Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Whistling in the Wind

It has been a long uphill journey between blogs and life has changed significantly for me. Most is personal, but this morning I will share this. My 1967 Beetle has a luggage rack that whistles in the wind. I discovered an old strapped-together suitcase at the Salvation Army Store. The suitcase fits nicely in the rack and has the added benefit of keeping the luggage rack from whistling in the wind. Perhaps I can learn from this and not spend the rest of my life whistling in the wind.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Around the World in 44 Years

After all these years the bug has finally made it home. It wasn't easy. Odysseys are never easy. Why should they be? During the Cold War, and later, in Ukraine, driving near the exclusion zone, the bug was exposed to radiation. Japan is another story. The earthquake there was long after the bug had completed a cargo ship journey. I owned a similar 1967 bug a half-life ago. This one is in better condition and took decades to reach me. One of its owners put it in storage for some years. Another passed away after disassembling the engine, guts strewn on a garage floor five years after the owner's passing. I have chosen to adorn the bug with original bumper and hubcap jewelry, celebrating its junket to me.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

25 Years

Will we have one of these things every 25 years? If we sign on to wind and solar now, at least we will have done something to spare future generations from these terrible mistakes.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


Although from opposite sides of the aisle, newly elected representatives Mary and Tom often had lunch together in the House Cafeteria. Nothing political, but they both drank tea.
"Ahha," said Tom recently at the lunch counter, "Our new house leaders have seen fit to bring back the Styrofoam cups your party tossed in favor of the so-called green paper cups."
"In that case I'm switching to coffee," said Mary.
Tom laughed. "To protest our Tea Party, I assume?"
"No, I take lemon in my tea, and as any tea drinker knows, the acid eats away at the Styrofoam."
"Well then, I guess I won't have lemon in my tea," said Tom.
Yeah," said Mary. "Not having lemon is a little thing. Maybe you could one-up Obama's We Do Big Things slogan."
"How's that?"
"We Do Little Things?"

Thursday, February 3, 2011


In rural Michigan where I live, truck plows are sometimes replaced by more serious plows. Oftentimes we humans find it necessary to use a larger stick or, as indicated by the color on this one, carrot. The driver of this carrot waved and smiled like mad as I ran out of the way with my camera. The dog is smarter than me, she stayed back up the driveway.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Why We Fight

Here is a short short story (exactly 100 words) I wrote for a contest:

We Fight For Air

The armored vehicle is superheated, making breathing difficult, especially with diesel fumes seeping inside. When the radioman riding shotgun yells, "IED!" the lieutenant glances up toward the gunner's ivory tower.
"Sky and sand! Wait! There it is!"
The lieutenant reaches between driver and shotgun, tracing a frantic circle with his hand, a fan made of flesh. When the vehicle lurches ahead, it seems a shockwave at first. But soon the lieutenant feels a fresh breeze from the ivory tower as they make speed. Breathing the breeze is a moment to be savored before their arrival in hell.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Orange Pekoe Revolution

KIEV, UKRAINE — Despite the best efforts of humankind, revolutions are brewing throughout the world. A recent one in Ukraine has been dubbed the Orange Pekoe Revolution (OPR). OPR organizers credit right-leaning Teabaggers of the US for inspiration. An OPR spokesperson stated, "We want something, but we are not yet certain what this something is. However, if they know what is good for them, politicians must listen. Listening is what they must do. It is written in all constitutions and even on the walls of toilet stalls wherever the masses cry out. Please listen, for there is a distinct odor of discontent in the air!"

Sadly, today, while we in the US slept, except for those with restless leg syndrome, and despite the "common man and woman" appeal of the OPR message in Ukraine, tragedy has struck. Today, April 1, 2010, which comes earlier in Ukraine because of it being +GMT while we in the US are –GMT, OPR activists found themselves pelted with coffee beans thrown by irate left-leaning latte and mocha drinkers in upscale westernized Kiev.

The so-called "coffeeists" attacking the OPRs had dressed themselves as teabags, complete with dipping string and that paper "thingy" stapled to the end for a handle. The overlarge teabag thingies dangling from protesters contained signage with slogans such as: "Would you like that ground?" "No, I have my own grinder." When the hurling of dark roasted beans by "coffeeists" became violent, threatening to put out an eye, or worse, Kiev Militia herded the "coffeeists" off to makeshift jails set up in various city squares.

Unfortunately, in our globally warmed world, fountains in Kiev's squares are these days warmer than usual. Because of this warming, the protesters immediately jumped in and began steeping themselves, many of them longer than the recommended five minutes. Eventually the Kiev Militia was forced to wade in and make arrests. And this is when the fountain waters ran red with blood. It turns out the scrap metal used by the "coffeeists" to fashion the staples for their thingies had very sharp edges. The result? Several militia, leftist protestors and, tragically, even some of the right-leaning OPRs who had waded into the fray were injured.

Meanwhile, back in the US, as the dateline of April 1, 2010 crossed our shores, an association dedicated to defending the Second Amendment of our own constitution put out a press release stating: "Staples on teabag thingies do not injure people; leftist liberal criminals dressed as teabags injure people." A liberal media website quoting the press release showed an elderly man, somewhat reminiscent of the organization's past president, holding an assault rifle aloft and stating in dramatic balloonage dialogue, "Coffee, Tea . . . or Me!" Standing behind the elderly man was a sneering "coffeeist" complete with Cold War hammer and sickle on his teabag chest. The unabashed "coffeeist" pinched his nose with finger and thumb as he stared at the backside of the iconic leader of one of our nation's most nontrivial organizations.

Is it any wonder there are revolutions when world heroes such as this are caricatured? As one of the OPR activists with bandaged arm back in Kiev said so eloquently, "If we are not heedful, soon we will be getting Chernobyl soil in teabags, and this will turn us all into monkeys."

Author’s Note: Ukrainians celebrate April Fool’s Day with parades, pranks, and other festivities. The city of Odessa, not Kiev, is considered the Humor Capital.