Still waiting…

December 2, 2016

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Just into December and get news Chicago has had more
homicides than in recent years. A total of 3,436 people were
shot and wounded, 662 were shot and killed, and 738 homicides
have occurred so far this year.

And we’re still waiting for a response from Black Lives
Matter. After all, 77.9% of the victims are black and males
are getting shot at a ratio of 8.95 to 1 compared to females,
while 30-34 year olds are the majority of victims. That is
a 48.2% increase over last year.

Just in November alone, 324 were shot and wounded, 76 were
shot and killed, and 81 homicides occurred. In November 2015
those numbers were 165 shot and wounded, 37 dead and in 2014
125 were shot and shot and wounded while 38 died from being
shot.

Chicago already has some of the strictest gun control laws in
the country, people are dying at an alarming rate, and Black
Lives Matter is not seen or heard. If it has to be an officer
involved shooting to get BLM involved, 11 have been shot and
killed by police and 14 wounded.

These numbers equate to someone getting shot every 1 hour and
58 minutes and someone get shot and killed every 10 hours and
57 minutes, 24 hours a day seven days a week.

Why isn’t this causing more outrage than the rare shooting
that happens to involve a member of law enforcement? Where is
the news conference from our president saying this is not
acceptable? Just like our white privilege,
we’re still waiting for it.

Enjoy the weekend even if you have to work. Tomorrow we may
see snow here on the east coast of Iowa, and while it’s not
supposed to stick around too long I’m charging up my camera
battery. Keep the shiny side up and I’ll eat a pizza for you.
Comments are always welcome.


First and last

December 1, 2016

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As the old saying goes, today is first day of the rest of
your life. It also happens to be the first day of December. So
if you’re not happy with the direction your life took, it is
as good a time as any to make changes. If you are happy with
life, give yourself a pat on the back because chances are
nobody else will.

As mentioned, today is the first day of the last month of our
year. December is National Egg Nog Month, National Impaired
Driving Prevention Month, National Fruit Cake Month, National
Pear Month, and if you’re Catholic it is the month of the
Advent of Christ to mention a few.

This month has a lot going on like the winter solstice on the
21st. December 1st is Bifocals at the Monitor Day, the 2nd is
National Fritters Day, the 4th is National Cookie Day, the 5th
is Bathtub Party Day, the 6th is St. Nicholas Day, the 7th is
National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day, the 8th is National
Brownie Day, the 11th is National Have a Bagel Day and
National Noodle Ring Day, the 14th is International Monkey
Day, the 15 is Bill of Rights Day, the 17th is National Maple
Syrup Day, the 20th is National Sangria Day, the 22nd is
National Date Nut Bread Day, the 24th is Christmas Eve and
National Egg Nog Day, the 25th Christmas and National Pumpkin
Pie Day, the 27th National Fruitcake Day, the 30th is National
Bicarbonate of Soda Day, and the 31st is New Year’s Eve AND
National Champagne Day.

With all that going on we may be a little late with some
posts this month, but we’ll do our best to resist all these
days of celebrations. Some observances may have been
omitted as we hand picked those that interested us.

Enjoy December, it’s the last month we get this year. It does
bring us closer to a new year though. All that typing about
the different food days this month has made me hungry so I’ll
go in search of sustenance.
Comments are always welcome.


My luck

November 30, 2016

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The day started with a whisper of good things to come, then
came crashing down when reality hit. I awoke with the usual
grin on my face and headed to the kitchen to relate my latest
dream to the wife.

I told her I had a strange dream and she replied “what’s
new?” So I began: I was hired to paint faces on the ballons
for a big parade. She stated they did not paint the faces on
the balloons and I countered with the fact that we did in my
dream so let me continue.

I then said I had to paint a face on the biggest balloon,
Hermie the legless octopus. She laughed and mentioned I had
mispronounced “legless”. It came out something like legel
less. Since I was trying to get to the point of the dream I
told her my bad enunciation was due to having to sell my
ballet slippers as a young lad.

Starting anew I told her the part that had made me wake up
with a start. All balloon face painters were told there was as
much free coffee as we could drink. Yet when I went to get
some I was told they only had Hazelnut flavored and lattes. Oh
the humanity.

I had toiled countless hours to get Hermie’s facial expression
prefect and no just plain old black coffee! Other volunteers
seemed happy with the hot beverage choices and would not go on
strike with me. So if you ever hear a rumor that I am painting
faces on parade balloons and can’t be reached, don’t believe
it.

Althouh after several cups of plain old black coffee I can
see where some may think I over-reacted. I just won’t be
tricked again.

Enjoy the last day of November, the birth date of Mark Twain.
And remember when we go to sleep tonight we’ll wake up in
December.
Comments are always welcome.


The more I learn…

November 29, 2016

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This post will not begin with “It was a dark and stormy
night”. I just got up early this morning to catch the sunrise
that wasn’t there yet. Turned out the sky looked more
dramatic before the sunrise anyway.

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I had to remind myself it is November 29th while the birds
were singing and the temps were in the low 40s that early. The
grass is still green and many of the trees still have leaves
on them this late in the year.

Not complaining, just wondering what’s going to happen when
winter officially gets here. You may have noticed I add
pictures of the church steeple 3 blocks away quite often.

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It is the Sacred Heart cathedral and the building that blocks
the lower part of the spire is the Sacred Heart Catholic
School. I was baptized and had my confirmation in this church
and attended the school.

This came up when I went over to Dad’s today as I mentioned
the “nunnery” was torn down. He quickly corrected me and said
it was a convent. Regardless of what it was, it is no longer
there. But what he said next took me by surprise.

The school is going to be torn down because it has three
floors and isn’t handicap accessible. Since the nuns are
gone there is nobody to teach the classes anyway. He added
that the building was used occasionally for receptions and
banquets.

I guess if I live long enough I could have fun confusing
someone and point to the parking lot where this school used
to be and say I used to go to school there. Things sure will
look different around here.

Have a great Tuesday. We’re down to three working days before
the partying begins.
Comments are always welcome.


The rose and the stars

November 28, 2016

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Through the frosty nights and the just finished rainy day the
old rose bush is still holding up. We have had temperatures
down in the 20s lately and heavy rain today, yet it still
proudly blossoms. We’re going to enjoy it until it gives up
the year and await next years’ bloom.

As mentioned it rained, thunderstorms and hail were
forecast, central and northeast Iowa got tornadoes and it
was supposed to continue late into the night. Imagine my
surprise when I went to start the car so the wife could go to
work and saw stars above instead of clouds.

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There were so many stars in the sky the trees hardly had room
to breathe. The Heavens looked decorated for Christmas mixed
with the tree branches.

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Even where there were no trees the sky shined with all the
stars that Heaven could hold. If felt like God was telling us
this was gift for putting up with the nasty weather. Pictures
don’t do it justice, but here are a few more to help you
visualize the sight.

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I’m still smiling, but have to go in search of a pizza that
has my name on it. Enjoy the rest of our Monday as it means we
now only have four working days left this week.
Comments are always welcome.


Lonely river

November 27, 2016

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We missed history in the making yesterday and we’re ok with
that. We have had a paddlewheel riverboat casino on our
riverfront for around 25 years and yesterday it departed for
Memphis.

At the exact time the boat left our riverfront we were
sitting down to a belated Thanksgiving meal with the wife’s
family. One other thing that stopped me from getting pictures
of the event was the fact that there were too many delays for
my patient quota.

Said riverboat was supposed to leave at 2 pm on Friday, which
was pushed back to 8 pm, which was pushed back to some time
Saturday awaiting a Coast Guard inspection. So we watched it
on the TV news. We’d insert a picture here but as we didn’t
see it leaving we didn’t get one.

The boat is called the Treble Clef and was purchased by
Memphis Riverboats whose owner stated it would be used for an
entertainment venue. Plans for the boat in Memphis are private
parties, concerts, and other such events.

Since I don’t gamble I don’t know alot about gambling boats.
When the whole thing started over 25 years ago gaming boats
had to cruise before the gambling could start, and there were
bet limits and sticter rules. That changed to the boat could
be docked while gambling occured and then the bet limit was
lifted.

In June of this year the $100 million Rhytm City Casino went
land based and the boat was history waiting to happen. So now
on our little portion of the east coast of Iowa, Davenport has
no gambling boat on the riverfront.

And even though I don’t gamble I’ll miss it. You just don’t
get to see that many sternwheelers anymore here. But the meal
was great and I got some butterscotch pie with whipped cream
so I don’t feel bad about missing the last chance to take a
look.

Enjoy the rest of your Sunday and we hope it’s been a good
one.
Comments are always welcome.


Sunday snicker

November 26, 2016

A friend shared the following with us and it put a grin on
our faces so we’ll share it with you.

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A Catholic Priest, a Baptist Preacher and a Rabbi all served as Chaplains to the students of Northern Michigan University at Marquette in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. They would get together two or three times a week for coffee and to talk shop.
One day, someone made the comment that preaching to people isn’t really all that hard, a real challenge would be to preach to a bear. One thing led to another, and they decided to do an experiment. They would all go out into the woods, find a bear, preach to it, and attempt to convert it to their religion. Seven days later, they all came together to discuss their experiences.

Father Flannery, who had his arm in a sling, was on crutches, and had various bandages on his body and limbs, went first. ‘Well,’ he said, ‘I went into the woods to find me a bear. And when I found him, I began to read to him from the Catechism. Well, that bear wanted nothing to do with me and began to slap me around. So I quickly grabbed my holy water, sprinkled him and, Holy Mary Mother of God, he became as gentle as a lamb. The Bishop is coming out next week to give him first communion and confirmation.’

Reverend Billy Bob, the Baptist, spoke next. He was in a wheelchair, had one arm and both legs in casts, and had an IV drip. In his best fire-and-brimstone oratory, he exclaimed, ‘WELL, brothers, you KNOW that we Baptists don’t sprinkle! I went out and I FOUND me a bear. And then I began to read to my bear from God’s HOLY WORD! But that bear wanted nothing to do with me. So I took HOLD of him and we began to wrestle. We wrestled down one hill, UP another and DOWN another until we came to a creek. So I quickly DUNKED him and BAPTIZED his hairy soul. And just like you said, he became as gentle as a lamb. We spent the rest of the day praising Jesus. Hallelujah!

The Priest and the Reverend both looked down at the Rabbi, who was lying in a hospital bed. He was in a body cast and traction with IVs and monitors running in and out of him. He was in really bad shape. The Rabbi looked up and said: “Looking back on it, circumcision may not have been the best way to start.