Saturday, April 30, 2016

Assault Weapons and Election Season

I am a gun owner . . . I will pause while some of you catch your breath and others un-friend me.

I have owned guns since I was a teenager.  I have fired thousands and thousands of rounds of target practise.  I have never shot an animal.

I have more than one gun, and a couple keep a couple of thousand rounds of ammunition on hand - it is much cheaper to buy in 1,000 round cases.

Being election season, every time I turn the TV on some idiot is promising to ban assault weapons.  If you want to frustrate and confuse a politician talking about banning assault weapons,  ask them to define an assault weapon.  Most simply can't.  If they try they will describe a scary looking gun that looks like a military rifle.  The last time Congress took a stab at this they banned "military style" rifles.  The ban was based on looks, not function.  The same caliber, barrel design and ammunition capacity in a nice walnut stock that looked like grandpas deer rifle was just fine, but if it was stripped down with a black plastic stock like a modern army rifle, it was on the banned list. Take the scary looking gun, and repackage it in a pretty package and it was legal (and some manufactures did just that.)

There are meaningful differences between a modern military rifle, the scary looking AR-whatevers.  Nearly all of the the consumer "assault weapons" are semi-automatic, not automatic.  This difference makes a meaningful difference in how fast it can fire, the consumer version is significantly slower. Fully automatic weapons have a tightly regulated permitting system and are somewhat rare in consumer collections.  Now most shooters are not able to handle a fully automatic for bursts of more than 3-5 shots, anything more than that and the gun is nearly uncontrollable unless it on a tripod or rest. At about $1 a round, a fully automatic can go through $50 in ammo in seconds.  There are ranges that own them and will supervise you shooting one, if you want to spend $100 for two minutes of fun (or terror. - I know a place in Scottsdale.)  Both hold a lot of ammo, but then again so does the rabbit hunting rifle my grandfather gave me when I was 14 - it just does not look scary.

I know, I scare the NRA, and the NRA scares me.  They can't believe that a gay moderately liberal democrat could be a gun owner.  I think they are nutty extremists.

Don't fall for the assault weapons rhetoric. The real issue is keeping all guns out of the hands of people who don't value other human lives and improving society so everyone feels valued as a human being. If we put as much effort into providing meaningful mental health and substance abuse treatment as we do into arguing about guns, a lot fewer desperate people would do regrettable things with guns.

Friday, April 29, 2016


Sometimes we just need to rant, I was talking with a friend in the office who recently returned from some major surgery that will result in discomfort - probably daily - for the rest of her life.  I assured her it was okay to melt down every few weeks about it, save it up, let it all out and then get on with life; well this posting is my melt down about the stupid and evil things I have encountered lately.

The Condo is replacing the back gate. The back gate is an electrically operated gate for the shuttle bus to get in and out and a pedestrian turnstile entrance - exit. It is the shortcut to the subway station, without it it is about 1.5 miles to the station, instead of less than 1/2 a mile.   It closed on a Monday for a four day replacement.  On Thursday of that week the management office posted a notice that it rained on Tuesday and the project would be delayed - the delay is running on two weeks.  So a 4 days project, delayed by one afternoon of rain took 10 working days to complete.  I've seen houses built faster! I'd scream at them, but no one speaks English, and I never learned how to swear in French - yes French - that has come in real handy as a second language.   Why the merde' didn't I learn Spanish instead (it wasn't offered at my high school.)

Congress finally passed reauthorization of the Older Americans Act.  Despite Rand Paul saying we don't need this, people get old without the government interfering (yup, I was there when he said it,) the Act creates a ton of important initiatives that make the lives of older persons better.  The reauthorization bill looks  innocuous enough, but it is written in the most deceptive manner of any piece of federal legislation I have ever read.  I won't be surprised to read that the bill repealed gravity by simply saying in Section 1070 deleted everything after (A) (2) (b)(1) (17).  Evil-evil-evil, tell us what you are doing.

I forwarded a posting from the Assistant Secretary for Aging about the Older Americans Act reauthorization being signed into law to a list serve. Finding relevant news and posting it to the list is part of what I get paid for.  Two silly responses,  One complementing me on the elegantly worded statement that I clearly didn't write.  The other wanted to argue with me about how poorly written the bill was and demanded to know how certain provisions made it into the law.  I don't know.  I worked on this issue for about three years - then things went silent and no one bothered to let me know what was happening until the bill had passed.  I didn't write the bill (earlier bills had sections in them lifted from things I had written) but not the bill that passed.  Duh!  I don't know.

The Metro station, about six months ago they put up a fence around the escalator at the entrance on this end with big signs reading "working to improve your commute," and they tore out the old escalator.  The signs are still there and no work has been done for months and months and months.  I'd scream at them, but there is no one there to scream at - in any language.

There, there, I feel better now.  Don't worry I will save it up and melt down again soon.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Why do we ride bikes

I have been following the journey of Eric Hites, Aka, Fat Guy Across America, the self proclaimed fat man riding a bicycle across the United States.  He started in the northeast, went south to Florida, and is now in Louisiana.  He is on a journey of exploration and seeking.  He is learning about himself, people; seeing America along the backroads.    

I have been riding since I was about 10 - I remember struggling to learn to ride, the tiny bike that arrived with training wheels and my father disposed of before I was handed the bike. Eventually I figured out that the secret to balance was moving forward, one inch at time, one revolution at time. I have learned a lot about myself by riding, I never really feel at home in a new neighborhood, until I have ridden the streets.  I have pushed my limits by riding.  The obvious is time, distance and endurance - riding to the limits and discovering new limits.  Riding time, is alone time for me, time for me to dig deep into my mind, and also time to get lost in the surroundings and forget everything that is going on in my mind and the world.

I have owned a few really good bikes, and one outstanding bike over the years.  When I was shopping for a really fast bike 25 years and about 90 pounds ago, I encountered the prejudice of bike snobs. You see, I am not built like a competitive cyclist.  A couple of shops refused to let me test ride the best and fastest. They said, that bike is far beyond your ability, you will never be able to ride it to it's potential.  As they say you always find what you are looking for "the last place you look" and I did.  The dealer was honest that the bike was more than what I was ready for at the time, that it would be a handful to ride, but if I would promise to wear a helmet, he would let me ride it.  It was love at first roll, I decided to buy it before I was out of the parking lot at the shop.  It is shockingly fast, I still own it, I still ride it from time to time.  I learned the pleasure of the best tools, of growing my skills by stretching beyond my abilities.  And of the need to focus on the task at hand, a very fast racing bike is a finicky and squirrely thing to ride - but oh will it go.

I have watched Eric change.  He has lost weight, but just as important he has changed as a person. He has experienced a lot of good and wonder, and been subjected to criticism by people who don't understand why he has not taken this a race-across-America, or a marathon to drop 50-pounds a month.  He has learned to deal with the naysayers, to embrace the people who understand and get what he is doing, and  the importance of moving forward one day at a time, one revolution at a time.  He is moving at a pace that works for him, he is experiencing the country.  He is learning about himself as a person and how to live within his being in this world.  I get why he is riding, why he is doing what he is doing the way he is doing it.  What he is doing, is why we ride bikes.


Wednesday, April 27, 2016


It happens every week, someone sends me an email referring the "the attachment" and there is no attachment.  Opps!  I have done this.  How do we respond to this?  99.9% of the time, the attachment is not there because the person was in a hurry and didn't attach it.  Rarely, very rarely, there is technical glitch and the attachment didn't send, or was stripped off in transmission and receiving.  The natural reaction is to email back, "you forgot the attachment . . . BONEHEAD!"  Oh I know we usually leave "bonehead" off, but we all know it is implied.  My reply, "my computer ate the attachment, please resend it."  Let's place the responsibility on Windows - and the two of us work together to try to slip this one past it.  Why should I make a harried person, feel bad about being overworked and distracted, when the real issue is simply, for what ever reason I didn't receive the attachment and I need it. No guilt, no responsibility, please resend it.  

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

How can I say this

There are idiots among us, people who as bright as a burnt out light bulb. We encounter them at work, when shopping, when driving, at every turn.  If you are lucky, you don't encounter them at home, when I was married the first time, I spent a couple of years saying B.O.N.T., short of Bright One Next Time.  Boy did I find a bright one the next time.

One approach is to be very blunt about it, calling a moron a moron.  It might feel satisfying, but it doesn't help get things done.  I sometimes try ignoring the stupidity, keeping it bottled up inside of me - it always leaks out sooner or later.  On other occasions I try to help the person, some can be lead, others can't.  Some are in deep denial and perfectly convinced that they actually know what they are doing.  The most dangerous of the bunch.

In the end, kindness, and understanding, usually work.

And also listening, some of the greatest gems of wisdom come from the most surprising sources. Many years ago I was working with a client whose signature had been forged on a credit card application.  The client was disabled, had about a third grade education, had never left home - she understood and openly shared her limitations with me.  It was obviously to all of us but her, who had forged her signature, a family member. The creditor suing her offered to dismiss if she would file a criminal complaint against the family member.  I talked to her urging her to allow me to arrange a meeting with the local police detective who worked this type of case (I knew him and had worked with him on numerous cases.)  She said no, I have tried talking to the family member and he won't talk about it, I didn't see him sign it, "if I go to the police and accuse him, without any proof that he signed it, I am the one who is lying."  The attorney for the credit card company was dumbfounded by her response, the attorney said, "usually people are so eager to throw someone under the bus on these cases that they eagerly take us up on that offer."  I urged the creditor's attorney to think about the wisdom of what my client had said, shortly after we were able to resolve the case in my client's favor.  Then came the next collection case . . . with the same family member taking advantage of my client.  

Monday, April 25, 2016

It has been a year

It has been a year, since I last fell and needed help getting up.  We make jokes about the TV commercials saying "Help I have fallen and I can't get up!"  Let me tell you, it really sucks to fall and it is even worse if you have trouble getting up.  I remember one fall, at home, alone, late at night, wondering as I was tumbling to the floor, if this was it, if this was where they would find my decomposing remains.  

If you see someone fall, help them.  Urge them to see a doctor.  Assess their condition, dial 911 if needed, or help them get up if they appear to be uninjured.  My last fall was in my local metro station.  Two men helped me up, one of them walked with me to my car just to make sure I was okay and said, "you really should go see a doctor."  I wish I knew his name, I owe him a huge THANK YOU!  Encourage people at risk of falling to obtain and use an emergency alert button.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Vacation and Travel Preferences

What do we really know about one another, we read each other's blogs, but there is more to each of us than our blog content.  So this year I am going to try to create a meme, or list of questions of the week. If you like the questions, feel free to copy and paste the questions onto your blog, and please link back to  Let me know in the comments how to find your blog and your answers. 

  1. Where are you going on vacation this year?    Italy 
  2. How many nights did you spend in hotels last year? 44
  3. If every chain is available, what brand of hotel are you most likely to book?  Holiday Inn 
  4. Do you prefer room service or going out to eat when you travel? Eating out 
  5. Planes, trains, automobiles or boats, what is you favorite way to travel out of town? Planes or trains 

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Cedar Plank Fish

And I thought cooking fish on a cedar plank was the invention of a modern chief, it was the restaurant fad of the year 4-5 years ago.  Come to find out, it is an ancient cooking method.  Here are three "Shad" butterflied and cooking next to an open fire.  It was an efficient way of cooking large amounts of fish.  It works especially well with oily fish as the fat melts and drips down.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Mt Vernon Grist Mill and Distillery

For 20 years, George Washington ran a very successful milling operation. The mill produced meal and flour for the estate and high quality flour for sale and export.  Grinding added value to what surplus grain could be sold for.  For years he resisted the idea of adding a distillery, despite the fact that there were over 3,500 distilleries in Virginia and Maryland.  He was afraid of the "kind of people" that distilling might attract.  Finally near the end of his life, he approved the building a small distilling operation.  At first it was just two stills.  Distilled spirits sold for a good price (about 60-cents a gallon) were easier to transport than grain of flour and didn't spoil.  Within 4 years the distillery had grown and George Washington was the largest volume distiller in Virginia (and possibly the country.)  He died shortly after, the nephew who inherited the part of the estate that included the mill and distillery was not a good business man and within a couple of years ceased operations and a decade later the distillery burned down.  The facilities were rebuilt over the past 20 years and are back in very limited production.

Stop by for a visit, and we can sample the modern product.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Go The Other Way

As I mentioned, Mt Vernon was busy last weekend, a couple of large tour groups of teenagers had come in, rather than turn left and follow the usual traffic pattern, I turned right, and then right again, walking the circuit in the opposite direction as the majority of visitors.  As a result the crowds were less intense and the noise level was much lower.

It also meant that I was climbing the hill up from the landing, on the path that I normally go down to the landing on.  Nearing the top of the hill, it is a bit of a steep climb, I stopped to sit and rest of a moment, and I saw this view of the Mansion that I had never seen before.  A rather nice view from that angle and the trees and blooms nicely frame it. We see things in a new light when we break the routine, and do things the other way around once in a while.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

What A Beautiful Person

I was out at Mt Vernon Sunday morning.  The place was unusually crowded with school groups and a group gathering for a special recognition program for young people.  Lots of ladies in grand hats - kind of like Derby Season in Kentucky.  The lady in purple was hard to miss, she was out looking her best, a flowing lavender dress, and a wonderful hat.  What a beautiful person.  She is out going, and doing and helping others.  She is making the most she can of who she is.  What more can or should the world expect of any of us?  I am sure she is aware that she is has a unique shape, but it does not stop her from looking good and getting out an doing.  The next time I am tempted to "sit this one out" thinking of her example will remind me that beauty comes from doing the best we can with who we are.  Get out and do and enjoy life.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Private Jet Travel

The side of the jet, reads "First Class Air Travel," it should be a nice way to travel.  Nice private jets, old 727's I believe.  The extra large door would have come in handy for the guy in the middle seat in the row ahead of me last Thursday night, actually he was in the middle seat, and 1/3 of the window seat, and 1/3 of the aisle seat - airlines really need to accommodate persons of size without squeezing the poor sods sitting next to them.

Pegasus on the tail of these two planes is a clue as to their use, they are private jets for race horses.  Specialized first class travel for very expensive, very pampered and very fast horses.  Keeneland race course is in the middle of their spring meet, the race course is just across the road from the airport in Lexington.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Name that airport - super challenge edition

This is a hard one, few have been there and even fewer ever wanted to be there, Name That Airport?

Sunday, April 17, 2016

What are your 5 Guilty Pleasures?

What do we really know about one another, we read each other's blogs, but there is more to each of us than our blog content.  So this year I am going to try to create a meme, or list of questions of the week. If you like the questions, feel free to copy and paste the questions onto your blog, and please link back to  Let me know in the comments how to find your blog and your answers. 
  1. What is your personal indulgence food? 
    1. A very sharp and crumbly cheddar cheese, the texture is the key
  2. What is the most comfortable item of clothing you wear?
    1. UnderArmour boxer-briefs - expensive and worth every penny 
  3. What view makes you stop and stare every time?
    1. Washington, DC coming in across the 14th street bridges 
  4. What is your favorite drink (alcoholic or otherwise)? 
    1. Cherry-Coke Zero- not the healthiest stuff  but oh so sweet
  5. What sound makes you comfortable and sleepy?
    1. Silence - the condo the quietest place I have ever lived, once the drummer stops for the night

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Home - again

If you ask me where I am from, you are likely to hear in reply, "it is complicated."  I have lived in five states.  I have few connections and no desire to live in Michigan the place I was born (I am do for a visit.) I should go back and visit some dead relatives and remind myself how lucky I was to flee when I did.  I have an emotional attachment to Phoenix that is hard to understand, I was in the first grade when my family lived there.  I liked Florida, I miss the warmer winters, but I am not sure I would move back.  There are oddities in Florida, there are nearly no rocks, the gardening seasons are really different and most transplanted yankees never figure it out (it is too hot in the summer to grow tomatoes.) I had some good times in Kentucky and really grew as an adult there, but neither of us ever really wanted to be there.  It was where the jobs and opportunity were. When people remark that I am from Kentucky, I often correct them, that I am not from there, but I did live there for a few years (13.5 years.)  Virginia still feels temporary.  I have been here over 7 years, and still do not feel like I fit. I thought when I got a drivers license here and voted it would feel like I belonged, and still I feel alien.

But I am back home for the moment, to the place that I have my mail sent to.  I have been in and out for a couple of weeks with conferences in Denver and Kentucky.  I am home for a few weeks, then another couple of conferences and grand adventure vacation.

So where are you from and where is home?

Friday, April 15, 2016


 I like airport, especially airports with interesting local or regional shops.  Denver has several shops that sell native american and western themed merchandize.  The fuzzy bag was a huge temptation. It would make a statement, be noticed, and you could pet it and hug it.  I resisted the temptation.

 Spring in the city, and again yes, I resisted the temptation.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Take a Hike

I was in Denver for a board meeting and conference last week.  I went down for breakfast and the top-tech-tips session on the third morning.  I remarked that I was skipping the morning plenary and would probably go to the gym and do my half-hour of penance.   The executive director of the organization looked at me and said, "take a hike," it is a beautiful morning  in a wonderful setting - you should get out of the hotel and go for a nice long walk.  And so I did,.  Sometimes the best advice is "take a hike!"

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Name that airport

In the ongoing series, name that airport, where was I last week when I took this picture?

Way back in the mid-1980's I was changing planes in the city above, at the old airport near downtown, or more accurately trying to change planes, when they announced plans to build an entirely new airport.  I distinguish between a new terminal and a new airport.  An airport is the runways and taxi ways - the things planes come and go on, the terminal is the building that passengers use to check in, check bags (please check your bags and quit trying to carry all your worldly possession on board,) get on and off planes and such.  It is much easier to build a new terminal than it is to build a new airport.  Airports take up a lot of land.  The problem with today's featured city at the old airport, was they had no land.  The old airport was surrounded by business and homes and it was far to small.  The runways were barely long enough and the terminal so small that when I went to leave, the airplane was there, but they couldn't find a gate for it for over an hour.  The airline personnel came up with a compromise, the plane pulled in close between two gates, and if you could walk down the stairs and out to the plane and climb the stairs to the plane, you were on your way now, if not another plane would use the jet bridge in an hour or so.  So while this was going on, the announcement was made that the city had purchased several thousand acres of land, a bit far out, and would build and entirely new airport and terminals.  Everyone trying to get to Phoenix that day understood why.

The new airport (not so new now, it has been open 25 years or so) is huge, it has tons of runways and an expansive terminal.  The only issue is it is way far out of town.  The good news, is a light rail line will connect it to the city center within a month.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

And the Cycle Begins Again

Travel and conferences tend to come in cycles for me.  When the job description said travel up to 20% of the time, it didn't say, all of that would be in 2-3 months of the year, but it tends to be.  April - May, and September -October are heavy office travel cycles.  I will see a lot of airport terminals in the next couple of months.  By the end of this cycle, I will be really ready for a couple of quiet months at home.

I like airports.  Airports can be stressful, but they are also places of amazing adventures.  My top five tips for not being stressed at the airport:

  1.  Arrive early, the standard recommendation is two hours before flight time. Most of us squeeze that down closer to an hour, but the closer you cut it, the more likely you are to get caught in a slow line at check in, bag drop or security and get stressed about missing a flight. 
  2. Know what is allowed through security and be prepared.  You need to be metal free, seriously I have seen people with half a pound of jewelry surprised that they set off the security scanners. Move everything into your carry on bag, or put it all in the pockets of a jacket and run it through the x-ray machine.  In the standard line, take your shoes off, you laptop out, take out your liquids bag.  In Pre-check, de-metal, and as soon as your bag goes into the x-ray machine walk through the scanner, don't take your shoes off or you laptop out.  
  3. Fly just a couple of airlines so you can learn the check on and bag drop procedures. 
  4. Allow yourself sufficient time to make connections. On a recent trip I had a choice of a 45 minute connection at DFW or a 3-hour connection at DFW.  I took 3-hours.  DFW is a huge airport, 45 minutes is barely enough time if the incoming flight is on time, running through airports is stressful, I'd sooner have time to walk, shop, have an overpriced lunch.  No stress.  It is all about attitude, I see it as three hours to explore a wonderful airport, not three hours stuck in an airport.  
  5. Check your bags.  Maybe once a year I will do a trip with a carry on only, and even then I will sometimes check the small "roll-aboard" so I don't have to lug it around with me.  Yes, it costs to check bags on most airlines - but if you are hauling all your worldly possessions around you pay in stress for the few dollars you saved.  I have airline credit cards with my two primary airlines that include free checked bags, I pay about $100 per year for each card, what I would pay in checked bag fees on two round trips on the airline.  In the long run it is a great deal for me.   


And it is not just the web-server that has experienced an error.  What a dysfunctional bunch. And one of the obstructionists is chief, wants to be president.

Monday, April 11, 2016

36 34

The view on the subway varies from trip to trip.  But it is are seldom boring.

I wonder what I really look like from that angle,

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Election Questions

What do we really know about one another, we read each other's blogs, but there is more to each of us than our blog content.  So this year I am going to try to create a meme, or list of questions of the week. If you like the questions, feel free to copy and paste the questions onto your blog, and please link back to  Let me know in the comments how to find your blog and your answers. 

1: Who did you vote for in your first Presidential Election? 
   Gerald Ford, the only person who was ever president without every being elected as President or        Vice President - and he lost the election. 

2: Have you ever missed and election and regretted it? 
     Yes, a governors election in Florida 

3:  Have you ever put a sign for a political candidate up at your home? 

4: Every worked as an elections or poll worker? 
       Yes, in Kentucky for about 4 years 

5: Ever voted for the lesser of two idiots? 
       Yes, another Florida governors election - what is it about Florida politics 

Saturday, April 09, 2016


When I was growing up my Aunt and Uncle owned a house on Lake Orion, not far north of Detroit.  Dick had bought a boat from a neighbor, who had won it on "The Price is Right," and needed a place for the boat, so he bought a house on a lake.  It was a fun old two story house, built during prohibition with a hidden space under the stairs for cases of bottles.

A highlight of my summers in my early teens was spending a week or two in the summer at the Lake.  Being indulged with exhotic foods like Pizza, and filling the days with fishing and boat rides.  The original boat was large, and heavy.  Parts of the lake were shallow and not safe to take the big boat into, so they bought a 10 foot row-boat.  They let me take the little boat out on the lake.  Rowning takes a little getting use to.  It is harder work than you think.

The house was on the inlet for Dollar Bay, round like a silver dollar and shallow at the end dollar bay was probably 25 acres of water.  The row boat allowed me to get off into the shallows at the end of the bay, into the water lilies. The water lilies fascinated me and creeped me out.  I still find them hauntingly beautiful

What fascinates and creeps you out?

Friday, April 08, 2016

How embarrassing

I just tripped over a friends seeing-eye-dog. I didn't see him.

Put a little beauty and wonder in your life

There is so much crap, garbage, negative input in our lives that we struggle to control, shit-happens we have can ignore it, but we know it is there. To balance this we can seek out beauty and wonder and welcome them into your life.

One of the great wonders of Washington DC is the proliferation and world class museums - one of the reasons I wanted to live here.

Thursday, April 07, 2016

What to do with a boring space

I have a love - hate relationship with the Hirshhorn Museum.  The building building is a modernist masterpiece. The lower level of the space had long been under whelming. I like modern and contemporary art,  well some of it.  Hence it is a love - hate relationship.

A real weak spot in the space was the lower level lobby, for decades it was a 20 foot tall, 2,000 square foot blank white space. Well they have done a few things.  They moved the bookstore/art/gift shop down from the ground floor lobby into the lower lobby.  They also decorated the space with words.  Art you walk on and can touch.  Art that makes you think.

Too bad the installation occupying the rest of the lower level is a waste of carbon atoms.

Wednesday, April 06, 2016

Oh Bull!

My "gaydar" does not work very well anymore, not that it was ever that good.  But my BS detector works very well, maybe even overtime.  A real challenge in an election year.  

Wisdom Self Check?

If you can't remember the last time you laughed, it has been to long!
Do something silly
Listen to something funny
Read something amusing
Find your favorite comedian on You-Tube

Tuesday, April 05, 2016

Passing through

I needed to sit down for a few minutes.  I do this more often these days than I did in the past.  And this was the view, a series of gallery spaces, with passageways between them, coming to an end a few galleries ahead, kind of like life.

I was at a conference last Friday and one of the "speakers" was blubbering on about fighting to "save" his 90 year old mother's life, after she experienced a massive stroke.  And I was sitting there thinking you haven't saved her life, you have prolonged it, force her into another gallery, this one filled with really bad things - a place I don't want to go.

There is a fundamental truth that many people are in deep denial about, we are all going to die.  There is no escaping it - no one lives forever and no one gets out of this life alive.  People fear coming to the end of the journey - but it is going to happen.  For some there are more galleries than there are for others, but sooner or later, we will all enter the last gallery of the journey.

For me the key is enjoying passing through the galleries of life along the way.  Some are more fun or more interesting than others, but every gallery has something to offer.  Aging is something we all do, not something we should fear or deny.  We can take steps to make aging more pleasant; it is more fun to be 57 and well than it would be to be 200 pounds heavier and barely able to move.  But I am not seeking eternal youth.  You can rush through the galleries of life, and eternal youth is not in any of them.  I work in aging and what is included in aging is hotly contested. Talking about aging is considered agist by some in the field of aging - think about that one for a moment. I asked my boss one day, "how do we define aging" and his answer was simple, "if you have been born, and you are not dead yet, you are aging."  How many more galleries, how many more passages to journey through?  I don't know, but I will try to have a little fun along the way.

Monday, April 04, 2016

Scarred for Life

There are two groups of people who will look down at your shoes when they talk to you, extroverted engineers and actuaries, - introverted engineers and actuaries look down at their own shoes, and people who have sold shoes at some point in their life.  I am math-phobic so I am not in that first grouping, but I sold ladies shoes for 9 months while I was killing time waiting to go to law school  - and I am SCARRED FOR LIFE.

So over the weekend I visited the National Gallery of Art,   I was listening to one of the docents talk about the Monet's and I looked down and I had to take a picture.  OMG!  What amazing heels.  And yes, those will scar her feet for life.

Sunday, April 03, 2016

Dr Spo came up with this list of questions.  I decided to see how Someone and I stacked up.  

1 Leaves the bathroom light on upon exiting.
2 Leaves the TV going when not in the room. 
3 Puts keys down next to the ‘key bowl’, not in it. The other continually corrects this. 
4 Answers the phone (rather than screening calls) yet becomes annoyed it is a telemarketer.
5 Laundry is done infrequently, en masse, rather than in continual small loads.
6 Often eats standing up at the counter in order to watch TV rather than sitting at table with the other.
              Someone - but for some other reason, we don't have a TV in the kitchen 
7 Throws out recyclables even though there is a ‘recycle bin’. The other retrieves them and puts them where they ought to go. 
8 Directly drinks out of the milk carton. Despite twenty years of mutual germs this action makes the other not drink the milk anymore. 
9 Leaves half-consumed beverages all around the house.
10 Saves leftovers ‘to avoid waste’ only to have them thrown out later when they go horrid.
11 Won’t watch something on TV without doing two or three other things as well, only to ask the other what is going on.
12  Plays Enya.
13 Uses 2-3x more pots, pans, and kitchen utensils than is necessary when cooking.
14 Clothes are folded first by sorting them into taxonomies rather than as they come out of the hamper. We’ve learned clothes folding is best done solo. 
15 Sleeps with the bedroom door open to the certain doom of all.
16  Doesn’t put spices and herbs back to their original position which is ~ alphabetical order.

Saturday, April 02, 2016

Black Sheep of the Family

I like being the black-sheep of the family.  I don't spend a lot of time, thinking what will my family think.  If I am happy, they will either be happy or they won't.  I can't control their reaction, and worrying about it would only make it harder for me to be happy.
        Moved out to do work I wanted to do.
        Headed off to college in my own unique way.
        Gotten married (a couple of time)
        Gotten divorced.
        Traveled a lot, with my sweet bear, and solo.
        Lived in big cities.
        Came out of the closet - lived openly - taken the same man home for decades
        Voted for Democrats
        Taken jobs I found fulfilling rather than the ones that paid the most money
        Quit a good paying job, because the stress was killing me (way back in 1991.)

Friday, April 01, 2016

Maybe it is time to Vote for Trump!

Donald says whatever comes into his mind at the moment.  The Tea Party and hard core Republicans hate him, if they are opposed to him, he must be in favor of things I approve of.  Mitch, Ted, Little Marco are the party of opposition, whatever they are opposed to, I am probably in favor of, so if they oppose Trump, he must be the next best thing.

I think the Donald as President would be hilarious to watch.  He has no clue what he is getting himself into.  Being chief executive of a government is much different than being CEO of a company.  He would be shocked at how few people he could say "your fired" to - I better be careful he may have trademarked that phrase.  He hates lawyer, but buys them by the dozen and keeps them busy.  Anyone who pays that many lawyers can't be all bad, can he?  I suspect after six-months he will be bored, try to covert the Washington Monument into condos, and take Air-Force-One skywriting.  Just think of the quality golf courses he could build in Yellowstone.

He is sexist, racist, and bigoted.  He is so politically incorrect - it would really change this town.

Just this week he proved that he can change his position on an important issue, in the same day.  In the morning he insisted that a woman who had an abortion in a category that was illegal had broken the law and MUST BE PUNISHED.  In the afternoon, he tweeted that the woman was a victim and wouldn't be prosecuted (I worry that he has no clue that people don't like being classified as victims.)

Now don't worry, I am about as likely to vote for the Donald as I am to go skydiving.  Yes I took the picture above, and yes I will probably vote for her again.   April Fools!