Suck It Up And Live!

One more post about buses and meets and then it is back to normal.  

Kudo’s to all of you for posting your pictures of the first annual soon to be in an RV Park near you BCI bus meet.  You have done an exceptional job.  I have enjoyed them immensely even tho‘ some of your camera’s appear to make me look rather portly.  Must be a chip problem or something?

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Things You Should Never Do At A Bus Meet

Parking crooked or being lop-sided

This bus meet sport involves “traversing environmental obstacles by not paying attention or rapidly and efficiently getting to the campground on time.” Still game?

Then consider this: You may have to swing wide, reposition repeatedly and borrow a longer dump hose when you get rid of the used groceries. Running over rocks, rubbing curbs, and mowing down other items, will get you bonus points.  You can watch this on YouTube later on without hurting yourself or your bus.

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Lost Wages

Dropping off the hill in Henderson Nevada, I gaze upon Las Vegas down below in the valley, shimmering in the night heat, she twinkled like a jewel in the desert.  I think I read somewhere that Las Vegas is an Indian term for spring or spring water.  Next time I run into the gunner I will ask him? (A friend who lives out there in that part of the country.)  My throat is parched and dry, it has been a long haul from Oklahoma.  Some 18 hours or so, now but just another log in the firebox of time. Continue reading

Things Are Bad

“Congress now rates just below telemarketers or whale poop, and we all know that is at the bottom of the ocean.”

The economy is so bad, that it is rumored that Exxon has laid off 25 Congressmen.
The economy is so bad, we are putting hamburger helper in our hamburger helper.
It’s so bad, MasterCard sent us a pre-declined credit card with a zero limit.
If the bank returns your check marked “insufficient funds” you wonder, mine or theirs?

When you order a burger, the kid says, “Can you afford fries with that?”

It’s so bad, Motel Six is not leaving the lite on for you anymore.
CEO’s are now playing “Miniature Golf”
It’s gotten so bad overseas, that the Royal Family and the Queen Mummy are now officially cut back to just $50 million per year.  Your recently issued High Mileage Explorer card has been cut back to 18 miles or a trip to Gary Indiana, whichever comes first.

On the subject of credit cards.  Last month we were hit by daytime burglars and they took a substantial amount of cash, guns, and jewelry from our home.  But I did not call the cops, it turns out they were spending less on the cards than my wife, so I just sort of let it go.

When did the term “Forrest Fire” change to “Wildfire.”  When I was young, we had Smokey The Bear who was always saying … “Only you can prevent forest fires.”

Now any time a fire breaks out, regardless of location, the media deems it a wildfire.

Strange huh?

The CERN Large Hadron Collider outside the tidy Swiss city are homing in on the Higgs boson, the so-called “God particle” that imparts mass to everything in the universe.  It is supposed to be in the shape of a plate, full of money.  Awhile back some very serious people (the folks who had their science project done on time in school) voiced concern that it might generate a black hole that could suck Switzerland and the rest of the known universe into a vortex of nonexistence.

Which is kind of silly, we all know that is the J.O.B. of the U.S. Government.

(No Comment)

We have gotten so big that the U..S. Coast Guard has reduced the passenger capacity of U.S. Commercial vessels to reflect the growing weight of the traveling average American.  The standard used to be based on a weight average of 160 lbs. per passenger, but that has been raised to 185 lbs.  Most of us weigh about 235 lbs. naked and in sandals (now there is a word image for you this morning).

It was a great ride.

Three people left a bar in Steamboat Springs, Colo., mounted horses, and rode them into a Starbuck’s and Safeway.  I suppose to get some more munchies.  It was a great ride right up until the very end, when the cops showed up and they got tasered and arrested.

When you absolutely hit rock bottom … You get re-elected … Is this a great country or what?

Just read a new survey that says “64% of Americans rate the honesty and ethical standards of members of Congress as low or very low.”  Which of course is most likely the lowest rating on record since the ancient times of Rome.  Congress now rates just below telemarketers or whale poop, and we all know that is at the bottom of the ocean.

If you think this is bogus, consider this:  “Hillary has blond hair” … I rest my case y’honor.

A blonde goes to the vet with her goldfish.  She tells the vet, “I think it’s got epilepsy.”

The vet takes a look and says, “It seems calm enough to me.”

The blonde says, “I haven’t taken it out of the bowl yet.”

Things are bad, sure.  But they could get worse.

Never, ever, under any circumstances say to yourself, “Oh well, it can’t get any worse.”  That is not true.  One time in Las Vegas after losing a goodly sum of my cash, while standing on the corner of Las Vegas Blvd and Tropicana Ave, I muttered to myself, “Aw, it can’t get any worse.”

And sure enough, worse followed me across the street to Caesars Palace.

OOO

[#1289]

Big City

Big City

Our little world is not only getting smaller but more crowded with the population now exceeding seven billion people.  India continues to lead the pack and is now slated to surpass China soon in total population growth.  Our cities are getting bigger and bigger.  My question would be are they building cities worth building a future in?   Are they making the cities more lasting, livable and prosperous?

Two cities I am intimately familiar with are Dallas and Houston, Texas, and I would not live in either one.  In Austin, Texas, at the height of rush hour, you can actually get out of your automobile and walk faster than the traffic moves!

But all the news is not dire, I hear that San Diego has a new light rail system and it is getting  commuters home faster.  They are now building electric sub-stations that are out of sight, in Las Vegas they have Microwave transmission towers that are camouflaged as pine trees.  So in some cases, progress is starting to show up, albeit, slowly but surely.

The sad part of all this is in recent weeks we have watched people taking to the streets by the millions to protest political, economic, and social conditions in the big cities across our land, where the quality of life has eroded seriously, to epidemic proportions.  Our cities are now turning into killing grounds for social misfits and predators, willing to put you down for a pack of Marlboro’s.  In some cases the best advice is “don’t let the sun go down on you here.”

On top of being dangerous, it is also unhealthy at the same time.  This morning I am reading where it says that living in the city can be hazardous to your mental health according to scientists.  A recent study in Germany has linked poor performance in math and other area’s to living under stressful situations in big cities.  Which should not come as any big surprise to anyone who has ever lived in or near a big city.

As I often like to consider myself a little bit ahead of the curve, I knew that one for a fact before I read it.  Big City living will bring you down, faster than a Hong Kong Second.  That is why I am a country dweller here in the Heartland.  Lack of stress is why I live here, out in the sticks. (Okie speech)

There is just one apparent drawback to all of this.  I live in El Reno, Oklahoma.  And as most you know, Oklahoma is the Extreme Bad Weather Capitol of America.  We have it all, thunderstorms, hail, floods, tornadoes. droughts and recently earthquakes.  I get enough excitement here to last a lifetime.  Regardless, I know I am better off here at the Goat Farm.

I know deep down that I would not adapt well to life in the Big City. You see … I already know how to drive and I cannot speak Spanish.

I used to read about the far away exotic and dangerous cities and places of the world with mystery and awe.  I would read the stories of the poor and the downtrodden in the third world, the weak and the hungry. I would gaze upon the photographs and see the barrio’s and the ghetto’s where hope came to die.

Now days I read about what is going on here at home and I realize this.

America in its own way, is morphing itself into the very same thing, it has become like one of these distant troubled places, and I just thank my lucky stars, that I am here where I am.

Locked down in the country, down at the end of the Yellow Brick Road.

OOO

No Free Lunch In Clark County

How do you know when you are old?

Interesting question, just how is it, that you know that you have changed and you are older?  Is it in the way you walk, the size and girth of your new found stomach, the sprinkling of gray about your temples.  Do you catch yourself running out of breath half-way thru the parlor amour session with the wife in the middle of the night?

What are those familiar signs of aging?  One thing I noticed personally in my case, is my appetite changed, I don’t eat as much as I used to.

When younger, I had a voracious appetite, but these days I tend to fill up rather quickly.  In my youth I ate like a horse, unfortunately, now I kind of resemble one.

The wife and I, used to make what I called regular scheduled runs to Las Vegas to “visit our money” as I put it.  Over the years, that sort of changed too.  Now we go, not so much for the gambling aspect, or the garish surreal glitter of it all, but for the food.

Las Vegas has so many refreshing, change of pace trendy restaurants to eat in, it is simply not funny.

People will be quick to tell you that “everything in Las Vegas is larger than life” and of course, “what happens in ‘Vegas, stays in “Vegas.”  That it is the “money capitol of the world” and all that jazz.  I have found at times it was entirely possible to go thru large sums of serious money in this town, that is a given.  A lot of that certainly applies now for the meals, Las Vegas now routinely posts the priciest tabs for a meal on average, of any city in the U.S..

Just for a moment, stop and consider the logistics of it all.

A city of close to 4 million, in the midst of a arid, dry desert, in the geographical center of nowhere, in one of the most inhospitable regions of the country.  And everything that they eat, consume, use or build has to be hauled in.  So it should come as no small wonder that the cheap buffet and the Steak and Eggs breakfast for next to nothing are now long gone.

Having just returned from another trip to our favorite adult amusement center, this past summer, we can testify that it is all there ripe and ready for the taking.  Bring your appetite and your credit card, put the feed bag on as my Daddy is fond of saying.  You still can have it your way at just about any hour of the day or night.  Just depends on your tastes, whether it be steak or lobster, a crisp taco on the side … you can find it all in Las Vegas, the only glitch is, “you won’t find it for free.”

A couple went for a meal at a Chinese restaurant on The Strip and ordered the “Chicken Surprise.”  The waiter brought the meal, served in a cast iron pot with a lid.  Just as the wife was about to serve herself, the lid of the pot rose slightly and she caught a brief glance of two beady little eyes looking around before the lid slammed back down.

“Good grief, did you see that?” she asked her husband.

He hadn’t, so she asked him to look in the pot.  He reached for it and again the lid rose, and he saw two little eyes looking around before it slammed back down.  Rather perturbed, he called the waiter over, explained what was happening, and demanded an explanation.

“Excuse please,” said the waiter, “what you order?”

The husband replied, “Chicken Surprise.”

“So sorry,” said the waiter, “My mistake… I bring you Peeking Duck!”

Last day of the month, we can put this one in the can.  Tune in tomorrow and we will tell you the easiest way we have found to remove the cap from a bottle of Snapple … When you reach my age, you need every break you can get.

OOO

Day Dreamer

There is a school of thought that says that “day dreaming is not good for you.”  That it raises false expectations about life and then kicks the door open for depression to move in.  I don’t necessarily subscribe to this theory and often find myself doing just that, day dreaming.

A long time ago, an ocean of time would be closer to the truth; I would sit in Mrs. McGee’s English Class and look out the window, and wonder what was out there?

English sucked and I didn’t want any part of it when I was sixteen years old. I felt that there were more important things in life than a good working knowledge of the language, a command of the written word.

When you are sixteen, expressing the wisdom you posses thru words, is kind of impossible, because when you are sixteen, you are woefully short on wisdom. I had no real knowledge to acquire through words, I had no patience or desire. After all, “I was a teenager, and I knew it all.”

Been there. Done that. Got the diploma. Time to move on.

Youth and that unchaste salute, time for deep inner reflection and strong will. I did not feel the need to collect and arrange words in the form of proverbs, epigrams, pithy sayings. I did not feel any compulsion to communicate truth thru words.  I knew no truth. I had no passion.  So here we now, Mrs. McGee, all these years later, and I find myself sitting in front of a screen, almost daily, doggedly and exhaustively pursing all the worldly ways I know, in the pursuit to make sense of life.  As an educator, you would be so proud.

One by one, almost as if mile markers on the railroad right away, I knock them down. Hedonism. Materialism. Philosophy. Intellectualism. Religion. Most of the time, only to come up on empty. Every now and then I get lucky, one item resonates with the spirit and I get a “good job” …” I like that” … or something along those lines.

Been there. Done that. Now what?

Suit up for the game, get in there and get a hit, it doesn’t matter if it is a Home Run or not. Just that you are ready to play the game.  This is gonna be a good day, I can just feel it in my bones.  Sit back, relax and let your mind rest … You deserve a break today. Silver State Ghost Towns  … Crank it up!

Take a trip off the beaten path.

OOO

Things I Love

Torture Time Again … Things I love

My old bus, “Be ye not the first to try the latest, nor the last to cast the old aside” is what my grandmother used to tell me, something truly special about being the owner of an old hoopie that is no longer in production

The smell of fresh rain on a country road in the summertime.
Songbirds in the tree on the westside of the house
The view from the top of the hill at the Riverside in Laughlin Nevada.

The husky sound of a woman’s laugh in the dark.

Little children at play.
Long stretches of two lane at dusk
the sound of a big Detroit workin a hill outside of Bozeman
fresh popcorn poppin,
mis-spelled words in Bus Conversion Magazines

Setting the Jake and listening to her bark as she drops off the hill.

High-dollar fuel, bad roads, lousy weather, take the edge off life
Aluminum wheels and shaved rivets
crowded truck stops and radared chicken fry’s
polished wheels excite my senses

I like the look of Albuquerque New Mexico after dark from the top of nine mile hill … Same with Las Cruces and The College Exit in Henderson Nevada.  Porpoising on the Interstate in Wyoming, running I-20 east out of Houston.

Winning lottery tickets  (Hey … This is my fantasy, remember that.)
“It’s all downhill from Van Horn Texas.”
(Yeah sure)
Diesel mechanics who smile and say, “Ah, this aint nuthin.”

Halter tops and cut off Levi’s

Bacon fryin and the smell of burnt toast in the kitchen,
M&M commercials
No one in line ahead of me at the fuel desk
mashed potatoes and dark rich gravy

The smell of diesel exhaust early in the morning

A cup of fresh brewed coffee.
Country Music, Miranda Lambert, Carrie Underwood
NASCAR, CMT Video’s, old time Rock n Roll
long, slow wet kisses in the dark,
Stories told late at night around a dying campfire

Cracker Barrel stores … Chrome shops … LED’s … Stainless Steel
the wife humming softly at the kitchen sink
fried apples in thick syrup.

And last:

Meeting another truck on a hill late at night, and he says, “Aint nuthin’ back there driver but a whole lot of dark.”

All that … is a Rainy Day slice of life … And some of it even makes me smile.

OOO

Gimme – Gimme

Not long ago I was watching the movie “Wall Street” starring Michael Douglas. This is where he plays the unscrupulous Wall Street financier Buddy Grekko (sp) I believe his name was, a Donald Trump Wall-Street-Wanna-be of the first order. In the movie he states that “GREED is good, and that it is not all that necessarily a bad thing.” So it got me to thinking, “If GREED is good, then why are we in such dire straights right now because of it.”

So today’s offering in literary junk food will be on the subject of GREED.

As I am often accused of picking on some of these pikers around here, and that I never seem to be able to get along with anyone, we shall talk about my favorite thing in life … GREED. Being fully aware that I am basically talking with honest people, who know the definition of true GREED (wanting more than you can honestly afford). By the way, you don’t have to be dishonest to be GREEDY, I know people who are in church every Sunday and they are just as GREEDY as the next old boy.

Now if you go through your wife’s pocket book, or take gifts from people that you know you shouldn’t accept, you could be GREEDY. GREED can be the most potent aphrodisiac know to anyone running for public office. GREED. Where GREED really plays a big hand is in politics. The more money someone raises to run for office the bigger his image and his ego gets, once again, a power trip. Fueled by GREED. Politicians are known for their GREED and at times, so are their respective parties that they belong to.

GREED can also be a good substitute for Viagra, one of the better know stimulants in the western world is GREED.

Today I received a notice of “change in terms” for my credit card. If I go over my limit, 30%, if I get a cash advance and overdraw, 30%, if I am late, 30% … GREED. Pure and simple, why do they do this to a up-to-date good customer … GREED.

And of course they can do this with impunity, because they are BANKERS and the GOVERNMENT is powerless to do anything about it.

Walking into an Indian Casino or playing Bingo once per week, watching the ponies run and wagering sums on them at the local track can also lead to GREED. This morning the price of gasoline was $2.31 per gallon, seven hours later, for no apparent reason, it is $2.45 per gallon … GREED.

A Hong Kong Jeweler named Lam Sai-Wing built a bathroom in which almost everything is made of 24 karat gold: the toilet, the floor tiles, the mirror frames — even a a chandelier. The only thing that’s not all-gold is the ceiling, which is studded with 6,200 diamonds, pearls, rubies, sapphires, and emeralds. Cost to build this monster … $3.5 million for this high tech outrageous poop-shooter.

GREED also comes into play in sports, the late Vince Lombardi said that “winning isn’t everything; it’s the only thing.” Americans will do anything to win a golf tournament, a tennis match or a Little League Baseball game. Now days they even have competitions to see who can land the biggest fish. Who is it that pays upwards of $200 for a pair of Tennis Shoes, while the rest of the world goes barefooted? GREED. I have more than 1,000 DVD’s movies in my collection … GREED.

Enron was a prime example of GREED. It’s apparent reluctance to pay taxes to the IRS for a period of several years, this is another example of GREED. So what if the city loses money … GREED. Tax Time is especially a fruitful time for GREED lovers and seems to bring out the worst in us. We sit back and try to figure out new angles in order to pay the least amount of taxes owed … GREED.

GREED always rears its ugly head when you try to figure out how to cheat on your taxes without getting caught.

Even when it comes down to romance, we are GREEDY. You say things to another person that sound like the real thing, but you really don’t mean it. Fortunately you cannot go to jail for this one, unless of course, you try to make your loved one tax deductible.

Some folks are GREEDY about clothes, homes, automobiles. Once GREED strikes it is hard to shake off. I have a touch of it myself, probably a tad, but no more or less than your average American.

Now in closing I want you to take into consideration one thought and then we will be done. Here is your scary thought for the day.

Back in 1990, the Government (IRS) seized the Mustang Ranch Bunny Ranch brothel in Nevada for tax evasion and, as required by law, tried to run it.

They failed and it closed.

Now we are trusting the economy of our country to a pack of greedy-dumb-asses who couldn’t make money running a whore house and selling booze? And we are lending them the lifeblood of our U.S. Treasury without as much as collateral?

What is wrong with this picture?

I envy people who have more than I do, but when people ask how GREEDY I am, I always tell them to speak to my lawyer. *

000

*As promised yesterday

  • The five entertainers who had airports name after them: Bob Hope, John Wayne, Ronald Reagan, John Lennon and Will Rogers.
  • Six stars who took Karate lessons from Chuck Norris: Bob Barker, Priscilla Presley, Steve McQueen, Michael Landon, Marie Osmond and Donny Osmond.
  • Why George Dubya Bush doesn’t wear a name tag at his Class Reunions. Who cares?

“The cartoon was published by the Center for American Progress” (online)