Friday, October 29, 2021

Proud Grandfather


High School Junior, honor student since 1st  grade, and has her sights set on the Naval Academy. My late son’s daughter. Her brother is in the National Guard.

Tuesday, October 26, 2021


 A recent LL sermonette dealt with fear. 
Facing and overcoming fear takes courage.

Courage comes in all sizes. The picture is of 10 oz “LexiLou”, a fearless resident of our complex. She fears, as near as I can tell nothing, and easily dominates Banner, my 80 lb lab mix. If she still had teeth, she would be dangerous.

 It is her owner that displays a level of courage that astounds me.

K suffered a devastating stroke leaving her right side nearly paralyzed. Her hand is clenched in a fist, seemingly permanently. With a brace on her right leg, she is able to shuffle along.

Every morning she spends over an hour getting dressed, brace on, and shoes. She does this alone, with no help asked for or wanted. She then takes her dog one lap around our building. Our building is a ¼ mile long.

K is always well groomed with clean clothes. A gentle soul, she doesn’t complain and, while she appreciates it when you help her, doesn’t ask for help. She is an inspiration for everyone in this building that isn’t a professional victim (and we have several).

One can only imagine the fear this woman faces and her courage and determination has my sincere admiration.

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

2022 Elections

 Pundits everywhere are speculating the GOP will sweep the 2022 elections. Maybe, given honest, emphasis honest, elections. How did that work out in our last Presidential election?

Does anyone think the radicals currently in office will risk losing their grip? Over and over we see a disregard for laws when doing so benefits them.

Consider this gem going on in Colorado.

Jena Griswold has, in her two years as Secretary of State, had a 200% turnover in staff. Cynic that I am, I believe that has eliminated anyone with a shred of integrity from her staff.

Emperor Polis has a long track record of fine sounding rhetoric and actions that are different. Will the cherry picked National Guard personnel have any integrity? I doubt it. These action will insure the Colorado elections turn out in favor of the (P)regressives, IMO.

Judicial Watch has sued Colorado to force cleanup of registered voter rolls. Like many state, we have more “registered” voters than adult citizens.

I expect we will see massive voter fraud in every blue state, and blue city, in 2022.

Citizens can become poll watchers or election judges and should.  If you are interested, start with your precinct committee person or whoever oversees elections in your county. Of course, some states have something other than counties. You should be prepared for serious resistance from the entrenched.

As always, YMMV

Monday, October 18, 2021

Defense Spending

Military think. If it doesn’t cost a ton of money, the idea isn’t acceptable.

Circa 1965 the Army had a program that would pay a cash bonus to service members for ideas that were accepted. I made a submission.

At the time the M151 “jeep” replacement was new and people were getting killed in rollover accidents.

The cause was the rear suspension, more particularly the positive chamber of the tires. Go around a corner too fast and the inside rear tire, with no weight on it, would tuck under. Straighten out too fast and the tire would stay tucked under causing the vehicle to roll when weight was applied.

My suggestion was to install a strap to limit the distance the rear axle could drop. The tire’s amount of tuck would be reduced.

My idea was rejected. Several paragraphs were used but the point made was doing as I suggested would limit off road capability in combat.

My drawing showed two bolts on each side. How long does it take to remove four bolts? If time is critical, cut the  &*&^ straps with a bayonet.

Reading LL’s blog and posted remarks, I realize my error was submitting the idea through channels. Instead, I should have sent it to a defense contractor. After enough taxpayer money flowed, the brilliant solution would have been made service wide.

At the time, our Motor Sergeant liked the idea and unauthorized modifications to our M151s were made. Earned me a couple of beers.

Sunday, October 17, 2021

Sunday Breakfast

 The local VFW Post serves breakfast on the third Sunday of every month. This morning Sisty and I attended. I had some of the best bacon I’ve ever eaten. Cost? $9 a head.

All the profits go to a fund to help veterans in need.

I learned today parts of the building were salvaged from a dismantled nearby  WWII P.O.W.

For some reason I hadn’t known about these breakfast but will likely become a regular customer. Especially, for the great bacon!

Friday, October 15, 2021

Outdated Rant

A recent exchange of comments with Greybeard

prompted this rant.

If the executives at Chrysler had the balls to raise the price of their cars and trucks in 1990 by $300 to $400 and spend the money on QUALITY, they could have become The Big One and left GM and Ford in the dust.

1993 found me selling Dodges for a brief period. The GM and I didn’t get along even though I was #1 or #2 every month. The 1993 Intrepid blew me away, it was so much better than the competition.

Salespeople spend a lot of time as back seat passengers. Two things still stick in my mind about the Intrepid. Outside air leaked around the door handle which, coincidentally, was the height of a child in a car seat knee. Second, the thin flocked piece of cardboard behind the rear seat over the trunk allowed so much noise rear seat passengers had to raise their voices to be heard.

In the years ahead I often found myself responsible for overseeing used vehicle reconditioning. Please understand I have little brand loyalty. Cost/benefit drives me. Yes, that might be at odds with my criticism of the MOPAR executives. The key is critical thanking.

The goal was to sell used vehicles at a profit and do so with the customers being satisfied with their purchase. We had many, many repeat customers.

Other than VW, we wholesaled every European built car. They were, and remain, money pits IMO. VWs are the same but the public doesn’t think so. We’d give the buyers a good deal and made certain the buyer understood fully, AS IS, no warranty given or implied.

These numbers date from around 2004. Average reconditioning cost to make something “front line ready” for Japanese, $400, Ford $600, GM $1,200 and MOPAR  $2,000. 4x4 Dodges always needed the front suspension and steering rebuilt. Always, there were electrical problems. Stupid electrical problems – fuses, relays, switches, etc.

Transmissions were always a weak area on everything. People seem to know about oil changes. Not so with transmissions.

I am a fan of Korean cars. They are reliable, durable, have a superior warranty, and are relatively inexpensive. They must be properly maintained. Timing belts don’t last forever. These are Kias Ford sold back in the day.

The news that recent Hyundai/Kia engines are causing vehicle fires saddens me.

After leaving retail automobile sales I worked for a period of time for Roush industries as a test/endurance driver and drove many different Hyundai/Kia prototype and pre-production cars. Mostly, I was impressed. Roush also tested Chrysler vehicles. Mostly, I wasn’t impressed, including Jeep. Same old same old, cheap shit little stuff.

As a side note, the reason Mercedes bought Chrysler had to do with the Hemi combustion chamber patented by Chrysler. Mercedes copied it, called it a “wedge”, and got sued. Facing losing the suit and millions in damage, they bought the company.   

Should anyone in the retail side of the car biz be reading this, I will offer a bit of advice based on decades selling. Decades, I might add, where I was usually at the top of the sales chart and damn sure at the top of the gross profit chart. People come to a car lot to buy a car. Let them! Don’t make it hard. Listen, show them what they want to see, answer their questions and, otherwise, keep your mouth shut.

“Oh, I need to take control!”

Dummy, you always have control. They want the car. You have the car. Who is in control? Grow a pair. If you are working for a dinosaur brained manager, go to Down the Road Motors.

Were I to ever go back, it wouldn’t be selling new. That has become a screwed up mess and you can make more flipping burgers. Used? Still places for salespeople, IMO.

As always, YMMV

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Shall Not Be Infringed

A YouTube post featuring a comedian mocking firearm owners got me thinking. Dangerous, right, me thinking? Fearful I’m in great danger in losing my choice cot in the re-education camp, on with pontification.

“We’re not trying to take your guns away”, was his lead line. Unspoken is the assumption we, my people, are morally and intellectually superior to you firearm owners. Out of kindness, we will indulge you, even though we should take your guns away. He then went on to create a dangerous imaginary character whose handling of a “gun” puts everyone in danger.

Going forward, many pro firearm forums deplore irresponsible firearm owners and offer ideas to mitigate that behavior.

"A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

Nowhere does it say, except for stupid people, irresponsible people, potential domestic violence perpetrators, etc.

We do have a long history, as humans, of imposing consequences upon people whose actions harm others. I’ve no problem with that. Preventing actions, that may or may not occur, I do have a problem.

“But if it saves one life!!!!!!!!”, is the hue and cry. OK, then why don’t we require ignition interlocks on every vehicle so that every single operator must prove they haven’t been drinking before they can drive? Isn’t that the same logic?

Red flag laws are “justified” using this logic.

We don’t live in a safe world and every time we give up a little freedom to feel safer, our world becomes less safe. Better we learn how to defend ourselves. A 90 lb woman with a Saturday Night Special is safer than with a “rape” whistle. Even safer, if she has had some self defense and firearms training.


Sunday, October 10, 2021

Atrial Fibrillation

 A term that now is on my mind since I seem to have developed the condition.  This is a personal post, most likely boring, but others might learn from my experience. Read on if interested, or go on to other, better, bloggers.

Some six years ago, I developed bradycardia, that is to say; too slow a heartbeat to keep sufficient blood flow to my brain. I face planted, twice while sitting at my computer and ended up in the emergency room. Soon after I received a pacemaker. The pacemaker kicks in whenever my heartbeat drops below 60 per minute. Since then I’ve had no problems.

The pacemaker has a memory that can be read in the office or remotely with a handheld transmitter and the internet. My schedule for the remote reading is four times yearly. A telephone conference follows once the results have been read and interpreted.

Per the pacemaker memory, I have a brief bradycardia occurance, on average, one or two times every four to six months.  Within  the past year, the memory has recorded a few Afib episodes.

Several people work in the cardiology clinic and the one who has been calling me with the results is of the, “I’m the expert, you aren’t, so do as I say”. Wrong! First, I won’t tolerate someone talking down to me. Second, having spent most of my working life compensated on commission, the nuances in a person’s speech mean more than the words they a saying to me. Sisty will undoubtedly add I’ve a habit of over thinking everything.

I did agree to start on a blood thinner. Said prescription caused my blood pressure to soar so I stopped. This set off the cardio tech. She said that can’t happen! Hey bitch, I’ve a blood pressure wrist cuff that sits on my desk and I use daily. This morning, 125/84/72.

After the last go around with her, I was able to get and appointment with the physician who actually implanted the pacemaker. She is an old Army doctor and rather plain spoken, which I appreciate. We recently had a nearly one hour adult conversation. My risk factor for strokes, while still fairly low, is elevated. She went over several options. After discussing the various options I picked one that seems best suited to my lifestyle and am now on another blood thinner prescription. So far, I’ve had no problems.There is a point to this long ramble. My body, and my health, is my responsibility and I will make the decisions. I will strive to make informed decisions and not be so bullheaded that I ignore the advice and counsel of those with more knowledge and expertise. As an example, I’ve used a CPAP since 1995.

My biggest fear isn’t dying. That will happen, sooner or later. My biggest fear, which many share, is being disabled to the point I need daily care and will become a burden.

Most of my neighbors in this 90 unit senior apartment have health issues. We have, on average, one death a month. Many of my neighbors have suffered strokes. I want to avoid that.

One neighbor is six years older than me. He has a replacement heart valve and now needs a stent in a leg. His favorite joke involves his replacement valve, from a cow. When he asked his surgeon why a cow valve, and not a pig, she answered, “I’m Jewish”.

As always, YMMV.

Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Is There Hope?


This is a Colorado political focus post.

Are the (P)regressives forming a circular firing squad? Maybe, if the crime issue plays a large part in the midterm elections.

In 2000 Colorado went hard blue. Governor and every cabinet level elective office are now held by the (D) mob. Adding one Congressional seat and the re-election of the least effective US Senator in recent memory plus a super majority in the State House and a one vote edge in the State Senate gave the (P)regressives everything they could hope for.

GOP? The strong coalition of “go along get along” traditional hacks, never Trumpers, and those too genteel to fight dirty were of little hindrance.  They have their own “issues”.

Only in CO 3 was there a rumble with pistol packing  Lauren Boebert from Rifle first kicking a traditional Republican to the curb in the primary and a ski town trust fund snot in the general election.

The last census gives Colorado another Congresscritter and the redistricting map is now in the hands of the state Supreme Court for approval. The pundits all seem to agree it will be approved.

My opinion of the redistricting? Overall, decent. While I’m not too happy to see the county I live in carved up the overall state wide alignments seem balanced.

Getting back to the blog title, is there hope for change? Former Democrats, such as myself, are turned off by the (P)regressives. I know lifelong Republicans that have dropped their party affiliation. Will enough independent voters be enough to kick out the both the radicals and the meatheads? Is there hope level headed centrists can be elected? Perhaps the midterm elections will show the way.

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Unintended Consequences - Doper Division

Currently there is much discussion of the number of job openings with few or no applicants. One reason no one seems to address is drug tests. Most employers require drug tests. Their reasons may vary insurance requirements, contracts, and personal preference but it is barrier. Self inflicted on the part of applicants, to be sure, but a barrier none the less.

 The decriminalization of the evil weed, or, in my state (CO) legalization, has caused unintended, or unforeseen, consequences.

 A lesser but real factor is the escalating housing costs in the urban areas where you find most jobs. In the Denver area a small apartment rents for $1,200 a month. $12 an hour times 40 hours times 4.33 weeks less 60% (taxes, federal, state, local) nets around $1,247. Two incomes are needed. Deduct child care and???? At $18 an hour the net is around $1,870. That leaves just over $600 for food, transportation, utilities, and insurance.

 A realistic look at inflation is somewhere in the mid teens at a minimum (real world – not government speak).

 Do I have answers? No, none that stand a chance until the economy completely collapses.

 For a different perspective I ran this by my 46 year old son who works in a factory environment. He is in his fifth year of sobriety and was never a drug user beyond a toke or two in social situations.

 He has no problem working with pot smokers, so long as they don’t get high on the job, and tells me many have as much trouble stopping pot as he did with alcohol.

 As always, YMMV.


Sunday, October 3, 2021

Best Book Title Ever?

Those who are familiar with Elk Mountain can appreciate the title.