Saturday, July 13, 2024

12 of 12

So I'm doing my 171st 12 of 12.

Normally it is 12 pictures taken on the 12th of the month. Since I only post once per day, you get my images the following day. All pictures taken with my iPhone. Click images to enlarge, if you choose.

Created by Chad Darnell and picked up from, what I can tell, any number of random bloggers who then link back to him and vice versa. Chad is no longer doing this, nor is successor coordinating the linking of other 12 of 12'ers anymore. 

06:01. the new a.m. alarm.  
Simon making his way to the open window through the closed blinds.

06:18. Microwaved mush. 

06:47. Shep morning walk. 1.2 miles

07:15. As seen on my morning 5 mile run. 

07:32. 3 down. 2 to go. 

08:11. Change of shirt. In the gym for strength training. 
Pretty 'fly' for a white guy. 

16:14. Kitchen work.  
A baking segment might be coming your way. 

16:55. Kitchen clean-up. 

17:30.  Shep dinner time. Outdoors as usual. 

18:32. Georgia!!!
Haven't seen her for a while, but did on our evening walk. It's kind of like having my Saturday pet post. 

18:44. Enjoying the backyard. 
Sitting with 710 having a drink.  Water. 

19:22.  Cole Slaw. 
The secret ingredient is cayenne pepper. But it was a decent side for grilling out. 



That's it folks. At least for this month's 12. 

Friday, July 12, 2024

Something

While I didn't - and wouldn't - watch Biden's address.........for whatever it was supposed to be about, let's be honest, it was aimed at being no more than a control the spin on camera and show what a competent, forceful and cognizant leader he was. 

Except he wasn't. 

In a time where Pappy Joe's gaffe ratio has to be 0:0 at least until after election day, he just couldn't make it through one fucking speech. He fucked up.  Twice.  At least twice. 

Everyone has gaffes, but he doesn't have the luxury to be making them at this point. Like, ANY.   And you mix up BLOTUS and your VP???   J.F.C.

Again, I didn't watch, but got a text by someone who did. Or at least watched partially. 

Unless there is some super top secret plan behind all this feebleness, Pappy Joe is just giving away the farm. And honestly, there NEEDS to be a super top secret plan.

Yet, I think we all know there isn't. 

Listen - I don't know if Project 2025 is real or not, but I think we need to act like it is. The GOP and VonShitzinPantz has more than alluded to what "he'd" do when (not if) he got back in office. We should take him at his word. 

As I continue to address my mental health - here and elsewhere - a fuck of a lot if it has developed over the last 10 years is making me feel utterly helpless to change what is happening. The rise of BLOTUS and literally the sooner-to-be-than-expected demise of democracy. 

That isn't conjecture speaking. We are watching it real time. 

Even Justice Sotomayor’s signed off dissent of the SCOTUS immunity ruling “With fear for our democracy, I dissent."   Looking at more than a dozen "news" sites online, less than half included that line in their reporting. 

The entire dissent is blistering, but none more so than that last line - and most chose to ignore it. That seems pretty standard. 

People have remarked that the news is not reporting at all on Project 2025. I can't say for sure since: no news for me. But it wouldn't surprise me if they aren't. They'll all be vying to the State Media site. The one and only source of propaganda news. No one wants to immediately be ruled out of that prospect.

I've said / asked this before and truly received no response. Voting isn't helping us out of this situation. There has to be something more - but I'm not smart enough to know what that is. Everyone (ok, some people) is saying we should be doing something:

WHAT IS THAT SOMETHING??




Somebody please fucking tell me!




Song by: the Beatles

Thursday, July 11, 2024

Sinking

I'd say the day got away from me, but it didn't. 

I'm lazy.  Period. 

I 'read' a headline that Pelosi thinks Pappy Joe should step down from the 2024 election. The 193 year old former Speaker of the House says so. 

Naturally, I read none of the article.  710 said that George Clooney wrote an op ed piece somewhere (the Hollywood Reporter????) saying something similar. 

For all the beef the dems get about the Hollywood influence, maybe it's best not to take heed from the guy who arguably played the second to worst Batman ever. 

Either way, this seems like bad news for Pappy Joe. 

We discussed on our Sunday call the step-down scenario. Becky kind of hit the nail on the head with the DNC HAD forced Pappy Joe on us in 2016 - and maybe we should be taking prompts from the GOP.  They are going all in with a felon who has repeatedly lied, has cognitive issues too, has cheated charities out of money, has left this country morally bankrupt - but the Dems can't do the same for Joe? 

The problem is: it's been two weeks now of this should he / shouldn't he bullshit, and all the while Joe is sinking in the polls. 

None of this bode well for us non-Nazis. 

I feel that we are fucked. Big time. 



Song by: the Cure

Wednesday, July 10, 2024

Balls

It's true.  100%.

Last evening I did a 4 mile run. 

No biggie, right?   

Of course it's a biggie. I can run four miles, but you know I'm not a natural at running. I never have been. I never will be. 

Still, I work at it. CONSTANTLY. 

I was running with my running group on Sunday and a really good runner from the training group passed me as he was biking - and acknowledged me. 

It's totally petty, but I liked he saw me out there running not just with the training group. And that I was working on this more than the two days per week he runs with me. 

It's like middle and high school all over again. Wanting that acceptance from the cool kids. 

While the temp last evening was "only" 79, the humidity was 91%.  It. Was. Miserable. 

My thought was, I can do anything for four miles - and I can, but at a cost. At the 1.5 mark, my asthma semi kicked in. It took me another half mile to recalibrate my breath, but I lost some of my mojo. 

I no longer carry my inhaler with me - and haven't for almost a year. With the endruance running, the meds make me extremely lightheaded. I end up feeling crappier than before. And usually I can regulate my breath. 

Still, it was hilly. And hot. 

My shirt was soaked to the bone. My shorts were dripping. 

On weekends, I've learned to bring a change of clothing. I did no such think on a Tuesday, as they are generally shorter runs. I've heard the term 'swamp ass' and now I think I know exactly what it is. 

Everything was soaking. 

Ev-are-ree-thing!

Dude with a Sign is right. When I got home and peeled off my shorts before hitting the showers?  PeeeeeU. 

I wasn't the last of the four mile crew in, but I was close. But I passed all but two of the people doing only three miles, so there's kind of an upshot. 

For a visual, after my shower, I stood in front of a fan for a few minutes while still trying to cool down. 



Song by: Amy Rigby

Tuesday, July 09, 2024

Ad of the Month

It's difficult to support "free speech" and capitalism at times. 

These times. 

The image to your left popped up in my Instagram feed. 

I have spent a LOT of time in Meta blocking or hiding groups, ads, etc for hate groups, political ads, political party clothing and accessories - and now hate related businesses. 

Perhaps Certified White Boy doesn't appreciate irony, but as they are seemingly based in Detroit, which has - for my lifetime - been stigmatized as town with the majority being people of colour. 

Detroit is now home to the largest population of Arab Americans. 

That that white boys!


As my friend Jon pointed out - they have 87,000 followers. Which is just frightening - and this is only on IG. Who knows about the other platforms.  

How they weaseled their way into my algorithm is anyone's guess. Perhaps attempting to block other GOP and hate related shit isn't a great methodology. Maybe it just opens the door to like-minded organizations. 

I know it goes absolutely nowhere, but not only do I block the ads/feed (when I can), but I mark them as beeing Scams or Offensive. If it takes a Meta worker even a minute to look into it and waste their time, I'm all for it. 

For the record, no links were ever clicked on, nor am I hyperlinking anything here. 

Fuck them. Fuck their cohort. 

But mostly - fuck them. 

Monday, July 08, 2024

My Music Monday

Liking some songs just defies logic. And maybe even taste. 

Eons ago, based on one song, I bought 710 Nora Jones' debut disk. The first song seemed very strong. As it would turn out, to me, not so much the other nine. They seemed a little lethargic to me, and all ended up sounding too too similar. 

I would forever start calling her Snore-a Jones.  

Yes, she's a talent multi-instrumentalist. Yes, she comes from musical "heritage", though I have never known anyone who has ever purchased anything from her father, Ravi Shankar. Let's face it - there is only so much sitar one person can take. 

But Snore-a has a new(er) disk out and her initial single, "Running", has been on multiple XM stations. 

IF I break it down, there is nothing I truly like. The vocals are wafer thin and somewhat uneven. The music a little too airy for me, though I like the piano part. The writing, nothing seemingly outstanding. 

All that said, I don't think I've ever changed the station when it comes on. I actively listen when it's on - not just as necessarily background music. 

Don't get me wrong, I haven't sampled anything else on her new disk, nor have I blindly bought it either. Fool me once......and all. 

Doubtful it will make my year-end anything, but it's nice to know I can be slightly open-minded now and again. 

I promise not to make it a habit though. 

Sunday, July 07, 2024

These Are the Days

Yes. A running post. 

I was going to avoid it, then found myself with nothing else to write. 

I had a race on July 4th - nothing of note, I would suspect. 

It was a 5 mile run. Normally drawing 600 folks, plus another 500 for a mile walk event. 

This race was put on by my running club (not training club). As I really do like this group, and I was going to be in town, how could I not either race it or volunteer for it? 

I think I chose wisely. 

As it turned out, a few hundred people registered the day before the event. They ran out of shirts and bibs! They seemingly had enough 'medals'*. 

On the ride over, it POURED. But not hard enough it would seem. The not enough rain took the humidity into the high 80s. I was super sticky even before heading to the starting line. 

As it was a July 4th event, tied into this communities festival for independence day, it was very family oriented. So, there were a lot of 7-10 year olds running. I was thrilled they didn't allow for bibs for under 7. I hate being 'beat' by toddler who are pushed in strollers by their super-athletic 27 year old dads. 

The heat and humidity was cruel. I was having a little PTSD from the Cleveland Marathon-like weather. 

The route was very community oriented. All the roads were lined with nice houses and so many people out cheering folks on. Better yet, so many had sprinklers and hoses going to spray down the runners. I think I ran through most of them. 

A running group guy asked if I was going for any record. I wasn't. But I almost made it. I was about 34 seconds off a PR. But 34 seconds in running can be a huge thing. It was not meant to be. But in my age group - and in all age and gender groups - I was middle of the pack. As it turns out, there was some seriously fast old farts in that race. I think I was 12 of 27. 

Every age group (male) winner from 7-45 did the five miles in under 30 minutes. The overall winner being under 25 minutes (or under 5 minutes per mile!).  And while I can't, and shouldn't, compare myself to them - it is tough. But he was 40 years younger than I !!!!

It was ok, though I was glad to get in my air conditioned car.  

I only have one more race for July - and it's a charity / memorial thing. Only about 120 participants - and in the cemetery for whom the race is dedicated.  It's 3 miles. 

After that, I have committed to zero races for the rest of the year. I know there will be some, but not sure which............or when. 

Fall marathon training started yesterday. I should probably select one soon. 


*the medal was a Rubik's Cube made out of the event 


Song by: 10,000 Maniacs

Saturday, July 06, 2024

Waterfalls

As you've read, it is a partial trip week. Some of the pics are here. Some probably saved for another week.  


Watching people walk to the American Falls. 


It's SO bright!!!

Shep, allegedly watching me leave for a run.  ....that's at least what 710 told me. 


Mr. Manipulator. 

Now he shows affection when I'm making a meal. He's never rubbed me any other time. 
Just like all men!

Shep at Horseshoe Falls



Song by: Death Cab for Cutie

Friday, July 05, 2024

Tourist Town

As promised - or threatened, depending on your point of view - I can tell you about 'vacation' now. 

On a whim, 710 suggested we take a few days and go somewhere with the dog. Alrighty. Fine with me. But most state parks and cabins were already booked, so we looked at similar things in Michigan (ugh!) : ) Pennsylvania and New York. All easily drive-able. 

We ended at previously frequented place - Niagara Falls. 

710 and I have been there a few times on our own. And once with my mother. We have done both sides - American and Canadian. This time we stuck with just the American side - mostly because we needed like notarized vet paperwork for Shep and we only had electronic stuff.  Plus, they can take him to exam him at the crossing and well.........that wasn't going to happen. 

As it turns out, he's not a crowd dog - and the Canadian side is more congested and in a smaller space. It would have been a recipe for disaster.  So US of A bound we were.

If you have not been to the US side, or haven't been for a long time, it's very different than it was 20 years ago. Maybe even 15. 

Personally, we like it better, and loved it when it was truly more nature oriented. The park itself has been done very nicely. The space directly around the Falls is non-commercial. Yeah, right outside the park is, but the falls area themselves is very peaceful.  You know, except for the falls and the Niagara River. 

The river itself, close to and right after, the Falls is violent. It's just as entertaining to watch as the falls themselves. But there are also paved trails and such that wind thought nicely tended areas. Good enough to run a few miles per day. 

If you're up "early" (say 09:00), there is almost no one at the Falls. At 07:00, I was the only one there. I think by the time I ran to Horseshoe Falls, there might have been 6-7 folks there. 

710 got a hotel room literally 200 yards from the park. Maybe less. Pet friendly. 710 schmoozed the gay check in guy and we got their $15/person breakfast fee waived. Ditto with the parking garage free. Loe that man. 

Shep was freaked out by elevators and barked a bit at noises in the hall, but overall did ok. I think it stressed him out a bit. And we overdid it with the walking, as he is almost 9 years old. But there were a LOT of squirrels, so he was very entertained. 

Shep also got to swim in lakes Erie and Ontario. We ended up at a park where you could see the skyline of Toronto.


I think it's important to say this, but please do not read too too much into it: 

20+ years ago on This American Life, they did a wonderful broadcast on Niagara Falls. There are a few very interesting stories in that program - so listen if you have time. They mentioned how some people are mesmerized by the water, the flow and the falls and so they jump. An average of one person every two weeks. That was back in 1998. I don't know the numbers today. 

As it turns out, having depression and being at Niagara are not great things that should go together. It did not really occur to 710 or myself when we decided to go. Obviously, I did nothing, but the sense of ease of how it could occur there was just overwhelming to a person with an operations background. 

I could see dozens of ways to protect people from the area that clearly wasn't done for aesthetic sake. 

Fences are low, sometimes non-existent. Times of day, there is no one around.  Signs of 'no water access' pepper the paved trails on which I ran, though clearly there were well worn dirt paths from the paved area to the river just above the falls. Trails that line the river close to the falls themselves with no barriers what so ever. 

I saw only two crisis phones somewhat near-ish the falls. 


Even just thinking how "it" could be done was exhausting - not that I was ever planning or wanting to do anything. Still, it became mind-consuming. More often than not, I was happy to go back through the touristy part and back to our room. 

Me running alone along the river and falls could have been a bad thing, but in actuality it was cathartic and was mind-strengthening for me. 

Other days, we hiked along the river below the falls - and it was great. Beautiful, nice trails. Calming. 

And due to my morbid curiosity of most things, we made the 13 mile drive to Love Canal, which exists, yet doesn't. There is a fence. There are no trespassing signs. There are zero signs indicating Love Canal is / was there. It's on a map, but no street markings. There are no toxic symbols anywhere, yet houses built right up to its edge with the sprinklers going - so I'm sure that is safe!

It was a needed get away, but not the one I thought we were taking. It was somewhat of an unexpected litmus test for me, as it turns out, one I'll be discussing with my team of professionals. I don't see any real reason for alarm, but I'm also smart enough to discuss with the powers that be. They know better than I....hopefully. 

This was not written to bring anyone down or a 'woe is me' moment. I said a month ago, I would try to de-stigmatize mental health issues, and I'm committed to that through transparency. I can only write about my experiences. 

I'm stronger than I think, and smart enough to know how / when to seek assistance. 





Song by: Marti Jones

Thursday, July 04, 2024

America, Fuck Yeah

 I think this says it all.  Even calling out "slavery" as a positive. 


Yes, THIS is the US of A. 


We are the worst. 



I really think it's tongue in cheek, but I don't think the people commenting on YouTube do. 



Enjoy your "freedom". 



"Song" by: jimmy something dc

Wednesday, July 03, 2024

Get Away

710, Shep and I went on a little vacay. 

We left over last weekend and actually returned today. Happy to be home, but not in the mood to craft a good post. 

I suspect that will be coming in the next few days. 

It was nice to get away, even for a little while, and it was great to include Shep in the travels. 

......and yes, we took Lambchop as well.  He never played with it. 



Song by: CHVRCHES

Tuesday, July 02, 2024

Blues of Desperation

As promised, I did not watch the debates. As also promised, I attempted to avoid news and social media coverage - but as predicted, total avoidance was impossible. 

Again, it's mostly just headlines, but it all just seems so tragic............for Pappy Joe, and then, in turn, for us.  ....cuz if he loses, we are fucked. 

Some big media has been speculating on him dropping out of the race, which would have been fine, two years ago. Who the fuck could they get to take his place. The DNC seems to have no succession plan, because it certainly can't be Harris, the Casper of VPs. 

And I'm not sure how they get around throwing us a candidate who hasn't been through the primary process and who might not even be eligible to be on any ballots at this point. 

Then I saw the NYT headline of Pappy's Joe's family encouraging him to stay in the race. 

If true - it's tragic that's the veracity of the candidate. If it's just a story, it reeks of desperation. And by all accounts from his post-debate rhetoric and spin, it is desperate. 

You know how I said I was happy the debates were this far ahead of the election and not three weeks before?  Fuck - at least now he has some repair time. If this happened September and October, Vonshitzinpantz would win by a landslide. 

The above text / poll just smells of passing a note in study hall?   "Do you still like Joe?"  Yes or No

Vonshitzhispantz literally shits his pants and is clearly cognitively impaired and Joe STILL looks like the addled one. 

BTW Joe - STOP using the word 'malarkey' in your fucking ads. The word went the way of the dodo. It was ancient when my father used it to / at me 50 years ago!

As for the unsolicited texted poll, I don't need your passive-aggressive shit on "if you don't answer, that means you like BLOTUS".    Suck.  My.  Dick. 

I didn't give them the satisfaction of clicking their link, let alone answering their poll. 

STOP BEING SO FUCKING FRAIL.  You're not moving any BLOTUS voters to you. At this point, you need to stop the bleeding from your own camp. 

If some presidential immunity is in place (thanks a lot SCOTUS):  USE IT to your advantage.  Now! 


This just sucks balls.   .....and not in a good way. 



Song by: Joe Bonamassa

Monday, July 01, 2024

My Music Monday

No theme for July - I can't and won't be bothered. 

For today, I'm doing something I tripped upon earlier in the week. It's a cover of Toto's "Africa". 

For the record, I purchased Toto's first 45 - "Hold the Line" - way back when. I liked it then and now. But overall, I purchased nothing else. The band has a decent liberry:  "Rosanna", "99", "Stranger in Town" - and others on which I'm blanking. 

The band was made up of studio musicians who would sometimes played together on other people's records and finally got together to create their own. 

"Africa" was a pretty big hit for them back in 1982!. You might not love it, but it's pretty hard to dislike.  In 2018 (?), Weezer did pretty much a note-by-note cover and did it well.

The below version is mostly audience participation at multiple venues in Australia. I'd say 90% of the people at the sing-a-long are oldsters........and then I realized they were probably my age, since I was all of 19 when this song came out. So were they. 

If I have any criticism of this is someone on stage feeling the need to do a vocal. It should have all been left to the audience. 

Sunday, June 30, 2024

Record of the Month

I figured I'd do a monthly 'what I'm listening to' kind of thing. This could be viewed as a lame placeholder kind of post. And probably it is. But it's my blog! So there!   


Crowded House has a new album: Gravity Stairs

I have never not bought one of their albums, or Neil Finn's solo work, or the disks he puts out with his brother, Tim.  I wasn't about to start now. 

With eight group disks over 38 years, the band has had five different iterations, with only Neil Finn and Nick Seymour being the constants. What that in mind, save 3-4 disks, the rest are variations of what one thinks Crowded House should be.....or was. Myself included. 

It takes awhile to put aside your bias on what I think and what the band now is. I'm very protective of those first four disks. All of them stand-outs in their own way, but even those differ. 

The cover itself is very Beatle-esque - Revolver influenced......or homaged at the very least. 

Neil Finn has the bulk of the songwriting credits, though he shares a few songs with his sons who are now in the band. Finn, for the last 38 years (+) has been one of the best songwriters out there. He is unappreciated (or at least under appreciated) in this regard. 

The musicianship is impeccable. Gravity Stairs is more consistent in nature than their last disk from three years ago

"Magic Piano" is a good opener and has a decent Alan Parsons vibe. In a good way. 

"the Howl" is pure Neil Finn, except that it was written and sung by one of his sons, Liam. It is a really good song, good rhythm and pacing. For me, it's the highlight

"Black Water, White Circle" has a bossa nova like thing going on. More in the music than the vocal, but it's different, in the positive sense. Actually, a lot of the disk is, even if it's not quite geared to the hit single mode. 

Their first two releases were just ok:  "Oh Hi" and "Teenage Summer".  Their fine, but that's about where it ends. Radio certainly didn't latch onto them. "the Howl" is the third release, so maybe that will get them exposure. 

I'm also liking "I Can't Keep Up with You".  "Thirsty" stands out due to its sparseness. I gotta say, Finn does a stripped down song on most any disk with which he's involved - solo or band. 

I really want to like "Some Greater Plan (for Claire)" as it was Neil's one collaboration on this disk with Tim. Usually they do really well together.  The lyrics were crafted from their father's diary during wartime. It is beautifully done, but it just doesn't click with me. 

Still, Gravity Stairs warrants a listen. 

Saturday, June 29, 2024

Solid Rock

Decent picture week. I even held a few back to use later, in case we have a shortage one week. You just never know. 

Simon doesn't even try to be coy about jumping up on the counter / stove. 

Background dude to a less handsome pup. 
Sorry - this is Gandalf the Grey material. 

I don't know where he got a tape measure, but he did. 

Warm afternoon walk in the park. We went into the creek for some splash time. 
Even he couldn't swim here, the water levels were far too low. 

When you want to look out the window, but are very very tired. 

Shep and I on a spare human hike. 
710 had a repairman at the house, and we didn't need Mr. Barky being intimidating. 






Song by: Dire Straits

Friday, June 28, 2024

I Want Muscles

I know in a world full of boomers (myself included), I get zero sympathy for weight loss. 

It probably isn't popular with any of the generations, but I guess I could have easily said "people my age". 

"We" are at a time of our lives where we try to control how much we gain, not trying to lose. Yes, it's a broad statement, but I think it somewhat applies. 

Marathon training (I'm assuming) forced my weight down lower than my goal and to well below the BMI for someone my height. 

Yeah - I get it: no sympathy. Not that I'm asking for it. 

Oddly enough, I brought it up originally as a concern. It seemed like a lot of poundage to slough off in six months - when it took me two+ years to lose the first two-thirds of it. Something in the metabolism kicked in.....big time. 

I only do one weigh-in per month and yesterday was it. I've gained 1.5 lbs.   Yay me. 

I say 'yay', yet I'm not sure I mean it. 

Me, being me, has jumped 17 steps ahead, in my head, as I'm going to gain it all back. All 35 pounds. Yes, I internally processed going past the 12 I should gain back and added 23 more. This is the beauty of being in my mind. 

I know I need to gain some weight back (though my doctor disagrees), but I'm wringing my hands now that I actually have.........and it's an entire 24 ounces in 30 days. Maybe 31. 

Mock me if you will, but I'm beginning to see how someone like Karen Carpenter ends up the way they do. Another good reason only to get on the scale 12 times per year. 

Training for fall marathons starts in eight days. In the heat of summer. The chances of me gaining weight over the next 17 weeks seems slim (pun possibly intended?). My new goal is to not lose additional weight. It's a goal - not a plan. I have no plan. I don't think I can eat ice cream forever without becoming a Type 2 diabetic. 

Maybe a return to alcohol isn't the worst idea. If I were truly sober (meaning, proactively abstaining) I'd have my five month chip this last week - assuming that's a thing. At least booze packs on the pounds. But I don't see that happening anytime soon. 

I should not discount my strength training. Three (?) weeks in, maybe I'm getting more muscle, which we all know people says it weighs more than fat.  

BTW - has anyone ever really confirmed that??  A pound of muscle and a pound of fat weigh the same on any scale. Maybe I'm not gaining weight - just muscle. 

That's it. 400 words later, and that's it!



Song by: Diana Ross


Thursday, June 27, 2024

You Talk Too Much

Honestly, this is the debate.I want to see tonight: no one talking to no one. 

Dead air, if you will. 

Because they're gonna suck all the life out of us anyways. 

You already know I'm not reading or watching the news. I mentioned a few weeks back on my struggle with depression. 

These two things are NOT unrelated. Most of it politically derived. 

I'm not even somewhat joking about this. 

My mental state, such as it is, would never listen to this debate. Me in better head space wouldn't either. 

If they must do it, I'm glad it's months away from the election and not weeks away. But the bullshit that is going to be coming from his mouth - yes, you know who - is something I literally (not figuratively guised as literally) could not take. 

If he died on live TV, I will regret not having watched. But that's about the only way you'd get me to tune in. 

I won't read the news tomorrow either, but avoiding all social media or friends and family texts are difficult, though not undoable.


Song by: George Thorogood & the Destroyers

Wednesday, June 26, 2024

Superman's Song

Ooooooh - good news / bad news in the DC universe. Possibly multi-verse. I mean, who the fuck knows.

Good News: the new Superman movie is i production.........in Cleveburgh. 

Bad News: Henry Cavill is not Superman.  

Clark Kent showed up for his first day of filming two days ago, though other filming has been going on for a week or two prior. 

I have no idea who he is, or whom the villain is either - though it's not Lex Luthor this time around. 

Full disclosure: I've only seen the first Christopher Reeve Superman movie back in '78 (?). I was underwhelmed. 

I tried watching a newer one with Cavill {sigh}, but it d-r-a-g-g-e-d on and seemingly would. not. end. Amy Adams did no one any favours playing Lois Lane. 

It's like that Family Guy exchange:  "how do we kill and hour?".   "Five minutes of Rita Rudner's stand-up?". 

But as you all might have read and retained from previous entries, I've never read or purchased a comic book. Adam West was my first exposure to Batman. Reeve, my first to Superman. Not the live versions - any version. 

Well, a B-movie guy/emcee in Cleveburgh was called SuperHost. He was also Channel 43's weatherman (UHF!). So, I kind of got the Superman reference. 

The 216 is familiar with the filming of super hero movies.  Spiderman III, the Avengers, and the second Captain America. I saw the last two only because of the Cleveland association. Zero of these hold any suspense for me, as they're never killing off the main characters / franchise movies / origin story movies. 

...and even if they did, uhhhh.......multiverse.  

I fully admit to not knowing there is a difference between the Incredible Spiderman and the Amazing Spiderman.......but allegedly there is. 

My resting heart rate still remains at 55. 

I don't go downtown often, but will be avoiding it for the next few weeks because of filming and closed off streets due to such. 

So while Cleveland is now Metropolis, it kind of makes sense for the city tie-in. While the creators of Superman were born above the 49th parallel, they grew up and created the guy here in Cleveland. 

Lois Lane is not being portrayed by Amy Adams (phew) or Margo Kidder (crazy......and dead), but by Mrs. Maisel Rachel Brosnahan. I can kind of see that. 

It was easy to be a Lucy Lu lookieloo when the movie is being filmed on your street, but I have zero interest. I'll view it when it hits basic cable......the December after it's released.


Song by: Crash Test Dummies

Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Strike

Thanks. 

But no thanks. 

The email actually had a title: "Thanks for Applying."

Blobby got dinged by New York...........again. 

For those who might remember, I did not have success in the lottery for the 2024 NYC Marathon. You might also remember that I didn't have my hopes up for gaining access, like I did for the Chicago one. 

Strike Two. 

Still there are other ways to gain access. One was to run a virtual marathon this October, so one could run in the 2025 (!) NYC Marathon. 

So, you have to go through another lottery to be able to run the virtual race, so you could get a guaranteed entry (assuming you actually get accepted and actually run it) to the November 2025 mararthon. 

While during my run in Cleveland a month ago, I told myself I had no right to be even thinking of running in the New York marathon. 

Flash forward three weeks and here I was - hopeful. 

Yes, part of me hoped I wouldn't get in, so I wouldn't have to face it, but deep down, I really wanted it. And worse, I let myself believe that few people would want to run a marathon on their own.

In my head, I was already planning my route. As there'd be no hydration stations or extra rest areas, this was kind of vital, even if it was 4 months away. Where would 710 meet me for some of those provisions, etc.?   I got confident - like I had for Chicago. 

The first line of the email was short - not so sweet:  "You weren't selected."  They even fucking used a contraction as to not utilize unnecessary letters.

Then came the additional way I could get into the virtual marathon: fund raising. 

For a mere $1,310 dollars, raised and submitted 12 days prior to the virtual race, I could run - and if I finish -and would get guaranteed entry slot for 2025. 

But like Chicago, my views of hitting people up for money have not changed. It makes me very uncomfortable.  

Someone in my training group said to ask people IN the training group, who have gladly donated for these kinds of things. But as you know, I have conflicted feelings about the group and how long it took me even to be recognized. 

Adding injury to insult - on top of that $1,310, I'd have to pay a $175 registration fee for a virtual marathon.  And while I'm selecting the route, running on my own, supplying my own nutrition,  timing device and such - that $175 isn't coming to me for operational costs. It seems like a semi-money grab.I don't even think I get a t-shirt or a medal. And I'd have to buy my own banana. 

None of these costs cover the registration fee for the actual marathon either. It all adds up quickly. Then you can put travel, lodging, food, swag into that mix. 

I'm not really complaining about the cost - well, except maybe the $175. 

Since I psyched myself up for the virtual, the rejection stung. I was, and am, massively bummed. 

710 says to just write a check for the $1,310, but I'm not sure I'm willing to do that. 

No rash decisions. At least as of yet. I'd say I'd sleep on it, but that hasn't been coming easily lately. Ironically, I have to get up and run this morning.  




Song by: Todd Rundgren

Monday, June 24, 2024

My Music Monday

Remixes is the theme of the month - and this is the last one. But in a way, you get two-for-one. 

Donald Sutherland passed away earlier this week. While not musical (I don't think), he did appear in the 1985 video for Kate Bush's "Cloudbusting". 

Bush's album, from whence the song came, the Hounds of Love, was the first was my first CD purchase, so the songs and videos hold a lot of nostalgia for me. 

Technically, I don't remember the remix to "Cloudbusting", but there are a few - some better than others. The battle drums at the beginning of all of them do nothing for me, but some of the overlaps of song lines are well done. 

As for the 2-4-1?  As Mr. Sutherland isn't in the remix video, I'm putting the original song and video version here as well. 





Sunday, June 23, 2024

Teach Me

Our new-ish neighbor Jason (yes, I think of Friday the 13th, each time I say his name) got his asphalt driveway done earlier this week. 

It looks good, by the way. 

More interesting was this sign that the vendor put up during the process. 

710, I think, read it wrong as we were walking Shep. 

His assumption was that teachers had to take a second job and it was sealcoating. 

Since it said 'former educators', I assumed that smearing hot tar on a driveway paid better than babysitting your little snots trying to get them to learn anything, so they quit that profession. 

And I'm probably correct. 

Besides the discipline thing, and the helicopter parents thing, and the school shooting thing - now teachers have to deal with what you can and cannot say, teach, show, imply. And in certain states have to explain to your kid from the blended family how daddy shouldn't have coveted his neighbor's wife, which is why she's now your stepmom..............cuz it says so posted on the bulletin board next to the lockers. 

Teachers are woefully underpaid. On top of that, they usually have to buy their own supplies, as the school system can't (or won't) pay for them. You can't blame all the families for not ponying up either, as there are plenty who don't have the means. 

Together but unequal, so to speak. 

It wouldn't surprise me one bit if teachers quit to do manual labor, or work at Wal*Mart. The pay is probably comparable, with benefits and normal hours. While I had some very memorable teachers, I'm guessing those are fewer and farther between these days. 

If you know who wins in November, education will truly be a thing of the past. 



Song by: Lyle Lovett

Saturday, June 22, 2024

Hot Stuff

The Heat Dome continues. Even taking Shep for walks after 07:00 has been a risk. Ones in the evening are quick. Maybe a block at most. Weekends have always been around water - now it's "let's get him into water" on these days. 

The cat? Well, Simon is permanently ensconced in an air conditioned house, but even he is picking new places in which to recline to get good airflow. I can't say I blame him. 

But due to weather, there aren't tons of activity on any one front, so we have farmed this out - so to speak - for guests. 

710 thinks Simon looks great against jewel tones. 


Looks like Bailey wants a walk. I'm betting she got what she wanted 

My niece's cat, Pippa next to her newly created Lego® Pippa

I always say Shep can't really swim. But now and again, he shows us up. 
It was a glorious 6 seconds. 

Ran into my cousin at daycare. 
Sadly, I recognized Siggie first. But I got Siggie Love.  We could not get a shot of the dog cousins. 

More jewel tones. 
I'm fine with this as long as isn't on the leather.....with those claws. 


Squirrel huntin'. 
I honestly didn't know Bailey was interested in them thar varmints. 





Song by: Donna Summer

Friday, June 21, 2024

Vote for Me

Yay for Melinda French Gates. 

The woman has done a lot of positive things in the form of the former Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. 

Now that she's on her own, she can spend her own $11 billion her way. She might be taking a cue from Bezos' ex-wife, but she was doing it formally long before. 

In her own words, as she interacts with many political factions - foreign and domestic - she has stayed away from endorsements or for whom she has voted. 

That has changed

"I’ve never endorsed a presidential candidate before. My work on gender equality and global health often requires me to work with leaders on both sides of the aisle, so I’ve avoided talking publicly about who I voted for in past elections. 

But this year is different. 

After Vonshitzinpantz’s first term in office endangered the health of women, compromising their safety and robbing them of essential freedoms, I’m supporting Biden this election and asking others to do the same."

She goes on and on too. In a good way. 

Gates goes on to lists the ways Vonshitzinpantz did the above. It's extensive and you can read her full op-ed here

It's quite amazing. 

That CNN had this opinion as like the 37th article down on their list, I'm not sure who the fuck is gonna see it, but hopefully women's organizations will take it and reprint it in their newsletters. It needs to be heard. It needed to be written by someone who is somewhat reasonable without a history of liberal agenda. 

Sorry, but it's the truth. And Gates can't just be written off. 

And better yet, she has more money than Vonshitzinpantz. That's gotta hurt his fragile ego. 


And Melinda and Melanoma now have something in common:  both of their husbands (well Melinnda's ex, now) were friendly with Jeffrey Epstein. 



Song by: the Specials

Thursday, June 20, 2024

the Great Commandment

This will piss of some geographically placed people, but so be it:

I hate the South so fucking much. 

SO fucking much. 

The Louisiana governor signed into law that all public schools who receive state funding (how is that not all of them?) are required to post the 10 Commandments in each classroom.  

Not each school.  Each Fucking Classroom. 

Let's dispense with the separation of church and state, since there are so many factions who don't understand it, believe it or want it. Of course, they only want their religion recognized. 

This I find hilarious. Christians believe in the 10 Commandments. 

Last I checked, Christ was a New Testament guy. The 10 - which conveniently don't actually physically exist - are Judaic. 

I bet if you told the Louisiana governor you wanted to hang Jewish writings in each school he'd shut you down in a minute. But I get it:  people are stupid. And no one is even following these commandments. None of them. 

Dollars to doughnuts they can't recite them, let alone in order. They certainly don't live by them. 

This just grinds my gears. 

And yes, I'm sticking with the South thing. There aren't many states in general passing laws to actually help people or expand services to anything - but the South in general (Arkansas, Alabama, Florida Louisiana, Texas - for starters) are hell fucking bent on restricting everything. 

They do no good. If it ever gets the slightest amount of repair, it will not be in our lifetime. ....and that is even if a child under 10 is reading this blog. Their lifetime either. 

This is all so fucking heinous it makes me want to vomit. 


Here's hoping someone challenges this state and this douche. Though SCOTUS as it stands now isn't going to be of much help. 



Song by: Camouflage