that wasn't the situation this time.

I'd watched doors assembled a few times, so it wasn't like I was completely ignorant. Still, I spent some time reading the instructions and followed the steps as explained. It was fairly simple, but there were some warnings about dangerous things that could happen.

After fastening the brackets, we placed the heavy sectional door on the brackets and proceeded to start tensioning the spring, which is designed to offset the weight of the door during opening and closing. I was concentrating on keeping the pipe wrench from getting loose and smashing my hand against the frame, or whipping around and hitting me in the face. Since I was on a scaffold, my attention wasn't on one of my helpers.

One caveat in the instruction was to NEVER remove the banding around the door, until the spring was tensioned. Since the door weighed hundreds of pounds, removing the band would allow it to unroll, which wasn't a good thing; especially if you're under the door.

I didn't like the method we were using to tension the spring, so I loosened the spring and climbed down to re-group. I felt we needed to have someone on the other side to help in the operation, so I was in the process of doing just that by moving a scaffold to the other side and finding another wrench. I didn't pay much attention to the helper, who was asking about some tin snips.

As I moved about around the door, the helper found the tin snips and with the best intentions to be productive, snipped the band around the door. Instantly, the door unrolled and slammed against the floor - missing me by inches. I was speechless for a moment and then looked at the helper. I didn't need to say anything. The sick look on his face meant he realized how bad he screwed up.

Anyway, instructions are important; so is communication. If I had spent a few moments explaining the entire process, the helper would have had a better feel for the importance of not removing the band. Not that this would have prevented the accident, since the helper wasn't the sharpest knife in the drawer, but at least the right methods would have been applied.

You live and your learn. In my profession, learning can be lethal.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Over 10,000 visitors...

...stopped by my blog since August, when I started my journey into the blogosphere. That's more than the populations of many towns, so the number is significant; at least I think it is. Some are regulars, many probably came by mistake and a few are only electronic efforts by computers to look for revenue. Still, I think a "thank you" is necessary.

Thank you. I'm honored by the visits.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Rolling Along

We were setting forms for a large headwall on the end of a concrete box culvert...kinda. The crew was setting forms and I was using my powers of observation to determine their progress. They were using their powers of telekinesis to wish me away. It must have worked.

Something caught my attention. I don't know if it was something I saw out of the corner of my eye, or a noise, but I looked up to see a complete tire and wheel from a semi coming down the center of the highway. It was pretty well staying right on the centerline and approaching at around 50 mph. I told the crew "Heads up", which caused them to look up to see what was happening. Those that didn't realize what was happening figured it out quickly from the pointing and comments.

We all had a few of those moments when you really don't know what to do. Should you move? Or, should you just stand still and see what happens? We all chose the latter and watched the wheel travel past, veer off to the shoulder and bounce into the woods; taking a few sapling down in the process. We stared for a few moments and looked down the highway to see a loaded semi limping to the shoulder. Since I was the closest person with any authority, I climbed in my truck and went to see what I could do.

The rig, since it had lost the front left steering tire, could only pull to the left, so the driver had pulled his rig onto the shoulder in front of a closed diner. As I pulled in, he was just climbing down and starting to survey the damage. Meanwhile, the old man that was selling vegetables in the empty parking lot was still staring at the truck and down the highway. He had a ring side seat and must have been thanking his lucky stars the wheel didn't travel straight in his directions. He wouldn't have had any time to react; the wheel could have been the last thing he ever saw.

In the next few moments, a state trooper whipped into the parking lot, bailed out of his car and that's when things got strange. I expected him to immediately see if anyone was hurt. I was wrong. He proceeded to tell the old man to move his vegetables. He went on to explain this wasn't the first time and he was through with warnings about his vegetables on the state right-of-way.

His face red with anger, the  trooper continued giving the old man the fifth degree, while walking in circles. When he headed towards his car, I got back in my truck and left. I'd seen all I wanted to see. As strange as things were progressing, I didn't want to find out how strange they could be. If he wanted to know anything, he could find me on the side of the road about a quarter mile away.

I went back to the job site and told the crew what I'd seen. They made a few comments and went back to work. I stayed on site until the trooper drove away and then left to go about other things I had on my plate. I told the crew to get the wheel out of the woods, which they took two of them to wrestle the heavy wheel out to the shoulder. That's where it was when I left that evening. It was gone the next morning. I don't know where it went, but I'm just about sure it wasn't where it was supposed to be.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

All We Are and Shall Be

Today was one of those winter days when it's still and the high clouds are a sign of a weather change. These type of days seem to give me long moments of introspection, which led to thoughts about legacies.

I was thinking of a great-grandfather. He was probably born after the end of the Civil War, so his father lived during the war. He had a farm in Illinois that was considered huge at the time. At 180 acres, it required the entire family to help with the chores. My grandfather, for whatever reason, left to fight the first World War and eventually ended up on the Gulf Coast. He didn't stay to inherit the farm. I never knew the reason he chose the path he chose. He never said and I never asked. He's gone, so the question will remain unanswered forever.

Anyway, back to legacies: my great-grandfather's final legacy was his farm was sold after his death and the house that held so many memories was bulldozed. All that is left of him and his children are a few pieces of furniture and memories that will become substantially thinner after my demise. Time will progress and only dust will remain. The summation of generations will be as inconsequential as a limb falling from a tree on a windy afternoon.

In a way, it all fits, but in another, it makes me realize that I need to pass something on to future generations. I don't want to fade away forever after a short conversation at a future family gathering. I don't exactly know what to do, but I'm thinking writing will be the path. Maybe a book, or a collection of memories to give to heirs. Who knows, but it's time to get started.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Presidential Debates

I've caught part of the Republican President candidates last night. It was interesting, but like all before, it was another scripted show with the contenders, standing in makeup, posturing and answering the questions from self described experts who formulated the questions  to show their intelligence.

I wonder how they would answer my questions:

What are you going to do about the no-ass congress members that abused their power, wasted taxpayer money and will live the rest of their lives on my dime?

Will you turn the dogs loose on the former administration and find where the bodies are buried?

Will you fly around in a small airplane, instead of wasting millions of dollars to fly a Boeing 757 around like a taxi?

Will you tell every S.O.B. that's in charge of every agency to cut their staff and budget by 50%?

Since you'll make a million on your memoirs, will you refuse a salary and pension?

Will you tell the rest of the world we aren't their parents and they need to take care of their own problems?

When it comes down to brass tacks, will you have the nerve to send the military to kick some ass?

I have a lot of questions. I have the feeling they'll all remain unanswered.

So Now What?

If you examine the problems with "Fast and Furious", it doesn't take you long to realize that some serious law breaking was undertaken by the United States government. Not only were laws broken, higher officials either turned their backs on this illegal activity, or were directly involved with the criminal operations. To add insult to injury, the highest officials of the United States government in the justice department are either stonewalling, or directly making an effort to hide information that ties them to the operation.

So, now what? A special prosecutor? It's not looking much like that will happen. Anyway, that's a horse crap excuse for rooting out rotten politicians. Too many of the people that should still be investigated still have their hands in the process. With one lying and the other swearing to it, there's no justice or preservation of the rule of law.

Congress can impeach Eric Holder. Whether their cojones are large enough for this task is the big question. So far, chihauhaus have them beat in that department.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Construction Travelers

Have you ever wondered where they get the workforce to build large buildings and industrial facilities?  It's construction travelers, which are a huge group of people, with special skills, that travel around the country to the big projects and work until they're completed, or their particular skill isn't needed any longer. Some are union, some aren't. They may have a home, where they stay until another project starts, or they may live in a travel trailer they pull to each location.

Besides working these huge new construction projects, many work what are known as "turn arounds", which are maintenance, or repair projects. Usually, these last a few weeks, or months and the work schedule is twelve hour days, seven days a week. The money can be very good, but the trade is limited family time and a toll on health. Working that many hours without days off isn't sustainable. What few times I've worked those hours left me completely apathetic in less than a month.

Still, they're out there and working every chance they get. They know every day is one day closer to unemployment. It can be a hard life, but you'll find few that are slackers or not good at their trade. You have to be. If not, you're the first to go when the culling starts. If there isn't any other job in sight, it can be a sobering experience to be in a strange town, with strangers and not enough resources to move on.

So, why am I writing about these workers? They are a very important part of the work force that makes the United States happen. There's no community that requires people with their skills at any one time, so they need places to go. They're a valuable resource and their skills aren't found by searching universities or work centers. All the bureaucrats in Washington D.C. couldn't replace a dozen of these workers. They know where the jobs are, but their jobs require a vibrant economy. If attrition reduces their ranks, the time needed to replace them is too long, which requires either taking a chance on unskilled workers or filling their ranks with people from other countries. You may never notice them, but they're the reason you have plastics for your computers, gasoline for your cars and the electricity that keeps the critters away at night.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Retail Sales Forecasts

I've arrived at the opinion that retail sales forecasts are determined by throwing dice. If you read the job number statistics, projected sales reports and other boilerhoused documents used for arriving at these forecasts, you realize the projected numbers are created from data that is as reliable as dice. So, a smart man would throw some dice, or flip a coin to make the determination. I know I would; why waste the time?

What really amazes me is that these numbers are even considered news. Every year it's the same doom and gloom up to Christmas, which leaves some retailers patting themselves on the back and others damning the economy. Neither has a clue of why they were successful, or not, although the news media always reaps some benefit. News is money, whatever the source.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

The Night I Found a Car

Late one night, we had just finished detouring traffic, placing new temporary lane markings and moving a few dozen concrete barrier walls, when I found a car. Not that it was a perfectly new car; it has a few scrapes and dents that were probably not there a few minutes before.

Night traffic on the interstate can be light; especially at 3:00 am. That's the reason most interstate repairs are done at night. In the day, the traffic can back up for miles, which leads to frustration, road rage and way too many calls to the local highway office. When you add the increased number of accidents, the best solution is to mandate lane closures are performed at night. Besides the lessened traffic flow, the officials are sound asleep, so they don't receive any nasty phone calls.

I was making my final return to the start of the setup to verify everything was placed correctly. This involved about a four mile trip, since the area was rural and there were few places to cross to the other lanes. The approach to the setup was near an entrance ramp, so as I climbed the slight grade and reached the top of the ramp, I found a car. It was skewed in the left lane at the end of the taper, so it was out of traffic. I pulled into the lane, climbed from my truck and approached the car. It was empty.

I thought for a few moments, then started looking. Since the section of elevated interstate was at the start of a bridge, the first thought I had was that the car hit the rail, spun around and the driver was thrown over the railing. I walked to the rail, shone my flashlight around, but didn't find anybody. There was water below, so I started wondering if the driver had drowned in the water below.

I heard a car approaching and found a sheriff deputy pulling into the lane closure. Somebody had seen the car hit the rail and called. I explained what I had found, we made another look around and the deputy called a wrecker. The wrecker arrived within minutes, pulled the car onto the flatbed and left, with the deputy right behind. I made sure the barrels were straight and left to join the crew as they readied everything for the next shift.

I never found out what happened. I did read the paper to see if there was a drowning, but nothing was reported. I guess it was a drunk that figured it would be easier to explain leaving their car on the highway instead of spending the night in jail. It was that, or outstanding warrants. Either way, the driver, obviously, didn't want to explain their situation to the law. Still, I'm curious. I wonder what happened.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Exit Ramps

This evening, I had one of those moments that make you wonder if you will make it home.

I took a usual exit ramp. Everything was fine; the pickup in front was exiting smoothly at a safe speed....until they decided to turn right at the bottom of the ramp. That's where the moment started. I had nowhere to go, the car that had the right of way in the right lane was oblivious of what was happening, so I had to slam on the brakes and watch the cars in my rear view mirror do the same. The truck darted behind the car and I was able to accelerate from the cars rapidly approaching in my rear view mirror.

For a few moments, I was ecstatic, relieved, alarmed and pissed off enough to find the driver and beat them with a stick.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Decency and Departure

I've followed a few blogs for years. Tractor Tracks has been in my favorites for a long time. I don't remember how I found the link, but her stories about construction caught my fancy, and I've been a fan ever since.

She lost an important family member, call her the matriarch of the family, which left a large hole in her life that can only be filled by the passage of time. From reading between the lines, she was a fine, descent person, loved and admired by many.

Sympathy is all I can offer, although it never seems to be enough.

December 7, 2011

It's Pearl Harbor day. For those that know what that means, or were alive during the event, today should remind that the world is a dangerous place. For those that don't, do a little research.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

A Little Rain

We had about one inch. Some places received up to two inches, but they were on the wet side of the slow moving front that took all weekend to pass. When if finally reached the local area, the front accelerated and the amount of rain was substantially less than forecasted. Still it helped. I think we're only about 28 inches behind at this point.

Other than that, I'm busy and have little time to write.

Oh, well.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Fuzzy Math

From what I've read, if a person stops looking for work, they're not included in the unemployment data. Otherwise, they're not unemployed, even though they are. I'm thinking this is a good way to determine how I pay my bills. Not enough money? Simple answer: I don't have enough money, but since I don't, you don't have to count the money I don't have towards paying the bill. So, you've been paid, even though you don't receive the money I don't have. It all works out; problem solved.

Now, I see there's a really good offer on big screen televisions. I'll have to convince the sales staff they're getting paid, which they can use to leverage their unpaid boss into giving them their commission with the money they never received. A sixty inch screen looks to about the right size.

Something To Brighten Your Day

Soap operas, especially one with the name "Diary of a Single Mom" must be very important. So important, nearly one million dollars of stimulus money was pissed away spent to help with production costs.

I feel warm and fuzzy inside knowing our government is making wise and important choices when they spend the money they borrow without our consent.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Merry Christmas

The economy and construction market haven't been very healthy this year, so a frugal Christmas is in order, unless you live in the White House and spend money borrowed from China.

Go Enjoy!

It will warm your heart, if you're a thief, politician or both.

Some Days...

...I have a lot of things to write about. Unfortunately, I don't have the time on those days.


Meanwhile, in Spleenville, entire books are written. I'm not only impressed, I'm envious.