flying

I flew Delta from LAX to Minneapolis to Hartford . Red eye special . Good arrival time for my friend to pick me up , except that I got confused on the day . The day I flew in he had a gig and had to pick me up a little later . I waited in an airport bar and had a couple of expensive airport beers ,  local Connecticut stuff .

Now I’m home again . Same flight in reverse , except that this time it wasn’t a red eye .

Three hours in Minneapolis . Coming in from L.A. , I saw snow covering the parking structures outside . On the return trip , two weeks later ,  no snow . The airport is stretched out along endless concourses . Concourses . When do you walk concourses  outside of airports ? Am I missing something ? There are moving sidewalks and a tram .  Endless concourses . Food courts . Shops .  WiFi access .

I had a few mini-bottles of Scotch in my carry-on bag . They’re allowed . My friend Willie told me that last year . He gave me a couple of them to test his statement . No problem .  I showed them to the snoops , thinking that they might confiscate them . No . Willie was right .scotch

To order the same shot of Scotch during the flight would have cost me seven dollars , I think . Drinking one of the bottles during the flight I felt as if I were now out of the red , outsmarting Delta , pushing the envelope . The little bottles cost only 99 cents in Connecticut .  If I had had a few more mini-bottles I’d be sitting pretty , ahead of the game , actually beginning to show a profit . Well , almost   .

I once went from Berlin to London on Ryan Airlines . Ryan , if I remember correctly ,was the airline that seriously considered charging a fee to use the restroom . Nice .I would have gone broke .  I got to the Berlin Airport , Freuninggulingen ……., no Shaeuftshaffen ……. no Sheinifeld ? , Shoenefeld ? , at six in the morning . I had come from Poland by taxi that morning . Got there overly early , as is my way .WWI air ambulance

I was second in line . We were the only two customers to have arrived so early for the flight .  I had one bag to check . There were two conveyor belts moving luggage along : to London  and to  Ankara . I didn’t see the clerk put my lonely bag on the Ankara belt . I should have been watching , I guess . When I got to London I had no clothes . 10 days in England and no  clothes other than what I was wearing . I won’t tell you the whole sad story . My bag met me in London on the 10th day , having , I assume , enjoyed its own vacation in Turkey . We flew back to Berlin together , but we didn’t talk to each other the entire flight .

Another Berlin to London flight on British Airways was exciting after the pilot announced  over the scratchy PA system that he thought the landing gear was stuck . We were going to have to go in on our shiney sleek aluminum belly . The pilot’s voice was almost inaudible and he had a heavy English accent . One of the many . Dorset , maybe . Rs everywhere . Like old movie pirates :  Aarrh , matey ! Wharr yer headin’ ? Shiver me timbers !  Emarrgency vehicles aarrh be preparrhin’ fer arrh landin’  . Aarh.sign el monte airport

The plane was full of Germans . I , a native English speaker , was barely getting what the pilot was saying . I didn’t think that many of the Germans got much of it . But , on the other hand , maybe they had learned English from the English . Good possibility that they understood a lot more than I did , now that I think of it .

When we approached Gatwick , or was it Heathrow ? , the emergency vehicles were lined up along the runway . There were plenty of them : fire trucks , ambulances , police , hearses . Well , maybe not hearses .   I had confidence in the pilot and the plane . I don’t think anyone else in the plane could say the same , judging by their panicked expressions . Those pilots , highly trained ,  could slide it in on its fusilage belly .

Buckle your seat belt ; it’s gonna be a bumpy ride . airplane seat belt

But the landing gear came down and we all rolled to a stop .  Anticlimatic . I’m not complaining .  Billy Bob Thornton said ,” I’m not afraid of flying . I’m afraid of crashing . ”   That about sums it up .

About these English accents :

Ada and I flew from LAX to London once and I had arranged , in advance ,a rental car from the airport . I never sleep on flights and by the time we reached the car rental desk in London I was exhausted . I couldn’t , for the life of me , understand what the English girl at the counter was telling me . It was a Friday . I thought that she was telling me that my car wouldn’t be available until Monday . She wasn’t , of course . She was trying to tell me that my car would be a Mondeo .  I was losing my temper .

” Not Monday !” I said . ” Now “england

Ada had to translate . Mediate . Ada grew up in Poland .

” Tell him…” the English girl would say .

” Tell her ….” I would say .

Oh.  The car is called Mondeo. Nothing about Monday . It’s waiting for us . Oh . O.K. Why didn’t she say so ?mondeo

I don’t mind flying much . Once in awhile . It’s quick once you leave the ground .  Gets you places you might not otherwise go . Somewhat uncomfortable . Never enough leg room . And they always remind you how a seat belt works ; they show you ; give a demonstration . That comes in handy because sometimes , if you haven’t used one in a few hours , you might have forgotten .

Sometimes you should bring along an English-American dictionary , or , at least a phrase book . Several English speakers from various corners of the earth learned English English from the English . Beware .  And consider bringing  some little bottles of booze . If nothing else , it gives you a sense that you’re getting away with something .  Even if you’re not a drinker bring some  —– trade one  for a few more tiny bags of peanuts or pretzels . If you ride Ryan Air , bribe the stewardess to use the head without paying the fee . Endless possibilities . Endless.illustration 3

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watch

I was leisurely reading an article in the LA Times this morning about a robbery in a Beverly Hill restaurant a few days ago . This was a follow-up to the original story , which gave very few details .

It seems a local jeweler had just shown a man some watches . Then he went to lunch at the expensive Italian restaurant and he soon spotted a couple of guys in hoodies headed for his table . They grabbed him and wrestled the watch off of his wrist as he fought back . He knocked the gun in one of their hands to the ground and they took off running . They had managed to get away with his watch .

Now , I’m pretty sure that no one would attack me for my watch . Oh , don’t think that I wear the cheapest watches . Sure , I could have bought a Casio or something for a little less than I paid for my Timex , but they look cheap . Maybe my ten dollar Timex looks cheap , too , to watch watchers ; but to me it looks plenty respectable enough .

Now , it’s not a Rolex , of course , or some type of other flashy watch . I have two of them , Timexes that is , by the way . At the beginning of the pandemic I couldn’t find any place to buy a new watchband after my watchband broke , so I bought another watch . The price had gone up between my two watches , both almost exactly similar . I had to pay almost twenty dollars for the newer one . Still a good price , I think , and , hey , I’m worth it !

I did have a better watch once . After my father died my mother gave me his watch , a Bulova . I wore it around for only a couple of months and then I lost it . Yeah . I’m pretty sure that I put it on the top of my car one morning and took off . Some lucky person may have found it later that day in the gutter . I used to have the bad habit of putting whatever was in my hands on top of the car as I rushed to get to work and struggled to unlock the car door . Distracted ? Of course . Every once in awhile I’d forget whatever was on top of the car roof and drive off . I lost a couple of coffee cups that way . I had to stop a couple of other times to retrieve a notebook or two . The coffee cups were usually shattered . I would hear them crash on the asphalt and wonder why I never seemed to learn my lesson .

Anyway , I suspect that I put my father’s watch up there one morning with my cup of coffee . Maybe . Maybe not . I felt horrible about losing my father’s watch . I think that I changed my ways after that . Too late , though , of course .

Well , back to the Beverly Hills jeweler . I was thinking Rolex . I was thinking maybe a few thousand dollars . I don’t shop for Rolexes or any expensive watches , so I don’t really have much of a notion of their cost . All I know is that my Timex keeps the same time as a Rolex. As I read the article I waited to be informed about the type of watch.

The watch that was stolen from him he reported to be worth $ 500,000 . He said that his insurance company might have a slightly different appraisal .

Who wears $ 500,000 watches !

He evidently told the cops that he struggled with the assailants because he was tired of being robbed . There had been a recent string of robberies in the area , he said . Given the hard times , of late , for most businesses , I’m waiting for a follow-up article to be written after the jeweler is arrested for insurance fraud . Why would he mention his insurance company , I wonder . I’m suspicious . He knocks the gun from the robber’s hand ? Maybe , but it seems like something in the old time B movies . And then the robbers run away . No one is injured .

Where will they fence a $ 500,000 watch ?

I’m not buying it .

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pagan babies

[ I’m going to re-issue this post . Susan reminded me of it . It kindles the odd memory in some of us ]

When I attended Corpus Christi Catholic School in the 1950s and 1960s there was a program we all called Pagan Babies . Each classroom was given small cardboard collection boxes . The teacher had a stack of them . They folded out .

The idea was to collect money from students , nickels and dimes , for charity . Maybe the program was intended , at least partially , to teach us generosity . When five dollars was collected the box would go……….somewhere ……..and a new box would be folded out by the teacher .

But , here’s the thing : When the class had five dollars then that class got to name a pagan baby . Yeah . We thought up the stupidest , weirdest names we could manage and , as I remember, the teacher wrote that name on the box with the five dollars and it went off to the pagans . We believed that somewhere in the world would be a pagan with a stupid name chosen by the silly students of Corpus Christi Catholic School . I assume that all of the other Catholic schools in the archdiocese were doing the same thing .

We were never quite sure what a pagan was . I’m still not so sure . But for five dollars we could play Name That Pagan Baby . There were competitions between classes . Sometimes the girls in one class would be pitted against the boys : Who could collect the money to name the pagan baby first ? Who could choose the most ridiculous name ?

Cary Cox stole a five dollar bill from his mother’s purse when we were in fourth grade so that Cary could pick the name of the next pagan baby himself . Herman . He chose Herman . Years later Larry Bye , another boy in the class , told me that his middle name was Herman and that he had been embarrassed when Cary chose the name Herman for the pagan baby.

But Cary was caught . Yeah , a few days later . Someone spilled the beans , I think , or he bragged to the wrong person just what he had done . So then there was an ethical issue that , in some elementary way , even we students recognized . The poor pagan was already named Herman , right ? His parents can’t now change the little pagan’s name , right ?  What do we do , Sister , what do we do ? Actually , as I remember , the girls in the class were very worried about this but we boys weren’t so much concerned with the little pagan family’s problem . We were wondering how much trouble Cary would get into . Cary had guts, for sure ,  for such a bold attempt at fraud . We boys , I think ,  had a sense of accomplishment somehow because even though he had been caught Cary  still had the satisfaction of knowing that a pagan would go through life named Herman because of him .

That was the early sixties . Jump forward to 1980 . Now I am teaching fourth grade in a little Catholic school in Venice . Some Irish nuns were there one day to speak to the students . They were missionaries working somewhere in Africa . They projected slides of their missionary adventures  onto the wall of the church hall . They spoke in thick  Irish brogues . They wore full habits in the old style .

And they spoke of pagans . “Here is sister Mary So-and-So in the plane about to fly off to baptize the pagans . Here is Sister Mary Michael Archangel giving medicine to the pagans . “

Here a pagan ; there a pagan . Everywhere a pagan pagan . They spoke for an hour and I think that every sentence they uttered had the word pagan in it . Pagan ,pagan, pagan .

And finally they finished . I wonder if the students understood anything through the Irish accents . The oldest nun asked : ” Any questions , children ? “

Charlie Bloomquist , of course , had a question . Charlie was in my class . Always when he asked his question , no matter what the occasion , he seemed to be right smack dab in the middle of the group . When the principal had signed on to a candy sale fundraising scheme because the promotion company’s salesman gave him a stereo system as a gift to grease the wheels , the salesman spoke to the students for a few minutes at the morning assembly . The students would sell candy bars for a dollar each and , depending on how many each child sold , he or she would win prizes . The salesman had charts and pictures and a poster for every classroom of the glorious prizes . How great !  There was excitement in the air . The assembly was buzzing . The students were raring and ready to go sell the candy and get the prizes  .

” Any questions ? ” the salesman said .  Yeah , Charlie had a question .

Charlie stood up to his full height of about four foot three , his head held high , a serious look on his face . There was something he needed to know .

” You mean to tell me , ” he began , ” that we are supposed to sell a candy bar for a dollar that we could buy in the store for fifty cents ……..”

” It’s to raise money for the school ,” the salesman countered .

” and if we sell ten of them , ” Charlie continued unperturbed ,” we get a pencil case .”

“Yes !” the salesman said.

” And if we sell twenty , we get something else that none of us really wants . To get the bike we have to sell nine million thirty six thousand three hundred and eight candy bars .”

No , only two thousand fifty , ” countered the salesman . Already he was losing  his enthusiasm . The principal was standing nearby wondering if he should intervene .

” This is my question , ” said little Charlie Bloomquist to the salesman , ” If I wanted that bike , why wouldn’t  I go get a job and save my money until I could buy a bike . Then I could choose the bike I wanted . Why would I sell overpriced candy to people  and never get the bike anyway because no one could sell that much candy anyway ? “

The teachers all smiled . Charlie waited for an adequate answer . The salesman had no answer . The principal stepped forward , to the rescue , saying  coldly  , ” It’s a fundraiser for the school .” He didn’t mention his new stereo system . He didn’t mention that 60% of the profits went to the promotion company . He didn’t say that the big winner was the salesman himself  , who had spent only a couple of  hours with the principal and  with the students but now had three hundred children who would be desperately trying to sell his candy for the next two weeks . He could go home , buy his kids new bikes if he wanted to  , and come back at the end of two weeks to collect the cash .

Charlie had a question for the missionary nuns , too . He stood right in the middle of the group .

” I only have one question , ” he said . ” What’s a pagan ? “

The Irish nuns in their full habits immediately looked around at the teachers as if to say ,” Aren’t you teaching these children anything ? ”  They were befuddled . They were wondering how to react . Should they be angry or should they just feel anguish  for the sorry state of the religion these days ?

I can’t remember now if they ever answered Charlie’s question . I should have asked them if they had ever run into any pagan named Herman .

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thoughts

I spent part of yesterday taking a new water heater up to the mountain cabin and installing it . I made sure that the new one is the same size as the old one so that the work is more or less unplugging the old and plugging in the new . No changes in piping or venting needed.

I got home late in the afternoon . Ada was sitting out at the table in the backyard with a friend of ours . The friend complimented me on being able to do this kind of a job . Her husband Boris , she said , wasn’t able to do any repairs around their house . Ada told her that I was able to and have done several repairs around the house and that she , Ada , freaks out when something goes wrong or breaks down . The friend said that Boris is the one who freaks out and that she is the one who calmly arranges for the repair work .

She said again that she wished Boris would learn to do some repairs . I told her that I’m sure Boris is very busy with his work . He’s a programmer with a big corporation and has been very busy lately . Yes , he’s busy , she said , ” He works with his brain .”

Well , that sets us apart , then , I told her . I try to avoid using my brain if at all possible . It was meant to be a joke but she took it matter-of-factly , so I let the conversation move along .

Well , I reflected later , if you live in old houses and have to get by on a teacher’s salary , and are by nature kind of a cheapskate , you learn to do some of the repairs that will periodically be needed instead of automatically calling a professional .

Oh , I have an electrician and a plumber , and I know a tree trimmer and a jack-of-all-trades type guy . The truth is I don’t know an awful lot about repairing much of anything , but nowadays I have the time to investigate and to learn how to do things . YouTube videos are a good source of vital tips and information , and I always ask people who actually know how to do things before I attempt repair work . I called my plumber to ask a couple of questions about buying water heaters . ” Hey , I was wondering if you got yourself a new plumber ! ” he said . No , just not many plumbing problems for awhile , maybe putting in a new garbage disposal . And the water heater . Nothing that needs professional service .

Oh , well I had a little practice for the cabin water heater installation because the water heater in the house in Arcadia gave out a few days beforehand , so I already had replaced it when the one on the mountain gave out . ⚛

I called Waste Management a few minutes ago to schedule an extra pickup for the two old water heaters . ” Good news !” she said. ” We can pick them up tomorrow . ”

Now Ada says we probably need a new oven and I’m in charge . I’ve repaired this one three times over the last several years . Nothing lasts forever. Somehow Whack-a-mole comes to mind .

Sometimes I think that this adult life is not all it’s cracked up to be .

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booze excuse

The owner of a mechanic shop up north was charged in the January 6 riot at the national capitol . The FBI found several pipe bombs locked in his shop , several high-powered guns in his house along with Nazi paraphernalia including an SS knife , membership cards in the anti-government group the Three Percenters , and several internet postings he had made threatening violence .

His lawyer claims that he’s a good family man , etc. , non-violent etc. , but when he gets drunk he’s a loud unruly drunk . His counselor explains away all of the evidence . The pipe bombs , for example , are just for his own entertainment . When he goes camping he likes to explode them ; and besides , they were locked in his safe .

I’m not a legal expert , but I think this guy needs a new lawyer . Just saying.

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angel security

In 1906 a guy named King Camp Gillette began producing a best -selling version of the safety razor and he made a fortune because of it . In 1926 he bought a lot of land for a ranch in the Santa Monica Mountains somewhere near Malibu and he built an ornate house on the property . I was there for a day when I was in eighth grade . The house was still there , but at the time of my visit it belonged to the Catholic church . More about this later.

I was recently given a comic booklet by my cousin about the Catholic elementary school experience . The cartoons in the booklet really rang true , stirring up some mostly-forgotten memories in me . One of those dredged-up memories concerns guardian angels .

The nuns told us to always leave room for our guardian angels . Well , when I wrote “told” maybe I should have written “demanded” . Every little kid had a guardian angel . When we sat in the church pews as a class every Friday for noon Mass in our salt-and-pepper shirts and corduroy pants we wouldn’t dare try to sit close to our friends, maybe to whisper and even giggle a little bit now and again because the nuns insisted that we leave a human-size space next to us for the guardian angels . No one wanted to accidently sit on their guardian angel .

I remember thinking back then that my particular guardian angel seemed to be kind of a dud . First of all , I had no idea what my own particular angel looked like . I knew what an angel looked like , more or less , because there were pictures , and at Christmas time there were figurines of angels watching over baby Jesus .

Well , there was the angel Gabriel . Gabriel was an archangel . I never knew really knew what an archangel was as opposed to an ordinary angel , but it apparently put Gabriel a notch or two above an everyday guardian angel .

And then there was Michael the Archangel . I think he was the one with a sword . I don’t think guardian angels were allowed to carry swords because there were too many little kids around , but who knows .

Well , I suppose Michael had a sword because he had to fight off the bad angels . As you have probably heard , long , long , long ago there was a huge battle among the angels . Oh , yeah , long before the dinosaurs . (See, it’s not just humans who kill one another !) A group of angels rebelled against something or other and wound up having to fight it out with the other angels .

The bad angels , of course , lost ; so they got kicked out of heaven and had to go to hell . They weren’t allowed to wear angel costumes any more . They grew horns and hooves and began carrying pitchforks around and were in continuous foul moods . I don’t know how many bad angels there are . I don’t know how many good angels there are either , for that matter . There must be a lot of them since everyone I knew got a one-on-one guardian angel and that’s in addition to the other assortment of angels who just fly around with swords and horns and harps and such .

I think that’s how it goes .

I’m not really an angel expert . I only know what the nuns told us . The nuns knew the religion like the backs of their hands . I don’t know to this day if adults have guardian angels . Or not . Maybe at a certain age the guardian angel says : ” Okay , I’m done ! ” and flies off for other duties . Who knows . I don’t even know if my own guardian angel is still hanging around or signed off and skedaddled decades ago . If so , and my angel is still guarding me , then that poor neglected seraph has got to be bored to death . On the other hand , as I think things over , that angel did one hell ( pardon the expression ) of a job watching out for me , if I do say so myself .

Ada has a guardian angel . He’s an older man with a little bit of a big belly who walks his dog past our house every day . Just about every time Ada goes out , doesn’t matter what time of day , she sees the guardian angel and his dog walking past , always on the other side of the street . He doesn’t look around ; just saunters along . We tried to follow him once to see where he lives , but when he got to the top of the hill he rounded the corner ahead of us and sort of just vanished . Ada could leave the house right now and I bet that guy would be walking past . I don’t know if the dog is an angel too . Could be . Are there animal angels ?

What does all of this have to do with old King Gillette the safety razor guy , you might wonder ? Okay .

When I was in grade school in the Catholic school , a priest came around on a scouting mission . Boys could sign up for a day at a seminary . It’d be like a fair , lots of fun , and maybe it would convince some of us to become priests . That was the point : recruiting for what they called holy orders .

I signed up . I don’t know why . I think that I was the only one in my class to take the bait.

My parents drove me out one Saturday to the King Gillette ranch . I liked the house . I liked the countryside around the house . The Catholic Church owned the ranch at the time and were running a seminary there . One of the seminarians was assigned to escort me around for the day to show me how great it was to study to become a priest . His name was Gabriel .

There were no Gabriels in my life then except for that old Angel Gabriel who showed up now and again in pictures and hanging above Christmas cribs . So I guess this young seminarian , whose task it was to persuade me to join up , was my guardian angel for the day . I spent the day , however , wondering who this king was who owned the beautiful old mansion house . It was a fancy house . I hadn’t been aware that there were any kings in California . The mystery of it all absorbed my attention all day .

Maybe angels , like in that old Hollywood movie , get their wings when they fulfill their tasks . You remember Clarence got his wings and a bell tinkled to let us know that . It’s too bad that my guardian for the day , Gabriel , didn’t get to sprout any wings after my visit that Saturday but , hey , he tried .

Los Angeles had a spell with angels a few years ago . I forget what the motivation was , but in hundreds of spots around the city statues of angels showed up . Los Angeles , after all , is called the City of Angels . The true name of the place is, after all , El Pueblo de Nuestra Senora de la Reina de Los Angeles . Anglos shortened it to Los Angeles , The Angels .

And have we lived up to the name ? Like hell , I say ! But we put statues of angels up all over the city a few years ago for one reason or another . City of Angels . Angels have good PR , but I suspect that the true reality could be this but , on the other hand , it could be quite a bit of that . I suspect that we’re not getting the whole picture about this war between the angels . After all , the victors write the histories , don’t they ? I’m not judging ; just throwing the issue out there for further analysis .

King Gillette died a few years after he bought his ranch and built his house there . A Hollywood director bought the property and lived there for several years in the 1930s and 40s . Then the Catholics got hold of the place for awhile . Apparently the priest recruitment seminary gig didn’t pan out . Now it’s a California National Recreation Area with a visitor center and hiking trails park and open to the public . ( Closed for the pandemic )

They’ve probably cleared all of the angels out of there , the good angels and the bad angels . As far as I know it’s in Ventura County anyhow , not even part of The Angels County . I’m going to go up there someday for another visit . I wonder if they let you go inside the house nowadays .

When I do I’m taking my guardian angel with me , now that I’ve been reminded about guardian angels and such —— just in case . I may even shave before I go , with a Gillette blade . That would fit .

I hope , too , that that seminarian Gabriel from that Saturday so long ago eventually got his wings . He seemed like one of the good guys .

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into the great wide open

Last night I had a great idea for a post but I forgot what it is . Maybe some day it will show up again . I think it was the second time the same idea occurred to me , so it most likely will be around again . I’ve got so much junk in my mind that things get misplaced fairly often . Not lost , though ; they’re in there somewhere .

Daniel Boone supposedly said when asked if he had ever been lost : ” I’ve never been lost . I’ve been confused for weeks at a time , but I’ve never been lost “. Well , that’s about where I am at any particular time—- kind of in a state of temporary confusion ; maybe suspended mental animation waiting for those great ideas to show themselves again .

Ah , sometimes it takes years . I’ll wake up in the middle of the night and suddenly know exactly what so-and-so meant by that statement they’d made —– how many years ago ? four years ago ? So that’s what they meant ! So that’s why they had that weird expression on their face . Of course ! I should’ve known !

That’s why I could never be a competent courtroom lawyer. Or maybe not a politician either . They always seem to have immediate smooth answers at any moment to any question . Whether or not those answers have anything to do with the question , or whether or not they bear any relationship to the truth is beyond the point for my discussion . Most questions I need a little time with . Best if I can sleep on it . I’ll let you know in a day or two . Let me think about it . I’ll get back to you on that .

The great wonderful superb post idea may have got pushed back into my mental archives because my cell phone rang late into the evening . Well , it’s not a ring ; it’s an old-fashioned car horn sound . My brother , who never calls me , called to say that he had managed to get an appointment for a Covid-19 vaccination . He’ll go to Dodger Stadium on the 29th . I don’t know if he was given a specific time or not . I warned him that the wait at Dodger Stadium has been four or five hours long . He was pretty excited to have an appointment . Hopefully they don’t run out of vaccine after he waits there in the line of vehicles on the 29th.

The buzz around town nowadays is about getting an appointment to get the vaccine . People are sneaking into lines despite not being in the priority groups designated to get the shot , hanging around pharmacies hoping that unused vaccine might be available at the end of the day . Hope is thrown up into the air only to be dashed against the rocks of reality . Right now the problem seems to be simply that there’s not enough vaccine .

To me it’s like when news of the latest electronic item comes out and crowds wait in line all night to be the first in line in front of the store to pay more for the item that is bound to cost less a couple of weeks from now and be easier to acquire . I’m not one of those who needs to be the first in line . I’ll wait .

Now , what was my original idea for this post ? Let me sleep on it . I’ll let you know but it might take some time before it makes its way to the front .

.

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comments

A friend of mine posted something about the recent mob break-in at the US Capitol . He decried the violence and offered some heart-felt vaguery about can’t we all get along .

Well , I say “a friend” , but I really only met him once briefly , years ago . I follow him on Facebook ; so when I say “friend” I mean a Facebook friend .

His other FB friends , or perhaps actual in-the-flesh friends , commented on his capitol post . Some of them were suggesting theories about Anti-fa being the real culprits . I hope not to get political in this discussion , but some of the comments went too far for my run-of-the-mill mind set .

So I went against my better judgement and posted a response . It was satirical . I know it’s never a worthwhile endeavor to comment on much of anything political posted on Facebook . I’ve done it once or twice in the past in response to a cousin who let particularly offensive stuff seep into his postings . I rationalized my useless action in my mind by hoping that he might stop and reflect on his vitriol were I to comment , maybe tone down his rhetoric and see another side of the issue . After all , maybe he doesn’t realize just how offensive……….. Of course this is all wishful thinking on my part , I know . The urge to try got the better of me . It’s useless . Always is .

Ada rolls her eyes and doesn’t have to put anything into words . Maybe she’ll say : ” You didn’t !” to point out to me the error of my ways . Yes , but I did .

The only reason I bring all of this up today is to mention that my sarcastic comment evidently got nixed from the comments under my friend’s post . Actually , I went back to find it the day after posting it in order to delete it because maybe it didn’t fit in to the tone of the discussion . As it turned out I didn’t need to ; it had already been deleted . I guess it didn’t strike the right chord with my friend .

I would have liked to have seen a couple of responses to my comment , which was not , by the way , in any way offensive as far as I can see . Now I have a little mystery to consider . Poor man might have been offended . After all , he merely meant to express sorrow for the events at the Capitol .

The thing is , the comments from others continued and, as those things seem to often go , some of them strayed pretty far off of the expression-of-sorrow reservation . Some of them went off in extreme political directions way beyond the pale ( my pale , at least ) .

I should learn my lesson not to ever attempt to insert anything into a FB discussion , or to comment on any FB post except to give it a thumbs-up , you know , or something like that . As a colleague of mine used to say : You can’t teach a pig to sing, and if you try you’ll not only fail but you’ll irritate the pig .

I should learn my lesson . Usually I stick to the general rule to shut up .

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