i A Time and a Place...: July 2005

Sunday, July 31, 2005

Now For The Rest of the Story...

Now for the rest of the story.

I was in a small market getting a coke (pepsi)right after Clarence and I had spread fertilizer under a very large orange grove. It was so big we had to use three loads of fertilizer. That meant loading it, (it was loaded with a bucket loader) driving to the orchard, spreading the load by hand and doing it all over again twice more. It had been a long, hot day.

I got my pepsi and was standing a ways away from the counter, waiting for Clarence to get his so we could leave.

Right then a man came into the market and stood by Clarence while waiting his turn. He was a middle aged man, well dressed and nice looking.

Just then the clerk asked Clarence how his day went and Clarence answered it had gone very well, that we had been busy. He looked at me and grinned. I added I thought we might be doing something a bit more important than spreading manure under orange trees.

The man who was waiting for Clarence said, "Pardon me, are you fellows the ones who just fertilized the orchard down the road?" I said we were and he reached out his hand and said he wanted to shake my hand. I looked a question at him and took his hand and he said he owned that grove and thought we did a good job on it.
He said, "I don't know what I'd do if it weren't for you boys. I used to do that myself but lately I've kept myself so busy I just can't get around to doing the job myself. I really appreciate the job you boys do."

Then he turned to the clerk and told him to give us a case of pepsis on him.

He asked if we had lived here for long and I told him I was just here for this year to help my brother-in-law. I told him I was from Modesto, california.

To make a long story short, I felt very important for a while there.
Later,around Christmas time, after I had gone back to Modesto, I came into the house one day and my Mother said, "James Cameron, there's a letter here for you." I didn't get letters of my own very often (except from a pen pal girl from Germany when I was in the eight grade)and I got a little rush looking at it.
I took the letter and saw it was postmarked Phoenix, Arizona. I thought it must be from Clarence or some relative of his I had met there. I opened it and it was a twenty dollar bill folded into a sheet of paper. On the paper was written, "Merry Christmas for a job well done. I appreciate your taking care of my orchard." And it was signed by the man who owned the orange grove, to whom Clarence and I had spoken in the market.

I wrote to Clarence and told him about it and he sent me a note back saying he got one, too.

So you see, even spreading fertilizer is just as important to some as any job there is!


What Are We Worth...

I can't believe how long it has been since I wrote in this blog.A week! I've been pre-occupied with a couple of things and just haven't taken time to think of anything else.

I heard a comment from someone about how un-important her job is and it reminded me about something that happened to me when I was 14 years old.

When I was about eight years old, my sister married a man who had little education and never had a job that required much more than elbow grease and sweat. However, he was a good worker and did about anything to make a buck.

He located and sold junk to junk yards; he cut down trees and cleared brush. In the right season he and my sister picked peaches and apricots, cut grapes and even went to Washington state and picked apples. He was the best and fastest cotton picker I ever saw.
In short, they worked pretty steadily and made a decent living.

In the winter-time he and my sister and their daughter moved to Phoenix, Arizona. They did this every year. They lived in a trailer house at 40th and Washington in a trailer and tent park of sorts.

One year when I was 14 years old I went to Phoenix with them and helped Clarence with his various jobs.
One was finding abandoned dump grounds and loading his 1 1/2 ton truck with cans we threw up out of the dump and flattened by stepping on them. That paid 13 bucks a ton and we could haul about three tons a day if we hurried. In 1950 40 bucks a day was pretty good wages.

We also bought crushed granite and built driveways with it. That was the hardest job because of the weight of the granite.

However, the job we did mostly was spread fertilizer under the trees of orange groves. We would find a grower who needed the job done and buy a load of fertilizer from a big stock yard and drive through the orange grove between rows of trees and using shovels, spread the fertilizer along under the trees on both sides. Needless to say, it was hot and smelly work.

I have to go to a jam session now but I'll finish this story when I get back. Tune back in and I'll see you...


Sunday, July 24, 2005

How Foolish and Dangerous It Would Be For China...

to underestimate the military capabilities of the United States! How arrogant that their military make veiled threats against us!

I just read about several weapons that are being developed and have already been developed by our military that are more than an effective deterrent toward any aggressive actions toward us by the Chinese. And they are absolutely amazing! And scary!

One such weapon is a beam which, when trained on individuals,(or crowds) causes their skin to heat up to very high temperatures instantly. Imagine spilling boiling water on your arm and you have the feeling produced by the beam. Then, when the beam is turned off, the skin is immediately back to normal.

Another weapon produces an electrical shock wave blast that instantly fries all electrical circuits of weapons or any other electrical device, such as computers, missile guidance systems and, etc. This can be used to neutralize any incoming guided missile.

Then there is the 'Black out Bomb', a bomb which, when exploded above ground, releases small filaments that short circuits things such as transformers and electrical switching stations. A couple of these could close down an entire city immediately.

There are many more amazing things that have been developed. One is a substance that is so slippery that, if it were applied on any object, would make that object impossible to hold, pick up or anything else.
For instance, if it is applied to a door knob, you couldn't turn the knob. If smeared or sprayed on a spoon handle, you couldn't pick up the spoon.

The military capabilities of this Country are such that it would be very stupid for China or anyone else to seriously threaten us militarily. I feel much more secure after learning of these space-age weapons our military has. And now, with more and more Americans feeling like there will probably be a Third World War, it is reassurring to know about these things.

How stupid it would be for China to assume they could even have a guided missile reach this Nation. And how stupid that they think there would be anything left of their nation if they tried such a thing.

Thank God for the ingenuity of Americans! Now if George Bush will get off his ass and act like the leader of the most powerful Nation in the history of the world, and understand that islam is terrorism and communist China is not our friend, we can once again begin to feel secure!


Monday, July 18, 2005

It Ended Very Sadly...

I watched a movie the other day and the ending was very sad. If I had known how it would end, I probably wouldn't have watched it. It was a terrific movie and moved along very well so it could have ended just about any way and been a great movie. It didn't have to end sadly; it shouldn't have ended sadly. It should have ended happily.But, as I said, it ended sadly.

This ending, however, whether good or bad isn't what I wish to point out.

When the end came, the leading man left our sight and no one knew where he went or what happened to him. His fate was left to the imagination of the viewer.That was the end of the movie. That was no ending.

There was a hint that the man might have gone somewhere else and started up the same kind of business as he had before.

Maybe he went somewhere and committed suicide.
He may have gone off somewhere and fulfilled a secret longing for a nice little house, a house he and the person who died so sadly had discussed at one time, and now maybe he is living out his life there as best he can with his memories.
Maybe he went to a big city and became a wino, living on the street, broken in spirit by the guilt he may have felt for the death of the person, his friend, who died so sadly.

Okay!-You say, so what is the big deal about what happened to the man who left so mysteriously, the man whose fate one can only imagine?

The big deal is it leaves the story un-told. It leaves it in limbo.It leaves one wondering, not able to put an end to this story that ended so sadly.

All right, I'll put an end to the story. The man moved to Turlock and opened a quick stop mini-market.
Don't like that one? All right, he went to Monterey and waded into the Pacific Ocean and was never seen again.
Still no go? Okay, he did buy that house and is now living comfortably in Empire, California.

All right, this is getting a bit boring so let's get to the gist of it.

Please assume any ending you wish. Assume the man is living in the house he and the person who died so sadly talked about.
Or assume he went to another city and opened another business.
Or assume he killed himself because he couldn't take the pain of his friend dying so sadly.

Now, if you have made your assumption, did the person who died in the story that ended so sadly come back alive? Did your assumption change anything that happened in this story so it wouldn't end so sadly?


No matter what you decide, whichever ending you wish would happen, did happen, none of it would make any difference. It just wouldn't make any difference. Whatever you do or don't do in life, as well as in this story, never makes any difference about anything that has already happened. Never has; Never will.And a very good story would still end very sadly.

I still wish I hadn't watched the movie.


Cleaning Day At The Trailer House...

Donna and I cleaned the refrigerator today. It had been several months since it was thoroughly cleaned inside. We started at around seven am and are just finishing up now at 1:20 pm. It has been a very eventful morning.

You know, it's hard to imagine how quickly and easily things accumulate in a refrigerator...and how much there is. Usually a person buys things, eats things and replaces things. 'duh'...sure they do...

While I was wiping the moisture off things that had been removed from the refer, prior to replacing them, I asked Donna, "Haven't I cleaned this liquid chocolate bottle already?" She said no I hadn't and I insisted I had and she said maybe it was one of these and showed me two more exactly like the one I was cleaning. Then I asked a very silly question. I Asked, (and I quote)"Why do we have three liquid chocolate bottles that are each half full?"
She laughed hysterically and said, "If you don't already know, I'm certainly not going to tell you!" And she stomped out of the room.

Now I have to figure out just what to say to apologize to her. And about what to apologize.

I tell you, cleaning days are very dangerous days and, for outdoorsmen, should be avoided like the plague. I started to go to the creek today but decided against it because it is 114 degrees outside and the place I want to go has no shade of any kind along the bank. I probably would have gotten heat stroke, had I gone, so I volunteered to stay and help clean the refer instead.

Tomorrow the temperature is supposed to be 114 again and I suspect something else here at home needs cleaning.
I'll be at the creek, heatstroke or no heatstroke!

Whoops, I gotta go now. The UNICEF truck is pulling up outside and I'll need to help them load all the food we had in the refer that was past the expiration date. I wanted to throw it out but Donna said the starving children in the third and fourth world nations won't mind eating a 13 pound canned ham that was supposed to have been eaten a week ago. So we called the UN and had them send a truck.

I'm glad we did, though, because I'd have had to rent a U-Haul to haul all the surplus to the dump.

Oh, Yeah!...You think I'm putting you on? You shoulda seen us when we had a 25 cubic foot double door box instead of this 18 cubic footer!


Sunday, July 17, 2005

Sandy Sent Me This and I Think...

it is good enough to post, so here it is.

"Andy Rooney said on "60 Minutes" a few weeks back:

I don't think being a minority makes you a victim of anything except numbers. The only things I can think of that are truly discriminatory are things like the United Negro College Fund, Jet Magazine, Black Entertainment Television, and Miss Black America. Try to have things like the United Caucasian College Fund, Cloud Magazine, White Entertainment Television, or Miss White America; and see what happens...
Jesse Jackson will be knocking down your door.
Guns do not make you a killer. I think killing makes you a killer. You can kill someone with a baseball bat or a car, but no one is trying to ban you from driving to the ball game.

I believe they are called the Boy Scouts for a reason, that is why there are no girls allowed. Girls belong in the Girl Scouts! ARE YOU LISTENING MARTHA BURKE?

I have the right "NOT" to be tolerant of others because they are different, weird, or tick me off.

When 70% of the people who get arrested are black, in cities where 70% of the population is black, that is not racial profiling, it is the Law of Probability.
I believe that if you are selling me a milkshake, a pack of cigarettes, a newspaper or a hotel room, you must do it in English! As a matter of fact, if you want to be an American citizen, you should have to speak English!

My father and grandfather didn't die in vain so you can leave the countries you were born in to come over and disrespect ours. I think the police should have every right to shoot your sorry ass if you threaten them after they tell you to stop. If you can't understand the word "freeze" or "stop" in English, see the above lines.

I don't think just because you were not born in this country, you are qualified for any special loan programs, government sponsored bank loans or tax breaks, etc., so you can open a hotel, coffee shop, trinket store, or any other business.

We did not go to the aid of certain foreign countries and risk our lives in wars to defend their freedoms, so that decades later they could come over here and tell us our constitution is a living document; and open to their interpretations.

I don't hate the rich. I don't pity the poor.
I know pro wrestling is fake, but so are movies and television. That doesn't stop you from watching them.

I think Bill Gates has every right to keep every penny he made and continue to make more. If it ticks you off, go and invent the next operating system that's better, and put your name on the building.

It doesn't take a whole village to raise a child right, but it does take a parent to stand up to the kid; and smack their little behinds when necessary, and say "NO!"

I think tattoos and piercing are fine if you want them, but please don't pretend they are a political statement.And, please, stay home until that new lip ring heals. I don't want to look at your ugly infected mouth as you serve me French fries!

I am sick of "Political Correctness." I know a lot of black people, and not a single one of them was born in Africa;so how can they be "African-Americans"? Besides, Africa is a continent. I don't go around saying I am a European-American because my great, great, great, great, great, great grandfather was from Europe. I am proud to be from America and nowhere else.
And if you don't like my point of view, tough...


Saturday, July 16, 2005

Chinas' Recent Statement Has Us...

wondering what the hell we're going to do now!

They say they have a missle aimed at every major city on the eastern seaboard of the US and they'll use them if we interfere in their business with Taiwan.With nukes, no less! And we can thank Bill Clinton and Madeline Albright, his secretary of state, for that.

Madeline Albright looked America right in the eye and said she thought it was 'scary', that the US is the only superpower left in the world now. Then she and Bill Clinton get together and figured out how to give China a missle guidance system so they could aim their missiles at us accurately.(Actually, Bill sold the system to them for four hundred thousand bucks) So, here we are, right where Clinton and Albright wanted us; at the mercy of Communist China!

Reagan would have already told the commies to shit or get off the pot but Bush hasn't got the balls Reagan had.

Now let's see what, if anything, Bush does about it.

Oh, and don't forget to write and thank Clinton for his aid to Chinas' military! And congratulate him for being a traitor and getting away with it!


Monday, July 11, 2005

I Knew a Guy Once...(a tale)

who raised a bunch of kids. He wasn't too educated but he was a pretty good guy. He worked hard and never got into any trouble. He had some girls and a couple of boys and they were so full of energy that you never knew what was going to happen next.
He believed in God but never went to church. The kids sometimes went to church with neighbor kids so that meant something.
All in all, things weren't too bad for the first several years. The kids went to school and this guy worked pretty steadily.

One day he noticed he wasn't as young as he once was. The kids began growing up and some of them did all right and others didn't do too well.Sometimes he got along well with them and at other times he didn't. Sometimes they would leave in a huff and promise they'd never come back again.Some of them finished school and went on to have businesses or vocations of their own. Others of them got into trouble and wound up in jail or worse. If the good things that happened to them was his doing, the bad things were, too.

Time went by and some things changed while other things stayed the same. This guy was pretty much the same as he always had been. Only thing was, he was getting older all the time and after a while his health began to be not so good.
He never complained much but he could tell things weren't just right anymore.

He finally retired and began living a quiet life, doing the things he couldn't when he worked. It was relaxing to be retired and he settled back to take it easy.

Then one day he woke up a little earlier than usual and didn't feel very well. Not being a complainer, he didn't pay much attention at first. After a while, though, he had to see a doctor and, after a bunch of examinations, he got the news and it wasn't good.

To make a long story short,it seems he didn't have much longer to live. When it started, it got worse in a hurry. Pretty soon he couldn't even get out of bed.
The kids came around to see him when they could but he didn't tell them he was dying. He always enjoyed seeing them but it never seemed to be enough.

Then one day he died. Just before he died, he went to see a lawyer and left his last request. At the funeral, all the kids were there. His attorney was there, too.

After the service, everyone met at his house. The attorney was there, too. In a little while, the attorney said the man had requested every child should write on a piece of paper in two sentences or less what they really thought about their Dad. They were to be blunt and honest. It wouldn't matter what they wrote because he had nothing of any value to leave to anyone and he loved them equally.They agreed and each one of them took a sheet of note book paper and a pencil and began to write.

After his children finished writing, they folded their sheets of paper and handed them to the attorney. The attorney opened each sheet, one at a time, and read them to himself. As he read, his eyes began to glisten and soon tears ran down his cheeks. The kids watched, wondering of the reaction of their Dads' attorney to their notes.

"Please tell us why you are crying," one child said.

The attorney said, "I can't believe it."
Then he turned the sheets face up on top of the table.

Each sheet said, in a little different way, the same thing. It was, "I love my Dad. There were things I wondered about that happened in my life with my Dad but I now know he always did the best he could for me at the time ."

Sunday, July 10, 2005

The Nation of Islam...

With all this islamic terrorism going on, it kinda makes me wonder where the Nation of Islam of the United States stands on the terrorism. Where is the outrage from them and their ruler, Louis Farrakhan?

I'm not too surprised, though, that we haven't heard from them. You know, a bunch of black Americans who are so stupid they can read the Koran and make any sense out of it; a bunch of people who will listen to a racist like Farrakhan might not feel like this is their Country.

If any of you hypocrits who call yourselves black muslims and follow the dictates of Elijah Mohammed and Louis Farrakhan read this, maybe you should take time to go to an African nation and check out the muslims there. You'd be happy to come back to the good old U S of A! You'd have to admit it; you're not really muslims at all. You know why?
Because you have too much. You are too free. You are too happy. You can't be any of those things and be a muslim!

After you see those black muslims in Africa starving to death with snot running down the faces of the children and their ribs showing and their stomachs extended by malnutrition you'd realize how much better off you descendents of American slaves are!

Maybe after you see how beaten down and starved, how poor and dirty those poor unfortunate people are, you'd appreciate your real home and a true religion, Christianity, the religion of love, not Islam, the ideology of hate.

Do you people celebrate every September eleventh, to honor the innocent people who died at the cowardly hands of the muslim terrorists or do you celebrate because the heinous crime happened?

It's too bad you people cannot just proudly say, "I am an American," instead of showing your dis-dain by saying, "I am an African-American, the descendent of a slave!" We're all descendents of slaves!

I hope some of you will have the guts to speak up and condemn the islamic terrorists! You don't have to be a Christian if you choose not to but you really do need to be an American if you love this country and your freedom!

Saturday, July 09, 2005

How Insignificant Are We....

as individuals when you consider that our galaxy, the Milky Way, is @28,000 light years thick and @128,000 light years in diameter.

A light year is the distance light will travel in a year at the speed of 186,300 miles a second. Now that's a fur piece!

Our galaxy, relative to the imagined size of the universe, is smaller than a grain of sand in the Sahara Desert and our solar system, relative to the galaxy, is smaller than that. And our Earth, well, not even a contest!

Now for the fun part! Donna and I will go to Dairyville today to a jam session. Dairyville is about eight miles away so, at the rate of 186,300 miles per second, how much of our galaxy will it take us if we go the speed of light? 'oops'...I accidently blinked my eyes and am already back! Shucks...now I gotta go back again!

Now for the spooky part. The Earth is smaller than the grain of sand in the Sahara compared with the solar system; the solar system, smaller compared with the galaxy and the galaxy; well, no one can even imagine the size of the universe so where does that take us with the galaxy!

'whooooaaaahhhhhh'...Compared with the city of Red Bluff, I am the size of a pimple on the ass of an elephant; so how big am I compared with the universe?


Now that is spooky!
No wonder there is so much trouble with some people!

Now, we're goin' Jammin'!

Friday, July 08, 2005

Can China Dictate To The United States Congress and the President?...

What is George Bush going to do about Communist China trying to buy an American oil company?

What is he doing about the Chinese telling our Congress to be quiet and mind their own business?

If China has it's way, it'll own one of the biggest American oil companies before long. The oil company has already all but agreed to the sale.

What the hell is going on with this government? Why hasn't George Bush told the Chinese, "No, you can't buy an American oil company"?

What has this country come to? It's getting scarry!

Mr President, it's time you get off your ass and act like a man! For me, I'm sorry I voted for this man who lied about being a conservative Republican! I know what a conservative Republican is! I'm a conservative Republican! And Communist China is not my friend!!!

Folks, let's do something!

What If We Spent Half As Much Time...

writing to our leaders as we do in our blogs

Here is a piece I wrote and sent to the president and vice president. It took about seven minutes to think up and write and 1.3 seconds to send

"Mr. President:

With all due respect, it is time you acted with all haste to put an end to Islamic terrorism in this country and the world. As leader of the mightiest Nation on Earth, it is your responsibility to stop the spread of terrorism.

As you and I both know, all of Islam is responsible for the continuing reign of terror around the world. All muslims must be held responsible for these acts of murder and terrorist activities around the world. There is now an islamic jihad being carried out around the world and all muslims are involved in it.

We should, immediately, completely occupy Iraq and should start to eliminate Islam from the world. Muslims are led by people who hate Christians and Jews by order of their Koran. They will continue to kill us as long as they exist.

Please read the history of Islam so you will see for yourself Islam is an evil idealogy, not a religion, and is intent on enslaving the world.
Please act as if this is as serious as it really is. Stop procrastinating. You need to act immediately. Your lack of concern for this Nation has already done harm to us by allowing the price of oil to triple in the last few months.
As an example; check and see how much financial aid this country gives to Nigeria while allowing that nation to gouge us on the price of oil.

Please wake up, Mr. President, and do the right things for this Nation and the world!

Red Bluff, Ca 96080

If you agree with me, copy and paste this and send it. If you don't fully agree, write your own and send it. Put in your own names. I'll send one each to my representatives and senators, too.

It might not do any good if I send it, but it certainly won't do any good if I don't send it!

The Death of a Legend...

This is truly the end of an era...Ed McBain died today. Ed McBain, writer extraordinaire, story teller par excellence, the creator of "Precinct 87," the most absorbing and entertaining collection of cop stories of which I have ever had the pleasure of reading and listening.

For the 16 years preceeding my retirement in 2002, I drove my truck over the same route five days a week, through valleys and over mountains, on open highways and through dense traffic, from northern California to Medford, Oregon and back.

When I first started driving this route, it was thoroughly enjoyable and pleasant. The highway was four lane and bordered on both sides by green trees and shrubbery. Often deer and coyotes and, even sometimes bears and mountain lions (and a few Bob-cats) were seen along the route.

The trip started on a flat, straight highway but quickly ran into hills then mountains, over steep mountain passes that were a challenge in the winter months. The route followed the Sacramento River and was a pleasant drive for the first year or so.

Then, after a while,like any good truck driver,I got used to looking at this beauty and began to be bored with the same trip, day after day.

Then came Ed McBain! A friend suggested I start listening to books on tape and recommended Ed McBain books. I tried one out and quickly became a disciple of the consumate cop novel writer, the daddy of the 87th precinct.

I could extoll his virtues for any length of time and space but, for the sake of brevity, will only say: "To listen to a story about the adventures of the 87th precinct is an experience you will always remember. Try it-you'll like it!" Thank you, Mr McBain, you will be missed!

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Business As Usual...Islam Terrorism...

How much more will it take for the world to fully understand what is going on everywhere right now?

How many more innocent people have to die before the world understands what is happening?

When will the leaders of our governments admit to their constitutients that another muslim crusade is going on right now worldwide?
George Bush knows this.
Tony Blair knows this.
Every world leader knows that there is right now, worldwide, a holy war being fought.

Islam was founded by violence; the choice was, join us or die. Mohammed killed hundreds of thousands of Christians, Buddhists and anyone else he encountered in his quest to install Islam into the world.

All of North Africa and the middle East fell under the knife of Islam. The slaughter of the innocents was stopped only by the Christian Crusades at the request of Greece, which was in danger of being overrun by the muslim hordes.

It really is time for honest and God fearing people the world over to unite and end what has become another Islamic jihad. The Muslims are a stupid and uneducated people who blindly worship a non-existant god, the imams of which command the followers to go to all lengths, even suicide, to kill as many "infidels" as possible.

These people are so ignorant, they cannot understand that there will never be a way to forcibly convert the entire world to Islam.

There are a few exceptions, of course, such as the many negroes in the United States who claim to be members of the "Nation of Islam," led by Louis Farrakhan, a man as radical and dangerous as Mohammed himself. This man is so subtle that he can mix one truth in with several lies and make the black sheep following him believe he is a true prophet of the false god, Allah.

Wake up, America; Wake up, World: the end may be nearer than you think for many of us.
These people will stop at nothing to accomplish their goals, even though the vast majority do not even know exactly what those goals are.

These people are like blind sheep, armed with lions teeth, ready to do the bidding of a savage people who have an ideology based on death and destruction as a religion.

There is no Allah, only a people so without conscience and honor that they will kill any and all who are different from them. They are programmed to follow the imam and act without question when ordered to kill and die.

Wake up, world, before many more die for no reason!

This London slaughter was just a small act of death and destruction, just a preview of many coming attractions, as was the twin towers and 9/11.

It's either us or them. That sounds terrible but you can see it is the truth. As long as there are muslims, there will be terrorists.
When was the last time you saw an American or British Muslim inform on a terrorist? It'll never happen! They're all terrorists at heart; that's their life!


Tuesday, July 05, 2005

I just saw a woman with hair so red I lit my cigarette off it; and I don't even smoke!

While Blogging I Ran Across....

a site valled "J Man Times." It is on Stratus link section so I figured it must be interesting. It was quite interesting, especially the comparison of Iron Mike Tyson, Michael Jackson, Kobe Bryant and O J Simpson. There was no place for comments so I have to make my comment on my own blog.

I was impressed with the comparisons of those people and the observations made by the J Man but a little taken aback by his limited reference to Mohammed Ali, the mouth.The reference wasn't much so I just wanted to add my two cents to it.

I never considered Cassius Clay (aka-Mohammed Ali) the greatest of anything except his rhetoric. He lost a few fights and so isn't the greatest boxer. If we go by accomplishment, Rocky Marciano, the only heavyweight to never lose a title or any other fight, has to be the best heavyweight.

To cut to the chase and stay within the subject line of the J Man, I think Ali was a coward. I think that is why he rejected his Christian up-bringing and embraced Islam; solely to avoid the draft. For this, I have no respect for the man at all. It's too bad he became punch-drunk but those things happen. Some suggest God caused his affliction for his transgression against his God but I think that is a bit far out.
I can understand him not wanting to go to Viet Nam but to
use Allah, whoever he is, and Islam, whatever that is, as justification to dodge the draft is really sick. Come on, Ali, just admit you are afraid to die and get it over with. There is nothing dis-honorable about being afraid. But be a man about it!


The Rest of the Story...

It is quite a coincidence that the name of Orin Tucker came up at the 4th lunch.
In the year 1962 I worked for a construction company based in Los Angeles, putting a septic system in Drakesbad State Park in the North-eastern California, Lassen Mountain Park. My foremans' name was Big Jim McDermott. The owner of that construction company was Orin Tucker, the once leader of the Orin Tucker Band with singer, Wee Bonny Baker, who was now Mrs. Orin Tucker. How about that!

While we were working in the park, digging ditches, laying sewer lines and filling springs with gravel to filter water going to the cabins, it began snowing. We worked a day while it was snowing but had to leave before the snow got very deep.

It was 17 miles back to Chester, the nearest town. We had a drag-line we used to help dig the ditches and move dirt. The dragline had tracks instead of rubber tires and the tracks didn't have cleats on them; they were smooth. This would present a problem going back because the dragline had to be driven back and the roads by now were pretty slick. The boom on the dragline was sixty feet long and not retractable. That meant someone had to walk behind the dragline and hold a rope tied to the end of the boom and help guide it around corners.
Guess What? I was next to the youngest member of that crew so, along with the youngest fellow who was 19 years old, I was elected to do the job.

By the time we started back, it was snowing hard and the roads were slick as snot. I forgot the other guys name but he and I tied the rope on the end of the dragline boom and started walking along behind, guiding the boom around curves in the road.

We were doing some heavy duty grumbling and, in a while, Big Jim came along in his jeep and asked how we were doing. We told him we were cold as hell and, being the gentleman he was, he whipped out a bottle of Seagrams and handed it to us and said, "Have a drink and get warm." We were more than happy to do that little thing and we did! Actually, we had more than a few before it was over.

By the time Big Jim left, we were very happy and ready to go to work! In another mile or so, the motor on the dragline heated up and we had to stop for a while. It sat there and proceeded to boil the water out of the radiator. The driver said one of us had to go to the creek just below the road and get a bucket of water. The kid, who was quite a bit drunker than I was, said he'd do it and I agreed.

He put on a pair of hip boots so his legs wouldn't get wet as he sloshed through the snow down the hill to the creek. The snow obscured the bank going down so it was impossible to see just where the edge of the creek was. However, that didn't deter the kid and off down the hill he went. We watched him for a ways until he dropped out of sight. A second later we heard a splash and heard some very bad words being shouted. I had never heard a creek called any of the things he was calling it.

Now it was time to panic. I could imagine the kid floating down the creek so I started down after him.
About half way down I met him coming back up with a bucket of water. I took the bucket and told him to go ahead.

When we got back to the top, he sat down on the edge of one of the tracks.I noticed his legs wouldn't bend so I checked him out.

He began to shiver and I told him to let me pull the boots off him. He agreed and I grabbed one and yanked. He came off the track and sat down abruptly on the road. Evidently his boots had filled with snow and were now trying to freeze solid.

It took us a while to dig the snow out of his boots and get them off his feet. By now he was shivering pretty heavily. His clothes were all soaked so, after we got his boots off, he stripped to his underwear and we wrapped him in a blanket and sat him right next to the motor which we had re-started.
After a while he warmed up and Big Jim brought him a dry change of clothes and we headed out again.

The rest of the trip was uneventful and we reached Chester an hour or so before dark.

After this job, we went to El Portal, the southern entrance to Yosemite Park to install yet another septic system, but that's another stoty.

What a Great Day.....

yesterday was! Independence Day! The park get-to-gether was a success and Donna and I had a ball entertaining! We sang about ten songs before lunch and thought that might be all for the day. But, after we all had lunch, several people came by our table and asked if we would sing some more. So we did!

Donna got some compliments on her singing voice. One guy compared her to either Betty Barrett or Wee Bonnie Baker, a pop big band singer from the Orin Tucker Band of the forties! She blushed, right on cue, and we thanked the guy. (As a coincidence, there is a story of Orin Tucker and Wee Bonnie Baker I'll tell in the next post)

Anyhow, after lunch we got back up and sang another hour. The music sounded great and we had a fine time; and we made a couple of bucks in tips!

Our friends, Sandy and Vicki, were there and after Donna and I finished up, we all went to our place (which is just across the street) and drank wine and played a dice game called, Zilch! It was great fun. We always have a good time with Sandy and Vicki! They even let me win a game!

Gotta go now...I'm in the middle of vacuuming the floor and needed a break. ...'Yeah, I vacuum, It's my job!

Monday, July 04, 2005

Happy Birthday America!...

"When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation."

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

What a wonderful concept! And what heroic men who penned this document and, on July Fourth, 1776, signed it! Thank God for people like these who had the courage, honor and dedication to give us this gift of Freedom!

This is, of course, the beginning paragraphs of the Declaration of Independence of the United States. For this Declaration, we Americans should truly thank our God!

Thank God for this Nation!

Thank God for the people who dedicate their lives to lead us!

Thank God for the freedom to come and go as we please!

Thank God for His Son, Jesus, who made the supreme sacrifice on the cross so we may have the ethical and moral concept on which this document is based!

And mostly, thank God for the brave men and women who every day and night place their lives in danger so that we all may live and love freely and without fear in this, the greatest Nation in the history of the world, The United States of America!

May God Bless Us All and give us the Courage and Wisdom to fully appreciate that Blessing!

Now let us celebrate this Holiday and be truly thankful for being the most fortunate people on Earth; Americans!


Saturday, July 02, 2005

Figured It Out...

Well, thanks but I figured it out for myself. All I had to do is go the right place and click the right button. It was somewhere in the settings section; I forget where now...

Right now I have to finish getting my music together for the big 4th bash. We will only entertain for an hour or so but Donna wants to have enough songs to last 26 hours, just in case. She says, "Who knows; maybe a talent scout from Nashville will come by and hear us and want to sign us to a 13 year recording contract at $179,000 a session and a guaranteed 27 sessions a year. (provided we wish to have that many) Each session will be an hour long and record two songs which, by the way, are my own compositions.

I'd better get busy now. It was quieter earlier when Donna was shopping, practicing for our first payday.
I said, "Honey, don't you think you should wait for the first payday for the first session; for the first talent scout from Nashville; for the first contract to be offered and accepted by us and agreed upon by the whole shebang? You know, wait for something to happen?"
She assurred me she has all the confidence in the world in us.

I guess I'd better get some of that confidence now myself; I need it to make sure I can make enough money to pay for the new Cadillac SUV and houseboat Donna picked up this afternoon.

By the way, does anyone know the phone number of a talent scout in Nashville? I think I should go ahead and make a call, just in case.

My other blog templates have places on them for a post "Title." This one doesn't. Does anyone know how to create a title slot in the template?

Friday, July 01, 2005

I Need To Check This Out...

This template lacks the subject slot so I am checking how to make the font different sizes and alignments.And it looks like I fingered it out! This is better.

I think I'll use this size for text that isn't extraordinary. (Is there such a thing?


Donna Says I Needed To...

Change back to my other template. She likes it better and Chico the Wonder Dog likes it better and they say (she says-he looks)it is cheerier than the black.

Besides, I have a black one, "In Dreams," and two of the same color is confusing. Now I have to re-do everything; the links and all the rest. Now I can resume linking my story, "A Detective Story."

I might not have as many friends now as I did before I left a comment on a fellows' blog. I enjoy reading his posts, by and large, but I felt I also needed to be honest.

Enough of that. Now I have to get my music ready for a Fourth of July show here at the park. And finish re-doing this blog.