Archive for May, 2013

Our Tropical Season Preparedness

We endured a rather horrific series of three-day weekends in the recent past with the grandchildren present when it was pouring rain outside and the pitter patter of energetic little feet racing around was confined to the inside. We all survived due to the occasional distraction of computer games and television. I believe we watched 99 episodes of Dora the Explorer in a row. Even now, I spontaneously burst into singing the Dora the Explorer song.

The old school clunky television died after a lightning strike a couple of weeks ago. SwampMan watches tv on his computer, so he didn’t suffer too much. I don’t get to watch tv since I never get control of the remote, so I certainly didn’t.

We were lazily discussing getting a replacement. We looked at them in a few different places. SwampMan wants a big screen flat television that costs somewhere around the GDP of a small African country. I pointed out that we actually don’t HAVE the GDP of a small African country. “I will get it and make payments!” he said confidently. “LIKE HELL YOU WILL!” I counter offered. “FINE. I’ll pay cash at Walmart.” Well, that was fine with me, I told him. “After all, we can both get by just fine without eating for six to eight weeks.”

So, that was how the situation was in television land. A complete standoff between both parties with no possibility of victory for either side. Then the unexpected occurred. SwampDaughter called and said that SwampSon-In-Law had been promoted at work! “Woohooo!” I said. Then I heard the downside: He’d be working every Saturday except for drill weekends, so the kids would be here every weekend (and on Thursday) in perpetuity and, of course, the boys want to be here for three weeks at a time in the summer. Rain was in the forecast for this weekend. And there’s possibly a tropical something brewing in the gulf that could impact us in @ a week.

SwampMan and I looked at each other. “Oh, CRAP!” we uttered nearly simultaneously. “We need a television NOW!” Yes, we’re awful for using the television for a babysitter during stormy times. It saves wear and tear on the furniture and young bodies, for the kids will jump off the furniture onto each other to entertain themselves when they are stuck inside. It also distracts them from loading viruses onto my computer in their covert search for computer games that MeeMaw Would Not Like. SwampMan lets the boys play things like Call of Duty, games that neither I nor SwampDaughter approve, so the boys are not allowed to use his computer. Devious bastard.

So, we made an emergency compromise. SwampMan has a bigger screen than previously, but not ginormous. It also has a much better picture than the late old television. However, it’s an old school clunky television, which means that we nearly got double hernias carrying that sumbitch into the house. However, it only cost us $30.00 at a thrift store. He’s happier with the bigger screen, better picture, and that only he knows how to operate the (universal) remote that isn’t universal. I’m happy that the month of July may include food.

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Remember The Fallen

From one of my favorite movies:

Introducing Sergeant Major Plumley

Any o’ you sumbitches call me grandpa, I’ll kill you!

And the real men they were based on:

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Happy Birthday, SwampDaughter!

Jenny's Bday 2013Happy Birthday to a most beautiful and talented daughter. You are loved very much!

I’m afraid this is actually more how SwampDaughter feels this morning after working the night shift:

Booboos SwampDaughter helps with on the night shift:What SwampDaughter does on her birthday

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Dylan’s Kindergarten Graduation

Jenny and Zoe and Dylan's Kindergarten graduationDylan's kindergarten graduationDylan’s kindergarten graduation was this morning, so naturally the ol’ Ford truck and I traveled somewhat beyond the speed limit in order to make it on time.

Little Miss Zoe was a lil’ tired grumpy girl this morning. We were glared at from under lowered brows with a little pooched out bottom lip several times. She dressed herself in a pink camouflage skirt and a black, pink, purple, and blue shirt. They did not match in any way, shape or form. She threw a hissy when Mommy wanted to change her clothes, so off we went. She immediately fell down and skinned her knees as soon as we went out the front door. Yes, she inherited my grace in movement.

If you wonder at Zoe’s lack of fashion sense, wonder no more. MeeMaw here was wearing a green camouflage shirt, pants of a slightly different yet not matching green hue, and white tennis shoes with pink and white socks. It was not a pretty sight. I ran into the house after SwampMan left and I’d let the sheep out to graze and fed the lambs, some of the chickens, ducks, and rabbits, and ran into the house shedding clothes on my way to the shower. The clothes I was planning on wearing had gotten crumpled in the closet, so I grabbed what was hanging near them, dressed hurriedly, and ran out the door without so much as drying my hair or putting on any sort of makeup to ease the eyes of my fellow humans.

Mommy looked down at Zoe’s hair flying wildly in divergent directions. She looked at my hair. She sighed, and said “She REALLY DID get your hair!” Hunh. I guess my hair was doing its Albert Einstein look-alike thing again. Dang. Poor Zoe’s hair is curly in some places and absolutely straight in others. It flips up over her ears. Daughter used to absolutely HATE that in my hair. “WHY in the world do you fix your hair like that?” she would ask. “I don’t. It just DOES it on its own!” I would protest. “Well, you need to DO SOMETHING!” she would say. “It looks HORRIBLE!” Grin. The ONLY THING to do about it is to either let it grow so long that the weight of it pulls the weird curl out, or cut it off. This is why my hair is about an inch long (Look! No curls!) yet STILL unruly.

Mommy just lets her hair drip dry out of the shower, probably didn’t even brush it, and it fell in soft beautiful waves. Perhaps one day Zoe and I will get together and shave her head when Zoe gets older.

Dylan (in the blue shirt) was his little mischievous self albeit on his best behavior after the 911 call last week. I am so proud of our little first grader! Well, we assume he’s going to be a first grader. I anxiously asked that very question of his Mommy when we were there. She said “Well, he’s with the rest, so I guess he’s going to first grade!”

“Um, would they tell little kindergarteners ‘No, you can’t participate, because YOU FAILED?'”

“I would think probably not!” she said, after reflection.

“Yeah, I wouldn’t think so, either.”

We pondered that for awhile until I realized that they would have sent Mommy a notice of retention if he were being held back. We do not doubt his intelligence; it’s just that it is very hard to be five years old, filled with energy, and to have to sit inside and be quiet and work for very long.

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Happy 9th Birthday, Jacob!

Jacob's 9th birthday

Happy 9th Birthday to my oldest grandson! I can still remember his daddy and mommy bringing his little self (well, okay, BIG self) home from the hospital. Where does the time go?

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Prayers for Moore, Oklahoma

http://kfor.com/on-air/live-streaming/

I’ve been watching the local news channels (via computer) out of Oklahoma. Like many of you, I watched the tornado touch down live via stormchaser camera yesterday.

I thank God that so many people survived what looked to be an unsurvivable event.

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Why Won’t My Keyboard Button Thingamajig Work?

SwampMan was complaining loudly to himself. “This button USED to work, but NOOOOOOO. It doesn’t work now. It hasn’t worked for a long time through different computers, and I’d like to know why the hell not!” STABSTABSTABSTABSTAB at the button because physical abuse always makes electronic things work.

“Did you look it up online?” I asked, rudely interrupting his soliloquy cuss session.

“No. What good would that do? It has been a long time since that thing worked.”

“So I heard. Is it your new keyboard?”

“No, damnit. The button hasn’t worked for YEARS. This is a new keyboard.”

“So, what version of Windows you got?”

“Windows XP.”

Ah, yes. He’d ordered a refurbished computer for his shop because he wanted to keep XP; his house computer also has XP. It makes moving things back and forth easier. I’d been typing into the search engine while we were speaking and had the answer in about ten seconds. “Well, there’s your problem right here. That button doesn’t work directly with XP.”

SwampMan muttered something that sounded suspiciously like “bullshit”.

“Humor me. Hit the button, then press start, then all programs, then accessories….”

He stabbed the keys with unnecessary vigor following my directions, then there was a muttered “Well I’ll be a (very rude and offensive expletive)!”

Ah, apparently we were successful in our endeavor.

“Isn’t it interesting”, I continued, “what we find out if we actually look it up?”

More muttered rude words. Not to worry, though. Tomorrow he’ll probably be saying something like “Isn’t it INTERESTING how much money we can save if we do not hit things with a hammer when they malfunction?” to me, unless he recalls in time that his knees have been malfunctioning for years.

Ah, well. He may still be a little aggravated at me from earlier today. He was worrying aloud about the CNC not working with the new (refurbished) computer, mentioned how he had checked settings several times, and was just about to start checking all his connections to make sure he had power to all of them.

“Oh!” I remarked helpfully, although he had not asked for any. “Did you check to see if you have enough RAM?”

He actually rolled his eyes at me. “What, do you think I’m stupid? Of COURSE!”

“Did you reconnect everything to see if it worked with the old computer again after you got everything disconnected and reconnected to the new computer and it didn’t work?” I’m definitely not a repairman, and I am lazy, so I like to make sure that what I’m putting forth a lot of effort and brainwork into is actually the problem.

He blinked. “Well, no….”

“It’s just me, but I’d like to make sure that the computer or a cable isn’t the problem first before I go tearing things down.” SwampMan likes to tear things down. Well, so do I, but all that is left are teensy little molecule-sized pieces when I do it. He actually takes things apart and puts them back together in working condition, and I just gaze at him adoringly because he’s my hero.

“I never even thought of THAT because everything is supposed to be new. Good idea!”

It turned out that it was a dead parallel port in the refurbished computer. Not to worry. SwampMan throws NOTHING away because he may need it someday. He’s got eight or so old computers sitting around to strip parts out of. He’s very happy that he gets to tear down things after all.

Crossposted at Nuke’s.

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Mommy and Daddy Had an Interesting Morning!

Dylan's 6th birthdayDylan just turned six years old last week. He is an interesting child. A *very* interesting child. He likes to do experiments and see what will happen.

Well. He has said something in the past about calling 9-1-1 when he is mad. Mommy told him not to do such a thing. He wanted to know why, so his Mommy told him that the police officers that showed up would be angry if this was not an emergency.

Well. Dylan thought about that for awhile, and eventually decided that, like the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus, this was just another fairy tale that adults told little children. So, when Mommy was asleep from her night shift and Daddy was watching the kids, Dylan called 911 to see what would happen.

Guess what? The police DID show up at the door. He got lectured by a policeman. Then, when the policeman left, he got his bottom spanked by his daddy, and he had to stay in his room all day to think about his misdeeds. Personally, I think that may have been a bad thing. He probably used the time to plan even more misdeeds (grin). He’s not supposed to play with his friends or watch TV or do a lot of other stuff for two whole weeks.

Mommy was *VERY* exasperated as she relayed all of this to me. This was all familiar territory to me, though. When Mommy was a little toddler, I told her NOT to touch the space heater as I reached into the bathtub to pull her brother out. “Don’t TOUCH! It’s HOT! It will hurt you!” “HOT!” she repeated, and deliberately put her hand on the space heater just because I said not to. She had grill marks after that, and a new appreciation for the word “hot”. We spent a lot of time in the ER when she was smaller. I had serious doubts about her surviving childhood because if her injuries (from doing things we told her not to) didn’t kill her, I might.

So, daughter, give him a break (a leg would be fine). He’s JUST LIKE YOU! There’s a reason my hair is gray, you know.

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SwampMan Better Beware!

This is really more of a Monday morning than a Friday night song but what the hell. I’m not working right now so I can be grumpy any damn day I want.

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Oh, Yeah, Janet Lied, Too.

Apparently all of Obama’s cabinet heads are habitual liars. It is almost as though they’d been chosen for that quality or something. Nah. Couldn’t be. Or could it?

Under pressure from lawmakers, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has disclosed new details about the criminal backgrounds of some of the approximately 2,200 immigration detainees let out of custody in February in anticipation of spending cuts, revealing that 32 of the 622 convicted criminals released nationwide had multiple felony convictions.

Several of those with felony convictions were released in Arizona, according to a briefing made to a Capitol Hill investigatory panel.

One had been convicted of a felony charge of second-degree robbery and had multiple convictions for prostitution and lewd conduct.

Another detainee released in Arizona had a felony conviction for extreme driving under the influence.

A third had felony convictions for carrying a loaded firearm, DUI with a controlled substance and felony possession of drugs, among others.

The new details raised more questions about the decision in February by Immigration and Custom Enforcement officials to release 2,226 immigration detainees from facilities in Arizona and several other states in order to slow rising detention costs in the face of $300 million in automatic budget cuts known as the sequester, which kicked in March 1.

During two congressional hearings in March, ICE Director John Morton insisted that only detainees who did not pose a threat to public safety were released and that all remained under supervision.

But information released by DHS officials in response to requests from the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations shows that ICE has taken back into custody 58 of the convicted criminals released nationally after a review showed the seriousness of their offenses.

It took DHS officials nearly three months to release details about the criminal backgrounds, and the information was disclosed only after the subcommittee threatened to subpoena DHS officials, according to Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., the ranking GOP member of the subcommittee, and Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., the chairman.

McCain, who this year has been leading a bipartisan Senate effort to enact comprehensive immigration-reform legislation, blasted President Barack Obama’s administration over the ICE releases and raised questions about Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano’s role or lack of it.

Napolitano has said she didn’t learn about the lower-level decision until after it happened.

Read the rest of the whole sorry story at the link above. Basically, it says that Janet, although she denies it, put a lot of people at risk from dangerous felons so that she could score political points for her master Obama in order to claim it was because Republicans made them do it.

Hey, how’s that working out again?

So, we’ve got liars from the IRS, the DHS, the DoJ, the HHS, the EPA, the State Department…well, my goodness. And they ALL did this absolutely on their own, with nobody telling them to do it.

Sounds like somebody is so incompetent he should be fired immediately because he had nothing to do with ANY of this.

Of course, he’s already been caught in so many lies, we don’t believe a word he says.

If anybody has a breakdown as to which states the felons were released in, let me know. I’d like to know whether felons were predominately released in red states.

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