Fairy Circle

I was walking the d*g (I still don’t know why we even have a d*g I am cat people) and saw this fairy circle. Well, semi circle really, I assume on the day the spores were sent on their journey there was a mild westerly wind, spreading the spores to the east rather than in a nice circular pattern.

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I am absolutely certain there was a wild fairy party there the night before. It is just that those crafty fairies removed every trace of evidence of having been there!

P.S. Yes, I know the lawn needs mowing. About the time I realized it needed mowing we had 2 days of rain followed by the last 6 days of oppressive heat. I am talking heat indexes ranging between 101 and 111 degrees F. Absolutely miserable conditions to even walk to the mailbox, let alone try to get anything done.

Yesterday evening I could no longer stand how dirty the car was and washed it (I do not use car washes, they are evil. Have you ever seen a car that frequents car washes?) It was 101 heat index at 5-0-clock in the afternoon. I looked like I had done the ALS ice bucket challenge, and was totally wiped out from the experience. Ain’t as young as I used to be…

Venus and Jupiter Dance In The Early Morning Sky

Check your forecast. If you have any chance of clear skies in the early morning, get up outta bed and look to the eastern skies, just before sunrise. Venus and Jupiter will be as close to each other in the sky as they have been in a long time. How close? Less than a 1/2 a degree apart. How close is that? Damn close. If you have a telescope you will easily fit both planets in the field of view.

If you don’t have a telescope, do you have binoculars? Binoculars will give a great view of this event. If you have neither a telescope or binoculars you don’t need them! All you have to do is look to the east in the morning twilight. You will see two very bright “stars” quite close, this will be what you are looking for. Venus will be the planet on the left, Jupiter on the right.

There is a bonus! Just to the left of Venus there is a well known cluster of stars known as the Beehive (a.k.a. M44)*  in the constellation Cancer. If you are early enough you should be able to make it out pretty well before the sun starts to wash it out. You will need optical aid to see the cluster most likely. It can be seen naked eye as a small fuzzy patch, on a really clear night when it is further from the sun than it is now. As it is right now, probably not a naked eye object. Binoculars should be able to tease it out.

* After the great comet hunter Charles Messier who documented many objects in his hunt for comets. The Messier Catalogue is a list of many objects he kept track of, that to him just were not comets. To astronomers today both pro and amateur these objects are treasures in the sky that we make efforts to seek out and observe.

Rick Perry Responds to Indictment

…by claiming that the indictment, which claims Perry engaged in an abuse of power, was itself an abuse of power. That kind of reminds me a a schoolground argument among 3rd graders. “You’re a poopyhead.” “Nuh uh, you are a poopyhead.”

Which given the history of this guy does not surprise me much. To think he was a candidate for president a few years ago is almost laughable, if it weren’t such a sad state of our political climate. Guess what? It looks like he is/was planning another stab at being a presidential candidate! If he does, I hope it ends twice as disasterously as it did the first time. The guy is a buffoon.

According to what I know, Perry tried to persuade a D.A. who got a D.U.I., and is also a political rival that runs a public integrity unit, to retire. He used the threat of withholding some 7.5 million dollars earmarked for the public integrity unit, as leverage to get the D.A. to do just that. Imagine that, a republican opposed to public integrity.

The article (here: http://www.cnn.com/2014/08/16/politics/rick-perry-indictment/index.html) goes on to say Perry will have to report to the Travis County jail to be booked, fingerprinted, and get a mugshot. Pardon me for a moment while I lol. After observing the antics of republicans for the last 8 years, I am of the opinion they should ALL report to be booked, fingerprinted, and get their mugshots taken. Losing touch with reality may not be a crime, but it should be. Dividing our country among political lines, and refusing to cooperate on anything sponsored by a democrat is not a crime. But it should be. Participating in damned if you, damned if you don’t politics is not a crime, but it should be. By that I mean this…

For a long time after Obama took office, all you heard every day of the week was “bring our troops home.” Our troops, thank goodness were brought home. Then a militant group ran amok across Iraq and Syria. As far as I know our president had nothing to do with that. Now I am hearing republicans clamoring about how Obama should NOT have brought the troops home! “What on earth was he thinking?” “He should have left troops over there!”  Damned if you do, damned if you dont. Having the audacity to partake in such slimy politics is not a crime…but it should be. If anyone is curious why I no longer support the republican party, there you go.

 

Current Events

There has been a lot going on. 

A kid in Missouri getting gunned down in the street. I do not care what this guy may or may not have done, no one deserves that fate in this country. If the policeman that gunned him down does not get jail time, there will be riots in the streets like none seen in a very long time. I am not sure I would blame them.

Robin Williams is dead, suicide. Just wow. I have been too close to two suicides, (One a very good friend of mine, the other my first wife and mother of 3, who like RW had addiction problems in the past and a mental diagnosis) and it is a devastating event for the survivors. From my experiences, and I am sorry if this offends anyone, but a suicide is an act of complete selfishness, with no consideration for those around you. If all you can think about is me, me, me, and all of my issues, you are not seeing the big picture, and how your suicide will affect those who know and love you. This is my conclusion, based on my experiences. My condolences to the family and we have lost a good one in Robin Williams.

The Jews and the Palestines are still sporadically killing each other. I have to wonder if this one will ever be settled, or if there will ever be anything resembling peace in the region.

ISIS taking over a large swath of Iraq and parts of Syria. This is not going to end well. They will have to be dealt with and there is only one way to do that, it does not involve fine stationary and a cup of tea. They cannot be allowed to continue with what they are doing. The things they are doing to people are right out of the pages of the dark ages. This is what happens when those in power look to their good books for guidance. Religion is the biggest problem we face as a society and the biggest obstacle to peace everywhere. As long as shallow minds continue to believe they are better than everyone else because of the religion they adhere to… war and strife will prevail.

The Russian supported rebels shot down a civilian plane with nearly 300 people on board. Looks like no one will ever have to answer for that one. Ludicrous!

I actually saw a piece yesterday, Kim Kardashian has published a book of…selfies? This is news for who exactly?

In all of this, the one thing that nags at me, is what the hell ever happened to the search for the Malaysian plane that disappeared? Just goes to show you how damned short our attention spans are. And how short sighted the media can be. Every new tragedy seems to take precedence over the the previous. Given enough time, no one even asks what happened about what occured a few short weeks ago.

Can I get off at the next stop please?

 

 

Quote of the Month

After a lot of looking for a good quote this month, I came across this one. It has nothing to do with my original intent with this series, which was and is illuminating the truth to those that would incorrectly claim or believe this country was founded on x-ian principles. Even a cursory search on the subject will quickly lay those claims to rest, and it is quite irritating to continuously hear it said. Anyway…

Having a grumpy teenager in the house, this one resonated with me, and what the hell, this is my sandbox I can build castles and moats, and bomb them with rocks if I want to. The quote, which is only attributed as a Cherokee proverb: 

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Indeed.

 

Surprise Link

I was over @ the Bad Astronomy blog hosted by Slate, when I saw off in the sidebar a list of links. One caught my eye and I clicked it with a slight groan. It was titled “Why You Should Stop Believing in Evolution.”

So I was certain to find some half baked creationist nonsense, but was pleasantly surprised. Turned out to be a pretty good lesson and some good points. Heck even the comments weren’t as bad as I thought they would be. I don’t know if this is a sign of people coming around, probably too much to hope for. It is promising.

The link: http://theweek.com/article/index/265653/why-you-should-stop-believing-in-evolution

I am link posting ignorant or something, for some reason I could not copy/paste that link, but it works from here as a copy/paste to the address bar, I just tried it. Nevermind that I have a 50% success rate with posting links that actually work. Is there a link posting class someplace?

EDIT: Okay, now it shows up as a working link. I did nothing to change it. It just works. How the devil does that work?

A Man With No Regrets…

…is a man with no concience. Recently on a blog I frequent (/waves @ Ryan) the subject matter was along the lines of knowing who and what you are in life, accepting these virtues and owning them. You are what you are, you is what you is, and a can of spinach won’t change that too much. We all have to at some point accept who and what we are and live with the decisions we make and the things we do as a result of those decisions. You cannot spend too much time dwelling on all of the if’s the what’s and the maybe’s. There is too much to get done in life to spend an inordinate amount of time pondering each and every decision we make.

There are of course exceptions.

Let’s just say I know a guy, a family member. I was at one time a fan of this guy, I wanted to see him succeed. I saw in him a lot of what I saw in myself as a younger man. At first. When he joined the Army, I was thrilled to see him off on a life adventure that had the potential for him to make something of himself. He graduated boot camp and we drove all the way to Bumfuck Missouri to bring him home. He was soon stationed at Fort Campbell in Kentucky, where he would periodically need transportation back and forth, which I was happy to provide.

Then the next thing I know he gets drummed out of the service for being a no good slacker drunk. I had the pleasure of picking him up. I asked the Army official I talked to “I thought the service tended to jerk a knot in guys like this and straighten them out?” His reply was “there are some that we just cannot keep working with. At some point we have to let them go.”

He palled around with some of his friends for a while, then soon went to live at grandma’s house. He was given help getting a vehicle, and got a decent job. Not once, or twice, 3 times. Fired from every job he has had, and none of the vehicles were ever paid for. The last one driving grandma into bankruptcy.

The entire time he lived at grandma’s house he never once offered up a dollar for rent, or utilities. He was also quite disrespectful and disruptive to their lives. Showing no respect and doing what he pleased. He for the most part lorded over them with his behavior. They would not confront him or call him out on any of his B.S. just to keep him from going off. Little better than a terrorist.

He was sent to New York at one point to live with his father. He soon conned grandma to send him the money to come back. Apparently ole dad expected a few things from him.

He has fathered I think 2 maybe 3 kids in town, all from different gals, and never able to maintain a relationship with the mothers, or be a father to his kids. He has paid some court ordered child support, which he apparently believes is sufficient to lay claim to being a concerned family man.

He has borrowed money from family members, never paid back. From what I gather though his street cred is good. He will pay his debts to his weed suppliers.

A few years ago I had an out of town job opportunity in my old profession as a commercial diver. I needed help getting the high quantity of harvested shell in the boats (I took two, one to work out of, another to store shell in while on the river) He proved to be absolutely worthless. He was pretty much dead weight in a boat. Which is the last thing you really want in a boat. He did prove useful on the drive home as we needed a driver for truck hauling the shell back to market.

Then a year or so later a plea to help him go to school to get a truck driving job was brought to our attention. Him being a particular family member, that leveraged support from someone quite close to me, I understood that it was important to them that we should help him out. Honestly at this point I really figured our best bet was to cut our losses. I was right. It cost us $6000 bucks on the assumption he would pay it back as he got established. Oh, he graduated, and got his CDL license, but on his first trip driving a company truck he dropped his trailer in St. Louis Missouri, and drove the truck back here to spend the weekend. These days company trucks have GPS on them, a company can ping any of their trucks at any time and know where it is. They found that he had driven their truck 200 miles one way, on their dime, without their permission. He was fired before he delivered his first load. The $6000 bucks? Not one red cent have we seen. You should know this is only what I am aware of with this persons history. I am sure there is a great deal I do not know.

More recently, at some point he took to staying with friends instead of at grandma’s house. During that time circumstances changed, grandpa died, and granny moved in next door with one of her daughters, I am married to the other one, so he could not go back to staying with grandma. He has bounced around here and there, and just a few days ago was pretty much thrown out from where he was living.

I recieved a phone call informing me he would be coming to our house that evening. A fucking sociopath is on his way, great. I was not real happy about this decision to say the least, nor was I part of that decision process, I doubt there would be much more of a story to tell If I had been.

On this person’s best day he is an exact polar opposite to everything I know and hold dear. So when he arrived he wanted to know if I knew the deal, I replied “yes I am aware, and I am not happy about it.” Nothing else was said. He settled into the den and all was well, to a point, save for the part where I am not a happy camper. I knew from minute one this was not going to end well.

Later in the evening, due to our particular circumstances at the moment I had to lie down and get a nap in, so I could get up at midnight and go pick up the wife from work. She gets off at one in the morning and by the time we get back here and settle in I don’t get back to bed till 2 or so. That little nap opportunity between 10 and 12 is important to my well being since I am usually up again by 6 or 7 in the morning. Even then I am running on not enough sleep.

As I laid down, the boys were a little loud, our guest in particular, so I, and admittedly a little ungraciously, called for some quiet so I could get some sleep. Having a couple of boys here, and their friends staying here from time to time, a call for quiet is not outside of my usual routine, and normally no big deal.

Not 10 minutes later there is a lot of door slams, rattling, tromps, knocks and noise, and I am like wtf? I get up to go see what the deal is and our guest is banging around in the kitchen with no consideration at all for my request to some quiet. So, I confronted him. I was like what the hell? I just asked for some peace and quiet and you are in here making all kinds of racket? He came back with he was not trying to be loud. I can tell you he sure as fuck was not trying to be quiet. What he was doing was pissing in the floor in an attempt to mark some territory. When he saw I was going to press the issue his demeanor went to hell real fast, and his true nature showed up in his soulless black eyes. You don’t have to dig very deep to get past the layer with the charming disposition and a nice smile to see what really lies beneath.

We had a war of words. I confronted him with much of the history I have already mentioned. I also told him we needed him here like the Titanic needed an iceburg. His reply was that he did not care at all about any of that stuff, and did not have any respect for me or what I thought, and never would, among other things. It took every bit of strength in me to not strangle him on the spot.

I have never in my life threw the first punch, or instigated any fight I have been in. I have not been in a lot of fights, I would rather talk out the issue, or walk away if that is possible. I do not start physical altercations. I am not however afraid to participate in one. If a guy makes the mistake of starting an altercation with me, I will have a go with a glint in my eye. I actually kind of like knocking assholes unconcious, and it has been a while. You must understand, I have lived the life of a commoner. I have been in many a bar, seen a lot of bullying types, and have avoided for the most part physical fighting. You can’t dodge them all or necessarily find an easy way out. There are moments it is time to defend yourself. When and if it comes to that, I generally like my chances. I am thankful that the few times I had to, I walked away in pretty good shape. A couple of my encounters left my opponents taking a nap. 

Only out of respect for my wife, did I not start a fight in this case. Never in my life have I wanted to so badly put a whuppin on anyone. I even tried to goad him into throwing a punch so I could. Which is not in my normal character, some people have a tendency to get your hackles up, I’ll bet if you take a moment and think on it, you will know in your little part of the world “that” guy I’m talking about. He would not comply. We pretty much stalemated on the issue, I could not make myself hit him without justfiable provocation, and I let it go despite his complete lack of respect in my own damn house. It was close.

He got a ride out of here the next morning, I have not seen him since. Where he slept on the couch in the den… one of my boys found this the next morning. I guess it fell out of his pocket.

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I should have known he was packing some kind of weapon. I thought he had just a tad too much confidence the night before. No telling where or how this would have ended had it begun. I’d like to think I could have neutralized him before he could deploy it, but you never know.

It’s been a few days now. I have no regrets about anything I said to this person or my actions. None at all. The whole situation still nags at me though, why in a case where I really feel justified to act and feel as I do, would I still feel like shit over the situation? I really feel bad on the one hand, and on the other I feel like I had no choice to behave as I did. I know in my heart it was high time somebody confronted this guy. Everyone else in the family is like, “don’t say anything” or “don’t do anything, it will make it worse” Why… must I feel like the bad guy for not bowing down to this person’s character?

I do not know. I do know this, one thing that I possess that my guest will never own, and that is a concience. Even having a concience, I will not lose much sleep over a certain persons never ending list of problems. Nor will I make them my own. You can’t help someone who does not have the capacity or the desire to help themselves. You certainly are not going to change the spots on a proven sociopath that gets by in life as a social parasite. No hope for symbiosis with this one. Now I need a moment of meditation, some zen, a happy place to retreat to. There are days I do not care for who I can be, but at the same time I see no way not to be so.

Mak, you gonna tell me I’m a determinist? ;)

That ends this chapter of my soap opera. I sure hope this character does not show up later in the episode.