Hell of a Guy
Chance favors the prepared mind - Louis Pasteur

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

An Apple Pie with What?...

12/30/2009

It’s a McDonald’s morning, overcast and in the teens, and another winter storm is apparently on the horizon.  I guess it is a little weird I have chosen to be here this morning rather than at my house.  Tina the housekeeper is there straightening up and cleaning this morning, and I have never been quite comfortable being in any of my homes when the cleaning crew is there.  I am the same way in hotel rooms.  If I happen to be in one when the housekeeper comes, I split for a while.  It’s a comfort, nutty thing I do.

So here I sit catching up on Facebook, my new obsession, and also work e-mails.  The Facebook thing is both stupid and wonderful.  I have reconnected with old friends, some I haven’t seen in more than forty years.  The stupid part is that I cannot stay away from it for very long – the e-mail alerts keep on coming when people write on my wall, and it is required to respond.  There are rules involved here. 

As for work, my company has been shutdown since December 21st and doesn’t re-open for official business until January 4th.  Unfortunately, for all of us out here in the field, customers have not had this time off, for them it is almost business as usual except for the Holidays.  So the work continues.

I am not looking forward to going back to work “fulltime.”  January will begin with me traveling to Louisville to hire a new sales rep.  The second week will have me in South Carolina with a new rep starting there.  The third week I will probably go back to South Carolina or, perhaps, Kentucky depending on when that new rep starts work, and the last week I am going to Phoenix for some computer training with my new reps.  February, oh joy, looks like a repeat of January.  If the travel doesn’t kill me the job might.

Having dispensed with the hyperbole, I feel better.  Now, having cleansed my mind of negativity, I must rededicate myself to the job at hand and go get ‘er done.  Bottom line is there is no BS allowed on the Best Day Ever.

And that is all I have to say about that… 

 
Monday, December 28, 2009

Prolonging Christmas…

12/28/2009

Back in the Dark ages when I was just a little kid the Christmas Season did not last as nearly long as it does today.  For one thing, stores didn’t even advertise Christmas stuff until after Thanksgiving, and I sure as hell know my folks didn’t even think about Christmas gifts for a couple of weeks past it.  Christmas decorations were never seen before the first day of December.  Those were the “Good Old” days.

At our house on Valley View Avenue in Baltimore, Santa not only brought all the presents, but he even brought and decorated the Christmas tree after we kids went to bed on Christmas Eve.  The tree, having outlasted its welcome, was undecorated just a day or two after the New Year’s celebration, which did not include the kids in my house staying up to welcome it in.  As we all began to get a little older and in our post-Santa years, the tree tended to go up a few days before Christmas but never was it up more than ten days from the first to the last. 

My first wife and I stretched the Season a little with our tree going up about a week or so before Christmas and kept it up for a week or so after.  The Nancy and I have had this year’s edition up since the 9th and we are both ready to take the thing down and box it all up until December 2010.  Our tree is a fraud, a fake, an imposter that we purchased at Walmart.  We gave up on live (or semi-dead) trees a couple of years ago – way too much of the tree ended up on the floor as they dried out because I failed to remember to put water in the stand, and The Nancy would not stoop that low – no pun intended.

I love the Christmas Season and kind of hate for it to end (the tree is just a small part of it).  These days with grandchildren 150 miles west and 150 miles southeast, we manipulate the season so we can visit one group on Christmas and the other for New Year’s Day, there by stretching the Season and our enjoyment.  There were some years when we would travel from the home one group to visit with the other 250 miles away on Christmas Day with a gourmet Chinese meal in the middle.  The trip took its toll on us, and neither The Nancy nor I miss it, though we always immensely enjoyed doing it.  It is a wonderful memory that will be with us the rest of our lives. 

We are just about ready to load up the car for Phase 2 of our Holiday travels where we can heap more Christmas junk on the two younger grandchildren.  This time we get to celebrate Christmas, the New Year and a couple of birthdays all in one weekend. 

Sometime this week we will pack up all the decorations as our synthetic Christmas tree comes down, and just about the time I apply the tape to seal the boxes and carry them to storage, knowing how quickly time flies these days, it will be almost time to get them out again and start the process all over again.

And that is all I have to say about that…

 
Saturday, December 26, 2009

A 13th Birthday…

12/26/2009

Do you remember yours?  My 13th came in 1957, the same year I began the 7th grade at Hamilton Junior High School in Baltimore.  Dwight Eisenhower was President and the U.S. was thankfully between wars.  The Russians launched Sputnik and the Space Race was on.  TV was still broadcast in black and white, AM radio was king of the airwaves, computers like Univac took up entire rooms and were slower than molasses, and life, as a whole, was a hell of a lot simpler than it is today.

Justin is thirteen today.  Right now his life is upside down, and he is torn between his love for his dad and also for his mom.  The poor kid is conflicted; he is neither a man nor a child, and simply doesn’t understand what is going on within his body - hormonally, physically or psychologically.  He has shot up about five inches this year, though his weight spurt has not caught up with his height.  It is easy for him to get ahead of himself and act out way ahead of his age and also within it, and that is what becoming a teenager is all about.  It is a learning curve that has to be experienced by everyone on the road to adulthood. 

Thank God, I was the perfect child, as I look back upon my own thirteenth year.  My road to growing up was as straight as it could be, and I only hated my parents for a while along the way.  I knew everything there was to know and was wise way beyond my years.  Other than that I was the average jackass thirteen-year old, but I did survive the experience just as my main man Justin will, and I am a little envious of him getting to take the journey. 

Looking back on my life now I just know I would go back, if I could, and do it all over exactly as it went down (the good, the bad, the ugly), especially since I now know I would have a good fifty-three more years beyond my thirteenth birthday to do it. 

And that is all I have to say about that… 

 
Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas 2009 - Pandemonium

12/25/2009

The Nancy and I are at Jackie’s celebrating Christmas 2009 with her and the kids – the four of them.  This year is kind of a bittersweet one, given the circumstances, though as always The Best Christmas ever! 

We have spent Christmas here many times in the past.  There have been some Christmas mornings when the kids have awakened us well before daylight.  One year they aroused us at 3:30 by running and yelling “Get up” at the top of their lungs.  I can tell they are getting older; it was after seven this morning when Jared ripped through the house screaming for everyone to get up.  It is fun to watch them rip the wrapping from box after box barely noticing what is in the box.  Jared’s mom noticed one he had unwrapped but did not open.  When she quizzed him on way he had not opened it he very quickly replied “It’s just clothes.”

These kids, like most, have way more than they need, but it is still fun to dump more crap on them just so they can have more crap then we all did at their age.  Isn’t that what Christmas is all about?  Giving, it ain’t a bad thing.

Merry Christmas everyone and may the light of the Universal Presence shine upon you this Holiday Season and give you health, abundance and eternal peace.

And that is all I have to say about that…

 
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