Thursday, April 30, 2009

More Rhymes

"Rain, rain go away, come back some other day!"

"April showers bring May flowers."

It seems like it has been raining or threatening to rain forever (or a week). We like to bicycle places, but do not like to bike in the rain (slippery brakes, getting wet, etc.). So we have not been able to do much biking the last few days. Biking helps us to use up the calories that we gulp down; whereas, not biking allows the yummy foods to build up in us (& not into muscle).

Also, my wife has been working in what we laughingly like to call our garden, but we can't do much when the ground is soaked.

Of course, since we have a well for our water, rain also gives us drinking water for much of the summer. Oh well, into each life a little rain must come!

“If a kid asks where rain comes from, I think a cute thing to tell him is "God is crying." And if he asks why God is crying, another cute thing to tell him is "Probably because of something you did."” Jack Handy

“The best thing one can do when it's raining is to let it rain.” Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

“A poet is someone who stands outside in the rain hoping to be struck by lightning.” James Dickey

rain (n) moisture condensed from the atmosphere that falls visibly in separate drops • [in sing. ] a large or overwhelming quantity of things that fall or descend

ORIGIN Old English regn (noun), regnian (verb), of Germanic origin; related to Dutch regen and German Regen.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Play Pals

When I was younger I always seemed to have a pal who I always played with. Two I remember were Willy Kohrs & Wesley Kokko (not sure of the spelling). We used to play baseball (usually in the street), football (ditto), war ,etc. So with these guys, I was proud to be associated with them; we were good kids ; didn't steal, smoke, lie excessively. We got in trouble sometimes but it was for minor things. My kids seemed to have good kids as friends also.

So we come to P.O.! His good biddies appear to be Bill Ayers (a bomber), Hugo Chavez (a dictator who put on the ballet numerous times to allow him to be "president for life" finally getting it after putting opposition newspaper publishers in jail & harassing his opponents ), Fidel Castro (another dictator ).

I'm proud of my friends; how about P.O.?

FRIENDSHIP, (n) A ship big enough to carry two in fair weather, but only one in foul

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Break your Mother's Back

When I was young there was a rhyme "Step on a crack, break your Mother's Back." I find that when I am walking on a sidewalk I still try to avoid the cracks. I wonder if the kids now a days still do that. Did I tell my kids this rhyme? Do they tell their kids? What if you are mad at your mother, do you purposefully step on all the cracks? I show that we watch sometimes is Monk, in his opening credits he is avoiding the cracks on a small rock sidewalk.

This is the 100th. post on this blog. I thought a non-political entry was appropriate!

rhyme (n) correspondence of sound between words or the endings of words, esp. when these are used at the ends of lines of poetry. • a short poem in which the sound of the word or syllable at the end of each line corresponds with that at the end of another. • poetry or verse marked by such correspondence of sound : the clues were written in rhyme. • a word that has the same sound as another.
ORIGIN Middle English rime, from Old French, from medieval Latin rithmus, via Latin from Greek rhuthmos (see rhythm ). The current spelling was introduced in the early 17th cent. under the influence of rhythm.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Credit Cards

I have had an interesting journey with credit cards.

When we first applied for a credit card, we were rejected. So I wrote one of my very bitter letters to the credit card provider (when I get mad I write very bitter letters telling them how stupid they are but not in those words, case in point the IL IRS letters) asking if we had NO debt & had investments how come we were bad credit card risks; they then gave us a credit card (which I canceled a couple of years later when they tried to impose a fee).

Since then we get numerous invitations to get more credit cards.

For the second time in 2 years someone has stolen my credit card number & we had to cancel the cards & will get new ones in the mail some time soon (hint check your credit card charges daily, it is easy to do on line). Of course, these are the cards we use for various periodic bills. The last time it was canceled just as our YMCA payment was due.

Now P.O. has proposed regulating credit card companies (after all look how well that has worked with Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac). Once again the responsive credit card users will be penalized for the incompetent users!

“You want 21 percent risk free? Pay off your credit cards.” Andrew Tobias “

Money isn't everything - there's credit cards, money orders, and travelers' checks”

“Money is just the poor man's credit card.” Marshall McLuhan

“Modern man drives a mortgaged car over a bond-financed highway on credit-card gas.” Earl Wilson
CREDITOR, (n) One of a tribe of savages dwelling beyond the Financial Straits and dreaded for their desolating incursions. (DD)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

TARP funds

From National Review Online : Several large banks, including J. P. Morgan and Goldman Sachs, have announced that they would like to repay the funds they took from the government under Paulson’s Capital Purchase Plan (CPP) last October, but the Obama administration is discouraging them from doing so. A senior administration official told the Financial Times that a bank would not be allowed to repay its TARP funds unless it was “good for the system” — never mind what’s best for that particular bank.

It gets stranger and stranger. I thought we would be happy to get back some of the money we shoveled down the rat hole!

I say get what you can from the banks; it might be our last chance.  Some of the reasons for the banks wanting to pay back the money are the restrictions that President / Congress has placed on the funds (no bonuses for one).

I guess I will never be in the Treasury Department; after all I pay our taxes & don't spend more than we make.

BAIT, (n) A preparation that renders the hook more palatable. The best kind is beauty. (DD)

I'm Sorry

It is amazing how sorry P.O. is!

I'm sorry for not spending enough time with my kids & maybe for a few investments I bought / didn't buy, but in general I tried to do things correctly.

P.O. has been apologizing to various countries for the U.S. being more productive, stronger, protector of weak nations, richer than other countries.  I guess I feel that the President of the U.S. should be a cheer leader for his country not an apologizer.

Why do you want to be the leader of a country that you hate?

APOLOGIZE, (v.i.)  To lay the foundation for a future offense  (DD)

Friday, April 17, 2009

Sports Update

Michigan State University did not win the NCAA Basketball Championship but get into the final game after beating 2 #1 seeds before losing to UNC.

The Pistons after the trade for Iverson have slipped to below .500 & have the eight seed in the NBA East playoffs while Denver has captured the 2nd seed in the West.

The Lions still were 0-16.

The Tigers are at least above .500 at this time vs. last year when they started off really bad & kept it up all year.

The RedWings have the 2nd seed in the West & won their first playoff game.

loyalty (n) the quality of being loyal to someone or something • (often loyalties) a strong feeling of support or allegiance

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Happy Tax Day

Since I am retired I have to pay quarterly estimated taxes plus usually a certain amount on "tax day."  Many people don't really know how much they pay in taxes since it is taken out of their paychecks each week / biweekly / monthly.  Many people think that they don't pay any taxes since they get a refund each year.

Add up the withholding, add up your real estate taxes, add the sales tax on each purchase, add in various fees, add the amount on any capital gains or dividends, add in the gas taxes on each gallon, etc., etc.  This is a staggering amount.

A refund is only the amount that you overpaid in withholding not free money from the government plus you lose the interest on that money if you have put it in a savings account.

Happy Tax DAY!

In levying taxes and in shearing sheep it is well to stop when you get down to the skin. Austin O'Malley

The way taxes are, you might as well marry for love.  Joe E. Lewis

I wouldn't mind paying taxes… if I knew they were going to a friendly country.  Dick Gregory

If Thomas Jefferson thought taxation without representation was bad, he should see how it is with representation. Rush Limbaugh

Next to being shot at and missed, nothing is quite as satisfying as an income tax refund.  F. J. Raymond

Monday, April 13, 2009

Holy Week

My daughter's blog has a very good journey thru Holy Week, of course, the 2-3 people that actually read this blog already know that!

I am in our Church choir. We have 3 basses (one is me); (1) who is on the disabled list due to surgery is an extremely good, strong singer, (2) another is very talented playing the guitar & leading our praise band, and then there is the bringing up the rear bass (me). I really like when #1 is there because he is confident & he can help me get close to the proper notes.

This past week the choir sang on Thursday (Maundy Thursday), Friday (Good Friday), Saturday (Easter Vigil Service) & Sunday (Easter Sunday). The Easter Season has numerous great uplifting hymns & is a good time to be in the choir. We were able to follow the journey thru these services.

5As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed.

6"Don't be alarmed," he said. "You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. 7But go, tell his disciples and Peter, 'He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.' " Mark 16:5-7 NIV

Wednesday, April 8, 2009


It is a different type of President that goes to Europe and apologizes for his country. That we have made mistakes & are arrogant (from probably the most arrogant president in my memory), that we should follow the European way of doing things (i.e., have the USA do it for them) & consult them over any decisions.

Everything that "The One" asked them to do they will not do (no more support for his Afghan fight, no support for calling out N.Korea, no increase their spending, etc.). I actually thought that he was intelligent enough to do what was right for our country, I am very disappointed that he is anti-American.

I like to see a man proud of the place in which he lives. I like to see a man live so that his place will be proud of him. ~Abraham Lincoln

It is the love of country that has lighted and that keeps glowing the holy fire of patriotism. ~J. Horace McFarland

The proper means of increasing the love we bear our native country is to reside some time in a foreign one. ~William Shenstone

My kind of loyalty was loyalty to one's country, not to its institutions or its office-holders. ~Mark Twain

patriot (n) 1 a person who vigorously supports their country and is prepared to defend it against enemies or detractors.
ORIGIN late 16th cent. (in the late Latin sense): from French patriote, from late Latin patriota ‘fellow countryman,’ from Greek patriōtēs, from patrios ‘of one's fathers,’ from patris ‘fatherland.’

Saturday, April 4, 2009


We used to watch numerous comedies on TV.  Some great shows like Dick Van Dyke, Mary Tyler Moore, Various Newhart shows, the Cosby shows.  But now we do not watch any "comedy" shows.  I think that they are just stupid, the men are all idiots, the women are smart & sexy, the children are disrespectful.

I think it started with The Simpsons and shows like Married with Children that showed completely unreal families.  I guess I am just an old-fogey.

The problem is the average person isn’t tuned in to lifelong learning, or going to seminars and so forth. If the information is not on television, and it’s not in the movies they watch, and it’s not in the few books that they buy, they don’t get it. Jack Canfield 

I can't think of one person who is on TV who isn't vain. It's the nature of the beast. If you are on TV then you have a vanity, for sure. Just admit it! Why not?  Simon Cowell

On an average day 7 minutes of news happens. Yet there are currently three full-time, 24-hour news networks. Jon Stewart

"My father hated radio and could not wait for television to be invented so he could hate that too."  Peter De Vries

"I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book."  Groucho Marx

television (n) 1 a system for transmitting visual images and sound that are reproduced on screens, chiefly used to broadcast programs for entertainment, information, and education.
• the activity, profession, or medium of broadcasting on television 2 (also television set) a box-shaped device that receives television signals and reproduces them on a screen.
ORIGIN early 20th cent. : from tele- [at a distance] + vision