Saturday, February 14, 2009

Turning Thirty

This may seem to be a premature entry ( I have been told in the past I have that problem) as my daughter-in- law will be thirty next week. However this applies to all people turning milestone years from 20 to 80.

I am sure you have been sitting back and reflection on what Have I done these past ten years. I have lost more than I gained wrong!! You have gained:
Wisdom. Looking aback on it there I are things you have done and you think What was I thinking,
Maturity. Your streaking days are over. Not because you are older but it seems so out dated
Love. Some have gained love once and lost but most are with their one and only. Your life dream in a nutshell, picking up after Mr wonderful when he drops his drawer's wherever
Exhaustion. That may seem a bad thing but if also means you either you have kids or Mr. Wonderful is more of a mess than you thought.
Friend. Ten more years 100 more friends, That is the average.
Family. As your family grows you inherit Mr wonderful's family. In some cases they my have an eccentric dad hanging around but in all cases, deep down you can count on them all in a pinch. Except Saturday evenings when it is private time at the eccentrics.
Children. If you have children they will give you the greatest feeliings in the world joy and frustration. Both emotions go hand and hand and that is the balance of life.

During your days, weeks, or months, leading up to the Big 30. It really is just another day but by tradition you better get bigger gifts.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Be prepared

One of the most important things a young couple will do is have children. It is an awesome responsibility. The worst thin you can do is not be prepared for the trip to the hospital. I took my duties very seriously and got my wife and I a ride we could afford that would get her and my new one to the hospital, coolly, calmly and SAFELY.

I looked high and low for the right car, a 1966 Oldsmobile. This car was a beauty. You could see for miles through the windshield on where you were going. by the same token you cold see very clearly where you have been from the rear window. What this car had was the ability to see where you were at the time by looking at the hole in the floor. Such luxury is not hear of today. Forget heated seat and xm radio. Who wouldn't want to seethe actual pice of road they were traveling over.

I kept the car in tip top shape. I only drove it over the mountain 14 miles to and from work. I changed the oil weekly and the water daily. Did i mention the cracked block?

On October 15, 1975I had the oil changed, water filled ad lunch packed ready to go to work. My wife had gotten up to go to the bathroom allot the night before but she said she was OK. Off I went. Out the driveway, temp gauge cool. Up to Knapp Creek temp gauge above the middle mark. Down the hill steam showing. Pull in to work and you could not see through the steam.

I knew something was up, three friends were outside waiting for me with garden hoses. YOUR HAVING A BABY they yelled. We opened the hood, flooded the engine with water to cool it down, filled the radiator and made the trip back up. A little know fact is that if a car overheats once it does not take as long the second time. I went the back streets going through stop sign and made it home in 12 minutes. Dad was there with buckets of water cooling the engine down and a can of oil for good measure.

Sharon got into the car and off we went. Even faster over the hill. Steam flying all over and oil spitting on the windshield. We got to the hospital in 12 minutes and 90 minutes later my son was born.

It was a bittersweet day. I gained a beautiful son but lost a fine working precision automobile gave its life to keep my family safe.

Friday, February 6, 2009


In ones life there are days where they feel goofy and fun and days that just seem a little off and you feel at the very least contemplative. Today is my day.

I got totally addicted to Facebook in a very short time. The interaction between friends and families is amazing. It has been particularly satisfying for me. For all intents and purposes I lost my blood family when my parents died. Do not know why, just know it was my fault. I have tried in recent years to reconnect with limited success.

I have no real friends. Dues to several dark years in my life, I completely withdrew from people and society in general. If Carol were not around today and something happened I would have no idea who to call. That seemed very sad earlier this morning but I realize now that I have a wider circle of friends and family than even I deserve.

Through my children, I am building friendships and even pseudo families that take me for who I am. Their families have raised my spirits in times where they needed raised. I do feel that if I were to keel over today there just might be one or two people there to at least dance on my grave of sit me on a park bench and put bird food in my stiff hands. You are a truly a great bunch and thanks for the inclusion.

I can not forget my former in-laws either. In every divorce there are hurt feelings and even though I made some terribly wrong choices, over time most have tolerated me when I was around or actually ask the boys how I am doing once and a while. In my mind they will always be part of my family.

Today my goal is to thank you all for being there and making me feel welcome. I am not perfect and will probably piss someone off now and then but I have learned allot from my mistakes and am a better person for being in all your circles.

To my sons. We went through some rough patches. I had to learn on the fly how to be a modern parent. Dad's way does not work any more. I do feel I had some influence in your growth and choices. A few weeks or months with me changed your lives forever. Brian, moving to East Hartford, got you a great career and a wonderful wife. David, living with me for that short time in East Hartford gave you direction, helped you with your career path and most importantly gave us the closeness we both desperately needed. You are both my best friends.

Anyways guys. thanks for reading if you do. It shows I have a human side.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Fun for the whle family

Let me tell you right now, whenever a product is touted as the greatest new invention and fun for the whole family, beware!! Two years ago Nintendo came out with the latest and greatest video game system. Fast, fun and interactive too. The Wii came into our households.

It was a rocky start from the beginning. Within weeks of the first sale, they were recalled because people got so excited playing they let go of the controllers letting them fly through windows, TVs and the occasional spouse's head. Nintendo was quick to add a lock to the wristband, problem solved. Well that problem anyhow.

The whole concept of the Wii makes it a highly competitive game for people to play against the computer or others. This proved widely acceptable as a rehabilitation tool for the elderly. You can bowl while sitting. Plenty of exercise but.... suddenly there was a rise with arm and elbow problems. The common element the Wii.

Then came the Wii fit. Once you could get one, it was to be a great device to help you exercise in a fun way. A close personal friend of mine has one. It is fun and exciting but if you try and do the balance and yoga when you are say a little out of shape and rotund you may fall into your wife's curio cabinet. Has anyone ever realized how you can move an item 1/8 inch, replace it right back on the dust spot and the next time the wife walks by "WHO MOVED MY CURIO CABINET"?

Back to the Wii interactive game. That same close personal friend of mine was shadow boxing with the Wii, maybe too exuberantly, when there was a sharp pain in my I mean his shoulder that curled his toes. Off to the doctor.

The embarrassing story was told. To the dismay of my friend, Wii injuries are becoming more and more common. The elderly bowling injuries, back injuries, shoulder injuries, cuts and broken bones do to falling, even hernias. The doctors are making a killing.

Now for the big news to go with the real MDs like back doctors, arm doctors, shoulder doctors even pee pee doctors for hernias, Nintendo is announcing the new Christmas 2009 game sensation "Wii Doctor". With the game you get wii insurance with a Wii copay. Be the first in line they are going to go fast.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

All bailed out

What an interesting few months it has been. The banks over lent money and got money to replace it. The car companies have a bad business model and got money to fix it. I would like to say good for them but fair is not fair. When my credit cards got high the banks did not say hey, we understand here is more money to help you out. Nope they charged even higher interest. The old get 'em while they are down policy. Many people have failing businesses due to poor planning and the recession. Does the government say no problem have some bailout money? Nope it's too bad so sad.

Now the government has to pay for these bailouts. How do they do it? They borrow and make more money. I can not borrow we already covered that. To the best of my knowledge if I made money I would get in trouble. What do I do to help myself out? Well the government says if I spend more of what I do not have it will help the economy grow stronger which will in turn give back the money I do not have now. Let's do our fair share. Sell everything you own at pennies on a dollar and replace it with full price items. What a boost the economy will get. Pay your debts, get more credit, buy more things and let the banks get more interest to make them stronger. For the government, everyone send in a check for 100.00 marked for deficit only. Pay down the deficit, there is less interest, less interest is more money for government has to boost the economy. One question on that. If we did send in a check do you think it would go where we wanted it?

On a related but different note. Connecticut is rolling out the budget for the next 2 years. We are billions of dollars in debt and by law we have to have a balanced budget. Why are we in debt? People can not pay their taxes, the casinos are not making a gazillion dollars, and our investments are in the tank. Our governor has promised no new taxes but deep spending cuts. That means many goods and services will be cut and cities and towns will not get as much help. We will have to pay for our own trash, do with less police while our crime rate increases and many other agencies will be cut or combined.

That leaves the burden to the cities. Remember the state is not raising taxes but how will the cities respond? they will have to raise taxes. What does that do? it makes it even harder for people not paying taxes to catch up and pay more. Am I crazy or is there a vicious cycle in all phases of government.

What to do? Well sit back, take a breath and try not to solve everything at one time by throwing money we do not have after it. Hold the people accountable for their misdeeds. If I do not pay my bills or taxes go after me not my neighbors. If a company is on the verge of bankruptcy do not stop its service to the customer. Let the Leaders of the company lead by example. This year our board and the higher ups took pay cuts and less compensation. By the same token the rest of us will not get raises. Do I want and deserve a raise but if my 2% increase will save a job especially my own then have at it. A note here our company did very well because they always have contingency plans.

All businesses should do the same. Government is bloated and over extended. The president and most senators and congressman are wealthy in their own right. Take a 10% cut for the year. Freeze everyone else's salary and do not spend what we do not have.

Unions, good in their day but they have to bite the bullet too. It is better to have a job with a little less benefits or pay than no job at all. The unions are a big reason the big three will be the big 0 soon.

All this scrimping and saving will not do any good if we do not have a sensible well thought out plan to use the money to help each and everyone of us EQUALLY.

Ranting over.

Off the soap box.