Thursday, January 31, 2008

Another Storm on the Horizon











They have been predicting quite a few major storms so far this winter....and another one, track not known yet, is appearently on the way. Guess it depends on who you want to believe......north of here, from Fort Wayne, Detroit, and Elkhart, they are calling for 7 to 14 inches with wind by tomorrow....meanwhile from Van Wert to Dayton it ranges from 6 to 10 in the north(Van Wert County) to 6 to 8 here in Celina, and 2 to 4 inches in Dayton...problem is, Ice is also in the forecast in the southern areas overnight tonight and early tomorrow...time will tell if this works out.


Meanwhile Sam is headed for New Jersey, plans on arriving this afternoon, catch a shuttle to Philly, and take a Greyhound to either Elkhart or Dayton....lots of luck there....told him to plan on the Dayton run...better to get lousy weather south than Elkhart(where his car is parked, soon to be buried)...so hopefully he can make it to Dayton, where either Hal(lives there) or me, 65 miles north can pick him up...all depends on the roads and storm track.


Drove Sam to Nappanee yesterday to pick up his 24 foot BP Crusier for New Jersey...got there and was informed Ross, the man who signed me on after my retirement 5 1/2 years ago...had died. Ross was a lifelong smoker, just turned 65 earlier this month....he had a heart attack last year, and the last couple of times I had talked with him, he did not look that good...always sad to see someone you have known for awhile lose the battle...not sure if the pending storm will affect or delay the funeral.
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The Mersman Building across the street continues to come down, a little quicker now....I've been posting the demise, including the smoke stack....top to bottom shows now and then, the work(destruction) of the 100+ year old table/furniture factory since early fall....
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Storm updates and photos....if it happens, tomorrow!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

The RINOS take over


Off to Nappanee again today...heck I might as well start driving RVs again....


Sam's car is still in Elkhart, so he picks up a small RV for New Jersey and heads out...planning to be back in Celina with his car in time for the weekend Super Bowl festivities....problem is, I take a look at the "future" weather forecast, and they are now posting weather watches for the Ohio and northern Indiana area starting tomorrow....claiming a big storm is possible...so Sam, who will be busing(awful way to travel and I don't) from Philadelphia to Elkhart tomorrow night and Friday, may have a decision to make....Elkhart or Dayton? Guess it depends on the final forecast when he hops the bus in Philly tomorrow night at 8....if this RV doesn't break down!


They asked me to take one to Jersey as well...but turned it down...I really don't want to tow the Jeep 700 miles and drive it back....because of the back...I will not travel by Greyhound Bus....anyway, told them if they have a Florida run middle of next week, I will try one, to see if my back holds up...then fly home, that I can probably handle...I'd like to give it a try, I will not go back to driving as much as I did after my retirement from the health department....but would like to make a few trips a year to Florida and Vegas....we will see how this all shakes out.

The RINOS Take Charge of the GOP___________

With McCain's win in Florida last night, Rudy dropping out of the race today and endorsing "Angry John"(see photo) ...it appears the RINO's(Republican in name only) are on the verge of taking over the GOP(see post from 1/27/08)....Ronald Reagan would be spinning in his grave for sure....John "Friggin" McCain envoking the name of Reagan and claiming to be a Conservative. enough to make a Right Winger puke....

"I remember Ronald Reagan, I spoke to and interviewed Ronald Reagan, John McCain is no Ronald Reagan"...neither is Rudy, Romney, or "The Huckster".....

A contest between McCain and Hillary should include no Vice Presidential candidate...that way the winner could just name the loser VP and the vast moderate and liberal lemming voters could be happy...a real love fest while the country goes down the shitter.

For those that give Hell to those that don't vote or threaten to stay away from the ballot box come election day.....I say, "you have as much right to show your protest by not voting, than by voting for someone you don't support".....but I will vote come November, even if it's between Hillzilla with her inbred husband as baggage, and McCain....my vote may be 3rd party however. I voted 3rd party in 1976 because of my dislike for Ford(an original RINO) and the peanut farmer, Jumma Carter, who went on to become the absolute worst President in my lifetime, topping even LBJ, which is pretty hard to do....I voted for Gus Hall as a joke(Hall was the Commie Candidate for many elections)...I was going to school and voted absentee...one of 3 persons in the entire Mercer County to cast my vote for Hall...I expect the other 2 were the assclowns that ran the local "Daily Standard" newspaper, or as we call it, "The Daily Worker", a hard Red paper in a lily white county of conservatives.

I may throw my vote away by voting for the Constitutional Party Candidate...but like Ron Paul, the Constitutional Party is great on 90% of the issues....but weak on defending the country against Islam...another group that thinks if we just play nice, the Middle East menace will just go away....Not Gonna Happen GI!

So there is a take..just mine...I will vote in November, maybe McCain, certainly not Hillzilla or Obama....but probably a 3rd party candidate...but Hey! I'm getting ahead of myself, Romney is not finished yet....but the party "leaders"(aka: tired sorry old fools that have been running, or ruining, the party for decades since Reagan left) seem to back Johnny the war hero....I've got news folks, I'm a Vietnam Veteran, being a vet, doesn't make you fit to be President, see "Hanoi John Kerry"...anyway I hold out hope until the bitter end....but as it stands now:

If you elect Hillary, Obama, or McCain...."Welcome to Mexiamerica"...the borders will be wide open, and the economy will soon be in the tank, radical Islamics will be allowed to continue to come to our country....and Global Warming Legislation will be the law of the land.....Bend Over Folks....it's gonna hurt!


Just heard Glenn Beck call McCain...."A two faced son-of-a-bitch" on his radio show.....that just about says it all!

Monday, January 28, 2008

22 Years Ago Today 1/28/86










I was working at the Mercer County Health Department in Celina....was just coming back from a morning inspection, walked in the office, and our Registrar/Receptionist Helen gets off the phone looks at me and says..."The Space Shuttle just exploded".







First thing I thought was..."that is sad"...the second.."why are we putting civilians(Teachers etc) on these damn things.....?"

So this day in 1986, if you were old enough, you have to know where you were, and what you were doing......I remember going home at lunch time....Sam, who had just turned 4 in December, was a game show junkie....he would video tape the games as they went along, then play along with them while re watching the videos...Sam was a young genius...he could read and write at 2....he finished with many awards for math in State Competition....so what's he doing driving RVs for a living? You'd have to ask him....the guy has an IQ in the 140 range, but goes to the beat of a different drummer.....kind of like his old man(except the IQ part...mine is not 140).
Anyway, he was taping NBC when the Bulletin came up.....I got home and told Patricia, who was working part-time and going to night classes at the time, to tape the rest of what was happening.....I've still got the entire days broadcast on tape today.....what a sad day, and it sure doesn't seem like 22 years ago.

Back to work this morning at Greenville this morning, back felt pretty good getting up, but acting up a little right now...BP has been up somewhat for the last couple days....150/77 or so...making me more determined to get the 15 pounds off, and drop the salt off in the diet...I'm sure the increased pain this morning has something to do with it as well.


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{Photos}-The Crew of Challenger...Sam with his "hardware" from the State Math Competition back in 1996...two 3rd place individuals for Sam, and a 1st place finish for the Celina team, he also won the school match competition back to back years in 5th and 6th grade....Sam with Hal and the neighbor kids in 1992 with his Lemonade Stand he built with help from his mom and ran himself that summer....he was very successful at being a 10 year old entrepreneur.
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Update...Speaking of Sam, on his way to Las Vegas with a Damon RV for delivery...story goes, he beats the storm out of Colorado, then hits 60 MPH head winds through Utah..goes into the Arizona gorge and right before hitting the Nevada state line, the diagnostic goes out on the RV...100 miles out of Vegas, so he has to call for a tow truck to haul it in to North Las Vegas to the Ford Engine shop....some minor heat sensor problem, that shuts down the engine and everything else....
But he makes it to the airport and is awaiting his "Red Eye" to Dayton....the joys of RVing.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

The Problem With(today's)Conservatives




Sitting here working on the final installments of the Murder in Waldo for my other blog:







which I'm running behind on...won't get it finished until middle of this coming week, also watching glances of the X-Games from Aspen on ESPN...wipe out city, lots of major injuries and spills today....Patricia is out at the Fitness Center...I was going to take a day off but after watching and reading about politics until I'm ready to puke, I figured I better get it out and off my gut...and move on.
The Democrats:

Not a dime bags worth of difference between the 3...interchangeable clowns, one women, who may be a man, one man who acts like a women, and one guy who can't make of his mind if he's black, white, or something else....one thing for sure, they all want to redistribute wealth and raise taxes.....they also don't have the guts to call Islam evil, and to put in place policies that would end our dependents on middle east oil.....THEY ARE SOCIALISTS!

That's as kind as I will be....any 3 get in, with a Liberal controlled Congress...toss away free speech, drive Christians underground, and take away your right to bear arms.

The GOP:


They all call themselves Ronald Reagan Conservatives.....none of them measure up.

Take a look at the front runners:

McCain: War Hero, tough on Islamic Terrorism, weak on taxes, terrible on the border issue...add in McCain/Finegold, McCain/Kennedy. and McCain/Liberman Bills....and toss in the false belief of man made Global Warming...you have a liberal that is not afraid to go to war.

Romney: Yes he has flip-flopped on social issues, can he be trusted with those issues important to Social Conservatives? Not sure....but he says he can. Good on Economic Policy, tough on Islam(remember he basically told their leaders not to come to Massachusetts unless they or the feds paid for the security)...a Reagan Conservative?...not quite....but as close as the GOP has left running.

Rudy: Social Liberal/no guns, queer marriage, and abort them babies as they come out of the womb....at least he tells you up front...he's good on crime, bad on the borders,and I think he would blow the crap out of the Muzzies without a second thought....he's more like the young Barry Goldwater(whose first wife was one of the architects of Planned Parenthood)...Goldwater became a senile babbling fool in his final Senate years....and he was never a true social Conservative.

"The Huckster": Some of my Evangelical Christian friends like this guy....he's a social liberal(except on guns and abortion), and is part of the "Blame America First" crowd when it comes to Islam and their gutter trash terrorists....good for taxes, bad for borders, weak on Security....no Ronald Reagan, no Barry Goldwater...more like Jimmy Carter.

Ron Paul...I throw him in for a laugh....Paul is great on the borders, great on taxes, great on guns, full of shit on security.....He actually thinks the Ragheadz would get along with us just fine, if we only left them alone....."Beam this one up Scotty"


There you have it.....

Democrats=Socialists with Marxist leanings
Republicans-Socialist Lite

By the time Ohio, the 7th largest state, votes in our primary, the races may be over....considering who we have voted for the past state elections....it's probably better off that way. We have a limp wristed Republican, Voinavitch, as one Senator, a hard core Marxist , Brown, as another, and a former Methodist Minister Democrat, Ted "The Head" Strickland, who supports NAMBLA and their right to be child molesters, as Governor....




I'm down to my 4th pick...

(1) Tancredo---dropped out
(2) Hunter---dropped out
(3) Thompson--dropped out
(4) Romney---
I am far right politically, and I make no apology...I am a Christian, but, I drink, smoke cigars, cuss, have fun, and I don't turn the other cheek, for anybody...once I pass, God will judge me, all others that don't like what I say or stand for...can kiss my ass....that's just the way it is.


That's my Sunday political rant....think I'll have a beer and wash the bad taste out of my mouth!
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{photos} Barry Goldwater....Gold H2O was also a retired General in the Air Force....he came to Nha Trang in late 1969...I was one of the LE Cops who got to guard his hooch....Barry liked to have a nip now and then....it's too bad he didn't retire earlier, his younger trophy wife led the senile latter year Senator down the Kennedy dumbassed path later in life(after his first wife died)...I lost all respect for him. Ronald Reagan....I think Reagan, like me, lived his life the way he wanted...he was Right Wing, but lived his life as it was meant to be lived, and enjoyed it....by far the greatest President in my generation.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

The Blizzard of 1978---30 years ago today!




30 Years ago today...The entire state of Ohio, along with northern Illinois and Indiana, and southern Michigan and southeast Wisconsin were hit by the 3 day blizzard known as the Blizzard of the Century.

In 1977 on January 28th the same area was blasted by what we thought was the "storm of the century"...363 days later, 1978 topped it....15 to 35 inches of snow plus 70-100 mph winds, depending on where you were.....well, I was in Wisconsin, northern Wisconsin to be exact, we missed the massive snows, but the wind mixed with 10 or so inches affected us none-the-less.

Patricia and I had moved from Celina, Ohio, to north of Wausau, Wisconsin, in October of 1977....when the January storm hit, she was working at Nationwide Investments in Wausau...I was bartending and working shifts at the Ski Slopes for Marathon County. Knowing a storm was approaching, I took her into work that day with the Jeep Cherokee, her rear wheel drive AMC Hornet was not equipped to make it through heavy snow(although 14 months later it would get me through the blizzard of 79, see "Snow storms I have known from January 3rd this year).

When it came time to pick her up I piled the Airedales, Rags and Max into the Jeep and decided to see how the back roads were, the snow combined with the strong winds were piling up the drifts pretty good, and the cold temperatures made it a dangerous proposition. As I drove down an unfamiliar road zig-zagging my way the 11 miles towards downtown Wausau, I came across a car sitting in the roadway, I went around it and "WHAM" it hit a high drift...which took all 4 wheels off the ground and the Cherokee sat helpless with zero of the 4 tires hitting pavement.

Getting out, I find out the son of a bitch sitting in the middle of the road was a county idiot checking the roads for the schools....he rolls down his window and says..."looks like you're stuck"...."yep", I say...and headed back to the Jeep to see if I could shovel myself out....as I walk back to the car...this clown, with in car two way radio...backs up and takes off....the bastard leaves me in a blizzard, high and dry, with a 1/2 tank of gas, night fall approaching, and two dogs in the Cherokee.....by this time the temperatures had dropped to about -15 chill factor...what to do?

Having only lived in the area a short while(and of course no cell phones back then), I was not totally familiar with the road, but thought I knew of a farm house about a mile east....I took a chance, wrapped myself up, gloves, wool hat, and my suede winter coat....off I jogged east, knowing if I was wrong, I was screwed.


Being in pretty good shape at the time, I made the mile in pretty short order, and there to my delight was the farm house, sitting like a ghost in the blizzard. Knocking on the door the farmer and his wife invited me in...I asked to use the phone, calling Patricia, I told her to get ready to spend the night at the office...because I didn't know when and if I would make it there....after hanging up, the farmer, tells me..."I've got an older tractor that will go through anything, and I've got a chain to pull you off the drift". Within 10 minutes we were heading down the frozen road...him driving, and me standing on the back hitch...the wind was pushing the frozen snow like needles into my cheeks....but I was glad for the ride...we hooked up the chain and within a minute I was off the snow drift.....I thanked him and offered him $20, he refused with a smile, I was one relieved dude as were the dogs....I headed in a straight line for Wausau and picked up my wife, taking the main roads home.


Here was a case of me making a mistake, and 2 strangers, one who left me high and dry, leaving me and my dogs at risk...and another who went the extra mile to help out a complete and stupid stranger.....you just never know.
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Sadly as many photos of the 79 storm as I have...I have none of the 78 Blizzard...but since it was much worse in Celina, where mom and the rest of the family still resided at that time, I do have some photos from the DOT files from that area...mom was stuck in the house for a week, the schools were closed that long as well...Celina and Mercer County were buried and Ohio had 51 of the 70 storm related deaths nationwide....It was one powerful and deadly dangerous storm.....the above photos show(1) the little town of North Star, south of Celina, buried...(2) The South Bay Motel, 3 miles south of Celina.(3) Looking south from the Celina city limits on US 127.....even the plows couldn't get through this for days....after the storm stopped.

Friday, January 25, 2008

250 Miles and a box of Cigars







Woke up early today, actually before 7AM(only on days working at Greenville do I get up this early anymore)...saw Patricia off to work....then woke Sam up for the trip to Nappanee...the Intrepid in car thermometer read -3....not much wind though, so didn't' think it was that bad.


Got Sam to Hoosier Transit just after Noon, he started up his car and headed for Elkhart to pick up his RV ride to Vegas....I headed back home...250 miles and 5 hours with only a couple of breaks can't be good for my back...but for some pain in the buttock, not a bad ride.


Sam will head across I-80 and by tomorrow night will have to decide whether to head on I-76 to I-70 through Colorado, or take I-80 through Wyoming into Salt Lake City...looks like a storm brewing that way, so told him I would watch the radar and forecast and he could decide which route(only about 40 miles longer going the north route...where fuel is cheaper) to take....but it all depends on him and the weather.

I got home and found my final cigar order, they were back ordered a month ago....these are a nice low price Robusto size Vieja Hacienda...smoke in about 30 minutes...good for when you don't have a long time to waste...or when the weather is so-so and you don't want to stay out long....since I don't smoke in the house or in my vehicles...they are good for the spring and fall of the year....

This makes my total stash about 100 strong...3 humidors packed...this should last me a good year, considering I may smoke 50 or 60 a year...and almost all of those in warm weather.


Reagan the last remaining Airedale greeted me on my return, and like me, she is getting up in years...with her dad Jack passing away late last summer, she may be the last of the breed for us(then again, you never know)....Patricia and I got our first Airedale, Rags, back in 1974...before we were married....With the exception of the 3 weeks back in 1976 between when Josie Wales passed away and I brought Jack home...we have not been without an Airedale in the family....over 33 years....Reagan turns 10 in July.


Will work on my final chapters of the Murder in Waldo story for the other blog this weekend....and with no football and temps in the 20s with snow in the forecast.....I should have plenty of time.
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{photos} Top...My small Humidor with the new batch in it....I used to keep this one on the shelf in clear view behind the desk, when I worked in the Health Department....nothing would get the EPA Gerbils and Enviro-nuts more irrational than a cigar box with "Annoy Liberals, Smoke Cigars" taped to it....and you know that's exactly what the point was....(2) Reagan, this afternoon, wondering ??? What's he doing?(3) and the stash as I unboxed them.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Kicking Back


Today? Really not doing much, started doing more work on my other blog concerning My Houseworth Family History:




Will finish up the work required to put out the Murder in Waldo installment, and it's final result of the lives of the two men charged...my great-great uncle, and his brother-in-law. I should have that story completed and posted by the end of the weekend, or early next week at the latest.


Sam got a RV run to Las Vegas....making me a little jealous, I always favor those runs...but still don't feel the need to travel that far in the winter, since I'd have to grab a plane back ASAP...why go to Vegas, if you can't stay at least one day and night and hit the casinos? So I will wait until I'm sure my back can handle it, and then give it a go.


Sam's car sits in Nappanee, so I will drive him the 120 miles(each way) drop him off, he will pick up his car and head for Elkhart, where this RV is located...and he will head west from there.


Patricia and I will go out for supper tonight, nothing fancy, but a chance to get out....once she is done at school, and with her workout.
One thing I did accomplish today(shows you how slow a day it has been)......shave my goatee for the first time in a couple of years. With the exception of 2 times since I got out of the Air Force, I have always had facial hair...I was "bare" in late 1981 when Sam was born, and then tried it again for a few weeks a couple of Christmases ago....for the past 10 years, most of the time I have worn a goatee....along with the ever present mustache....but as you can see from the posted photo....the "T" is gone....will it return? Only time will tell.


{photo}-Me a few minutes ago, butt parked in front of the computer, minus the goatee, working on the genealogy stuff.... now it's time to let Reagan out back to chase the squirrels....and for me to take a load of trash out to the garage.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Whiskey Run









The temps hovered around 25 today and the sun has shown most of the day....I fired up the Jeep which has sat idle for a week, threw in my digital cameras and decided to make a run around the south end of the lake and see how my home area from my old high school days had changed since winter's past.

I lived in the little town of Montezuma, Ohio, from 1963 until I joined the Air Force in the summer of 68...mom and dad lived there for awhile longer before selling the house and moving into Celina.....Montezuma at the time was a little berg 95% Catholic and kind of like Celina's step child...they had their own bars, gas station, and small grocery store, even their satellite elementary school, but when you reached high school you got shipped into Celina. The town was a clickish place that I never warmed up to....except my neighbors, the Jones'(see Jim Jones funeral December 2007)...Bob and Jerry were both in my class and we became life long friends...raising as much Hell as we could, without being "bad" kids.

Montezuma has changed much today....although the town itself is much the same, the outlying area has become infested with 50 Cent Millionaires(as I call them) from Dayton and Cincinnati...former weekend warriors who have built on the lake area, now that it is sewered and open for construction....property values have risen, and the local egos have done the same....thus the 50 cent Millionaires....those in debt up to their collective asses, but putting on the dogs to keep up with the neighbors....they will be the first to lose everything in the coming depression.

I learned to drive a car, kiss a girl, and ice skate, among other things, while living in Montezuma....the Jones boys and me, and on occasion our younger sisters, would walk the mile across the Lake Field Airport(think smaller county paved landing strips), to a place called Whiskey Run....WR was a little creek that was nestled between farms and woods, it drained to the lake about a mile south....in the winters of the 1960s(before non man-made Global Warming) the Grand Lake and the feeder creeks would freeze solid by late November and seldom free up until late March or early April.....these days, the lake freezes for maybe a couple of weeks a season....this week is has a pretty good cover.

We would spend many a Saturday afternoon or Christmas break time Ice Skating on Whiskey Run, and warming with a campfire....it is one of the few areas that has changed little in the 40 years.



I learned to roller skate at an outdoor rink in Venice, Florida, learned to Snow Ski at Snow Ridge Lodge in Turnin, New York, while stationed in the Air Force at Rome NY......learned to swim at a public pool....learned to ride a bike in a rural home in South Venice....but I learned many things in Montezuma... including how to drive a car, and how to ice skate at Whiskey Run.
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{Photos} (1) Looking acrosss frozen Grand Lake from Windy Point towards Celina, about 5 miles to the north and west....(2) Looking east on Guadalupe Road
from Whiskey Run(3) Looking west towards Indiana from the Montezuma-Cassella Road Bridge crossing Whiskey Run.








Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Stages---1972-77





























After leaving the Air Force in May of 1972, I had many decisions to make in my personal life....some I will cover, some better left behind like those years.

I went to work back at the Huffy Bike plant in Celina for awhile...I had time served in the AF plus a little over a year, so I could pretty much slot into whatever job(s) I wanted...what I wanted was to be the Hell out of Huffys and Celina...college is where I wanted to be, but being the procrastinating person I am...that would have to wait....I choose to sew some oats for awhile....moving back to upstate New York....before realizing you can't live those times again...once you are gone, you're gone...and I was...back to Celina in November of 1973.


I had taken leave of my senses and quit Huffy, so with no where to go I moved in with mom for awhile...dad had passed away the previous Christmas Eve, and mom and Kelly(who was 11 at the time) had the house...Hell I could stay there until I figured out what I wanted to do with my life. First off I enrolled in night classes at Wright State Lake Campus in Celina, and after dumping a couple of factory jobs, I took a custodian job in the local school district...that lasted exactly 6 months, bar hopping at night then getting up to clean floors, classrooms, toilets, and shovel coal(yep the school still had a coal fired big ass furnace in 73) was not in my future(are we getting a pattern here?)...the workout was great, kept me in shape, so much so, that my buddy Mike and I kicked the Hell out of this clown from Chicago for punching out the owner of our favorite night club...the infamous Red Door in downtown Celina....this classic rock bar of the 70s was a fire trap in waiting...1000 people or more going through the doors every weekend and more during the holidays....fights and more fights just about every night....well Wayne Hollman, the owner, impressed with my ability to handle myself offered me the managers position, meaning working 6 nights a week, all the beer and all the fights I could handle, and any side benefits I might be able to latch on to.

I worked the Red Door for over 2 1/2 years...and it would take a book to cover all the adventures I had running that place...by this time my cousin Gary had moved back from Florida and that gave me a chance to move out of mom's...thus saving her sleep and me the usual nightly butt chewings she was giving this guy approaching 25...we rented a trailer and set up shop until I scraped up enough money to buy my first house.


By this time I had met Patricia, and to this day it still amazes me why she put up with me....I was still sewing my wild oats..she was just 21 had finished her first college degree(with 2 more to come later) had moved from the safe, frozen, confines of southern Wisconsin and moved to Celina, because a college roommate had a teaching job secured here.....we saw each other for about a year before anything serious came up....I was raising cane and would continue to do so for the next couple of years, up to and including my college years in Athens and Nelsonville, while she lived in Celina taking care of the house I had purchased with my GI Bill, and my gaggle of coon hounds who lived in the Kennel, driving my neighbors nuts....I've got to tell you, all were older, we are talking senior citizens here, and here comes this crazy Vietnam Veteran, running a bar, and boarding a pack of Red and Blue tick Coonhounds...talk about mixing oil and gas....all we needed was a match, and that came close a couple of times.

Patricia and I finally married on December 18, 1976, 3 years to the day(so she says) after we first met....got to tell you, I really don't remember the exact date...but smarter than me she is, so I always take her word for it.


Other "highlights" of this 5 year period include living off campus of Ohio University in Athens, with Nick Hromish, and Rick Pearson as quad mates...Rick and I met in 1966 when we went to work at Marsh Supermarket in Celina....he was a year behind me in school and a year or so younger...we both ended up Military Cops, Rick in the Army, me in the Air Force, he was best man in our Wedding in Wisconsin, when he married about 5 years later, I returned the favor in Auburn, Indiana....we get together a couple of times or more per year...our football New Years Day feast, and in May the mushroom hunt and beer drinking contest in the Michigan woods....another Highlights was Mike Schilling(who went on to become a cop for 25 years in Celina) another Army MP, Jim Olson, a radio DJ, who did the same at the Red Door spinning records, and me, heading for Florida in June of 75....I remember it well...we took my old Ford Van, two dirt bikes that Mike and I owned, and 35 cases of beer in the back, and headed south....10 days, one flat tire, 40 or more cases of beer(the 35 were not enough) consumed, and Olson the fair skinned Nordic descendant with a massive case of sunburn, we returned home with maybe $25 dollars between us...I know it wasn't much because I was broke....totally broke.


Those 5 years were fun, made so because somehow, me and all the guys I hung around with survive today, as does my marriage of 31 years...

It was off to Wisconsin, Indiana, and Dodge City, Kansas, Radio, and kids, over the next few years....settling back in Celina in 1980...and eventually buying the house that Patricia had always liked....the church parsonage located just a block and 2 doors down from the first house I purchased in 1974...we bought this one in 1995, 21 years, a lot of water under the bridge, but only a few hundred feet away....what a ride!
{photos}Top Left to Right(1) The Coonhounds...Drum and Belle the Blueticks, and Jake and Sue the Red Ticks....never many coons, but we had fun running them and sitting around the campfire drinking beer...back in our Redneck Wannabee Days(2)Me on the left and Jim Olson on the right in our June 75 Florida Disney, Daytona, and Beerfest(3) Max(1975-1987) the 120 pound Airedale relaxing with a PBR on my couch in 1976(4)Rags(1974-1985) at Higgins Lake, Michigan(5)Me and Rick Pearson right before I took the plunge....(6) Patricia on our wedding day at Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, 12/18/1976(7)Me, sometime in 1977(8)The first house on Brandon Ave...as it looked in 1975...20 years later and 4 states, we bought the church parsonage we always liked, 2 doors and a block away.

Monday, January 21, 2008

January 21st

Today is a day to look forward to, for no other reason than, on average, it is the coldest day of the year. From here on out, the average temperature will rise, however slightly, day-by-day, until July 21st, when it will head back down.....just another useless fact, but worth a note if you are already sick of winter, even in this age of global warming BS.



41st High School Reunion____??

Guess the class leaders frustrated that they couldn't get us to come to the 40th will try again this September for the 41st, never heard of a HS 41st...first time for everything I guess.....I think the only one I made it to was the 20th back in 1987....had tickets for the 30th but was involved in a Pony League tournament and decided to drink beer after the games instead....will I make it to the 41st? I don't make plans that far ahead....not sure if a bunch of 59 and 60 year olds getting together to talk about grand kids and prostrate problems is something I look forward to.

Back to work today and tomorrow at Greenville, Dartball tonight at home against Rockford, we stand at 6-0 in the second half...but some of our younger and less experienced players will return tonight(which is good, we need new blood), and it will be difficult to sweep a good team(we took 2 of 3 last time we played them).
Back felt the best it has in quite a while yesterday...after walking the floor at GTI this morning for an hour I had some pain..but it feels pretty good now, and the Blood Pressure is doing well.


The Giants against the Patsies in the Super Bore....was hoping the Packers could pull it out, and was definitely against New England....but as in most years, I doubt if I will watch much of this one.....Pats will probably win...but let's go for the upset:


Prediction

NY Giants 23 New England 21


Saturday, January 19, 2008

One Sunrise






























Several of the blogs I read on a regular basis post photos of sunsets and sunrises...I done many sunset photos, especially at Venice Beach(Florida) and sunsets and a few rises on Grand Lake. I've got quite a few posted at various places on this blog and elsewhere....Buck in New Mexico has put up many nice sunrises on his blog:

http://exileinportales.blogspot.com/

and David from down under has done the same:

http://david-mcmahon.blogspot.com/

Back to my One Sunrise story...this morning I woke up at the lazy hour of 8AM...Anissa and Patricia were already up...Ness is a chronic early riser, and unfortunately my wife usually gets up when she gets up....unfortunate for Patricia that is.....when I awoke I took a look out our bedroom window situated some 30 feet off the ground looking south...I saw the sun coming up over the Grand Lake area of the city(not viewable from our house)...so I ran down stairs and proceeded to take photos with my Sony FD90...both the 90 and the 88 are from the original series and take photo using floppy disks....I own both, and each is useful in just about any situation...the FD90 has great zoom and was useful this morning.

I took about a dozen shots from various locations in the upstairs portion of the house.....some looking southeast, some east, and even some north and east.....here are the results and descriptions below.
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{Photos} Top Left looking to the east across the debris pile at the Mersman Demo Site...looking towards the Immaculate Conception Church as the sun lightens the scene. Top Right, looking south out my upstairs bedroom window....the next two are from the same spot, I especially like the one where the sun is "bursting" into the sky. The next one was taken through the winter stained window and screen of our upstairs bath, looking east. Next is the I.C Catholic Church, located about a half mile from the house, I zoomed to catch the sun hitting the glass stained windows...and finally the first one I took as the sun crept across the horizon.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Stage 2.......1970-1972 end of an era





























I guess it was after I returned from my R&R in Hawaii that things started to change around...from the guy that went along just to get along, to the belligerent trouble making a-hole that I became for the next several years...





Leaving Tan Son Nhut for R&R in Hawaii....I was on a plane full of married guys who planned on meeting with their wives for 4 or 5 days...figure most of the poor bastards were going to spend their time in the hotel.....me I was heading for the beach and as many night clubs as I could close down.....I met one other guy, Denny Moneypenny, from West Virginia, who was also single...Denny was Army, I was Air Force...but we decided to pool our money, stay for cheap in a decent off beach hotel, rent a car, and share a cab at night, so we could booze it up and grab a ride, rather than drive the rental when drunk.....we saw most of Oahu, and took a day trip to Maui....a great 5 days.

On the Pan-Am flight back to Saigon I made the decision (in my mind).....to not take bullshit from anybody(that didn't have a gun pointed at me) for this point forward...first things first, I had just under 3 months left in Vietnam, once I survived that....things would change.

Change they did...first thing I was assigned to Griffiss AFB, in New York...my orders said AFLC Law Enforcement....I would be running traffic and base entry....well that's what I thought. "The Griff" was a SAC base, and SEC absorbed the LE the freaking week before I got to Rome, New York....I was assigned to SAC, the most Chicken Shit command in the whole freaking Air Force...spit and shine, humping gawdam airplanes out in the frozen hinterlands of the base.... well that sucked, if I had known that, I would have stayed in Vietnam....so much for me not taking shit. Knowing I had almost 2 years left, I decided to piss off as many "lifers' as I could for the next 22 months....the haircuts were few and far between....a few black guys who I tossed down beers with, Marvin Bussey, Rich Richardson, and George Hundley, started to call me "Sargent Hair"....it drove the first shirt and especially my flight NCOIC "Taco" Joe Gomez...crazy...they tried to get me busted a couple of times for refusing to obey orders(and yep my hair was long, especially for a sky cop)...screw em' I thought....I skirted as many rules as I could...and with the help of some good legal birds from the young law staff on base, I made it up until May 1972, when this half assed First Lt(we called Lt Adolph)...decided to give me a rash out on the flight line...I came within a inch of assaulting the little SOB, and actually made contact with him....lucky the only witnesses were 5 of my "underlings" and they swore that Alolph grabbed my shoulder...or they would testify to that, if he decided to bring charges.

Long story short....Major Bartles(sp) got wind and asked me if I was willing to take an early out...still with Honorable Discharge, but with the stipulation I would not be allowed to reenlist and not serve my final 2 years of inactive reserve.....I remember my exact words...."If I had known that offer, I would have done something 2 years ago"...the Major just shook his head..within 3 days "Sargent Hair" was gone, and my Air Force life behind me.

Now don't get me wrong...as much as I hated the Air Force life, and the spit, shine, and order, of it....I look back and do not have any regrets with the time I spent....but I was not one who was going to take orders that I thought were chicken shit in the face of war and what was important{shows you what I didn't know back then}...me and that life-style were combustible. Made many friends, a few enemies, and many good and a few bad memories.....I would not change it for anything.


May 5, 1972 saw me leave "The Griff", and the Air Force....I was a happy man...the next few years would see ups and downs and major decisions to be made....at 23 I was going to have to have many roads and forks in them to take....some were right, some were wrong....but the next 6 to 8 years would, as I look back, be the most interesting in my life....before or since.
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{photos}(1) On Patrol at Entry Point #7 Nha Trang AB, RVN(2)Me(L) and Harry Bevan...Harry went on to become a 30+ year Phildelphia Cop...VSPA Member today(3) Flashing the peace sign at the Honolulu International Airport in April 1970-check out those pants!(4)In the water at Wakiki Beach(5)Daimond Head when you could still take photos without a million hotels on the beach(6)"Sarge Hair" on a snow bank at "The Griff" in upstate NY(7) Getting Ready for "Charlie Flight" at Tan Son Nhut in early 1970}














Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Games we play



Went back to my regular doctor today around noon...blood pressure is fine and dandy, but will keep me on the mild meds until the next visit in about 6 months...the reading at the office was 117/70 with a pulse rate of 65.....he asked about the leg and back pain...and I told him it was "better, but not exactly where I want it to be"...but have to admit despite the constant low to moderate pain, I can live with it where it is....the big question will be, where will I be come baseball season?


Games_______

With computers, X-Box, and Play Stations, today's games are pretty far from where many of us grew up, whether it be from the 40s, 50s, 60s, or 70s.....I had a variety of games growing up in Florida, but most of my time was spent outdoors playing "real games"...or just exploring the wilds of southwest Florida, before it became "infested" with the overpopulation that affects the state today...wish I had more photos from my collection of the friends and things I did back then.

I did have games though...I remember my best friend in Florida, Mike Graff(1949-2003)had a football game, I believe it was called a Strat-O-Matic...it was box like and one guy called offensive plays, the other played defense...each put his "negative" into the slot, then you lit the box up and the result of the play(sack, fumble, yards for run or pass, etc) would pop up....great game, which I could find one on E-Bay...just to see if it was like I remember it almost 50 years ago.....another was the stupid vibrating football game....you place your plastic players on the field, stuck a little soft football in the ball carrier's hand...and turned on the field....the runner, usually vibrated himself out of bounds...I had a couple of them.....looking back, they were real stupid....but Hell, we played if for hours anyway.

Games sure have changed, to say the least.




{photo-Me playing the vibrating football game(can't even remember the name)....sometime around 1962.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Stages...........1949-1970
























































We took 3 of 3 last night at Dartball...getting a piece of revenge from Mendon, a team we dominated in year's past...but lost to in the tournament last year, and whom we lost 2 of 3 to at home earlier.....








My oldest Sam had the hot hand last night going 7 for 14 with 4 RBIs.....playing part-time he now leads the team in average....I finished 5 for 13 3 RBIs and a rare "walk"...and also threw into a double play, my 3rd career base on balls, and my first ever double play in 13 years.....I stand 2nd on the team in average and also in RBIs...recovering from a real slow start, due in part to my earlier back problems. Those still haven't gone completely away, but I've learned to work around them....and am throwing much better.

Sam left with my mom this morning for Naples...she will stay with youngest sister Kelly for a few months....Sam drove her car down and will fly into South Bend from Fort Myers on Saturday.....I usually take her down, but with the back, decided not to test it just yet, and Sam took over.

Back to Doc Bergman tomorrow...my regular doctor...check up on how my blood pressure is doing....and with the home monitoring system and one pill a day...it has been doing well...usually in the 120-130 over 70 range...much better than a month ago.
Note: In case you read the Hermit's Helms Deep Blog....he informed me that it has crashed....and he will be bringing it back in a different(non-blogspot/Goggle) format....he's is not happy....he puts out good stuff, hopefully he'll have it back up and running real soon.

Stage One_________

I've always looked at life in stages....not so much where you live, but age wise, or state of mind wise.....the first state I guess, began when I was born in Van Wert, Ohio, some 59(in March) years ago....we lived in the little burg of Scott(dad's hometown) until 1952...moved to mom's state of Delaware for a year. Then back to Scott, before heading to the Florida west coast, Venice, Florida, for the next 9 years. Back we came to western Ohio, this time Celina, where I was to stay until joining the Air Force at the age of 19.

This was stage 1....actually, I consider stage 1 up until the day I left for Vietnam....Stage 2 was Vietnam and several years after....not that Vietnam was a horror story for me....I was a Air Force Cop(Security Police), and yes that was the most dangerous job on the ground(being in the air was far worse as far as AF duty was, in my opinion) in the USAF...but I can't complain...I grew up, didn't end up with PTSD(post traumatic stress disorder), didn't come down with AO(Agent Orange) problems, and didn't become a total drunk or druggie....I drink no more now than I did before my time in the service...so I've always liked my beer, since I was 18.... a year of so before I joined.

It was just a different, not necessarily better me, that came back....more confident, less likely to take crap from anybody, as I tended to go along to get along before 1970...after I got back stateside in July of that year....I was a changed person.

Stage one-The Photos(1949-1970)..........(top left) Mom and me in the fall of 1949 in Scott, Ohio(2)Brother Mike and me holding up some kind of fish, I'm sure we didn't catch, in Grandma Houseworth's living room in Scott...summer of 1954(3)Guess this was mom's idea of a "glamor" shot...I actually remember getting this and a stack of others taken by a professional photo guy...I think it was our first full summer in Venice that would be 1955(4)Mike and me with Uncle Forest(Smokey), dad's oldest brother(1912-1964)(5) Back in Scott for summer vacation in 1957....that's me on the right with my buddy Al Foust....we were both 8 and had gigged these bullfrogs out of my Uncle John Houseworth's pond.(7)Summer of 1958...Mike was on the Venice Elks Varsity Little League Baseball team....I was on the Junior Elks.(8) Summer vacation in Ohio in 1960....Dad and me fishing in the Auglaize River, near Defiance, Ohio.(9) Sitting on Dad's Dodge Charger...the day before I was inducted into the Air Force....I rememer it well, June 22, 1968(10) June 29, 1969...me and mom...a final farewell photo, before I headed to Dayton for my flight to San Francisco and sunny Vietnam(11)...the large one at the bottom...me in the fall of 1951 in Scott...Grandma Houseworth had a bunch of these blown-up to 8 x 10s...so she must have liked them.
Stage 2 will be coming up later in the week.......