Happy Independence Day! And don’t forget to lecture your family about Obamacare

Happy Independence Day all!

I’ll be doing the usual 4th activities: Passing around a replica of the Declaration of Independence while grilling dinner and later taunting a giant bag of fireworks with my usual “I don’t need all ten fingers anyway” attitude.

Oh, and don’t forget that the Obama administration would appreciate it if you would try to get your relatives to drop lit Roman Candles down your pants by lecturing them about the awesomeness of Obamacare. In my family that kind of thing would get you pantsed and thrown into the river… maybe worse:

Lest we forget though, this is what it’s really all about:

A sign from the sump pump

You might have noticed that posting has been light of late (mostly here but also at MM.com in the past couple of days). My father passed away late Saturday night/early Sunday morning after a long decline from Alzheimer’s and related problems.

He was a proud Air Force veteran and successful business executive who loved his family, country and the outdoors.

Quick background on this “signs” story: When I was growing up, our house (which my mother still lives in) had a sump pump, like many do. It’s an area where the ground can get very damp and if a sump pump isn’t maintained, there will be problems.

I remember one time, probably back in the late 1970’s or so, coming home from vacation to find the basement to be knee-deep with water. I used to like to watch my dad fiddle with the sump pump, replace it when necessary, and check to make sure it was working properly on a daily basis. In other words, if story of the area of my dad’s life that concerns household machinery had been written by Herman Melville, my father would have been Captain Ahab and the sump pump would have been his “white whale.” I learned all of my sump pump tech skills from him.

On the other hand, the house I’ve now lived in with my family for about 15 years has a fairly dry basement, but we do have a sump pump. As a matter of fact, I replaced it last year and alerted Mystery Science Theater 3000 alum Mike Nelson that the old sump pump looked familiar:

I’m guessing that also closely resembles what Hillary’s email server looks like.

I hadn’t had much trouble with the new sump pump that I replaced that with, other than some tweaking here and there.

Okay, here’s the “signs” part: My dad passed away very early Sunday morning. Later in the morning, knowing my sister was coming over with other company (where we would talk about dad while watching Michigan State clinch a Final Four appearance — WOOT!), my wife suggested we serve a ham we had in the basement freezer. When I went downstairs to get it, I heard a loud buzzing sound and traced it to the laundry room. Looking at the corner of the room, the sump hole was full of water and the pump wasn’t working. I unplugged the pump, pulled it from the hole, drained it, let it cool down and then tried it again — and it worked.

A “sign” from my dad, or just a happy coincidence? In either case, it brought back great memories when they were needed most.

I’ll be back to as close to full speed as possible before too long (“full speed” for me defined as about 70 percent — I’m a big believer in not burning your reserves).

This spring, the weather watches and warnings we get on occasion might provide an opportunity for further tribute to my dad: I’ll pour a gin & tonic over the rocks and go stand in the driveway looking for tornadoes after ordering the rest of the family into the basement for safety… and to make sure the sump pump is working.


Update: In hindsight maybe I should have mentioned the sump pump in dad’s obituary, but it’s still not bad.

Happy Mother’s Day! Unfortunately some have made it ‘National Irony Day’

To all you moms out there, including my own, not to mention the mother of my four great kids, thanks for all you’ve done, are doing and will do.

Unfortunately, because of people and organizations like late term abortion advocate Wendy Davis, NARAL and Planned Parenthood, this day is also known as “National Irony Day”:

I noticed that the moms of every single person in those tweets chose life.

And with that in mind…

“The greatest destroyer of peace is abortion because if a mother can kill her own child, what is left for me to kill you and you to kill me? There is nothing between.”

— Mother Teresa

Vacation time: Fleeing to warmer climes

Thanks to global warming or something, this winter has dragged on far to long and far too cold for my own liking.

With that in mind, my family is temporarily evacuating to the tropics. For the most part it’ll be an “off the grid” vacay, but check that Twitter feed up there to the left for occasional updates, provided the beach sand doesn’t ruin my iPhone.

Be back about a week from Saturday. Take care all!

Quick New Year’s Eve site note

Happy New Year’s Eve!

At some point in the next day or so, this site will be switching to a new server. Huge thanks to Mike Lasalle for his expertise and efforts in making the change.

We’ve been through this drill before. Sometimes it takes a day or two for things to settle back to normal. We’ll see.

If there’s any down time, remember you can still catch me over at Michelle’s site.

Have a great New Year’s Eve all! We have some fireworks left over from the 4th of July, so if you hear anything loud tonight, it’s just us blowing stuff up.

Merry Christmas from the dark ages

Merry Christmas! And contrary to how it may seem, I’m not dead. Yet.

Last Thursday night we got a nasty winter storm, and then on Friday night an ice storm came through and caused some serious damage. Much of the area remains without power and downed trees make some places look like a tornado blew through. We were lucky in that we only lost power temporarily, but the internet connection has been pretty much gone since Saturday morning. It’s just now starting to come back to life. Even some of my backup areas (library, coffee shop, etc) didn’t have internet. So it’s ended up being an unintended mini-vacation. I’ve gone through so much driveway salt that even the driveway has even melted.

Because of the low temps most of the trees remain covered in a quarter inch to a half inch of ice, because of global warming or something.

Hope you all are enjoying the holidays with your families, and hopefully I’ll be back up and running permanently soon. I’ve never seen an outage this lengthy.

For now, I’ll let cousin Eddie bring this one home before my connection goes down again:

Countdown to the Next Chapter

Today is my final day working at my job of 20 years… and five months, but who’s counting? (If you don’t know what I’m talking about, click here)

I plan to take somewhere in the neighborhood of a week off to get some rest after burning the candle at both ends for so long, though I’ll still be blogging on a fairly regular basis at Michelle’s and a little here during “vacation” time (I’m not traveling anywhere… I’ll just be wandering around the house for a few days in a silk bathrobe and smoking a pipe like Hef).

After that I have some things brewing that I’ll announce soon enough but can’t yet. Until then I’ll have much more time to focus on blogging, and I’m looking forward to saving some serious money on gas (I drive over 300 miles a week going to and from the TV station).

Soon I’m meeting some friends for a farewell drink, and I doubt the word “drink” will stay in the singular for long but we’ll see.

I’ll be back here tomorrow, and feel free to discuss whatever’s in the news. If I get a chance I’m going to try and get to this as soon as possible.

Have a great Friday, all! As always, thanks for reading and keeping the place lively.

We’re Baaaack!


Ok, here’s what happened: This domain name is registered through Dotster, and somehow the nameservers (that point the domain on which servers to go to in order to access the site when you try to load it) got deleted from Dotster. Problem was, I lost the primary and secondary nameserver addresses. So I had to contact the person who runs the server this site is on so he could remind me of the addresses, which took a couple of days. Then, after I re-entered the nameservers at Dotster, they took a day or so to re-absorb into the etherworld.

Anyway, here we are again!

Here’s something to kick the day off: Janet Napolitano said that the Boston Marathon bombing is not part of a larger plot, but that they still have no idea who’s responsible for it. That’s like saying “I have no idea who broke into my house and stole my stuff, but there’s no indication that it’ll happen to anybody else.”

I sleep better at night knowing J-Napster is at the security helm.

Onward Definitely, Upward Perhaps, and Maybe a Little Bit Sideways…

Any of you who I’ve had the pleasure of having as “regulars” here have probably noticed that I rarely talk about my personal life. I’ve always wanted the focus to be on the issues of the day and an occasional fun aside instead of things like what I had for breakfast or the fact that my oldest son (17 going on 18) just got accepted into the National Honors Society (quite the accomplishment for the son of a guy who barely graduated high school “Thank You Laude” as Bill Cosby used to say).

So here’s happening: For the past 20 years, my “day job” has been working in varying capacities at a network affiliated television station here in Michigan, mostly as a department head and for a couple of years in the mid-2000’s as a Station Manager. There is a mass consolidation taking place all across the broadcast industry — centralization is the “expense cutting du jour” and it’s happening where I work. Imagine the chuckle I got when — three days after the re-election of Barack Obama — I was told I was losing my job. I’ve been writing about that happening to others for so long I guess somebody decided I got a taste of it myself. I wasn’t very surprised because I know what’s been going on in the industry, and it’s been going in that direction since well before Obama’s election, but the timing was comically symbolic.

I was told back in November that I’d be finished at the station by the end of January (they’re being very generous with severance so they really got no complaints from me). All I had to so was help prepare things for “hubbing,” meaning my workload will increase as people are eliminated until it’s my time to go, when the centralized hub takes over. Well, the date has been delayed and delayed (as they slowly realize they made a huge mistake but have invested too much in centralization to turn around now), and at this point it’s looking like I’ll be done with my “day job” toward the end of April.

As I mentioned, my workload and hours are actually increasing until ultimately somebody else takes it all over. In essence I’ve been asked to dig my own grave and then stand in front of the hole and wait for the bang. This means my blogging time for the next few weeks will be decreased significantly. I already burn the candle at both ends quite a bit (between that job, blogging at Michelle’s and here) and there just won’t be enough hours in the day in April. So I’m happy to announce that Joyanna Adams has graciously accepted my offer to guest blog here in April. I first got to know Joyanna back when we both blogged at MensNewsDaily.com, and have always admired her unique and original approach to the subjects she writes about. I’ll still pop in from time to time.

Long term: Losing my main source of income for the last two decades with three kids to feed and send through school is — believe it or not — a good thing in my case. In the short term, after I’m finished there, I’ll have much more time to devote to writing and blogging, and I also have another career option more closely related to what I love doing, but nothing’s finalized yet — I’ll announce that only after it’s a done deal. Over the years I had a few job offers related to the field of writing and editing that I turned down because of the security of my “day job” (and in one case because I didn’t want to move my family to Washington, DC) but recently somebody made the decision for me — and I guess that job wasn’t so “secure” after all. Plus I spend five hours a week just driving to work and back home — half of a work-day per week wasted in a car. I’m looking forward to getting that time back and applying it elsewhere.

I’ll still keep this site going, though it may slow down just a bit, and I’ll be continuing to write at Michelle Malkin’s blog as long as she’s good enough to keep me around (I’m eternally grateful to Michelle and her husband Jesse for the opportunity). As I mentioned, in April all bets are off as to the amount of time I’ll be able to devote to blogging on any venue). Starting in May, the new adventure begins. Until then I’ll be tapering off just a bit, but I didn’t want anybody thinking I was giving up. Soon I’ll have more time than ever to devote to what I’ve grown to love doing, as well as to do it more in depth.

Thanks for listening, and thanks even more for the support and great comments over the months and years!

Merry Christmas!


A very merry Christmas to everybody!

I’ll be spending the day with the family, and hope you all get a chance to do the same. The kids have already torn through the gifts, and in a while my wife and I will be trying to make the perfect prime rib. Fingers crossed. But if it doesn’t work out, I understand McDonalds is open today.

Have a great day, all! And prayers for the troops who are unable to spend today with their families. God bless them.