Wednesday, June 19, 2013

As It Stands blog: Guest post - 40th Anniversary of ‘The Exorcist!’

Exorcist

  Good Day World!

I have a guest post for you today that I think will take your breath away! Seriously, when the movie Exorcist came out it scared the crap out of a whole generation.

It was the last horror film my wife ever watched! Freelance writer, Alex Smith, talks about this iconic horror film on it’s 40th anniversary:

(Art by Stephen Whitmore from DirectTVDeal.com)

      By Alex Smith

When it was released in 1973, The Exorcist terrified audiences all over the world in a way that no film had before. It tops virtually all lists of the scariest movies ever and changed forever the way horror films are regarded both by movie studios and audiences. Although Rosemary’s Baby was released the year before, it was the critical and commercial success of The Exorcist that made it a game changer for the genre.

Money talks in Hollywood, and the box office success of “The Exorcist” forced producers to look at horror films in a completely new light. The film was not only the biggest hit of 1973, it was financially speaking the most successful horror film of all time, raking in over $2 billion in today’s dollars. Its box office numbers were eclipsed by “Jaws” in 1975, but it still has the highest numbers for any R rated film. Horror films had long been thought of as low budget and relatively safe bets for producers, but now they could look at them as major vehicles for directors and acting talent.

In hindsight the decision by William Friedkin to direct the movie was a good one, but it must have seemed like a major gamble at the time. He was coming off an Oscar win for his work on The French Connection and could have had his pick of projects to work on. In a sense, the attraction of a horror film for an artist is easy to understand. One of the primary goals of art, particularly film, is to make a connection with the audience and provoke an emotional response, and fear is the most visceral emotion of all. After the success of the film, both commercially and critically, talent on both sides of the camera would be less reluctant to take on a horror project.

The critical acclaim the movie received was also unparalleled for a horror film. It was the first of the genre to ever be nominated by the Academy for Best Picture, and was ultimately nominated for 10 awards in total. Critics were divided on the film’s merits, but all of them took notice. This level of attention changed the way that audiences perceived horror films. They were no longer merely date movies that provided the odd heart stopping moment, but a legitimate cinematic art form.

Horror films had traditionally fallen into two categories. There were monster movies like The Wolfman and Frankenstein, and there were the slasher type films that still make reliable box office cash cows. The Exorcist along with Rosemary’s Baby the year before and The Omen three years later added a new dimension. These films tapped into the types of deep rooted fear that give even agnostics sleepless nights. Audiences were no longer experiencing vicarious fear for the characters on screen, but were feeling uncomfortable in a very personal way.

The religious nature of the film was also very divisive, and a release date one day after Christmas heightened reactions. Billy Graham claimed that the film itself was possessed, while the Catholic Church called the film “deeply spiritual”. Religious controversy is always fodder for the media, and Walter Cronkite devoted 10 minutes of his nightly news broadcast to covering the reception to the film. This is another example of how the film changed cinema and how movies are promoted: The Exorcist became a cultural phenomenon that people were eager to experience so they could join the conversation about, and Hollywood studios learned that controversy was something to embrace rather than run from.

The enduring legacy of The Exorcist is that audiences want to be terrified, and that filmmakers can achieve spectacular results when they step away from the safety of the tried and true. Horror films have become the testing ground for new ideas, often taking cinema in completely different directions. Without the success of The Exorcist studio executives may not have been willing to back the wide release of The Blair Witch Project in 1999. That film went on to turn a $25,000 production budget into a $248 million box office return and pioneer the found footage genre.”

Author Bio: Alex Smith is a freelance TV and film blogger for DirectTVDeal.com. He is a lifelong horror fan with a particular interest in the films of the 1970’s and 80’s, psychological horror, and anything sci-fi. In addition to his writing, he firmly maintains the belief that having your pants scared off is the best cardio.

Note to readers: If you have a guest post you’d like to share on this blog, please contact me at richarddavestancliff@gmail.com . Limit one post per month.

Time for me to walk on down the road..

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

As It Stands blog: The hunt for Hoffa continues after 40 years - body discovered?

               Good Day World!

Four decades have slipped by smoother than a crime don’s voice,and people are still seeking Jimmy Hoffa’s body. His disappearance remains a mystery to this day.

Hoffa wasn't controlled by gangsters, but he certainly was beholden to the mob, which had helped him land the Teamsters presidency in the first place. Hoffa's successor, Frank Fitzsimmons was under Mafia control, according to lawmen, and did what he was told, especially regarding loans to Las Vegas casinos.

(Getty Images file President of Teamsters union Jimmy Hoffa makes a phone call.)

Hoffa was a threat to that arrangement. In July 1975, he vanished forever.(Hank Walker / Time Life Pictures /

In the latest chapter of this saga, federal agents are digging in a field 30 miles north of Detroit after getting a tip from a Mafia underboss,Tony Zerilli, that his remains are there.

Hoffa, a former president of the Teamsters labor union, was last seen in suburban Detroit in July 1975. He was declared legally dead on July 30, 1982. The property where authorities are searching Monday was formerly owned by Jack Tocco, Zerilli’s cousin.

If this story sounds familiar it’s for good reason. There’s been numerous stories about his body being discovered…but not one panned out.Tons of earth have been moved in the search for Jimmy Hoffa's remains. The following are just a few of the leads that didn't pan out:

  • According to Ralph Picardo, the convict who fingered the conspirators, Hoffa's body was put in a 55-gallon steel drum and carted away in a Gateway Transportation truck. Picardo said he didn't know where it was taken.

  • According to another jail bird, Hoffa's body was taken to New Jersey where it was mixed into the concrete that was used to construct the New York Giant's football stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

  • Hoffa was said to have been buried in a 100-acre gravel pit in Highland, Michigan, which was owned by his brother William.

  • Hoffa's body was encased in the foundation of a public works garage in Cadillac, Michigan.

  • His remains were buried at the bottom of a swimming pool behind a mansion in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.

  • The corpse was ground up and dumped in a Florida swamp.

  • Hoffa was crushed in an automobile compactor at Central Sanitation Services in Hamtramck, Michigan.

  • His body was buried in a field in Waterford Township, Michigan.

  • It was weighted down and dumped in Michigan's Au Sable River.

  • Hoffa's remains were disintegrated at a fat-rendering plant.

  • He was buried under the helipad at the Sheraton Savannah Resort Hotel, which at the time of his disappearance was owned by the Teamsters.

  • His body was put in a steel drum and buried on the grounds of Brother Moscato's garbage dump, a toxic waste site in Jersey City, New Jersey.

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Monday, June 17, 2013

As It Stands blog: Signs of the times–Sesame Street introduces 1st Muppet with jailbird dad

muppet

         Good Day World!

Oh, how the world has changed in the last four decades! I remember my three sons watching Sesame Street when they were little.

The thing that stands out to me between now and then, is the innocence lost – both in programing and in the real world.

It’s not that the Muppets didn’t deal with real life situations in it’s early years, but they were far from controversial. It was more like a silly kid show with a message of kindness towards others. Today’s Muppets have been getting a hefty dose of reality. The world in Sesame Street got a little harsher recently when the creators introduced Alex, who has a dad in jail.

I guess it’s just a sign of the times. Here’s the story: 

Those friendly, fuzzy Muppets from “Sesame Street” have helped kids open up about all sorts of serious subjects, from hunger and divorce to military deployment.

But they’re now tackling a much more unexpected issue: incarceration. Meet Alex, the first Muppet to have a dad in jail. One in 28 children in the United States now has a parent behind bars -- more than the number of kids with a parent who is deployed -- so it’s a real issue, but it’s talked about far less because of the stigma.

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

For more than 40 years, “Sesame Street” has been helping kids tackle tough topics like death and divorce. With one in 28 kids having a parent behind bars, the show will now be tackling the topic of understanding jail time.

That’s why the Sesame Workshop says it created the “Little Children, Big Challenges: Incarceration” initiative, an online tool kit intended to help kids with a parent in prison find support and comfort, and provide families with strategies and tips to talk to their children about incarceration.

Alex is blue-haired and green-nosed and he wears a hoodie – you might think he’s just another carefree inhabitant of Sesame Street. But there’s sorrow in Alex’s voice when he talks about his father.

“I just miss him so much,” he tells a friend. “I usually don’t want people to know about my Dad.”

It’s easier for kids to hear such things from a Muppet than an adult, creators of the initiative noted.

“Coming from a Muppet, it’s almost another child telling their story to the children,” said Jeanette Betancourt, vice president of outreach and educational practices at the Sesame Workshop.

Alex will not be part of the regular cast on “Sesame Street,” but he’s playing a central role in the online tool kit.

Children of parents behind bars often feel sadness, shame and guilt about the situation, so they need to know they are loved and that the incarceration is not their fault, said Carol Burton, executive director of Centerforce, a non-profit dedicated to supporting families impacted by incarceration.” (Full story here)

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Sunday, June 16, 2013

As It Stands: Bugging out: views on insects in the news

By Dave Stancliff/For The Times-Standard
 Why is it that most of my life I haven’t been aware of monster-sized mosquitoes, giant rat-sized snails, and insects like Cicadas that wake up after 17 years and eat everything in their path?
   I don’t know about you, but lately some of the insect and other pest stories I’m hearing sound like something straight out of the Bible; “And the locusts descended upon Egypt…”
  Are these pest reports signs of the end times? I doubt it, but they have a certain Armageddon-like aspect that makes for top news slots when they decide to invade an area.
The most recent insect invasion is in Florida where monster mosquitoes are tormenting tourists with bites so powerful they go right through clothing and feel like a pinch. A big pinch!

 These special mammoth-sized mosquitoes are called Gallinippers by scientists, and pains-in-the-butt by tourists and locals. The only good news about these oversized pests - they’re 20 times the size of a normal mosquito-is they don’t carry diseases harmful to humans like their tiny cousins.
Entomologists warned us earlier this year that the B-29 of the buzz world would be active this summer.

They say it’s happening because of tropical storms Debbie and Andrea, which hatched a bunch of dormant eggs (they can stay that way for years) and produced hundreds of thousands of these Quetzalcoatlus-like (biggest bird ever-30 feet, 200 pounds) species of the insect world.
The next example is the giant rat-sized snails (Giant African land snails) that overran Florida streets in April, eating anything green in their path. The seven-inch long pests also like to eat stucco (which contains calcium -vital for a healthy shell!), which as you can imagine doesn’t make them popular with people living in stucco houses.

Just one of these behemoth snails produces up to 1,120 eggs a year. They’re also a motorist’s nightmare because their hard shells can blow out tires on cars! If that isn’t bad enough, they also carry a parasitic lungworm which can cause illness in humans, including a type of meningitis.
No one knows for sure how the infestation started. One possible source is practitioners of Santeria, a religion with West African and Caribbean roots, who use the giant snails in some rituals.
The giant snails also showed up in Houston, Texas in May. The Center for Disease Control didn’t seem too concerned because they said humans will only get infected if they eat them raw or undercooked. And not that many showed up. There was a story of some woman who found one in her garden and it made front page news - “Snail Invasion?” The invasion never came, but was a fun topic to talk about.
 And how about those sleepy Cicadas?
Those bug-eyed insects look like little aliens from outer space. They started their food drive in the south, but have worked their way up north, causing havoc.

The advance of the Cicadas was called “Swarmageddon” and residents in New Jersey have two different takes on the infestation: on one hand, some people think they’re really cool and sit out in parks playing instruments with Cicadas all over them.

They write poems about the bulging-eyed nuisances.
On the other hand, the barbeque set feels under siege, as the visitors ruin their outdoor cooking experience - a very popular pastime this time of the year.

 Normally, experts say, the peak of the Cicada season would have been over by now, but cooler weather has extended their lives and they’re covering more area than usual. There’s no doubt residents are looking forward to sleepy time for the noisy brood, and a relief from their presence for another 17 years. 
 All of which brings me back to the question: why are there insect and pest invasions these days? Didn’t people talk about these things back in the 50s and 60s? Did the media miss out on great insect invasion stories for decades before the internet?

 It’s too deep for me. I just know it’s bugging me (you knew I’d have to slip this pun in somewhere)! Could be I live a more isolated life than I thought, and I’m the only one who feels like the bugs are getting a lot of media play these days. Then again…
 As It Stands, one of these days we’ll have a mutant insect invasion and our lives will turn into B-movies!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

As It Stands blog: this old column has been around the block

Nolan Chart

Good Day World!

Back in 2008, this column was doing double duty in two publications: Nolan Chart (See right side of page) and The Times-Standard.

Seems like a week doesn’t pass without a good corporate scam to follow. Here’s the latest example - Corporate Records Service scam targets, dupes small businesses

I thought it would be fun to dust off a column I did under corporate scams and rackets for Nolan Chart in 2008. GO HERE There’s nothing new under the sun folks!

While I’m at it, here’s a satirical article(below)I did on GMOs, which is a hot topic right now:

Genetically modified 'Marijuana food' contest could end prohibition
Published: September 7, 2008

snippet…
”Then there's this very interesting thought that right now there's no states with laws against genetically modified "Marijuana Food." It's not likely that there's a ban against cannabis cantaloupes on any state law books at this time.”

For the record, As It Stands, was first published as a newspaper column in 1977, appearing in the Hornet Newspaper, at Fullerton Community College.

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Friday, June 14, 2013

As It Stands blog: Study says men are the cause of menopause in women!

    Good Day World!

Fair warning to my male counterparts!

I’ve got some disturbing news that’s probably not going to make life with your wife any easier!

She’s going to run across the following article, or see it on TV, so you might want to go into damage control before the accusations start flying:

“For decades, anthropologists and biologists have been puzzling over one of nature’s great mysteries: Why do women go into menopause?

At first blush, menopause doesn’t make much evolutionary sense. According to one widely accepted theory, the point of evolution is successful reproduction. After that, nature doesn’t have much interest in keeping us alive, and so we die. Why, then, keep women kicking for decades after they can no longer make babies?

Rama Singh, a professor in the department of biology at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, thinks he’s figured it out. Menopause, the Canadian researcher argues, is men’s fault.”

My initial reaction to Mr. Rama Singh’s discovery was anger and a feeling of betrayal! What the hell! What made him take up a study that’s going to put men on the defensive from here on out? Wives will be saying, “I knew it! You drove me to menopause you beast!”

And our only defense is going to be “biological imperative” which seldom stands up in the court of angry women. They were better off vaguely suspecting men were at the root of their menopausal miseries. Now, good old Singh boy has given them more ammunition in the battle of the sexes!

“In a paper published today in PLOS Computational Biology, Singh and two colleagues detail elaborate evolutionary computer models demonstrating that “male mating preference for younger females” leads to the development of a long menopausal period.

“I am saying what women have been saying all their lives,” Singh told NBCNews.com. “Men are to blame.”

Singh’s argument relies on one key fact: “Sex is fun,” he says.

In humans, sex isn’t just about making babies, it’s also about pleasure and bonding. Over time, he contends, men found that having that sex with younger women was more desirable than sex with older women, without regard to making babies.

As men began to prize younger women as sex partners, gene variants that led to infertility with advancing age were not eliminated. Menopause became built in, even as women lived longer and longer.”

Well, there you have it. Singh mans up to his nefarious deed and claims that men are thinking with their “other head” when it comes to sex, and not really worried about procreating. (There goes that defense!) (Story from here)

Time for me to walk on down the road…

 

Thursday, June 13, 2013

As It Stands blog: George Orwell's '1984' is a popular book once more!

  Good Day World!

Surprise! Surprise! Who would have guessed?

George Orwell's dystopian fiction Nineteen Eighty-Four is enjoying a renaissance.

According to the lastest sales rankings published by Amazon.com, sales of the classic novel's 2003 reprint have spiked 3,100% over a 24 hour period(from 6/11 to 6/12) as coverage widened with fresh reports (and new confusion) about the National Security Agency's data gathering programs and the 29-year-old Booz Allen Hamilton ex-employee, Edward Snowden, who leaked details about them last week.

The coincidence is striking for reasons beyond the sudden conversation about state-sponsored surveillance, which the society depicted in Orwell's novel takes to its extreme end. National Journal noted last week, the NSA revelations surfaced a few days before the anniversary of 1984's original publication date on June 8, 1949.

And Amazon itself encountered its own Orwellian controversy nearly four years ago, in July 2009, when the company remotely deleted thousands of digital copies of the novel from customers' Kindles.

The sales spike could be even more pronounced than current data indicate. Earlier Wednesday morning (6/12) Geekosystem reported that sales for the same 2003 edition has spiked nearly 7,000%, a moment captured by a screenshot at Gawker.

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

As It Stands blog: recalling those wonderful drive-in movies

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The first drive-in theatre opened 80 years ago in Camden, New Jersey.

Good Day World!

I grew up watching drive-in movies in the 50’s and early 60’s. To me, that was the golden age of movie-going.

You could load up on 15-cent McDonald hamburgers and fries if you didn’t want to buy the expensive (and usually horrible) food at the snack bar.

I still remember the intermissions with cartoons about dining at the snack bar. The food never looked great, unlike in real life. The smiling families that triumphantly parading around on the big screen with luscious-looking hot steaming pizzas didn’t exist. And the lines. Forget about it. Unless you bolted for the snack bar moments before intermission you faced a long line of mom and dads with hyped-up kids in pajamas.

Pimply young high schooler’s went to those drive-in movies. They were accepted make-out venues. Hormone-addled young men tried to get past “first base” with nervous young ladies before the movies were over. That’s right. Movies. There were always two, along with some news shorts and cartoons. What a deal!

Once, there were over 4000 drive-in movies. Now there’s about 400 nationwide. The video above highlights one of those theatres keeping up with the old traditions.

Time for me to walk on down the road…

 

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

As It Stands blog: feeling the pain at the pump with more to come!

        Good Day World!

 In my part of the world we pay the highest gas prices in the nation. Yes, little old Humboldt County consistently clobbers locals with insane gas prices. It doesn’t matter what time of the year it is. There is no real reason other than greed, and because the locals can get away with it. What are you gonna do? Move? No sweat off their pocketbooks.

In three decades I’ve read, and written, articles wondering why our prices are so high. Most come off as puzzled attempts to explain the unexplained. Without getting real and risking a lawsuit, there’s nothing that can be done.

I’m always amused at other areas of the country complaining about gas hikes when none of them hold a lighter to the scorching prices in paradise, aka Humboldt County. Nationally, reporters working for corporation run media outlets serve up the same plate of pathetic excuses for Big Oil.

Make no mistake, we are all mere serfs in Big Oil’s kingdom, and can expect it to stay that way until we finally utilize enough alternative methods to propel our vehicles, planes, and boats. Americans may have meekly accepted the status quo of fossil fuel as a primary source of giddy-up for our go-machines, but they do wonder why the prices fluctuate so frequently.

The following article pulls out the same old violin music about why prices go up and down like puppets on crack, but winds up with the following interesting snippets:    

Snippets:

“I don’t buy it. I think gas prices are up because somebody is manipulating prices.”

So do European regulators. Last month, the European Commission announced it was investigating whether BP, Shell and others got together to fudge prices reported to a widely watched market index. No charges have been brought, and the oil companies have said they are cooperating with the investigation.

U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) last month asked the Justice Department to join that investigation and look into whether price fixing had boosted pump prices for U.S. consumers.

"Efforts to manipulate European oil indices, if proven, may have already impacted U.S. consumers and businesses, because of the interrelationships among world oil markets and hedging practices," Wyden, who chairs the Senate's energy committee, wrote in a letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder. Go here for the full story

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Monday, June 10, 2013

As It stands blog: You know ‘Thrones’ is popular,but did you know about it’s hilarious spin-off parody?

Alfie Allen and Jonathan Van Ness in Ep. 3, "Gay of Thrones."

    Good Day World!

Unless you don’t have a TV, smartphone, or computer, you’re aware of the hot HBO series, “The Game of Thrones.”

The creators decided to ramp up the gore for the last few episodes of the season and guess what? Ratings have risen like a murder of crows and people are talking about “The Red Wedding” two weeks ago.

Last night was the season finale. There’s a good chance you saw it…but if you didn’t stay off of FaceBook and Twitter, and anywhere else people are talking about last night’s show. Otherwise, you’re going to hear how the episode ended. More shocks for fans lie ahead when they view the conclusion. The finale was a flop according to lots of fans!

The thing I really like, is the show is so versatile that it can go from being a bloody drama to a hilarious comedy! If you haven’t had the opportunity to see the following parody – Gay of Thrones – I highly recommend you check out the links provided in the article below.

"It's like the '80s all over again," says Erin Gibson, writer and director of the increasingly popular (though not safe for work!) "Gay of Thrones" episode recap show on FunnyorDie.com. "If you didn't watch the show, you don't get to talk about it the next day."

Gibson's Web series stars real-life California hairstylist Jonathan Van Ness, who subjects a new client each week to his over-the-top run-throughs. Van Ness calls the platinum haired Mother of Dragons "Christina Aguilera," tells a client they're "serving Winterfell realness," and enviously describes Jaime Lannister's severed hand necklace as "fetch."

As silly as it sounds, this is high-quality comedy with gravitas. In one episode, Jonathan’s client is none other than Alfie Allen, who plays Theon Greyjoy on the actual show. Each episode is funnier than the next.

"You can't do this kind of recap with 'Duck Dynasty,'" Gibson says. "GoT" works "because there's so much meat, it gives us something to talk about." She adds, "So much comedy makes fun of how stupid things are — it's great to celebrate something that's actually good."

And many are getting in on the celebration. Along with "Gay of Thrones," FunnyorDie.com also posted "Where Are My Dragons?," a reality show spoof about Daenerys-like single mom. And there was"School of Thrones," a Degrassi-style mashup with a "Prom is coming" theme. Following the "Red Wedding," Second City gave grievers an "It Gets Better" parody, not for bullied gay teens, but anyone who endured the horrific violence . It gets better, "GoT" fans are told.

Hold on to your sides and check out the recaps of Episodes 1 & 2 of Gay of Thrones.

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Sunday, June 9, 2013

As It Stands: A word of wisdom: remember to be wise in your whining ways!

    
 By Dave Stancliff/For The Times-Standard
 I’m a whiner when it comes to pain these days.
Seems like I get a new pain everyday when I wake up. I can strain a pinkie doing something stupid the day before, and the pain will greet me in the morning like an unwanted in-law seeking to move into my den.
I try to take solace in the fact experts say my habit of cracking my knuckles when I was young didn’t cause the arthritis that I currently suffer. They say cracking my knuckles was simply forming - then popping - an air bubble in my synovial fluid. That’s the gooey stuff in the cavities of your joints.
  I have a lousy left knee. It crunches when I walk. When I had it examined and the word surgery came up, I decided it still had mileage left despite the near constant pain. So I wear a brace - sporadically - and whine for all to hear as I lumber along.

 I just read an article about a sugar solution injected into the knee for pain relief.
The technique - known as dextrose prolotherapy - has been around for 75 years but is still considered an "alternative" therapy. If I used this method for pain relief I’d probably get sugar diabetes! Alternate pain solutions have produced problems for me in the past and I‘m gun shy of shooting myself in the foot again!
Seriously, I do look for ways to alleviate my pain without taking meds. I use relaxation techniques and dieting. I’m careful not to twist my back when I bend over and pet one of my pugs. Basic stuff. I use the cane when my right leg goes totally numb, as it will after I stand upright for long periods of time. Comes from nerve damage in my back.

  If I don’t resort to the cane after a certain point, I look like Big Bird on a binge!
  I’ve discovered that whining can feel good. People pay attention and you might even get babied for your efforts! If you’re really lucky, they offer to get whatever you want, and are happy to run to the store for your favorite chocolate peanut butter ice cream!
  I just have to remember to be wise in my whining ways. Too much produces the opposite effect of what I want. Everyone disappears suddenly, and I’m left to lament in solitude. There is a fine line.
  I whine about bruises. The darn things pop up out of nowhere on parts of my body that barely got bumped the day before. If it’s a really dark bruise I display it as proof that I have a reason to whine. “Look at this dear,” I tell my wife, displaying a dark spot on my forearm. She patiently nods in sympathy.
  I don’t know what good it does to whine when I hurt. When I was younger it was the last thing I would let anyone know. Heavens no! I was way too tough to let on I was human. Especially in the Army.

  Age does something to a person however. As I settle into my sixties, all the abuse I subjected my body to is coming back to haunt me like old competitors on steroids! Decades of basketball are partially to blame for my pain, but excesses like jumping off roofs of houses when I was in elementary school, contributed to the overall breakdown of my body.
  Pain comes home to roost in older birds like me who didn’t take good care of themselves. I lived hard, played hard, and still play hard even when it hurts! In that I don’t have any regrets.
  I’m in my so-called Golden Years, I’m gimping around like Popeye on pot, but I’m lucky to have a wife who’s understanding and will listen to my whining without wanting to see me lose my voice!
  I was talking with another fellow my age the other day and we did a dueling banjos thing where I would whine…then he would…then I would whine even louder.. and he would.. Well, you get the idea.
  As It Stands, they say humor is the best medicine, so I try to remember to laugh after a good whining session! 

Like I said, 'Putting Up A Fence Is A Declaration of Fear'

Justice for J6 Rally. Saturday, Sept. 18, 2021. Less than 200 attended the right-wing event. I asked the question are we overreacting to J6...