Blog Archives

Ever make out a “living will?”

My daughter, wife, son and daughter-in-law are all participating in making out the details for a “living will“… I guess they are worried about what to do with my books and check-protector collection and fat-man clothes and other stuff.

They need to know if I’ll allow an autopsey, or whether I want to be cremated or buried or stuffed and distributed on a timely basis to decorate the homes of family members. They need to know if I want to stay alive in a vegetative state. Nothing I’ve really thought about before.

They are doing all this by following instructions in a book (“In the Checklist of Life“) by Elly and my old friend and former employee Lynn McPhelimy who developed this stuff thirty years ago.

This has been helpful to many people in our family… Elly gave many of them copies of Lynn’s book as holiday gifts one year. You can get it, too… just go to Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/In-Checklist-Life-Working-Leave/dp/0965784355b   where it costs under $20.00.

If you are planning last days of any family member, or yourself, you may want to consider one of the many five-star reviews that have appeared on Amazon:

This is an excellent book. Everyone needs to have one of these. I have filled out every page that applies. I told my whole family where it is located should my untimely death occur. I have had to plan and attend many funerals and when there is no plan it can make things difficult and stressful. It you take the time to fill out these pages, even some of them, it will help your family in a time of sorrow and confusion. This book is best for the division of property and sentimental items. It is also a good idea to have a living will and trust. Anyone who’s ever had to go through probate or a difficult family situation can relate. For those who haven’t, just know that death can often do strange things to people and even the most loving of families can be divided over who gets what. Get this book as a great start to planning an inevitable part of life.

…or this one:

“In the Checklist of Life” was a book that I found to be indispensable. In retrospect, after losing someone close to you, you realize how important this book really is. I have always joked with my family about writing my own obituary, and here is my very own chapter in which to do just that. The chapter about your pets is one that should not be missed for all pet lovers. This book is smart, it’s funny, it makes you think, it makes you cry. Be kind to your family and fill in the pages of this wonderful book. They will forever be thankful.

As I think about what might go wrong with the surgery I’m having next Friday, this will keep most of my family feeling much more secure.  Thanks, Lynn.

 

Advertisements

Realizing how much I have come to depend on my wonderful Superfocus glasses.

For the last few weeks I have been wearing my new Superfocus Leonardos, the new Italian design frames for the amazing focusable glasses I discovered a couple of years ago.

My original pair is a very modernist design called Bauhaus. My wife was so impressed with them that she bought a pair as well.

People are always asking “Where do you get those glasses?” and we give people the source and refer them to the Superfocus web site, show them the Penn Gillette ads, and demonstrate the ease of use and the focusing action of our specs.

The Bauhaus focuses with a sliding device and the new Leonardos have a rotating dial that is virtually invisible to onlookers. Both methods are very easy to use and I am so used to them I rarely even realize that I’m carrying out the focusing.

Interested? Go Here:

Halloween tonight…

Elly works late today, so the dogs and I will be ready to greet any costumed kids who come to the door with a bowl of miniature candy bars. I know this is going to drive my dogs crazy, but I’ll put up with it.

It looks like the rain has finally stopped outside. Hopefully it will stay this way. It would be very unfortunate for kids to have to go house to house in the rain. Out here in rural Harper’s Ferry the houses are spread pretty widely apart and it would be a very wet walk.

So I’m wishing all of you a happy Halloween out there. Let it turn a Wednesday evening into fun.

 

I’m wondering if Halloween is turning into a sexually demonstrative holiday…

Have you seen some of the Halloween costumes, both for kids and adults, that are popping up on the web looking for buyers to turn on? I’m finding them amazing…what was always, to me, a kids’ holiday with a spooky, witches and ghosts attitude seems to be changing radically.

The first costume I saw that made me look for more was this kid’s costume:

The idea that mothers are going to let their young ‘uns out as contraceptive packages surprised the hell out of me… not that I didn’t think it was hilarious.

Then again, there are adult costumes that are making me wonder what folks are looking to communicate.
Perhaps there are too many things in our society that aren’t getting enough attention… or the conservative attack on a woman’s right to choose has results that appear unnatural.

I’m not about to think of Halloween as an obnoxious holiday… it never has been during my life.

It does seem that some folks are having lots of fun with this. I’m not sure if the penis here is for kids or adults. Whatever, it certainly seems happy.

Can you picture moms and dads in the costume shop with junior shopping for this year’s appearance. And then there are girl’s costumes, too. A used feminine napkin is something I would never have imagined as something to walk the neighborhood looking for candy as.

When you think of it, there are many similar things which could be turned into Halloween costumes and some designer somewhere is having an emotional roller coaster ride.

How we see members of the opposite sex is something that expresses an unusual opinion. Men are, perhaps, looking for ways to make a statement as to how he sees the woman in his life. A joke? An insult? A confused thought? Who can tell?

Then, of course, there are costumes looking for some kind of action. Does it make you wonder what occurs during the free mammogram? One can guess.

There is, however, a view of the man/woman relationship as a plug-in idea… and energy will probably be passed on. This is pretty neat, but still highly suggestive.

So… I hope at the end of the month you have an interesting and revealing Halloween.

 

Foreign Facts ( I was led into this from Dave Barry’s Blog)

 

One in three busy Brits believe it’s acceptable to answer a mobile phone call during sex, it has been revealed.

Read the whole article HERE.

 

Reviewing the “junk” or “spam” that comes into this blog…

 

Every so often instead of just trashing the entries that Akismet builds up during the course of the say, I take a quick review of where this stuff is coming from. Since I average about 9,500 of these bothersome bits a month, reviewing them is pretty much a waste of time, but it tells me what some people out in the blogosphere are trying to do.

Would you believe that this costs $1500.00?

For the most part they are trying to get free advertising posted as comments to blog entries. Last year the big pushers were porn sites, but this year I am swamped by women’s accessories – primarily Gucci leather products (mostly handbags) and various brands of ladies’ shoes.

Who do these people think this blog serves? Why do they think I’ll post this stuff?

I’d like to think the posters are wasting their time, but since I am sure this garbage is being put out by some kind of automatic list pushed across the web, I doubt that they are taking up anyone’s time at all.

Thankfully, Akismet has a great memory for spammers and removes them immediately. I recommend it highly.

 

The Power is Back! (9:00 AM)

We just finished a 13 hour power outage due, I am told, by a tree falling over a line down Uvilla Road.

Elly and I drove over to Charles Town to have breakfast (and COFFEE) at the Mountaintop Diner and came back to the lights being on (although the Potomac Edison trucks are still working on the lines around the corner from us.)

The wind and thunderstorms last night blew all kinds of things from Elly’s gardening around the yard and it will have to be picked up today… although it is getting up to near 90° outside… and there are more thunderstorms due later this afternoon.

Happy Memorial Day.

I’m off to buy a suit…

… for my son’s wedding in August. I haven’t bought a new suit in 30 years, so this is an occasion I’m dreading.

This is the one I like.

Anyway, Elly and I are of to Men’s Wearhouse (or as I refer to their Big and Tall section the Fat Man Shop) where I saw a suit advertised that I can live with, given my outrageous size. They also advertise 2 for 1, although what I am going to do with two fat man suits is beyond me. If I was an insurance agent or a stock broker or something, I could see it… but I’m a retired computer and theatre guy with a couple of local radio shows where no one sees me. Suits are not a big deal.

Buddy’s wedding, however, is another story and there are requirements that must be met, so I expect to come back with receipts for two suits which will be being hemmed and altered. Next step is shoes, shirts and a tie (something other than the couple of old ties I found in my closet.)

Pictures of me in this stuff to come.

I needed a laugh and found one…

…at All Hat, No Cattle:

Joke

A woman who had been married three times walked into a bridal shop one day and told the sales clerk that she was looking for a wedding gown for her fourth wedding.

“Of course, madam,” replied the sales clerk, “exactly what type and color dress are you looking for?”

The bride to be said, “A long frilly white dress with a veil.”

The sales clerk hesitated a bit, then said, “Please don’t take this the wrong way, but gowns of that nature are considered more appropriate for brides who are being married the first time – for those who are a bit more innocent, if you know what I mean? Perhaps ivory or sky blue would be nice?”

“Well,” replied the customer, a little peeved at the clerk’s directness, “I can assure you that a white gown would be quite appropriate. Believe it or not, despite all my marriages, I remain as innocent as a first-time bride. You see, my first husband was so excited about our wedding, he died as we were checking into our honey moon hotel. My second husband and I got into such a terrible fight in the limo on our way to our honeymoon hotel that we had that wedding annulled immediately and never spoke to each other again.”

“What about your third husband?” asked the sales clerk.

“That one was a Republican,” said the woman, “and every night for four years, he just sat on the edge of the bed and told me how good it was going to be, but nothing ever happened.”

 

Heeheehee… I needed that.  🙂

Over at Mellow Moods having coffee after the show…

Not a bad show on WSHC this morning… a lot of song request challenges (and I found all of them) from my regulars and nothing went wrong with the equipment (Ta Dah!).

The weekend looks lovely. After coffee, I’m on my way over to our now up-for-sale town house to get some hardware off the garden fence. Then back home to make up the sleep that I DIDN”T get last night.

Hope you all have a great weekend.

Best Commercial Idea I’ve Seen This Year…

Do people steal your lunch out of the refrigerator at work? A company called “the” has come up with the answer: anti-theft lunch bags.

For $8, you receive 25 plastic sandwich bags with strategically placed green splotches on the surface, to make the contents inside look like something no one would want to steal, let alone eat.

Five percent of the lunch bag proceeds will go to Freedom From Hunger.

To order go HERE.

This is SOOOOOO FUNNY…

(and it sums up my generation!)

With great thanks to StarshipCunductor.

Starting the third week of moving and we’re still not done…

So help me, moving again is going to take more will than I think I have. We’re still hauling boxes and artwork and clothes and other stuff from 322 Starkey’s to the new house and it is an ongoing exhaustion creator.

To top it off it is raining this weekend and our helper students have football practice for much of it. When this is all done I’m going to sleep for two days straight and then get on with my life.

This morning on my radio show I was stumped for the first time on a play challenge, but, in general it went pretty well. Except, of course, that we weren’t on the internet due to a problem with the provider that the station is having. I’m sorry my regular out-of-town listeners couldn’t tune in today.

Spring Ahead!

We lose an hour of sleep tonight, so remember to set your clocks and watches (and computers and cell phones if they don’t do it automatically) ahead one hour.

Don’t let it get you down, though. It means there’s one more hour of sunshine in the early evening when we start doing the after work gardening or pet exercising or just casual coffee drinking on the front porch. Ahhh, Daylight Savings Time.

It gives Santorum and Romney an extra hour of campaigning in daylight, when people can really see them. Too bad for Newt, though… vampires come out an hour later.

I guess we’ll just consider it springtime and hope there is no return to the cold.

World’s Best Graffiti VI – As you can see, I’m being lazy…

… while I’m in the process of moving houses, I’m not doing my usual political ramble (of course, I’ve had no television to pick up the political stuff, but, wonder of wonders, Comcast showed up this morning.)

Anyway, here are a few more wall art masterpieces;

I love the tiger!

Just brought my first load over to the new house…

…not a lot. Just my tools and tool tables, some folding chairs, Elly’s bicycle and some glass lamp covers to install upstairs (Elly’s project). I’ve also got a bent mailbox outside that I have to fix… then I’m going home to pack more stuff and take care of the dogs.

The pups don’t realize it, but we are installing one of those electronic devices to keep them in the yard using a transmitter and zapping collars. It turned out to be easier and cheaper than putting in a new fence. We have 30 days to try it out, train the dogs to it and make sure it works.  Does anyone out there have experience with this that you would share?

Figured I’d take my photograph sitting in the new house while I post this. The house is pretty empty, but there is a nice light coming in from the windows and I don’t look that bad.

OK…time to go. Can’t waste more time.

I’ve been trying to convince my dogs that they should help around the house…

… so I showed them this video:

Nestle went back to sleep and Byron picked up a chew toy and ran upstairs.

So much for dog responsibility.

Went to see “I AM” that Sustainable Shepherdstown presented at the Opera House.

The documentary by Tom Shedyak that Elly set up for Sustainable Shepherdstown to present at the Opera House had a crowded audience… very impressive.

Here’s the film’s trailer:

The Rube Carnival at the Folly is coming together…

A lot of folks, me included,have been working on finishing the Carnival project so it can come off on the 10th and 11th of September without a hitch.

I’m almost finished with the Sling Shooters booth, where folks can fire slingshots (a la Angry birds, but in real life) at targets like a clown, a werewolf and Gumbo the Rooster.

I stopped by today to watch Sally Kimmel (and others) working on painting the Tarot Cards which will line Archetype Alley.

Saturday morning we’re finishing the last clay layer on the outdoor pizza oven… and I understand that Phil Mastrangelo from Mellow Moods will be there throwing the Pizzas… he’s also setting up to sell his famous fruit smoothies.

Al Thomas will be having a trebouché shoot… Bradley Sanders will have a bamboo water wheel game. there will be a Fashion Show, live music, plenty of fun for kids and adults running from morning into the evenings of both days. We’re only 10 days away from it as I write this.

Hope I see everyone there!

I guess I’m REALLY feeling older…

Al Thomas

Last night was Al Thomas’ Birthday Party over at the Folly, the wonderful timber frame performance area he built some years ago on Bradley Sanders’ property, surrounded by talking areas and wood benches and what’s left of Al’s giant trebuchet (which he says he’s going to put back together one of these days.)

Al turned 60 this week, which makes him 5 years younger than me and a person with so much more energy and personality, able to carry on discussions with anyone and loved by everyone, that I am totally jealous.

Elly and Bud were also at the party with me ( Bud stayed there till 1:00 AM… 1:00 AM!… when his mother picked him up and the party was still going on.) We got there around quarter past five and after 2 1/2 hours I was exhausted, so I talked Elly into going home (she was going to a 10PM showing of “Paris Texas” at the Opera House with her friend Joan anyway), where I went to bed (I had been up since 4:30 in the morning and could barely keep awake.

The music was great, the food was terrific and beer and wine flowed freely. By the time I left there were easily 100 people there… from folks my age and older to the youngest of children running around and speeding through crowds on bikes… and Elly said when she picked up Bud cars will still arriving as others were leaving. How folks close to my age can keep going so far into the night is more than I can understand.

My son says I’m not “social” and that’s probably true (Elly agrees), but I think part of it is that I can never think of things to talk about unless someone else and I are involved in the same project, and I can’t remember most names… even of people I’ve met only a day or so ago. I am so embarrassed about my inability to remember names and how it makes it hard for me to introduce people to my wife and son or others, that I avoid doing it… or I do “one way” introductions, hoping the person whose name I can’t remember coughs it up when saying “nice to meet you.”

As I get older, I’m losing my memory of other things, too… events, movies I’ve seen, etc. … and my energy level is dropping like a bag of stones from a bridge. I’m having more and more trouble losing weight as I get more and more sedentary. I only sleep in 90 minute chunks, so I’m up and down all night. If it were not for this blog, my podcast, and co-hosting for John Case on the Friday morning radio show, I would probably be in a coma.

I can’t figure out who I am at this point in life. Perhaps working on the Carnival project for August at the Folly will help me see who I am (and someday I’d like to direct some theatre again… there are so many pieces I want to do and no one, so far, interested in having me do them.

At least it is Sunday and I can nap the afternoon away.

Anyhow… Happy Birthday, Al. You are one of the people whose names I CAN remember and who I really enjoy talking with.

Change To Win

I spend most of my time on this blog, lately, pointing out the growing number of things that are destroying our economy, our community, our health and, ultimately, our existence. I’m not sure who listens or believes what is proven over and over. I know many are putting their faith is religion, in second comings, in waiting to be lifted to heaven as the Devil takes over the Earth

Come back to reality, folks. Most of the solutions are fairly clear and require us to put in a great deal of work. We have all got to be ready for it.

I haven’t run one of these videos in some time… but I feel like upping everyone’s will to win:

Got it? I hope so.

Saturday Projects…

Given the first good, thunderstorm free Saturday in a long time, everyone was outdoors taking care of our long delayed projects. I started the day by cutting the grass in our front yard (which is very small… I use a rotary trimmer, don’t need a lawnmower) and took down the really overgrown grass.

Then Elly and I went over to work on the Community Garden fence installation. We were there before ten and original only had a couple of small neighbor boys (one who, incidentally, has reserved a garden plot for himself) to get the fifth post in.

By the end of the day, after Peter Corum and some of the other volunteers who came at 10 AM helped with the rest of the posts until all four corners…12 posts… were now in the ground.

The other project today, which our group participated in as well, was the building of a barn-like structure on the Morgan’s Grove Market Platform ( which used to be the foundation of a burned down restaurant.)

Al Thomas of Joint Efforts had cut and notched the pieces and had actually set up a lot of the structure himself before the team showed up.

But once everyone was there they made significant progress in getting the bracings up for the roof (it took four people on each side at the top of the rigging and a couple of people checking for accuracy below.

This is where it was when Elly and I left:

Market opens May 7th.

My glasses are here.. I’ve changed my look..

First, I had my grey hair cut short. Then I had my Superfocus glasses fitted at an optician‘s in Charles Town. Now here is the new me:

What a change!  Wait til John Case sees me tomorrow morning on Winners And Losers.



Return to being a Vegan

I’ll admit it… about six months ago I gave up the Vegan diet I had been on for close to two years and went off on a meat and cheese (mostly cheese) binge. But now, since my weight stopped coming off and I just didn’t feel as good, last Monday I returned to my Vegan diet (but I will miss that occasional top sirloin!).

et’s see how long I can keep going (says bill as he digs out his Vegan Chili recipe.)

Waiting for my Superfocus Glasses…

I’m now in the sixth week of waiting for my Superfocus glasses to be delivered… and the estimated delivery date is May 18th.

That’s right… it takes these guys 12 weeks to make a pair of these amazing, adjustable glasses.

I am so looking forward to getting rid of these bifocals and being able to focus at any distance with just a flick of a finger… however, the wait is almost unbearable.

I originally got interested in these when I saw a couple of TV ads with Penn Jillette and Joel Grey ,  then the ads started popping up all over the web… so I went to their site (www.superfocus.com) and got more information about them.

To start with, they are NOT CHEAP. Starting at around $600.00, by the time you get the extras, like scratch proof lenses (or shades) and different length and color of temples, you are easily up to $700.00 or $800.00. So I weighed the costs of getting either bifocals, or separate reading glasses and distance glasses, and the fact that these will function longer without prescription changes… and that they would just be easier to adapt to my aging eyes. Then I decided to order them. I went to my optometrist to get an eye exam and a prescription for the glasses (you have to get a little more than the usual amount of info because each pair is sized to the particular distance between your eyes only) and I called in my order.

Now I wait.

And I wait.

Has anyone else had a longer than usual waiting experience for these?