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, March 29, 2014

Just When You Don't Expect It

I had some plans of things to do this weekend. My back, however, didn't agree.

I'll putter around; walking like something is stuck up my rear end, and keep a poor attitude.


Do You Want To Know What's Wrong With Washington D.C. ?

This is. Harry Reid called those adversely affected by Obamacare liars, then lies about calling them liars.

Until the likes of Harry Reid are thrown into tanks full of hungry sharks on Fridays, at 12:00 pm, until they're all gone, Washington D.C. will be a huge accumulation of the most noxious, lying, thieving, worthless reprobates ever assembled in history.

I Bet You Forgot This Song

Sugarloaf had a few songs played more than once on the radio. "Green Eyed Lady" was one. So was this one. Their experience with the music business didn't leave them fond memories.

To complete the list, with some facts about the band:

Thursday, March 27, 2014

A Brief Conversation

I was talking to an insurance agent today about my policy. As we talked, the fact her brother passed away over the weekend came into the conversation.

It was sudden. He'd had health problems, but his passing was not expected.

She said: "I must still be in shock". I agreed, and told her about losing two brother to tragic accidents.

I told her how one of my brothers was the "go to" member of the family. He was a wealth of information, immediate help and did so without expecting anything in return. He honored us with his devotion to his family and it my other brother did the same with his close circle in the state he lived in and while in the service. If he'd been closer to us, he'd been the same; constantly in motion, always willing to help and generous without expectations.

She explained that was how her brother was. As a mechanic, they always turned to him for advice and he was always willing to help, when needed.

I went on and explained it would just hit her some day, without warning, and the big boo-hoo would take her by surprise.

We changed the subject, finished our business and that was the end of the conversation. The look on her face told me she was hoping it wouldn't happen immediately.

So, that's how it is. You don't feel the loss immediately. You trudge on, go to work, do what you normally do, continue with your life, but it hits you one day. A thought, moment, certain smell, inconsequential event and it all comes crashing down. The grief overwhelms and you realize it will find you again in the future.

You never forget those you placed in your heart. When they pass, they leave an empty spot and it's never filled again.

So, the moment after you read this may be the last chance you ever have to contact someone you love. Do so and remember to never neglect the opportunity again.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

It Was a Long Time Ago

I was a fan of the band "Yes" back in the early 70's. As time progressed, and they came out with new albums, the following song became a favorite.

I don't remember the exact date, or the exact event, but it was a cold winter night, I was with a girlfriend, we were driving around, just killing time, when the song came on the radio. It was far from the typical be-bop crap on the AM, which was filled with the increasing cacophony of disco crap, which didn't appeal to me at all. I was mesmerized.

As was all music on the radio, the wish to hear a song again was usually unfulfilled, especially with FM stations. FM was more distinguished, the disc jockeys were more laid back and there was an unspoken rule to have a great variety of music to hear, so your musical horizon could expand.

Anyway, I still like the song and can listen to it multiple times without hesitating.

I Went To The Doctor

It was time for my annual checkup. I was a little disappointed, since I gained 8 pounds (according to the arbitrary clothes weight information from the's really 5 pounds) and my blood pressure was a little high.

Still, my heart is the normal size, my lungs looked good on the chest x-ray, and I still have some signs of wear and tear on my spine.

Cholesterol, and other blood work data, will be announced the day after tomorrow.

I don't know about you, but age has been very kind in some aspects, and kicked my ass in others. My weight is at the upper end of what's considered healthy, my gerd and cholesterol are under control, and I generally feel good.

On the ass kicked side: I have a multitude of aches and pains due to the unnatural wear and tear on my body; heavy lifting and injuries are not good on a small fellow like me. Where a six plus foot bruiser can lift, or carry much more than me, the effect on me hasn't been good. In my youth, I wouldn't let anyone of size best me in any endeavor.

So, I'm still operating on eight cylinders, although I'm burning a little oil, my timing is off and the transmission has a tendency to slip on hills.


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Freezing Sulfur

We had to "freeze" some sulfur today, so we could pour a concrete wall in a trench.

Freeze sulfur? What does that mean?

Sulfur starts solidifying at around 240 degrees Fahrenheit. Regular cold water will rob the heat, the sulfur will solidify and - if it's seeping - the seep will stop.

We drained the trench first, which involved pumping a pit down below a drain, opening the drain and allowing the sulfur to leave the trench. We eventually reached the point where the constant seepage from slide plate valves was all that was adding sulfur, so we turned on the water hoses and "froze" the sulfur - after the steam to the loops was turned off.

It all worked as planned, although it took more time than I liked. After the sulfur was frozen, we cleaned the concrete, place the forms, placed some rebar and poured the concrete.

We'll leave the forms in place, until the next phase is complete, which is completely removing everything from the pit. This we won't do, since it's not part of our work. The temporary wall we poured today will allow the trenches to be used, without any uh-ohs. Trying to work in a pit with the possibility of sulfur pouring in is not  pleasant thing to happen.

After the pit is empty of steam piping and equipment, we'll form and pour new concrete. When finished, the pit will be smaller, but good for another few dozen years - or longer.

This means I won't reek of sulfur for the next few days....that's a good thing.

Monday, March 24, 2014

No, There Are No Ninjas

At least not where I'm staying. Everyone has a loud voice, walks like an overweight elephant, can't close a car door without slamming it and has a laugh like a constipated jackass eating briers.

So, their are no ninjas; quietly going to their room; only a whisper of sound even ignored by mice; never conspicuous, always hidden and nobody ever knowing they're there.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Thunder In The Distance

When I awoke this morning, the fog was thick, the temperature in the upper sixties and the wind was calm. The forecast called for a front to arrive, which it did at around 10:00 am, with only a wind shift and the end of the fog.

Now, its 60 degrees, the wind makes the air seem much cooler and there's thunder in the distance.

The front stalled offshore, the warmer air is riding over the colder air and rain is on the way.

Tomorrow promises to be chilly and rainy; otherwise a dismal day. Work should be interesting; especially if we're mandated to build a temporary concrete wall in a trench due to scheduling.

Time will tell.


...Over the Rainbow....A song I like.

Protecting My Little Friends

A few years ago, while working on a dock, I became fascinated by the Cliff Swallows that lived in mud nests under the dock. I even wrote a post about them.

While I was at the office this morning, dropping off my paperwork for the week, I noticed the power lines were covered with thousands of Tree Swallows, which must be in the process of migrating North. As I watched them, I thought of the time on the dock with the Cliff Swallows: 

One morning, while waiting for the crew to weld some hangers, I noticed a crow flying around the dock. I didn't pay much attention to it, until the tiny birds started fussing. They chased the crow back to the land, where it landed on a fence and watched.

A few minutes later, I saw the crow again. As I watched, it swooped down and caught one of the swifts resting on a concrete ledge, and took off toward the land. The swifts chased for a moment, but soon left the crow alone to enjoy its feast.

For some reason, that angered me. The crow probably was only feeding on the slow and weak, but that only made me more angry. The crow soon returned.

This time I was ready. I'd gathered a few bolt heads we'd accumulated from removing some structural steel. As the crow attempted to land, I damn near hit it with a bolt. It flew back to its perch on the land, but only for a short period of time.

When it returned, I let fly another bolt, which emboldened the swifts, that quickly swarmed the crow; fussing and pecking at the predator they didn't like.

The crow flew further inland, but wasn't completely discouraged. After about an hour, I was alerted by the swifts, as they fussed and swarmed the returning crow. This time, I only had to throw a bolt head its way, when it turned and left; with the swifts following as far as they dared.

The crow didn't return that day, or any other, while I was there. Whether it waited until we left for the evening to return I'll never know, but while I was there, it was smart enough to know I was helping protect my little friends.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Out of Nowhere

We were working on a new section of highway. The project was over 6 miles long, so we moved along the highway, while we added drainage structures.

We reached one section, where the new highway was complete, but still closed, and were installing a headwall on the end of a large concrete culvert.

I don't know where she came from, but an Australian Shepard appeared and became a temporary mascot.

She was very friendly, and would arrive shortly after we started work. I worried, since we were only a few dozen feet from traffic, but she avoided that area. She was content staying with us and keeping track.

I watched her over the next few days, and was amazed. If we took a break, she would come visit and her instincts would kick in.

She'd wander around all the workers; moving behind; getting close and "herding" us into a smaller group.

The other workers never noticed her actions, but I did. I was amazed and fond of her, since she was so good at her task, nobody was the wiser.

She left before we finished the headwall. I don't know if her owner decided to pen her, or she found another "herd" to protect.

I felt honored she spent so much time with us. Whether it was an undeniable instinct, or she just liked being around us wasn't important. For a short time, we were special and she was a joy to have around.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Maybe They'll Kick Them Out

The First Lady, and her entourage of 70 people are not only pissing off taxpayer money, they've pissed off the staff of the hotel they've turned into a circus of American Ghettoism. 

I've stayed at a few hotels and always find the majority of the staff are willing to make your stay comfortable, but are even more accommodating, when you're polite and courteous.

Are you embarrassed? I am. We're much better, and it's unfortunate we have such obnoxious people abusing our taxes and insulting our country.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

It Continues

So, I decide to wash my truck this evening. I usually get up a little early and do it in the early morning, when it's cooler and dew help soften the dirt.

I pull into a bay at the local coin car wash, get out, put some quarters in the slot and start to wash my truck.

Before the first squirt of water, the local car dry man walks by on the other side of the truck and speaks: "When you're through, I'll dry your truck for a couple of bucks."

I ignore him. I always ignore such people. Replying is not the thing to do, even if your great aunt used to spank your ass for being rude, and ignoring people

As I continue, I can hear another person calling to LCDM. I glance, and see the man that was in the next stall backed his car in the shade and was looking for some help.

LCDM is soon to arrive, and tells the man he needs to pull across the street. He says: "No, it's better to dry in the shade"; and he's right.

LCDM goes ballistic. I don't hear the entire conversation, but he soon passes and comments: "Either you come across the road, or you can do it your own  **cking self.

My wash time soon ends. As I'm putting coins for the rinse, the man drying his car remarks: "I was just trying to help the guy out."

I ignore him, too, drop my quarters and soon start rinsing my truck. Meanwhile LCDM is ranting and raving across the street. I can hear him over the high pressure spray.

I'm finished in a few minutes. I quickly get in, turn on the wipers, hit the street and ignore LCDM, who is waving me to the other side of the street.

I don't even glance in the mirror as I drive away. It's obvious LCDM is one Pop Tart shy of a complete breakfast and the car wash owner has forbid him to be on the property.

I need to find another car wash, and start washing my truck in the morning again.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

At the Crossroad

I'm staying at the crossroad. The crossroad to where? The crossroad of life. It's a tiny section of society, but it's represented by all: the goth waitress, with a bounce in her step, that brings a smile to the old fry cook; standing outside the door of the Waffle House; smoking a cigarette, musing on life.

 What's their story? Where have they been? What interesting conversation awaits over a cup of coffee; a small moment to reflect, reminisce, find a common thread and find the bond that glues us all together?

 What about the elderly gentleman? He's retrieving something from his car; the back seat is a closet rod, including feminine clothes that are not his. Is his wife along for the journey? Is it another family member? Maybe he's decided escape with his mistress and make one last stab at life before it's all over?

 Who knows? I gather a lifetime of questions, with only a short glance, on a warm evening, with the seagulls crying and the sound of a siren in the background. All is well, but nothing is complete. It goes on forever and I can only stand, watch and wonder.

Wandering Thoughts

I saw something on the way to the motel I never saw before: A crime scene, with yellow tape wrapped around the scene.

I have no idea what happened, but there was one of Galveston's S.U.V. police vehicles blocking the drive of strip shopping center, tape wrapped to keep pedestrians away, a group of employees sitting on the sidewalk in front of the building and a few officers milling around.

I was only passing, so I didn't have time to look, or find out anything, so it's an enigma.

Another thing I was thinking of is how - if I had lots of money - it would be neat to have Herve Villechaize and Ricardo Montalban on video when they find the missing 777. Ricardo could look distinguished and Herve could point and say "The plane!! The plane!!!!!!.

Unfortunately, neither is still around and I don't have that kind of money.


Sunday, March 16, 2014

Numbers in My Head

I had to bring my paperwork to the office this morning. As I drove, I thought of the numbers that roll around in my head. They're there for immediate reference and I doubt I'll forget any in the future, unless I become severely demented.

110 - The pounds of one inch of asphalt base per square yard of coverage

9 - Square feet in one square yard.

2000 - Pounds in one ton.

27- Cubic feet in a cubic yard

150 - Pounds per square foot of each foot of concrete in a form. If you run the numbers, tall pours require substantial bracing at the bottom of a form. Wall ties I approximate at 2000 pounds of tensile strength each.

1/8 - The rise in bar diameter in inches for each designation. For example No. 3 bar is 3/8 inches. No 4 is 1/2 inches, No. 5 is 5/8....etc.

3.142 - An acceptable approximation of pi for calculations involving circles.

.7854 - pi divided by four. I use it to multiply with the diameter squared of a circle to determine the area. (I find it easier to to use.)

.2156 - The area of a fillet. I use it to determine the square footage of a fillet in the turnout radius of a drive.

3.28084 - feet in one meter

25.4 - millimeters in one inch

39.375 - inches in one meter

7.62 - meters in one standard section of guardrail, which slightly longer than 25 feet to allow for lapping.

6.25 - distance between the centers of standard guardrail posts.

21 - inches above the ground for the center line of a guardrail bolt.

3,4,5 - Proportion of a right triangle. When all you have are two measuring tapes, some string and some stakes, any multiple of the three dimensions can be used as a poor boy way of squaring anything.

490 - weight of a square foot of steel. I've used this to determine the unknown weight of structures for demolition. Measure the members, figure the total cubic feet and you arrive at a usable approximation of weight.

231 - cubic inches in a gallon. This required when figuring the amount of sealant for sealing paving cracks, or caulking.

The list goes on. I use the decimal value of inches constantly, since surveying requires conversion of inches to feet.

In school, I was deplorable in math. I'm guessing my mind doesn't work well with abstract numbers, but can make do with practical applications.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Back In The Days

I'm not an ironworker, although I've hung iron before.

When I was younger, I could participate with projects involving the erection of steel. Most were for pre-engineered metal buildings, but some were standard structural members.

Most people don't pay attention to the erection of steel, but it's an involved process, with many pitfalls. From conception, to finish, many are involved and the final result is the frame for a building, or support for an object, or machinery.

Engineers determine the correct size of members after given the task. Whether it's an architectural firm, or a customer that needs a structure built, the process of designing the members requires calculations, plans of the structure and fabrication details for manufacturing.

Usually, after the design is determined, a draftsman details the structural members for fabrication. The details are given to the engineer for review and any corrections made with red pencil remarks. A good contractor will review the final plans, also. Mistakes can be made and a good review can take a long time, since it requires verifying measurements and structural shapes.

What are structural shapes? Most steel for fabrication is of standard sizes. The shapes include W-shapes, which are wide flange beams; S-shapes, which are commonly known as I-beams and a multitude of others, like angles, tees and square tubing. All have known characteristics, such as weight and how they behave under certain stresses.

No matter what the shape, all deals are off if the steel is heated to the point it starts becoming plastic. That's why many structures are fireproofed after erection. Whether it's an insulation, or gunnite, the coating helps prevent failures during a fire. Even then, exceptional events, such as the World Trade disaster happen, which exposed lightweight trusses to tremendous heat and caused them to fail. After the first failure, the static force of the above floors falling literally ripped the building apart as the combined loads struck the floors below.

Fabrication involves cutting, welding and hole drilling. Standard connection details are used and holes are drilled to accommodate the bolts. If the steel is to be galvanized, the members are tagged before the process of "pickling" - the acid bath before dipping - and then dipped in a vat of molten zinc. If painting is required, the steel is sand blasted before painting.

Steel arrives at the project site on flatbed trilers. What can be bundled is wrapped with wire, or placed on pallets. The larger items are just placed on the bed and bound with straps. This is where things can get interesting.

There's no guarantee the fabricator sent exactly what is needed. An error might have left some key members off, or the galvanizer may have lost some pieces. That's why the erection drawings, which usually come with the first load, are consulted. Every member has a number, and the location where it will be placed. Since assembly is an ordered process, someone is required to inventory the steel and verify it's what's needed. This "shaking out" can be as simple as going through the contents of a pallet, or as complicated as using a crane to move heavy members from a bundle and laying them out on dunnage. Losing a finger, or being crushed is always a possibility during this process. Steel is heavy, slides easily and a wrong move can end in disaster.

Before any of this happened, a foundation was placed. It may have been a simple concrete slab or an elaborate conglomeration of concrete foundations with multiple anchor bolts. This is where it all begins and the foundation must be correct.

Even with smaller structures, the first members are usually heavier than what a person can handle. This is where cranes, or forklifts are required. The columns are placed on the anchor bolts and the connecting girders are bolted. All bolts are just run up to snug, since steel can change dimensions due to heat and movement is required to assemble the steel.

As members are placed, ironworkers use spud wrenches to "stab" the bolt holes and temporarily hold the steel, until they can place a bolt. After that, the spud wrench is used to align the holes for more bolts. After all the bolts are placed, they move to another member.

Eventually, enough members are placed, the columns can be checked for plumb and the bolts can be "rattled up". Usually this means using an impact wrench, which can be a cumbersome tool, while working in an aerial lift, or standing on a beam, with only a harness to keep you from falling.

In the winter, steel is cold, can be slippery and if working up high, can lead to a miserable day in cold, unblocked wind.

In the summer, the steel can be too hot to touch with bare hands. Sitting on the steel can scorch the family jewels and being in close proximity adds heat to days that are already blistering hot.

Back in my younger days, I could hang with anyone all day and never look back. Now? I don't think I could do it for any length of time. Ironworking is a tough trade and best left for the young. When I did "hang iron", examining the finished project always left a sense of pride. Unless you've done it, it's hard to understand the satisfaction of seeing the hard work turn into something important.

When The Urge Strikes

For whatever reason, I had the urge for pancakes, so I went to a local grocery, bought a pound of house bacon, some frozen pancakes, spent a little time cooking, and feasted.

Now, it's time for a nap.

Steamy Post

You can put your dirty thoughts back into their box. This post is not about that.

I'm not content with just working in an industrial facility and not knowing the processes involved. That's why I've been paying attention to the boilers, equipment and steam use where I'm working.

They use a lot of steam, where I'm working. Rail cars, ships and barges come from great distances, are full of sulfur and the sulfur can be solid. That's where the steam comes into place.

The boilers fascinate me. Inside the combustion chambers are steel tubes, which is where the steam is produced. Natural gas, which is only one of many fuels, is used for the heat and the heat of the flames is increased by forced air blowers.

The basic process is the high temperature in the combustion chamber heats the water, the water flashes to steam and the steam is channeled through insulated piping. That's the simple process.

Steam has different temperatures at different pressures. The higher the pressure; the hotter the steam. At high pressures, the heat of the steam can reach the point it changes products into different substances, which is how petroleum is distilled and many products derived from crude oil. The downside is that the high temperatures are above the flash point of many of the products. At those temperatures, something seemingly insignificant, like a tiny leaking flange on a pipe, can result in an instant fire, since the only requirement left for combustion is the introduction of oxygen, which is abundant in air. That's why refineries limit employees during the process of bringing a unit back on line after maintenance. Things can get out of hand quickly, and disasters are not unknown.

Steam pressure is determined by regulators, so the heat is controlled and kept at the optimum temperature for the process. Where I'm working, the boilers are kept at about 110 pounds of pressure and the steam for the different processes varies. The steam travels through insulated pipes, into steam jackets on rail cars, which heats the sulfur above the melting point. The liquid sulfur is dumped into concrete trenches, that have steam loops in the bottom to insure the sulfur doesn't "freeze" during transfer. The sulfur flows into a pit and pumped to large storage tanks kept hot with steam.

Steam doesn't stay steam forever. As it's used, the temperature drops and the hot water is eventually collected back into the "hot well". From there, it's pumped to a deaeration tank, which supplies the boilers with water for steam. There, the process begins again.

Attrition through leaks requires makeup water for the system, which is controlled by a float in the hot well. When the well drops below a certain level, water is added.

Makeup water isn't just tap water. Chemicals are added to prevent scaling and corrosion in the boiler tubes, which can fail if the water is contaminated. If that should happen, the combustion chamber is "kicked" with super heated water, which raises the pressure tremendously. If the relief valves don't allow the gasses to escape, the boiler explodes. That's why boilers have sight port, so inspections can be made while the boiler is running. If the tubes appear to be distorted, or leaking, the boiler can be shut down for repair before a catastrophic failure.

In a perfect world, little to no water is added to the closed steam loop. But leaks happen and the amount of additional water is dictated by the amount of leaks. Since heating water requires expensive energy, steam leaks are frowned upon.

So, now you know as much about boilers as I do. They're fascinating, loud, hot critters that make noises that make your hair stand on end. While those that operate them are used to the noises, I'm not and they sometimes make me nervous.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Sulfur and Sneezes

I've been working in a facility that handles, melts, processes and ships sulfur. For those of you that don't know anything about the stuff, it's interesting to say the least.

Sulfur starts melting at approximately 240 degrees Fahrenheit. At 275 degrees, it flows like water. At 300 degrees, it becomes thicker and is like heavy syrup at 325 degrees.

In molten form, sulfur release Hydrogen Sulfide, which is a deadly gas. To warn us of accumulations, we wear monitors that beep, when the concentration reaches a certain level. When they beep, the best thing is to walk across the wind and move away from the area. This hasn't happened often, but it has happened.

Sulfur, when mixed with water, will create a weak solution of sulfuric acid. Steel not coated starts corroding immediately, when exposed, and can become severely corroded in a short period of time. Even stainless steel is not immune from the acid. Eventually, it too is eaten away.

Sulfur has a distinct, and strong odor. If you've never smelled it, buy some matches and smell an unlit match. When working around the stuff, the odor is substantially stronger and clothes will reek of this odor at the end of the day. It takes a few washings for the odor to disappear.

When melted, sulfur is a clear, red liquid; much unlike the bright yellow, when solid. When it burns, it becomes a darker yellow and releases Sulfur Dioxide, which is another deadly gas. Having a fire is common and can be started by as little as an automobile tire causing friction as it rolls over sulfur.

So, now you're wondering what I'm doing. I'm in charge of replacing some concrete that is almost destroyed after years of exposure and replacing the sheeting on a large building. I anticipate a few months before we're finished and will work out of town until complete.

I've become used to the environment, but sometimes the sulfur makes me sneeze and always gives my sinuses a fit. I'm rewarded with slight laryngitis when I return home every week, due to sinus drainage. By Monday, it's gone, but I know I'll have it again by the end of the next week.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Punk Kids

I have no other term for them. Young Spring Break turds; looking for trouble, threatening each other and disturbing the peace.

I wouldn't be disturbed, except they're stirring crap in the parking lot next door to my motel room and making more noise - with language that would make a sailor blush - than necessary.

I called the police. They arrived within minutes, but the throng disappeared.

It's not over. I wouldn't be surprised if I read about somebody getting their ass stomped, or killed tomorrow morning.

Where's the decency in today's youth? Being young, stupid and aggressive is part of growing up, but you don't do so where those that work are trying to rest. or where families might dine, while on vacation.

Assholes. May they all walk into the Gulf and disappear.

Legacy of Wuss

I've been around a few decades (over five) and spent a substantial amount of that time dealing with those in society that don't get their coffee at Starbucks and can make you disappear.

So, with that in mind, let's look at our current President, who's legacy is now cast in stone.

Will he be considered great? 

No. Nothing he has done is great. What has happened was by subterfuge.

Will he be considered brave?

No. He never explained his ideas with his belly against the bar. He lied, continued to lie and hides his lies with more lies.

Will he be considered a statesman?

No. To be a statesman, the citizens you represent, and foreign leaders you encounter, must find you exceptional, and respect you as a majority. That's not what we find, or will find.

Will he be remembered as a leader?

No. Being a leader means taking full responsibility for your actions, and those that are under your responsibility. If those you lead fail in their task, operate outside the law, or tarnish their office with malfeasance, there is no option, other than removing them from their position and demanding authorities prosecute; if necessary. Allowing those that broke the law to plead the fifth is not leadership, unless the leader is leading criminals.

Jimmy Carter wasn't a good President. His ideas clashed, he was perceived as weak, and the world treated the United States with disrespect due to his actions.

President Obama is worse. Not only has he surpassed Carter with his actions, he's lied, allowed his subordinates to violate the Constitution and ignores the laws he swore to uphold. World leaders shun him, if they don't treat him with derision.

Time will reveal more than is obvious. Obama's legacy will be of a bad President, a criminal politician and failure as a world leader. It's unavoidable and nothing he does will change his legacy.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Conjecture and Waste

It appears a giant airliner disappeared. There's conflicting reports, opinions, conspiracy theories and a whole bunch of time spent just talking about nothing.

Personally, I think it was pulled into the mother ship, with a tractor beam, and the occupants are on their third round of anal probing.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Line of Demarcation and Insanity

On the north end of Galveston, it was foggy this morning, but the fog lifted, dissipated and the afternoon brought abundant sun with temperatures around 70. For Galveston, that's very pleasant, considering the brutal heat of summer.

On the south end, it doesn't look like the fog ever lifted, which left temperatures in the damp fifties, low visibility and  a gloomy seawall.

Are you thinking to yourself: "What insanity?" If course you are, which brings us to the tourists:

The seawall was full. People were walking, riding, driving and wandering in their shorts, hoodies and looking forlorn. Only a few blocks north, it was beautiful, although there's nothing really there to see, unless you go to the Strand.

Is it insane to be determined to not waste your vacation, or Spring Break, and wander in heavy, dank, cold fog? Damn straight it is.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Life's Been Good

This one is for Dana

Daylight Can't Be Saved

It can't. So only a pinheaded government bureaucrat could come up with the idea of "Daylight SavingsTime".

I don't like it; never will; and think those that do are woefully lacking in reasoning abilities. Sorry if I insulted any of my readers, but that's how I feel. Nothing good comes from manipulating clocks and arbitrarily dicking with the sleep schedule of millions is not healthy.

So, one hour of my day was "borrowed" for some undetermined reason. My circadian clock had a screwdriver placed in the works and I won't feel like I've had a good night's sleep for awhile.

Screw you "Daylight Savings Time".

Friday, March 7, 2014

The Song That Doesn't Exist

My drive home this evening was full of musings, songs that resurrected the past and accentuated by the early Spring weather; high cirrus, wispy contrails, a sun dog and the smell of new growth; tugging at the cool air; a harbinger of hot days and a blistering sun.

Winter is forecast to forecast to threaten again; a weak effort with rain, cold mornings and the slow relinquishing of the hold that gripped with vengeance.

After I arrived home, I searched through music videos; looking for the correct song to express my mood. It was a futile search, with Three Dog Night, Joni Mitchell and Randy Newman only scratching at the mood I'm in. Nothing fits and I decided I'd tried enough, and will admit defeat.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

While Checking the Weather

I stepped out of my room early this morning, checked the weather and heard a voice a few dozen feet to my right: "Excuse me sir; do you have a cigarette?"

I turned, and two young bearded men; about four rooms down; were standing by a stairwell and looking my way.

I don't like being asked such things; especially when it's the wrong time of the day to ask me anything and they were too close to my comfort zone. I answered: "You need to get the **ck out of here."

Bearded boy 1, with the checkered pants and hoodie: "What's wrong with you?"

Bearded boy 2, in jeans with a hoodie: "Leave him alone, he must be having a bad day."

Checkered pants started walking across the parking lot, toward the fence separating the the hotels and said: "What's your problem?"

I answered: "Are you staying here?"

He answered: "Yes" and kept moving.

His sidekick, who I was watching out of the corner of my eye, crossed the parking area, without moving closer, and soon joined his buddy.

As they walked away, I could hear checkered pants ranting and they soon disappeared in the adjacent parking lot.

I stepped back into my room, finished preparing for work and was ready to go within 5 minutes.

I was cautious when I left my room. As I was driving toward the exit, I saw sidekick about halfway from the end of the hotel and checkered pants walking down the middle of the drive.

I slowed down, waited for a reaction and checkered pants soon squeezed between a missing slat in the fence and was gone.

I told the night manager, and a fellow worker said the police were in the parking lot before he left for the project.

I stopped and spoke with the manager when I arrived this evening. They evicted a few people this morning, which is good, since I was told by another fellow worker he watched checkered pants exchanging something between a car that stopped and soon pulled away.

Drugs? Probably. In my motel? Nope. I'll be watching. In my book, there's no season on drug dealers.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

With Knowledge Comes Knowledge

I was watching "Iron Man" and thinking of how physics are abandoned for the plot and special effects.

One thing that came to mind was the instant deceleration from a few hundred miles an hour. It looks great on film, and a suit could probably be made to handle the stress...but....there would only be jelly inside.

Some might say: "Well, you could control the inertia, with the manipulation of gravity, and the person inside the suit wouldn't be hurt."

That could be, but if you could do that, why not just manipulate gravity, crush your enemies to the size of an atom and watch them fuse in a tiny nuclear explosion?

Still, it's fun to watch. I like to see bad guys lose.

A Lot Of Bots

Bot visits seem to be in cycles. A long time passes, and only a few try to scale the walls, and then a crowd appears.

I've wondered why, then realized some programmer will come up with a new way to circumvent filters, sell the code and make a few bucks. After that, the bots find a way in for awhile.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

If You're Not Already Concerned...

...think of this:

The Soviet Union was ruthless in accumulating information, gaining power and manipulating other governments. Most of this was done covertly and the operatives were expendable, if necessary.

Now, there's an entire army in Crimea, without identification and Putin is denying they're Russian. Otherwise, he's thumbing his nose at the entire world - especially the United States - and he's making the threat he'll do anything to destroy his enemies.

So, somewhere there are Russian operatives doing their dirty work and many in the U.S. thought they were our friend.

Dumbasses. It's only beginning.

Monday, March 3, 2014

It All Changes

The media has done everything but carry the current administration around on a pillow, but that was when the fantasy was too real to be true. I think this will change.

Even a blithering idiot will understand the stark fact the problem in the Ukraine is indicative of something that influences the ability to survive. The media, as much as they would like to think otherwise, is finding Russia is censoring the media, will cruelly punish those that try to report facts and their insignificance will arrive in the United States shortly, if they don't become more vocal. The best analogy is an outspoken woman finding she's wandered into a dark alley, with thugs, and her dress is too short. All the words mean nothing and the scream will be unheard.

What Should Happen?

It's obvious, the clueless administration has stepped in it, has no idea what they stepped in and want everyone to believe there's nutritious oatmeal on the bottom of their stinking shoes. This leads to the question: What's next?

If I was President, I'd tell Kerry to keep his stupid ass in the United States and close his mouth. After that, I'd ask for an emergency meeting with Congress, demand a loosening of regulations dealing with any petroleum production, and proclaim a reduction in federal spending, except for that needed to increase our military strength and rejuvenate our nuclear weapons.

Will this happen? Of course not. Obama is as silly as a savant in a piano store. It all sounds good, until you realize he's as competent as a box of rocks.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Tim Wilson R.I.P.

Tim Wilson was a comedian/songwriter/performer. I first heard him on the Bob and Tom radio show, years ago. He was a regular, shared his comedy and made me laugh.

Tim died of a heart attack. May he rest in peace.

I Need Not Explain This

Bob Dylan once sang everyone serves somebody. It makes you think.

Being Blunt

History is full of the likes of Obama. Weak, feckless individuals that gained power because the populace was too apathetic to demand more from their media, unwilling to make the right decisions and generally clueless on how dangerous the world really is.

Russia is making huge strategic and diplomatic moves that can only be described as pissing on the shoes of the rest of the world. Meanwhile, the President is more worried about things that are inconsequential.

So, the U.S. waits, with most of the citizens oblivious of anything except the size of Kim Kardashians ass.