The Peanut Butter Solution

Tonight was supposed to be the night for my annual dinner of meatloaf, mashed potatoes, corn on the cob, biscuits, and German Chocolate cake.  My mother made it for me every year for my birthday.  After she passed away my wife started making it for my birthday.  But as in all things, change comes eventually and we adjust to new situations.

This year, my wife said she was going to make my birthday meal for dinner and somehow that sense of anticipation that had always built up for that meal was clearly absent.  The lack of enthusiasm was not only absent, it didn’t even sound good.  I told my wife not to do it.  When she asked what I did want for dinner, I said “Don’t worry about dinner.  I’ll make a sandwich or something.”

Today, I received birthday wishes from about 1/3rd of my friends and relatives on my social networking site and responded to each and everyone of them as is socially appropriate in my opinion and still no idea what I wanted for dinner.  My son, and daughter called me to wish me a happy day and I loved talking to them, but still no dining thoughts.

My younger brother and daughter in law and I responded in kind for their wishes for my joyous day and you guessed it nothing sounded good.

I had received kind words from over 60 people to include a sibling, my children, cousins, my nieces, and tons of friends and something was missing from my day.  I had noticed that my other brother and sister had snubbed me.  Not only had they snubbed me, but my brother had also snubbed my wife on her birthday.  This did not sadden me, it actually irked me as I have always called them on their birthdays every year and even called my sister in law every year to wish her a happy birthday too.  As I realized this, the only thought that came to mind was “so shall ye sow, so shall ye reap.”

Life is too short to get upset by family who does not feel strongly about family.

Anyway, I was lying here with my foot elevated from the surgery and my mind was focused on something totally off topic and my wife handed me a plate.  On the plate was two grilled peanut butter sandwiches.

Years ago, and I am talking scores of years ago, I was a tall skinny kid who was a really picky eater.  My mother used to say two things:  the first was if peanut butter had not existed when I was young, I would have starved to death; and the other was if she had been smart she would have bought shares in the Skippy Peanut Butter company and she could have retired at the age of 40.

Whenever I was feeling down as a child she used to grill me a couple peanut butter sandwiches and give me a glass of ice cold milk to cheer me back up, and it always did.  Tonight, my wife did the same thing down to the ice cold milk and cutting the sandwiches at a diagonal.

I asked my wife when Mom told her about grilled peanut butter sandwiches and she said Mom never told her.  She told me that even though she thinks grilled peanut butter is gross, she had seen me make them once in a while and noticed that even though I don’t cut most sandwiches I make, when I make a peanut butter sandwich I always cut them diagonally.  Tonight, she just had this feeling this would be the solution to the lack of cheerfulness that I usually display.

In 35 years together, my wife has never ever made a grilled peanut butter sandwich before.  I think Mom, who has been gone from this dimension for seven years, still had something to do with this.

Everyone has a comfort food and mine came home after a long absence tonight.  So, now when someone is turning to their own comfort food for help, you can say it is The Peanut Butter Solution.

Posted in Nourishment For The Soul, Writing | Leave a comment

As I Sit Here With My Foot Elevated

Had surgery on my foot two days ago and am still sitting here with my leg elevated to keep that throbbing feeling down. My foot is swollen and really, and I mean REALLY ugly. While viewing my ugly foot I let my mind wander and out of the blue realize it’s my birthday. My age right now matches the last two numbers in my birth year.

The more I think about it, there are a good amount people who can do this but there are many who statistically will never have a birthday like this.

So, my foot is ugly and hurting yet I am celebrating a birthday that many don’t get to, so all in all it’s a great day.

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Morning Mental Exercise

For fun I figured out that today I am approximately (because the seconds keep ticking away while I type this):

I am approximately One Billion, Seven Hundred Ninety Eight Million, Six Hundred Seventy Five Thousand, Two Hundred seconds old.

How old am I?

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Previous Post

Funny how not a single like showed up for my previous post.

Would it have been better if I had sugar coated the post and just said:

Without tolerating you will not be tolerated.

Without respecting others you will not be respected.

If you use virtual anonymity to attack others, be aware that it is not difficult to identify someone and their location with the right knowledge.

Posted in General Rantings, Writing | Leave a comment

You Believe What You Believe

You believe what you believe and as long as your beliefs don’t harm others, to include animals, that’s okay.

I believe what I believe and as long as I don’t harm others that too is okay.

If you want me to tolerate you and your beliefs, you have to tolerate me and my beliefs.

If you try and infringe on me or my beliefs I will respond with an equal and opposite reaction.

Your definition of “equal” might differ from mine though.

When I react, I react to finish the disagreement permanently as to drag a disagreement out is a unnecessary waste of both parties energy.

The other consideration you have to think about is I get to determine the method of terminating the issue.

* I might try and quietly reason with you with fact and logic.
* If you made it personal, I might go into what I refer to as Drill Sergeant mode and get in your face and reason with you with fact and logic in not such a quiet mode.
* If you threat bodily harm face to face please make sure before you do that you have all your effects in order for your next of kin.
* If you threaten any of my family even though you do it via the internet, you best be looking over your shoulder for a long time to come,
because some day you can rest assured I will be there to confront you face to face.

I expect if I were to infringe on your beliefs that you would react the same.

I consider this my public service notification.

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Blog Catalyst

For those of you out there that write their blogs on whatever comes to mind have you ever hit a dry spell and not known what to write about? I have realized over the past year that most of my posts come from fodder provided by people on forums I frequent. Also known as blog fodder, these topics are provided usually by people whose point of view are not only different from mine, but are also teetering on the edge of the absurdity abyss.
This week it seems that the topic catalyst has been hyperactive in providing me subjects. However, I am not one to dole them out one at a time to give myself daily inspiration, I want to just blurt them all out at once and get it off my chest. Here we go:

1. Corporal Punishment. Corporal punishment is NOT abuse. If a child needs spanked as a way of getting them to know the difference between right and wrong, they need to be spanked whether at home or in school. I am not saying they need to be beaten, that is abuse, but spanking is not abusing the child, it’s called parenting. The saying “Spare the rod, spoil the child” is very true. This topic was on a forum and I relayed the story about the day my daughter came home from middle school and announced that a lady had come to talk to all the students at a rally. The lady told them that if their parents ever spanked or hit them in any fashion the child could call the police or tell counselors at school and the parents would be arrested. I told her that if she did anything that mandated a spanking, she would get a spanking. Her response was “If you do, you’ll get arrested.” I am sure she was feeling empowered by this anonymous lady.

My first reaction was wanting to go find this person that had told the children that and give her a piece of my mind, but I refrained and responded to my daughter in a very calm voice “Well if you ever try and have me arrested for parenting, you better have a place other than here to live. Because this is the kingdom of Mommy and Daddy and we make the rules.”

One of the first responses to my post was “So you terrorize the child instead of beating them?” My response to that was “No, when your own child is given the impression that they control the household and are empowered over their parents, you let them know in no uncertain terms that their vision of power is nothing more than pure fantasy. Amazingly, I never had any problems with my daughter after that, and other parents who didn’t remind their child who the parent was did have problems with their children.”

It is frightening how many people today have children but don’t parent them. That is part of the problem with society today that needs to be repaired but it has gone on so long that it won’t be an easy fix.

2. Military Benefits. Another forum has a person who posts anti-military on as many topic threads as he can. A couple of times his sophistry has actually persuaded a few people to jump aboard his train of thought for a little while. Yes, there are certain benefits military personnel receive for putting their lives in harm’s way. When in combat, they get combat pay and their income is tax exempt. If married and living off post, they get an allowance for food and housing which is tax free. If they are hospitalized, they don’t have co-pays or deductibles. If they contribute to a plan, once they get out of the military they are entitled to education benefits. The amount they receive in education benefits is dependent upon how much they contributed to that benefit.

The one thing this poster failed to comment on, and refuses to admit, is that there are no other occupations where your employer can force you to go into combat and there is a great probability of you not coming back. When brought to his attention, his response is always “you volunteered to do that.” When someone replies back “Yes, and for volunteering for this, the benefit package is a reward for doing so”, his response is always “But it is the taxpayers who have to pay for it and that’s not fair.” He cannot understand that it is through these patriots who are willing to put their lives at risk for our freedom that we are afforded the rights and freedoms we take for granted.

It turns out that this guy tried to get into the military but was sent home from basic training. He claims it was for double vision, but if he had double vision, he would not have made it into the military in the first place.

3. I don’t care what political party you are affiliated with, if you blindly vote the party line, you are part of the problem with what is wrong with America. Obama is a blight on America because time and time again he breaks the constitution by bypassing congress and signing executive orders on things congress won’t pass. He has made it to worst president in history in polls time and time again dethroning President Carter. There is a district attorney who was convicted and sentenced to 45 days in jail for driving while intoxicated. This person who is charged with upholding the law thought the law was below them. When the governor of that state called for the person to resign, they refused. The governor then cut funding to one of the positions this person held and the response was to indict the governor on criminal charges. Since the governor and this person are in different political parties, there are those who side with the district attorney based solely upon the party differences. There are also those who say Clinton should be the next president based on two things. First being she’s a woman; and the second being she’s a democrat. The fact that she turned her back on four people she was entrusted to protect at Benghazi and the fact that she and her husband were neck deep in a real estate scam back in Arkansas and only by way of her husband’s position at the time were they not convicted of fraud.

On the same note, it was rumored that Dick Cheney was peddling contracts for the Middle East to friends of his. This should have been investigated thoroughly and if found to have substance, action taken to remove him from office. The executive and legislative branches of the American government were not set up to make people rich even though there are many who use it for that purpose.

There was a report that came out a couple years ago showing the wealth of elected officials at the time of their election and their wealth at the time of the report. It was disturbing to see that all of a sudden people who went to Washington D.C. to represent their constituents became multi-millionaires on their paycheck from the government.

Another report says the vast majority of Americans vote based on the candidate’s looks and quality of their voice, next was their political party, and bringing up dead last was the substance of their platform. This shows the vast majority of voters are ignorant. That’s right, if you voted for a candidate for any reason other than what they stand for you are an idiot.

4. Lastly, the riots in Ferguson, Missouri. After a black man was shot and killed by a police officer, people started protesting to find out answers. This soon escalated into rioting with looting and arson. Police responded with tear gas and rubber bullets as a less than lethal means of breaking up the rioters. Then others got involved to further their own means.

First the media used this situation for ratings. By interviewing people who claimed they had a right to loot and burn to show the police that the people controlled the city, not the police. While many were calling for calm and level heads, the media ignored this and went to talk to people who were trying to agitate the situation. One station went as far as showing the police officer’s home in their report. After the damage was done, they apologized.

Then came the idiots like Sharpton and Jackson, along with the “new” Black Panthers who wanted their share of the fame. They could not care less about the original situation, only that they get their face and name on TV. Where were these people when the previous month in Chicago had 82 people shot in 84 hours? Nowhere to be found is where they were.

Then it comes out that the man shot had robbed a convenience store with his friend earlier in the day. The same friend that told everyone that their hands were up in the air when the police officer shot; the friend that failed to mention that his “innocent” buddy was trying to wrestle the firearm away from the police officer when he got shot. When this came out, the deceased’s parents cried out that the police were trying to character assassinate their child. I understand that the parents are hurting over the loss of a child, but when that child’s actions caused the incident, responsibility has to be accepted.

As far as the looters are concerned, they came in and looted businesses, many of them owned by local people. All of them employed people from the neighborhood. They stole from their neighbors and then burned down many of the businesses. These same people who looted will now be crying because businesses have abandoned their neighborhood and there is nowhere to work. Some in the community claimed it was outsiders that came in and looted. I shook my head when I read this, because that same story showed a woman in a bra and panties leaving a store carrying a television set. I’m sure that woman drove into Ferguson from out of town and then stripped down to her undies to loot. She was a local and so intent to get her share of the booty that she didn’t even bother to get dressed.

I’m done now. I’ve covered four subjects in one post and got all the pent up writing out of my system. Have a great day!

Posted in General Rantings, Opinion, Politics, Sociology, Writing | Leave a comment

This Kept Me Up Last Night

Somewhere along the lines I agreed to fill out surveys for this online company a couple of years ago. I now cannot decide if this company’s clientele are clueless, or if the company itself has an agenda. The longer I fill out these surveys, the more biased the surveys become. Last night’s was, for some reason, very annoying and when I went to bed I could not shake my irritation with it.

“What was so disturbing?” you must be wondering. This survey, which was designed to modify further questions based on previous answers, took about 30 minutes to fill out. It was basically asking how to tug at people’s heartstrings to get them to open their purse strings. It was sponsored by a non-governmental organization whose focus is on creating a single world standard of living. It wanted to know what were the key words necessary to get me to donate to improve the standards of living for women and children in impoverished nations. It kept rewording phrases using what I identified as key words in the previous phrase as important.

When given a chance to give a response of my own in lieu of their canned responses to pick from, I stated:

“Before the people of a nation start focusing on helping the people’s of other nations they first need to ensure that their own neighbors and fellow citizens are not needy. Then they can look to the outside, but if the people of a country live in an area without the natural resources that are valuable to others, no matter how many times you try by giving them a hand up, they will remain impoverished by the mere fact that they live in an area that does not have resources to improve living conditions. Therefore, giving them a “hand up” is wasted and only gives the charity cases a false sense of hope.”

That in turn got me to think about how many “charities” there are out there constantly shoving their open hands in our faces asking us to give. It is common knowledge that many, like Goodwill Industries, use the money to support lavish lifestyles for their regional and national leadership, while paying their challenged employees less than minimum wage, which is completely legal in America. Other charities spend so much on their employees that only a couple pennies per dollar actually go to the cause and the rest goes in the employees pockets. Some spend the majority of donations on paying lobbyists to try and affect change in the charity’s favor. There are very few that actually use the donations for the cause.

So when a “charity” tries to get me to tell them how to word their campaigns to be more effective, it tends to leave me with an unsettled stomach. If the charity is really for a good cause, you don’t need spin doctors to sell it for you, the morality of the cause will do the job. Then the only problem lies with the charity continuously asking for more and more.

Last year I gave to the USO to sponsor some morale gifts for several soldiers during the holiday season. I took all the money I had been saving up for a kayak for myself and gave it to them. Being on a fixed income, it took me close to a year to get to that point and had about another year left to reach my kayak goal. After the donation, I started getting weekly emails and mailings asking for more donations. When you don’t have the money to support a cause that you deem worthy more than you already have and they constantly shove their hands in your face for more, I don’t know about you but it irritates me. It took multiple phone calls and emails to get them to cease their begging.

Then, I donated to St. Judes Children’s Hospital, which I feel is another good cause. I gave them my monthly allotment of lunch money as a donation and skipped my lunch meals for that month, which is hard to do when you are going to school because it seems concentrating on lectures, taking notes, and studying seems to make me hungry and to do those tasks on an empty stomach is a challenge. Anyway, a month after the donation, the emails started coming in. When I unsubscribed from their virtual requests via the internet, weekly requests for donations started showing up in my mailbox. There would always be a photograph of a sick child and something to the effect of “Just a mere $100 can supply a child suffering from cancer a dialysis session” or something to that effect. I just recently sent a pledge form back in with “I gave you all I had, quit asking for more!” written across it. Hopefully this will resolve the matter.

I give all I have to give and it seems that these charities are not grateful for what they get, they think you owe them more. If you are a donor, donate to a charity because you know it is something you want to help with and the money will go to the advertised purpose. If you are a charity, be happy with what you get and stop trying to pry away every last penny from a donor. Although I think the USO and St. Judes are both worthy causes, I will not give them another dime because they couldn’t just say “thank you” and leave it at that.

Posted in General Rantings, Sociology, Writing | Leave a comment