Monday, February 28, 2011


As Mr. Meek, my high school World History teacher said,'The older one gets the less black and white things are and the greyer they become.'

That's true both literally and figuratively.

I remember that moment specifically. Mr. Meek was the kind of teacher who inspired and guided, never getting in the way. Oh he could mentally kick you in the ass too.

His words have come to mind from time to time, often ironically.

As we get older and greyer, so the world seems to blend and become indistinct. Things don't seem so cut and dried anymore.

In youth, we seem so confident, heedless of consequences and ready to leap before we look.

The older we get, we hesitate, looking before we leap.

Maybe one of the best things to come from that time years ago is that we don't have to ever give up.

Things get greyer but we can still focus. If we look before we leap, we may see where we can land.


Traveling gives one a perspective beyond one's local limits.

When I was a kid, I was told it was broadening. I was fortunate that we travelled many places. I got the full spectrum from fishing with Dad and hunting with my Brother to traversing the country and some of the rest of the world with my Mom and Sis.

One of the pillars of travel was the fact I learned manners. Sure I was taught from day one about please and thank you. I learned about waiting my turn and general politeness, including patience.

This and more was begun at home and then honed on the road. Mostly manners were pretty universal. I didn't learn about cultural nuances til later on my own.

I still try to be polite and give people the benefit of the doubt. Usually.

The slow bleeding of manners by a me culture and erosion by fear would try the patience of Job.

When someone is rude to you what should you do?

Depends on the circumstances but I usually call people on it.

Cutting in line, ignoring the wild even churlish behavior of some kids and rudely accosting others are commonplace today.

Instead of 'excuse me' often it's 'hey, hey'. I ignore that one all the time staying in condition yellow, lest it be a distraction.

I sometimes meet rudeness with abruptness. Funny how that gets some lout's attention. Often these mokes expect people to be embarrassed. No thanks. Again that can be the tactic of some moke intent on robbing and or worse.

Part of this is taking command of a situation. The intensity varies but not being caught off guard is the goal.

If it's a questionable come on, I keep my distance and actually order the accosting party to stay away.

One night my son and I were walking down the street and a guy asked where the nearest homeless shelter was located. I told him but he continued approaching us. We made a circle and he still tried to close the gap with my son present!

He chose to move on, though in the opposite direction of the shelter. He saved his life that night.

I say this simply because it was escalating and he didn't seem to want to keep away. Of course it would have all depended on him if he proceded. Believe me it was touch and go.

I believed he was trying to test our defenses and decided to back off.

No matter, the rudeness was unbelieveable.

Don't laugh. Ok go ahead.

Now I don't expect polite thieves. There have been some but I wouldn't bank on the good graces of a thug.

And no, I'm not complying with some moke robbing me, no matter how polite.

Then there are those who think the world exists to serve them. You dare not to look in their eyes. Horse hockey. When you do, it makes them nervous.

When people are nervous, they make mistakes. Don't know if they think twice later and become more considerate. But if you call them on it, they have to move.

Again, here I am leaving this to you to deal with manners or their lack as you see fit.

Some think only the higher ground can be successfully defended.

Tain't so McGee.

Thursday, February 24, 2011


Made up rhythmic words.

Not the scatological rhetoric throughout history.

And not a certain kind of porn.

It's one of the oldest American musical traditions.

Humor is often employed as the singer weaves his or her way on a musical trip.

It's a matter of improvisation. You literally make it up as you go along. And the deal is that people can dig the beat. They can move with the groove. You can mingle with the tingle.

I'd give you a written sample but it's real hard to spell scat out. It's a language all its own. And it's best expressed orally. You gotta hear the sound.

There are detail analyses of scat. Check it out. You might start at 'scat singing' at Wikipedia.

There are evan psychological studies. Then again there are psych studies of fruitfly behavior. Now studies are ok, but sometimes things just are.

I suppose what I'm getting at is for people to listen. There is musical structure.

Instrumental improvisors are different but related. They of course imitate actual musical instruments. The Mills Brothers come to mind and there are others.

By the way, that whole instrumental phenomenon sprang from a strike that forbade actual instrumentation aka musician's strike. So people found a way.

What's it got to do with Freedom? Just reread this missive.

Like I have told my kids, figure it out yourself -s-.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Is there a fine line between networking and riding coattails? Not really. There is a broad band.

They can be related but only if some boundary is exceeded.

In my world, networking is simply connecting with others in my line of work. The degree of involvement can vary and that's where the confusion can manifest.

I found it's best when approaching people at a certain level that you keep it simple and direct. Be polite and tell them what you are about. Express your interest and appreciation for their work sure. But get to the point. Time wasted is time gone. If you are fortunate to get to know them, maybe there is time to chat.

On the other hand, if there is no direction or you just want to meet them or worst case hang with them, it's coattail time.

Most people realize for instance that actors are playing parts. They may have an interest in something the character represents. Or it might be the challenge of playing a part they could have in common with the actor.

Usually fans are happy to meet the person behind the character. Sometimes they are glad to see the actor is human and cares about the audience. It ends there.

If you are professional, that can usually be determined quickly. I've met industry people at conventions and conveyed to them what I'm doing. That is of course not to put the fans down. I'm one as well. It's simply to let the artist know where I'm coming from.

It's in the ballpark of the person you're approaching after you make contact. They may say sure call email etc to a contact. They may decline. If they do be businesslike and go on hoping to contact them at some other point perhaps through a mutual associate/friend.

Whatever you do, don't push. That old axiom about not being dull or desperate is remarkably true. Just be yourself and talk.

That last is from someone well known who wishes to remain anonymous at least in circumstances like these. I'm fortunate he knows I'm not coattailing him. Bob Wise and Pat McGoohan among others knew/know I'm on the level. That takes time and a buildup of trust. But to begin with, easy does it.

All of this and more applies to other facets of business and to other life endeavors as well.

As for those who are just plain dicks, walk on and don't give them another thought. Success is the best revenge -s-.

Most who are seemingly rude are usually protecting themselves. If there is a good reason later, you may deal professionally with them. And again if not, there are plenty of good professional folks to work with.

Lastly (for now lol), there will come a time when you will have to determine when people are trying to coattail or network.

Let experience, your own and others, especially friends, serve you as to which is which.

As for Facebook friends, I've mentioned it before and will again one day. It can be a different ball of wax.

Sunday, February 20, 2011


It's the town where my Great Grandmother was born. At home. In the 1870's that was pretty common.

It's still pretty quiet there. Too quiet for some I suppose.

My kids tell me they would go nuts living in the country or a small town. Not me.

Oh I'd keep a place in the city but I would like to live in the mountains or at least in a small town.

I don't want to hide. People who think that are in for a shock. It's hard to stay away from technology. Not impossible though.

Cities are ok. But if things go south, you'd better get out while the getting is good.

I'm not gonna go into all the survival stuff. Nothing wrong with it and the fact it's often demonized tells me someone is afraid of losing control.

Nah. I just have fond memories of small towns.

Be sure, there are dramas and even intrigue where everybody know everybody else. I even had a great great uncle murdered in Whitestown. No need to dig up details as it were. Just take my word for it.

Love birth love death with work play and lots of sweat included.

Some townies still see 'outsiders' as the new folks in town even after years. Some are very welcoming. Like all else you find good evil and everything in between. It's just that finding things is easier. Well the intangibles. A lot more stuff has to be imported or you go to the nearest city etc to shop. Whereever I live, I like to order stuff now online. It's fun to get things delivered.

I like to travel, but I look forward to coming home.

Small and quiet is better for me.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Rocking Chair

I love rocking chairs. My Great Grandmother had one on her porch overlooking Main Street. She could coast back and forth, watching the people and cars. She could also hold court in warm weather as she often did with so many. For a woman who gave up cleaning her own house at 98, it was a simple restful pleasure.

There is no needing one. Well, unless it makes one's sunset years more comfortable.

Rocking chairs are chairs for all ages and all times.

On the symbolism side (Which I almost almost always seem to touch on), they are representative of peace, tranquility, of taking it easy after a long life.

Though there is a distinct lack of peace these days, I figure we should grab any r & r we can.

Besides they feel good on my back lol.

I used to sit on Grandma's lap when little and I remember how soothing it was when she rocked. I used to like rocking myself when my feet finally touched the ground.

It's a great place to think. You can let your mind wander and/or stay on earth and think just about anything through

Naturally I hope I get to rock my grandkids if I have any. Maybe there will be peace then. I suspect there will be a need to 'maintain' it though.

My kids and I will teach them.

Ok there is a great need for them.

Let's rock!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Have A Heart

Happy Valentine's Day, whatever it may mean to you!

It's a cheap one for me this year. I'm single and no sweetie/s. The kids are old enough to have somebody Vday them and I refuse to get Codrea and Vanderboegh etal cards or candy -s-.

I'm just asking everyone to have a heart. Not bleeding heart goshiness.

Care. Care for the right reasons.

You don't know what you've got til it's gone very often.

Care enough to help people help themselves.

Without feeling thoughts become dry metallic, robotic.

Balance your head and heart.

I'm passionate about our Freedom as Americans.

I pray putting my heart into my work pays off.

If I didn't care, I'd ditch it all.

Love comes in many forms.

May it blossom. For without out it how can we truly be free?

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Banality Of Evil

It's not usually Ernst Stavro Blofeld on a mountain or in a volcano.

It's remarkably ordinary.

It's everyday.

The guy whose job is left at the office/factory. The shoe salesman. The guy who fixes things. For weal or woe.

We are being robbed of the ability for critical thinking.

People have greatly fallen into the trap or ratrace.

Some consider Hannah Arendt's philosophy like beating the proverbial dead horse. Her work could take a bit of time in a colloege class to unravel.

But, there is no doubt that thought and judgement have been affected negatively.

She specifically talks about Adolf Eichmann and how her pursued his duties in the death camps. He was an unremarkable man who carried out his job without thinking of the consequences.

There are a lot of bureaucratic automatons who could fit the bill today. Look at how some people are being portrayed as dangerous even inhuman and unbalanced in their fear of government. Unthinking hearts and minds are convinced that Restoring the Republic and the increasing Great Awakening threaten instead of heal.

I used to wonder even as a child how America could produce the likes of camp workers. No more.

Anything as horrendous as the loss of our Freedom is hardly banal of course. But is has become everyday. Thus people of different stripes could easily be recruited to serve tyranny for a greater good.

However, as I've said before, we counter the unthinking with thought and aggressive action with self defense.

The everyday folks who might serve evil may well do so.

But there are many who will serve Freedom.

It's not the banality of good. It is quiet or at least resolute devotion to duty.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

A Fork In Every Road

Eternal choices. You name it. It could be as simple as either doing something or doing nothing. The desired effects may vary and conversely by doing nothing one might bring about change even for good. Some things have to stew in their own juice. Most things, however, need action as in stirring the pot.

Setting events in motion might be enough. But most of the time maintenance is required. And observation.

Awareness is the most overlooked quality to develop. What's going on? What can I do? Being kept busy keeps us from asking ourselves what's important. Even me these days. Just look at the lag time on this blog. Distractions aplenty can facet our lives so that there is little time to concentrate.

And there is doubt or confusion that can result.

Of course, we can handle many things and seemingly at once.

It's a matter of focus. It's a matter of doing more than one thing at a time.

It's a matter of knowing the score, the truth.

I think eyes on the prize is appropriate. That prize is Freedom, faster dwindling though we are cosseted and continuing to be lulled into a very false sense of security.

Isn't that a key word? It almost rolls off the tongue, seductively.

Put your mind on hold and do what you're told.

Then, SLAM! Something happpens to shake you loose.

Perhaps it's always the feeling things aren't right.

And you have to decide which way to go.

A fork in every road.

A dead end or place to make things right.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Servants And Masters

'Government is not reason, it is not eloquence, it is force; like fire, a troublesome servant and a fearful master. Never for a moment should it be left to irresponsible action.' George Washington

Well, how far have we come from this? Seems gov is a raging forest fire now. Then again, it's always been a fight between individual will vs control of the masses. Guess in ref to what Washington said, nothing changes except intensity.

It is the reason of man that sets limits on government. In Restoring the Republic, we are working to undo bit by bit the horrible mixmaster installed while people trusted there gov to those elected.

Those people have become troublesome servants in that many have forgotten that they are indeed servants. Role reverswal has deluded them into thinking they are the masters. We ae endeavoring to remind them how wrong that is.

It's becoming slowly combustible. Force is force. Thus the Second Amendment. It's simple, but made so needlessly complex.

We have rationalized our rights away. And the trick is they are still there.

We must remind our servants of that and who is boss.

As we do, the heat increases and threatens to engulf.

Then let's be fire wardens. Control is ours.

Thursday, February 3, 2011


Pranks can be fun. They can be painful even dangerous. they can be hurtful. Or they can be serious.

We used to pull pranks in school. They were mostly harmless. I personally would never participate or initiate something that would bring serious injury or berating such as racial epithets to anyone. However, a little water never hurt anybody.

We especially liked to prank people who were prigs, the full of themselves types, who often were social bullies. And we would prank one another.

For security reasons (-s-), I'll refrain from detail except for the occasional crayon fight and water bucket. Suffice it to say we had fun. Was it at the expense of another? Sometimes lol. It was never mean spirited and no one was permanenetly harmed. Shoelaces? Crying 'boo' in the dark? Hey, joybuzzers whoopie cushions and barf pads aside, except for the social bullies most laughed with us.

Creativity was important. Being resolute and even sometimes detailed, pranks could range from simple said buzzers etc to more intricate almost 'Mission Impossible' plots. We didn't watch the 3 Stooges for nothing.

Oh and don't think we were stupid enough to actually do injurious things. We knew the difference between filmic FX and reality. Kinda the same thing with toy guns and real. There was respect and caring much to some surprised people. Oh yes, and common sense.

Pranksters have a future. There is a long road ahead for us all and our kids. A few surprises could be just the tonic to keep things alive.

And if we keep a snense of humor, we keep our humanity.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Monkey People

Ever heard the story of The Monkey People? It's a Colombian folktale.

There is a recording of the story at Rabbit Ears Radio and available at Amazon done by the late Raul Julia. He was a good actor who is best known for playing Santa Anna in The Alamo: 13 Days to Glory and Gomez Addams in the Addams Family movies.

There was a tribe of people who lived by a large lake. They were exceedingly lazy, messy and irresponsible (Reminds me of a certain bunch I've expunged from my life.).

They were so lazy, all they did was use up what was around them. they got so lazy they didn't repair their huts nor did they even till the ground.

As soon as the area was overflowing with waste and garbage, they would move off to a new spot, circling the lake.

They got increasingly lazy, tot he point where they would not even repair their huts nor search for food.

One day a mysterious man appeared and said he could solve their problem.

the people were anxious to avoid any work so they allowed the man to 'help' them.

He created a race of monkeys from leaves.

The monkeys, served the people. They cleaned, tilled the ground and fewd the increasingly lazy people.

They became so lazy they wouldn't even rise from their hammocks, preferring to remain and complain about how hard life was.

The monkeys took care of all their needs. They eventually didn't even need to leave their beds.

It continued til the people wasted away to bestial creatureswho scurried away as the 'monkey people' rose and became dominant.

The moral of the story?

What do you think?

I recoomend you order it. It's a great cautionary tale right up there with The Little Red Hen.