Tuesday, October 28, 2014

New Medical Update

Had my little heart episode two months ago (Aug28). This post is primarily an update for my extended family (50+ first cousins) who occasionally read this blog.

Two months in, my nose is fairly well healed. Since it was broken so many times, it is strange to see a straight, normal nose in the mirror.

The cardiologists had to reattach one of the two pacemaker leads. That was on October 1. They only kept me for a few hours. As you cousins and aunts know, I’ve lived most of my life at high altitudes and inherited the Burtis genes for shoulders and chest size. Even when I’m less than 200 lbs, I still wear a size 52 coat and a 20/36 shirt. Seems the cardiologists had trouble finding a good location for the lead. Dr, Gryboski would instruct me to take a deep breath. The lead would move. I seem to remember five attempts. At my two week check up, the lead wasn’t optimal but within tolerances.

When I did the face plant (twice) August 28th, I must have received a bad concussion. I’m still wobbly and have some balance problems. I’ve lost an edge mentally. As to the heart, my energy level is way down and strength is off. Must use a jack now lifting my truck instead of just putting it on jack stands (yeah, yeah).

Now the bills are rolling in. Somewhere North of $100,000 and climbing. Between Medicare and United Health Care, most will be paid or discounted. My share? Don’t know yet, but it will bite.

In summary, I’m living the joke; if I knew getting old was like this, I would have put it off a few years. On the other hand, I was 70 years old before I spent a night in a hospital (as a patient).

Life goes on. If I can avoid the family cancer curse, I will be content.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Hope and Change

Let’s start with and oldie but goodie well understood by most folks.

Six Stages of a Project

Initial Enthusiasm.
Search for the guilty.
Punishment of the innocent.
Honors and Praise for the non participants.

Six Stages of a Progressive

Nagging doubt.
Double down.
Look for a savior.
Find some way to cover their asses.

Are we there yet?

F4U Corsair

Does anyone know a blogger who might relate?


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Favorite Season

Fall is my favorite season. Cool days,  crisp air, and a riot of colors, if only briefly. In my youth it meant hunting season with my Dad. It is bittersweet, as I know what follows.
As I get older, the less I appreciate winter. Maybe I should become a snow bird.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Thoughts On Firearm Ownership

This will be a rambling post with no real point. You are warned.

First, I detested the use of the word “gun” unless you are referring to a smoothbore. Firearms have been part of my life since childhood. There was always a .30-.30 over the front door, a rifle in our vehicles, and a .22 in a closet. I can’t tell you how young I was when I first fired a firearm because I can’t remember. Likewise, I can’t remember a first use of a hammer, saw, axe, hay fork, or cow hobbles. They were tools that we used, sometimes daily. From 7th grade through high school, I belonged to the NRA Junior Rifleman program. The weekly range session was the highlight of my life. At no time did I hear anyone referring to a “gun”. Please take my word for it, in the Army, circa 1963, referring to your M-1 or M-14 as a “gun” would bring swift, and unpleasant, attention from the NCOs. Even the .50 M-2 was a “weapon”.

Second, I detest people who don’t handle firearms safely. I think everyone should demonstrate a basic competence and understanding of safety issues before they can own a firearm. Yes, I understand this is not happening because anything of this nature will be gloomed on to by the gun grabbers and perverted. There already exists a model, the hunter safety card.

Does it work? Damn right it works.

Third, I think every household should have a firearm and ammunition, and know how to use them.  Of course, some households have members who are not emotionally stable or mentally competent, and access must be restricted. I say this as someone who has personal experience with the issue. Rapid access in an emergency is compromised, but compromised access is better than no access. As I type this, a revolver is available in the drawer of my desk beside my right knee.

Fourth, I think every business should have trained and armed employees in the workplace. I spent thirty years in the retail automobile business. Believe me; you do not want to rob a car dealership. While some are “gun free”, none I every worked for were, even when the “official” policy was “gun free”.

Two times in my life I’ve faced a criminal armed with a hand gun. The first time was around 1970 in Glendale, CO at a small coffee shop on Colorado Blvd. My employee, Glen, and I were at the cash register paying for our coffees to go when the robber approached and waved a firearm. Glen was an 11B about one year removed from the 173rd in Vietnam. Without a word spoken, Glen and I both tossed our hot coffee in the robber’s face. Soon, the robber was happy to see the police and ambulance.

The second time was mid 1970’s in Renton, WA. I was on a test drive. When I stopped to change places with the “customer”, he pointed a semi automatic p.o.s. at me. Dumb little gang banger, he had the safety on. Funny how your military training kicks in, even after years away from it.

In both cases, I devoutly wished I was armed. Discussing the second case with a supervisor, he told me I was armed, with my wits. Yeah Don, not a substitute for my .44 Special.

I doubt many readers of this blog will disagree with me, even my (p)regressive friends who occasionally wander over here. I believe everyday violent criminals leave potential victims alone because they are afraid of getting shot. That, I believe, is a good thing.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Hell Freezes Over - Political Edition

The Denver Post newspaper has now endorsed two Republicans, Rep. Mike Coffman in Colorado District 6, and Rep. Cory Gardner for US Senate.

Maybe there is something in this "climate change" business!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Political Ads

I seldom watch television, but live in a house where it is on 14 hours a day. Don't listen to the radio in my vehicle, but am in stores with radio stations playing. Even with my limited exposure, the political ads are overwhelming.

Colorado seems to be a national battleground. In recent days, some of the Democrat ads are being pulled. Hopeful sign. I'm a blue dog Democrat who hasn't voted for a Democrat, except in local races, for several years. This year every blasted Democrat running is a (p)regressive. I hope they all go down in flames. Maybe by 2016 the (p)regressives will form their own party (hey, I can hope).
The GOP has one good congressman running for reelection that I will feel good about voting for, as I did with a check to his campaign (Mike Coffman).

The candidate for governor is the usual recycled past, failed,  candidate. Lifelong banker and a one term Congressman who has been associated with many shady, if not criminal, happenings.  In spite of that, Governor Wishywashy seems to be in trouble.

Lots of chatter from the 2nd Amendment people. More chatter from the ecofreaks about fracking. Instead of, "I support the 2nd Amendment, but.......", you hear, "I'm not against fracking, but............."

Say the GOP, at the national level, takes the Senate. What can we expect from B.O. and gang during the lame duck session? Bet it won't be pretty. Then, two years of the Elmer Fudd show. Aarg! I'm getting negative again.