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Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Vocabulary Expansion 2

While you sleep

Just an update on the story I shared two weeks ago:   My Durango was stolen from my driveway.  Fortunately for us the surveillance camera caught a great picture of the car thief.  After being shared over social media (over 2000 times) and with local law enforcement.  The vehicle was recovered in an abandon foreclosed home.  Someone broke into the home and parked the Durango in the garage.  I simplified the process (explanation), but it actually took over a week of following deadend leads from the well-meaning Facebook community. 
Vehicle Prowl while you sleep

The vehicle was reported seen in a couple of nearby towns and I made the dutiful drive to follow every lead.  From the first time law enforcement saw the video footage they knew the name of the perp (police jargon for perpetrator) and even referred to her as a well-known local tweaker.

The PD put out an all point bulletin (statewide) for the stolen vehicle.  Between the All-Points, and Facebook, the stolen Durango became so hot that no one dared to drive it or even give it away.  The vehicle was recovered with minimal damage and something like 10 miles additional on the speed-o-meter.  There is no arguing that criminals are especially dumb or they wouldn’t do what they do.  One of the perps actually contacted my son and tried to collect a few hundred dollars to return it.  The PD got involved and the rest is history. 

I know that for many of us, a criminal act against us is unfathomable, but it does happen.  Even nice neighborhoods have become prime targets, especially because we are comfortable knowing that we have good neighbors.  Well guess what, the criminals also love our neighborhoods.  About seven years ago I invested in a security system that includes 8 exterior infrared cameras.  Most of my neighbors must have thought I was paranoid.  Well, the saying goes, that just because you are paranoid, it doesn’t mean that they aren’t out to get you.
50 Ft. with a 9mm (I wouldn't want to meet me in a dark hallway)

Please be proactive, material things hold the least value, besides all material things are insured.  A security system will keep home burglars/invaders away.  Criminals case their targets, and as dumb as they are, they are looking for easy pickings.  Besides in my case any criminals that don’t get discouraged by a security system will have to deal with a certified marksman if they get into the house.  The best is yet to come………….

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Top Priority

Take care of yourself first

Someone I consider a good friend was recently sent to the ER (Emergency Room).  She is being referred to a cardiologist and the outcome is yet to be determined at this time.  We should use this instance as a reminder that our personal health is and should always be a priority.  Not because we are selfish but because we are selfless.

We live to take care of family members and friends and the best way to do that is to make sure that our personal health is maintained.  I don’t know how many of my readers have noticed that part of airplane safety is to instruct adults that in the event that the oxygen masks drop the parent or guardian is to put their own mask first before helping a child or others.  The reason is that you can’t help others if you don’t take care of yourself first.

I once thought I was having a heart episode and my wife made the decision that I should go to ER immediately, I was 40 at the time.  The macho (very stupid of me at the time) in me convinced her that I knew the way and could get us there quicker so she allowed me to drive.  Fortunately, I got us there safely.

The Summer day was near 100 degrees, and I had been in the backyard digging a 24-inch-deep trench about 30 feet long for the cables leading to the house from a 10-foot parabolic satellite dish antenna. Around 4 pm I walked into the house, not feeling well.  As I got ready to take a cold shower to cool off, I went into shock so bad I was afraid to bite my tongue.  Among others, the weirdest thing I remember doing is jumping on to our master bed with my muddy work shoes on.  You need to know how much I respect (read that fear) my wife to know that I would never knowingly do that.

To make a very long story short, I was ready to make peace with the Lord, I swear that I even had most of my life pass before me in short order.  As it turned out I had managed to dislocate a couple of ribs near the sternum as I manhandled the satellite dish over a couple of fences and into my backyard.  The injury was further aggravated by digging the trench in the heat.

I still vividly remember what the attending doctor said to me with a very grave look on his face. Sir, I wish I could tell you (long pause), that my heart is as healthy as yours, but I haven’t been examined as thoroughly as you have.  Your problem is musculo-skeletal.  And with that I was released with some pain medication, and a referral to a specialist.

Ever since that incident, I take my health and prevention efforts very seriously.  I sincerely apologized to my wife for being so stubborn and promised that I would follow her guidance in the future regarding my health care needs.  Fortunately, I don’t have any health care problems, I subscribe to preventative measures.  I want to be around to provide for my family for as long as possible.  Quality of life should be the goal, so please take care of yourselves.  The best is yet to come……             

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Muhammad Ali, The Greatest

Muhammad Ali, The Greatest

Growing up during the 60’s, one of the favorite activities was the Friday Gillett Fights on television.  Our family was still one of the lucky ones in the neighborhood to have a television set.  Relatives gathered at our house on Friday evening all pumped for the wonderful meal that preceded the Friday Night Fights.  I never actually saw anyone get drunk but I do remember that the adult men in the family (my step-father, uncles and cousins) all drank beer with their meal and during the fight.

I recall that the more exciting the boxing match was the less beer the men drank because they were so into the fight.  It was obvious to me that the beer drinking was not the object of the night.  As was customary for the ladies of the house to be found working in the kitchen preparing the extravagant meal of the evening (a feast to be sure).

The children (anyone under the drinking age) downed their meal with a couple of cold glasses of Kool-Aid.  It was during this family gatherings that I became aware and a fan of Cassius Clay (Muhammad’s name before he changed it soon after the Liston fight).

I remember with great clarity my introduction to the big time 1965.  I was still a teenager, and was happily surprised to be invited to a close circuit television presentation some 40 miles away from my home.  My biggest disappointment came when we arrived inside the venue three minutes into the fight, and fight had only lasted two minutes.  We sat there and saw the replays over and over on the large screen.  The excitement in the room was unbelievable.

  • Soon after the Liston fight, Clay changed his name to Muhammad Ali upon converting to Islam and affiliating with the Nation of Islam. Ali then faced a rematch with Liston scheduled for May 1965 in Lewiston, Maine. It had been scheduled for Boston the previous November, but was postponed for six months due to Ali's emergency surgery for a hernia three days before. The fight was controversial. Midway through the first round, Liston was knocked down by a difficult-to-see blow the press dubbed a "phantom punch". Ali refused to retreat to a neutral corner, and referee Jersey Joe Walcott did not begin the count. Liston rose after he had been down about 20 seconds, and the fight momentarily continued. But a few seconds later Walcott stopped the match, declaring Ali the winner by knockout. The entire fight lasted less than two minutes. ~Wikipedia

The loss of Ali is every bit as impacting to me as the day I heard on the radio of the other major icon of my youth’s passing, the King of Rock and Roll.  R.I.P Muhammad Ali.  For the rest of us life goes on and the best is yet to come……..