Sunday, March 23, 2008


Easter tree...

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Ethan, Andrew, Elise, Kiera, Ward
in my backyard swing.

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Saturday, March 22, 2008


Easter Bunny at WalMart

And later that evening...

Friday, March 21, 2008



Macaroni, the dog and Cat, the cat. (cat pic taken w/digital zoom)

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Monday, March 17, 2008


Appropriately enough...

Two of my favorite brews:

Hand on the cell phone was apparently none too steady...

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Horton Hears A Who

Took three of the grandkids to the movies Sunday; Horton Hears A Who was the movie of choice.

The Dr. Suess of memory was pretty spare with words. I don't remember reading anything to my kids that took longer than maybe 20 minutes. Horton expands on the good Doctor's story and, unlike the unwatchable How the Grinch Stole Christmas and the horrid The Cat in the Hat, Horton stayed truer to the Dr. Suess original while filling an hour and a half with silliness appropriate to a general audience.

I had actually dozed off during one part of the movie - it starts off a little slow, and I tend to drift off during kid shows anyway - so we're not talking Pixar quality entertainment here, but one thing I found noteworthy about Horton was the writing. I noticed it early on during the movie, and was later moved to comment to the wife that Horton - the Movie was as libertarian - brazenly so - a movie as I've seen in a very long time. Try as I might, I can't remember lines of dialogue, and I'd love to get hold of a copy of the script. I didn't go into the movie with the idea of reviewing it, so I wasn't prepared to take notes.

There was of course the inevitable incident where a kid comes off as morally superior to his parent, in this case the fascist Sour Kangaroo mother (Carol Burnett) - and playing like Hillary Clinton - is disobeyed by her oppressed son, who was "pouch schooled" (and, presumably, socially retarded.) There was also a contrived scene where Horton extends an olive branch to his tormentor that was less than satisfying, but the writers mocked liberal bromides throughout and got it mostly right. The scene where Mrs. Kangaroo was attempting to convince Horton to change "for the children" was particularly amusing.

In another shot across the bow of our materialistic would-be overlords, the evil Sour Kangaroo tells Horton, "If you can't hear, see or feel something, it does not exist." Of course, Horton knows different, he's heard the Whos, and, of course, "A person's a person, no matter how small." Horton's faithfulness in the face of peer pressure and even oppression by the community - Sour Kangaroo comes across as the president of the neighborhood association from Hell and it is Horton's neighbors who cage him and poke him with sticks as he strives mightily to keep his promise to the Whos to keep them safe. "I meant what I said, and I said what I meant. An elephant's faithful, 100 percent," says Horton, who certainly is faithful.

The tribute to REO Speedwagon's "I Can't Fight This Feeling Anymore" was cringeworthy, and came completely out of left field, almost as if they had to emulate Shrek or something. I could have lived without that, but otherwise take the kids to see Horton.


Sunday, March 16, 2008



This is one of the few times I've been able to get Kiera to hold still. Unfortunately, it's in a low light area from about 10 feet away, so it's not the best shot in the world. Her cuteness comes out anyway!

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Saturday, March 15, 2008


Danger, Men Cooking...again!

Today was my first day off in a couple of weeks, so I relaxed in my
favorite room in the house by cooking.

Fried 'taters with red onions w/salt, pepper and garlic in olive oil...

On the plate with French toast and scrambled eggs and sausage...


Friday, March 14, 2008


Cat was here...

Used to be a, just feathers.

Not a great pic; took it with my cell phone


Thursday, March 13, 2008


Why are we there again?

My nephew, Nick, called my brother this afternoon. His Bradley ran over an IED this morning and it blew. The Bradley rolled over and was burning. Nick's sergeant pulled an unconscious Nick out of the wreckage. I guess the sergeant got his knee taken out.

At least they're alive, if bruised and battered. The Bradley also ran over an IED yesterday, but it didn't go off until after the Bradley was by it. He's in Diyala Province, which seems to be a hot spot. Twelve (I've only been able to find reference to 8) American GI's got killed in that area yesterday. They've been seeing a lot of action.

Update: 3/16

Talked to my brother yesterday, Nick still has tinnitus and he's a little sore, but otherwise as good as can be expected


An excuse, sorta...

Besides my normal duties, since last Wednesday I've been coordinating technician training at the shop - buying tables and chairs, setting up, providing refreshment, coordinating the IT guys, getting the facility ready and just chasing down problems. I've got a month of preparation in this and I'm pleased that week one went of without a hitch. After five straight days of 13 hours or better, I'm ready for a break. One month to go!

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Wednesday, March 12, 2008


Monitor Tavern

The only tavern I've ever been in where being at least a little drunk is actually an aid to navigation.... Notice that there is no step. The chair to the right of the table in the background is actually the low point. Last week it had standing water.

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Tuesday, March 11, 2008


Demonrats have a problem...


Do they vote for the nut with two boobs?

Or the boob with two nuts?


Monday, March 10, 2008


Keys to the, umm, fiefdom?

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Sunday, March 09, 2008


Funny faces...

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Friday, March 07, 2008


Yep. I'm Catholic.


Thursday, March 06, 2008



He's officially 4 today!

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Today it's my Birthday!

For about three weeks, Ethan and Ward are the same age.
Mom has a "special day" for each of them on their birthdays
and a combined big party for both, which was last Sunday.
Today is Ethan's special day.

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Wednesday, March 05, 2008


Speaking of crap...

Through rain, slow, sleet or black of night,
nothing prevents these terriers from the not-so-swift
completion of their appointed rounds...
@#$% dog...

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Tuesday, March 04, 2008


Liberal Fascism

Jonah Goldberg's Liberal Fascism is a highly readable and well-researched book, and yet I can sum it up in two sentences:

1.) Progressives in all their political incarnations from the Jacobins to the Nazi's to the Fascists to Communists to Socialists to crusaders for the Social Gospel share a common ideological heritage and a murderous history.

2.) A little fascism is okay, as long as one agrees with the Glorious Leader's - or whatever social do-goodism suffices for a moral imperative - stated goals and it's for the right reasons.

Most any libertarian* not named Noam Chomsky could have saved you the trouble of reading Goldberg's book and told you the same thing. In the meantime, progressives of whatever ilk go about blithely increasing the power of government in the Pursuit of Heaven on Earth or some other enlightened vision of the perfectability of Man** and virtually no-one asks:

So what happens if the wrong Glorious Leader gets power?

It's not like Goldberg lacks for examples of totalitarianism run amok. Every abuse of liberty from the Reign of Terror to Buchenwald to the gulags and the unconstututional excesses of virtually every president - Republican or Democrat - since Wilson's abortive fascist experiment has followed in the Progressive goosestep. How he reaches the conclusion he does seems to me like a cognitive disconnect on his part.

All that said, I recommend Liberal Fascism. That Goldberg reaches a flawed conclusion doesn't mean I don't appreciate the service he has done in laying out an easily followed argument that modern American liberals - who are really anything but - and conservatives are really fruits of the same ideological tree. Scoop Jackson and Patrick Moynihan would have been perfectly at home in today's Republican Party. Unfortunately, libertarians aren't.

*that is a "classical liberal," or presumably a Randian. I really need to reread Ayn Rand. I suffered through The Fountainhead and a large chunk of Atlas Shrugged in high school - trust me, it wasn't part of the curriculum - but I wasn't ready for the ideas - probable - or maybe it was only because I was already radicalized to the left. Hey, this was 30-odd years ago; I thought Nixon was a righty. We grow too late smart and too soon old.

**In the collective, of course. Damned few people seem to be interested in perfecting themselves.

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Walked out the door at work to find...

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Monday, March 03, 2008


Interlude V

February 27, 28 and 29 were the end of Hell Week. Friday night ended with a visit from the local PD as we caught a guy breaking into a customer's trailer. Other than that, I was pretty much locked in at work or sleeping. There are only so many pictures of broken trucks I can post...

I didn't log on to a computer for fun until after midnight on March 3rd. I did get pix for March 1 and 2, so I posted them.

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Sunday, March 02, 2008


Warm enough, and time...

Once again, the worst part of the ride was getting out of the driveway. A quick thaw turns it into muck. Once on the road, it was a great day for a ride. Still plenty of snow cover in the valleys, though:

The road goes on forever...

A variation on the mirror self-portrait...

In the Wildcat Valley at Adams Mill covered bridge...

The bridge...

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Saturday, March 01, 2008


There was beer involved...

Grilled hotdogs for Ethan's and Ward's birthday party.
This was set up outside the hall that #2 daughter rented for the occasion.

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