Nothing to do with Elk County..........just an observation.
Today I received a phone call from a guy who used to live across the street from me. He moved many years ago but kept the house as a rental. So I would see him on occasion. He was a music composer and composed and arranged music scores for himself and other musicians. He was also an arranger for some movies. When my wife and I went to the show we were always the last ones out because we waited for the credits to see if his name was there. His wife was East Indian and was a very talented Indian musician. They toured all over the world. I remember stories about her going to India for a tour and they paid her in gold because dollars were difficult to exchange in those days. She was diagnosed with breast cancer over 20 years ago but seemed to have beaten it. I had not heard from him in some time.
He called today to tell me that his wife had passed. She was 68 and had been very sick with cancer that had returned. Their son was the same age as my son and came to our house many times until they moved.
I mentioned this to my kids and they informed me that I could find her on YouTube which I did. They also Googled her although much of the information such as birth dates were not quite accurate. When they lived across the street the house had a room which was soundproofed and she taught lessons to those who were learning Indian music. Their son became a musician also and has toured Europe and the States.
Another observation that occurred during Christmas........
I was talking to my wife and we were reflecting on past holidays both good memories and bad. I thought about the Christmas' I spent in Howard. There were not a lot because we lived far away. I also seemed to think of the bad times rather than the good ones. The bad times are a stronger memory I guess.
One Christmas when I was very young my cousin who was the High School girls athletic coach in the town where we were living decided to drive my mother and I to Howard. We packed up the car with a lot of goodies, cookies and candies and such. We loaded up the dog and set out. When we got to Liberal my cousin wanted to stop and visit an own friend. After the visit we headed back down the farm road to the highway. A tire blew out and she lost control and the car overturned into a ditch. We managed to get out of the car while the dog was having a feast on the goodies. A man with a station wagon came along and helped us. My mother was injured pretty bad and he took us to the hospital. She remained there for four weeks and my cousin and I went on to Howard for Christmas.
Another not so good memory......my mother passed away three days before Christmas. I was overseas and came back for the funeral. My brother and I drove to Howard on Christmas for the funeral which was held on the Wednesday between Christmas and New Years Day.
I am sure there were holidays that were good and happy. But I always remember the bad ones.
1. I wish to apologize for ranting which is mainly what this thread is for. 2. Thanks for the "Wake-up" which reminds me that although I do read some things on this thread I choose to restrain my comments because I don't like the taste of my foot in my mouth. 3. My own lack of knowledge of politics inhibits me from understanding most of what is happening. 4. I promise to keep my opinions to myself where they are safely stored in my brain.
And another opinion from someone to generally stays away from this thread........
I personally have had it with Trump. Shutting down the government and causing thousands of Americans their wages that support their families because he can't convince Congress to support his wall is tantamount to childish behavior............."I am going to take my football and go home."
Does a wall keep out illegal people from entering the country? I don't know and I don't really care. What I do care about is that my legal neighbor is suffering because he can't get his paycheck to pay his bills and feed his family because of this idiot's desire to build a wall.
It is time for Congress to take a stand and either build the wall or get this guy out of office. It is time for us to tell our Congress and our President to stop playing games with American citizen's lives. In my mind this act of shutting down the government is an impeachable offense.
Thought for the day.......a long thought but you might like.
I rarely get out much except for necessary doctor appointments and special occasions such as holidays or birthdays. The reason for this is.......laziness.
I had resigned myself into believing that my COPD and other general health conditions made it almost impossible for me to go anywhere without a great deal of hassle.
Yesterday my wife had an appointment with a doctor, a specialist, in Orange some 30 miles away. If she has not been somewhere before it is certain she will not be able to find a new place by herself. So I resigned myself to the fact that I was going to have to go with her to insure she would get there. So we got ready and were out the door in plenty of time to make the appointment. I printed out a MapQuest guide and programmed my phone for instructions. We got in the neighborhood of where we were supposed to be but couldn't find the address I had researched. We drove around and we asked people who were outside for this place was. Nobody could help us not even a local cop. Then I discovered I had put in the wrong address and we were right where we were supposed to be. We were 30 minutes late but they let her go in anyway. This is one that I have to accept the blame for.
I bring this up because as I said I rarely get out much. Keep in mind that I am carrying an oxygen cylinder that is supposed to last about 4 or 5 hours. By the time we were headed home I had turned down the oxygen supple to a lower dosage in order to preserve what I had left. She had asked if we could eat out and she wanted to go to a specific restaurant. Normally at this point I would just say I was tired and that we would have to go home and get another tank. But I said let's do it and we did.
I bring all this up because........
She wanted to eat at a place called Chilis. They serve any kind of food you want from steaks to pasta to Mexican food and hamburgers, etc. This particular restaurant is located as a stand alone place in a shopping center. Back in the day in 1970 I was the store manager in a record store similar the restaurant actually right next door. At the time the shopping center was owned my May Company. The record store went out of business a few years later. I was already gone by then. It became a restaurant called BJs Brewery and restaurant. Whenever we go by there we are flashing back to when it was our store. My wife worked there also. The other building which is now Chilis used to be the May Company Automotive Center much like Sears stores which have similar such stores. Sadly those are fading away now.
My daughter-in-law always wants to take me to BJs on Veteran's Day. We didn't go last year because I decided I couldn't do it..........laziness.
So last night we went out to eat at Chilis and I had forgotten how nice it was to go out to dinner with my wife and have a good meal and a drink. Because of this laziness I have been selfish in my relationships with my wife and family. It was kind of a cultural shock also. Our waitress wore a head covering because she was Muslim. I have no problem with that. She was young and very beautiful and extremely helpful to the old people she was serving who had the standard paper menus. She pointed out that the strange little electronic thing sitting on the edge of the table was also a menu with a touch screen allowing us to select what we wanted. This included a gluten free menu for me. I had a steak with French fries which I couldn't finish and had to bring home the leftovers for lunch today. A very expensive dinner what with the food and the two drinks we enjoyed together. I mentioned to the waitress that we were eating in the old automotive repair shop and she laughed. Then she looked at me and said she had not been born yet when that was there making me feel old once again.
Lessons learned..... 1. We decided that we would make it a point to go out to eat at least once a week. 2. I am going to make an effort to go places with my family more often instead of waiting for them to come see me. 3. Never mention to a young person how things or places used to be because they generally don't care making me feel so old. 4. Make sure I have the information I need to get where we are going.......all the information. 5. Don't let this laziness get in the way to spending time with the ones I love.
Okay it is a new year. In SoCal we start the year with the Rose Parade. The granddaddy of all parades. The local paper gives out a complete guide to anything and everything related to the Rose Parade. This includes the schedule of appearance of the participants all 91 of them this year. One local TV station begins their coverage at 6 AM interviewing people and spewing facts about what we are about to witness. The parade begins at 8 AM local time and is scheduled to last two hours. This TV channel will repeat its coverage of the parade all day long until around 6 PM. Their selling point is that they don't have commercials during the parade but in the repeats there are commercials.
Trivial facts about the parade.........It has rarely rained on the parade. I have seen years when it has poured rain on the day before and the day after but I can't remember when it rained on the parade. Some times it has been cold and I really feel for the majorettes with their short skirts or shorts. Today it was in the high 50's so chilly for us locals. The Rose Parade is never held on Sunday. If January 1st arrives on a Sunday the parade is postponed until the next day. The floats for the most part are assembled in warehouses in a neighboring towns of Irwindale and Duarte and Azusa some 12 to 15 miles away from Pasadena and are driven to Pasadena during the night before the parade. They are lined up on Orange Grove boulevard in Pasadena. When the parade begins the participants make a right hand turn onto Colorado Boulevard for the 5.5 mile march to the end. There are officials at that corner to help the drivers negotiate the turn. I have seen floats get stuck in that turn requiring tow trucks to get them through.
Reflections on this year's parade.........There is always the stealth bomber flyover at the beginning. I used to always go outside to see it as it flies along the edge of the mountains. Some years I saw it most I did not. This year I stayed in bed and heard it fly over. My daughter lives more in line with the path of the bomber and sees it all the time. I am amazed at the logistics involved. In that magazine they list all the bands and information about them. So I added them up. The total of marching band members came to 4971. Add in the support staff and sponsors and parents and that is a lot of people. This is the time I wish I had bought a motel in Pasadena! Where do all these people stay? How is it possible to transport all these people and the band instruments to Pasadena? Who is the lucky one who figures out how to feed these people? How do you take 300 kids to McDonalds? The band from Hawaii had 440 members. They said that there were 18 million roses used in the parade. Cut flowers don't last very long so all those roses have to get here within a few days of being put on the floats. Everything you see on the floats has to be decorated with organic materials. Something you don't see in the TV broadcast are the team of guys going along behind the equestrian groups with their shovels. One of the things I hated when I was in marching band was watching out for horse droppings along the parade routes.
Two glitches this year.......The idiot who put the lineup of appearances this year put an equestrian group behind the American Legion float that, gasp, made the turn and fired off a cannon filled with streamers. The horses were not in a patriotic mood and did not appreciate the loud bang so early in the morning. Fortunately the riders were able to maintain order. Second glitch.............The parade normally goes by without too many problems. This year (attn: spoiler alert) the biggest and longest float courtesy of the Chines American organization depicting the joining of the transcontinental railroad stalled at the turn holding back other units. Marching bands and smaller floats managed to squeeze by. That rarely happens.
Overall it was a great parade. In previous years this TV stationed had the same announcers, Stephanie Edwards and Bob Eubanks. They retired and the hosts they have now are not as good. I rather enjoyed the repartee between Stephanie and Bob. Things change. For many years there was a high school band from Kyoto Japan who came to be in the parade and also made an appearance at Disneyland. Check them out on YouTube--Kyoto Tachibashi High School band. I was impressed at a group that could dance and play at the same time. They were not here this year.
Merry Christmas to you and Al. We will going to my daughters later and the whole crowd will be there. As far as the entertaining pup he has decided to bark at the TV on occasion. Even if it on pause and nothing is moving on the TV he will just sit there and bark. Now he has decided that he doesn't like the screensaver on the computer and will bark at that and it doesn't move either. Weird.
Congratulations to Al both on his birthday and for his service. What an honor for 50 years!
and no I don't have a snow shovel. I left it in the mountains of Wyoming many years ago. Where I lived there was at least two feet of snow on the ground from September until June.
and on to stranger things. This puppy now seven months old is weird. There is a commercial in which there is a guy strumming a guitar and singing the word "no". This is because there is a couple trying to watch something on TV and they are not happy because there is nothing on that they haven't seen or that they don't like. This is for a service that provides TV, internet and phone. What does this have to do with the puppy? In the morning when I am laying in bed drinking my coffee and watching TV he likes to lay between my legs and sleep or just lay there. Every time that commercial comes on he perks up and stares at the TV. If he is laying on the floor chewing on a toy and that commercial comes on he stops and stares at the TV. My son and I have come to the conclusion that because he hears the word "no" around the house from my wife and I that he is trying to figure out who is saying "no" to him. Is this a once in a while thing maybe only happening a few times? No because that commercial is on many times during the day and if he is in the room he will stop and stare at the TV.
I have decided that I am going to record it and play it for him. A lot. Just to bug him. How fun!