Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Another Day, Another Dollar

Off in  few to start the fifth day in a row at work. I still have two more in the stretch of seven in a row. Hard day yesterday...I thought most folks would take the day off and sit around the grill and drink all day. No, they were at Home Depot buying mulch, pine straw and Goddess knows what else...horrible busy. No break in the hot weather either and the forecast today is for 94 or so. Makes working in the garden center a huge party.

So tired yesterday when I got home at 730p that I put dinner in the oven and after a large martini fell asleep. Madam woke me to inform me that I had toasted dinner completely. Shame too, since part of it was our first Japanese eggplant of the season and some very expensive Reggiano. Cold cereal for dinner as a result.

Everyone enjoy the first day of a short work week and the 'unofficial' beginning of summer.

Monday, May 30, 2011


I think it is funny/sad that in their effort to out "asshole" the Arizona GOP our own GOP here in Georgia passed an immigration bill (HR87) modeled after the Arizona one giving the police the right to hassle anyone they think might be illegal. Even though it doesn't go into effect until July it is already causing a huge number of migrant farm workers to avoid coming to Georgia to pick vegetables and fruit out of fear of being targeted though most are here legally. The net result is 500 million dollars or more worth of Georgia crops are going to go unpicked and spoil in the fields.


It's Memorial Day so don't forget to put out the flag. All of you who don't have to work today and will be enjoying your day off take a few minutes out of the burgers and beer to remember the purpose of the holiday. The official "moment of silence" is at three pm but sometime today pause and give thanks to all those who have served and lost their lives in service to our country. Regardless of your feelings about any given war or conflict nothing should diminish our respect and gratitude for those who have lost their lives or been disabled in our service.
Since I have to work today please have a cold adult beverage of your choice for me and I like my cheeseburger with mustard, onion, pickle, and the lettuce and tomato are optional. If its hot dogs then mustard and onion, slaw and chili if available. Enjoy your holiday.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Memorial Day

Memorial Day is really an odd holiday. While it is a day reserved for honoring those killed in action defending our nation from aggressors it is also a day that, for many, symbolizes the first day of summer. Schools are letting out, municipal pools open, everyone makes an effort to haul out the old grill and burn something dead. To a large degree I think many people overlook the actual purpose of the holiday.

Thank you for your sacrifice both yours and your family's. I think the best way for us to recognize the magnitude of sacrifice so many have made in defense of our country would be for us to GET THE HELL OUT OF IRAQ AND AFGHANISTAN NOW! Both are costing us precious lives and both were wrong from the outset. The treasure of lives being wasted and resources being squandered is unforgivable.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Water Controlled

The heavy rains the other night proved my water control strategy for the garden. No flooding and my "moat" diverted all the runoff from the neighbor's scorched earth back yard around the garden. It was worth the day spent digging the "moat". Lot's of growth in the garden with all the rain. Spent the morning redirecting tomato plants back into their cages and the like. Lots of small green tomatoes, a few tiny cukes and at least one zucchini and a couple of Japanese eggplant. Really disappointed in a new variety of yellow squash I planted this year. It's called'Horn of Plenty" but it is not growing and looks terrible. The zucchini planted next to it and at the same time are four times larger and blooming. I guess I am going to have to replant some of the old traditional "Yellow Crookneck" if I am to have yellow squash.
Off to work the noon to 9pm shift at you know where in a few minutes but at least I got a little garden time in this morning.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Terrorists, Plain and Simple

Republicans are terrorists. It's pretty obvious when you consider what they are doing with respect to the debt ceiling vote. Steve Benen at the Washington Monthly points out how “McConnell puts Medicare in the ransom note“:
The Republican debt-ceiling strategy hasn’t been subtle: GOP officials are threatening to cause a recession, on purpose, unless Democrats give them the spending cuts they want. It’s Hostage Taking 101…

Today, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) went much further in clarifying what’s on the ransom note.
In a Capitol briefing with reporters Friday, McConnell declared affirmatively that unspecified Medicare cuts are on the table in bipartisan debt limit negotiations, led by Vice President Joe Biden, and, he expects, will be part of the solution. But in response to a question from TPM, he went further than he has in the past in laying down a marker on that issue. Medicare cuts must be part of that deal to get his support — even if negotiators manage to find trillions of dollars in savings elsewhere, even if his other priorities are met.

“To get my vote, for me, it’s going to take short term [cuts, via spending caps]… Both medium and long-term, entitlements.,” McConnell said. “Medicare will be part of the solution.”

To clarify, I asked “To clarify, if [the Biden group] comes up with big cuts, trillions of dollars worth of cuts, but without substantially addressing Medicare, it won’t get your vote?”

“Correct,” McConnell said.
You need to read this carefully as this is no small thing.  Here is the Senate’s leading Republican saying,  that without Medicare cuts, he’ll try to create an economic calamity on purpose..and this is regardless of what other cuts might be made.

While we don't have any details about what kind of cuts McConnell has in mind it is very telling that he has put it out on the table that killing Medicare is all the GOP really cares about. The Democrats need to ride this horse over and over and they need to let the public know that Senate Republicans will create a recession unless Democrats agree to Medicare cuts.

Te definition of terrorism is "The use of violence and intimidation in the pursuit of political aims." The proper response on the part of Democrats and the President is  ‘We don’t negotiate with terrorists‘.

Thursday, May 26, 2011


Before I head off to bed I thought I would just note that all of the GOP are insane and mean to boot. If you voted for the GOP in the last election you are a cretin and I sincerely hope you reap the full measure of their insanity as you deserve it. Just sayin'.

Getting Smaller

I'm a big guy...always have been. I come from a family of big guys. Since I started my part time job(which somehow manages to be 40+ hours a week) I have lost 20+ pounds and while I am still a big guy I had to break down today and go buy some shorts that would fit. Six foot two and 245 I have a bit of a gut so I am now fitting nicely into size 46. Yeah, it is still tubby but an improvement. Madam made me go through my closet today and get rid of anything that doesn't fit and I made a major dent. Lots of 52 belts and 50 pants will find their way to the charity tomorrow.

I did have the day off today but I am scheduled for the next 7 days straight and most if not all are in outside garden...which is hard work. I'll survive but it will be a challenge.It still surprises me how much money the folks are spending on their landscaping. While some includes veges and herbs most in not edible,.

Good work in the garden today. Everything watered,even though we are now getting the forecast rain. Some weeding and tying up of peppers and tomatoes. I really need to take a picture as it actually looks pretty good considering the lack of time I have to work in it. Props to Madam for all her help.

Well it is 9pm and bed time as I have to be up at 5am. As usual I only made a small dent in the "tubes" and all those messages hanging fire will just have to wait. Spring will be over soon and I will be back to 24 or 32 hours a week and I can give this place a little attention.

Monday, May 23, 2011

First Monday

I have the day off for the first Monday of the world that didn't end. Actually Armageddon did begin last Saturday but no one noticed since it wasn't any different from any other day. Jesus looked around at all the self proclaimed born again Christians but couldn't find anyone that met the criteria for rapture. He decided to go to drinking instead and wound up the day with a major buzz and a hooker with a "heart o' gold" in a nice little dive in Porto Vallarta. Reports are, that said hooker has had a radiant smile ever since so maybe at least one person got "raptured" Saturday. 

Anyhow, I got up and got dressed thinking I had to spend the morning getting my starboard hearing aid repaired as it seemed to have stopped working yesterday afternoon. To my surprise it was working fine this morning. It might have just needed a rest. So I have the rest of the day to whatever, I'll probably wind up in the garden but it is nice to be a bit at loose ends after the weeks and weeks of "no time,no time".

Not good news on the weather front. Joplin got whacked hard last evening by a tornado and they expect to find more bodies. Already they are counting 89 dead. We have good friends that live just South of there in Bella Vista, AR. but it looks like they were spared any damage. Seems like the tornadoes are just a bit fiercer these days but I am sure it has nothing to do with Global Climate Weirdness.

The good news is that flooding in the Atchafalaya River Basin is not going to be as bad as feared. The ground is evidently a lot drier than the last time the gates of the Morganza were opened and the gates are being opened gradually enough that the river basin is managing. Here is hoping for the best. Regardless, it is only a matter of time before the Big Muddy makes the Atchafalaya River Basin its permanent home as that it where it wants to be. The Moganza spillway is attempt by the Corps of Engineers to keep Baton Rouge and New Orleans on the Mississippi in spite of the river's wishes....good luck with that.

Off to do something with my day off. Oh! and don't look at the financial markets this morning. Both Greece and Italy's credit ratings took a hit late last week and it isn't pretty and not even discuss the GOP's intent to bring our economy to its knees by holding the debt ceiling hostage. It's going to be ugly.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Newt Poison

I apologized a few posts ago for Georgia inflicting Newt Gingrich on the American people. DennisG has a post up this morning at Balloon Juice about old Newt that is worth a peruse but I want to hightlight one bit. It's a quote from L.H. Carter who, back in the day, was a close confidant and supporter of Newt.

“The important thing you have to understand about Newt Gingrich is that he is amoral,” says Carter. “There isn’t any right or wrong, there isn’t any conservative or liberal. There’s only what will work best for Newt Gingrich.
“He’s probably one of the most dangerous people for the future of this country that you can possibly imagine. He’s Richard Nixon, glib. It doesn’t matter how much good I do the rest of my life, I can’t ever outweigh the evil that I’ve caused by helping him be elected to Congress.”

That's really all you have to remember about Newt but at the rate he is going his campaign will be over in a couple of weeks.

Salmon Teachings

I'm just echoing something that Hecate posted but that resonates completely:

My friend the great Dakota activist Waziyatawin once said, “That defeatist attitude makes me want to scream. The battles we’re fighting are overwhelming, but we know things won’t get better if we do nothing. Our only hope is enough people intervening and taking action, people willing to risk something now so we all don’t lose everything later. The only sense of empowerment I feel is by taking some kind of action, whether it’s writing, working to undermine the existing structures, or sitting on the open prairie in December with a Dakota man trying to save our landbase.” She went on: “If our actions will do nothing, why would anyone even want to live anymore? That kind of hopelessness, in the defeatist sense, means an embracing of victimage and complete powerlessness. Here the salmon have much to teach: either they make it upriver to spawn, or they die trying.”

If our actions make it so there is even a one-thousandth of 1 percent chance that things will work out better for ourselves and the planet, then it is our moral duty to act and act and act. Before it’s too late.

Am I optimistic? Not in the slightest. Am I going to quit? Not on your fucking life.

You should read Derrick Jensen's entire post here.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

I Jumped The Gun A Bit

I said a couple of posts ago that it looks like Mother Nature had decided to skip May and go right into June. It was an unbelievable 48F this morning here in Atlanta. I had to turn the switch from Air to Heat of all things. Got some much needed weeding done this morning but I actually had to bundle up a bit...very strange.

Anyhow, off to work at 345p which is a very strange shift. Only a little over 6 hours and it also means no lunch break. In recognition of the cool weather and the upcoming missed dinner I had a big bowl of chili with Fritos for lunch also known as "Frito Pie" though to be perfectly accurate a "Frito Pie" is when you open up a small bag of Fritos and have a couple of big spoons of chili added and you eat it out of the bag. Yes, the chili was from a can, but it was Trader Joe's low fat beef chili which is actually quite good for a canned product. I will get a couple of 15 minute breaks so I will have a granola bar and a banana to sustain me. The good news is I am scheduled for the garden register which means I will out in the fresh air and with the cool and overcast I don't expect it to be too busy. I worked the garden register on Sunday as well and it was a blowout. Throngs of people with loads of stuff. There were any number of customers that checked out with around a grand's worth of bedding plants, vege plants and assorted mulches and soils. Some serious spending went down.

Off to get dressed.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Sleep In

Don't have to don the orange apron until 130p today so I get chance to sleep in until 630. I do have to work until 1030p tonight but again I don't start until 1345 on Tuesday. It is nice, for a change, to not "have" to get up at an appointed time. Going to spend a little quality time in the garden this morning and as you can see I am actually getting a moment to cruise the tubes.

Trying to send positive energy to all those in the path of the Big Muddy. Let's just hope it is the only material things that suffer. Lot's of people, pets, farm animals and the like are threatened. What are the farmers going to do with the cows and chickens when their farm is going to be under 25 feet of water?

Money Honey

Well, today is the day the U.S. hits the debt ceiling and it sure looks like Congress isn't going to do a thing about it. The hypocrisy of of the GOP is absolutely mind numbing and their ability to ignore the reality of where all this debt came from is insane. The thing is...all of this debt is something the Congress has already approved in their budgets and spending, so what we are talking about here is them merely acknowledging that they ran the plastic card through the reader and are going to pay for all they booze, broads and expensive toys, nothing more. It is going to very interesting to see how this plays out over the next couple of months, and you know they are going to drag this out til the very last minute, as the Treasury juggles the books to try and keep the party going.

I'm also wondering if the Prez and Dems are secretly feeding the Retardlicans rope over this mess and will gladly allow the idiots to hang themselves with it. It shouldn't be that difficult to hang the default squarely around the necks of the GOP.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Tomorrow You Need To Remember

To put out a bag of canned goods for your local food banks:
You can help “Stamp Out Hunger” this weekend by joining with the Letter Carriers’ (NALC) in the largest one-day food drive in the nation. NALC asks that you collect canned goods and dry food, such as tuna, canned meat, soups, pasta, rice and cereal, and leave them in a bag or box by your mailbox on Sat., May 14. Your letter carriers will pick them up as they deliver your mail. NALC members will deliver the goods to local food banks, pantries and shelters to help needy families in 10,000 cities and towns in all 50 states and U.S. jurisdictions.
This is NALC’s 19th annual food drive, held on the second Saturday in May. National and local NALC food drive coordinators hope to expand on last year’s record of 77.1 million pounds of donations collected along postal routes. Over the past 18 years, NALC members have collected and donated more than one billion pounds of food to help feed hungry Americans.
Demands for food assistance have reached record levels. More than 50 million people—including 17.2 million children—live in households that are hungry or at risk of hunger, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. That’s a 30 percent increase in one year and represents more than one in seven households in the country (14.6 percent).

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Skipping May

It seems we are skipping May this year in Atlanta. It is almost 3pm and already my thermometer is reading 90F. The forecast is for 92 or 93 today and I am pretty sure we are going to make it handily. Started trying to get some garden work done but decided it was too damn hot so I am back in the air conditioning and contemplating a cold beer. Probably going to see what is on offer over at Netflix. I am paying the $8 a month to download flicks but have only used it a few times. I got the first month free with my Blu-Ray player and the movie quality is quite good. Not that many years ago I wouldn't have thought I could sit in my den and have access to thousands of movies, in High Def no less, on demand for just 8 dollars a month or even that my disc player would be smart enough to use the Internet.  Today might be a good day to vegetate and marvel at the wonders of science with cold beer in hand.

In a similar vein... I was just thinking the other day about the first transistor radio I saw...I guess it was in the fifties and how amazingly small it was compared to the conventional tube jobs. Now I look at my HTC 4G Android phone and find it hard to understand the leap from that first transistor radio to what we have now and I was fully involved in the technology evolution...it just seems like such a huge leap. Seriously, have you seen what the new smart phones can do?


I'm finally at a "catch a breath point" with the garden. Everything of import is planted or transplanted and just some incidental stuff needs to be done. Still lots of mulching and assorted stuff to do but I can finally sit back and pace myself a bit. No longer is every minute of not working time a must be in the garden time. Looks pretty good too, all things considered. I rushed a bit and took some shortcuts and some of the rows aren't as straight and perfect as they should be and I am sure Pop is looking down and shaking his head. I'm sorry but I claim old age and weak morals or whatever. I have two days off to get some stuff done but it will be a less frantic pace. Next week I have been cut to 22 hours so there is even less reason to go at full tilt as there will be lots more time for all the chores.

Still trying to catch up on what's going on in the world. My thoughts are with all the folks along the Big Muddy for their trials this week. More storms and water are not going to improve the situation.


Today we "officially" are informed that Newt Gingrich will run for POTUS. As someone who has lived in Georgia for the majority of his life (though I really consider myself a Virginian) I want to sincerely apologize for inflicting Newt on the rest of the U.S. The candidacy is ridiculous, of course, and even as screwed up as we currently are I don't think we are screwy enough to elect Newt. He just needs to invigorate his income stream and insure that he will get his regular visits on the well paying Sunday talk shows and pump up his book sales.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Momday, Monday

Finally Monday and I have a day off. Worked four straight long days and the weekend in the garden center. My store is located in East Cobb county and the area is very affluent which means the residents spend big on their yards in the spring. I had several customers check out yesterday with over $500 in bedding plants and mulch and stuff. There really doesn't seem to be much of a recession in that area, at least. Anyhow, working the garden center checkout on a nice spring weekend day means hoards of people and long lines and not a chance for a breath between customers. It also means a lot of bending and lifting and it leaves me pretty much exhausted. I work again tomorrow but have Wednesday and Thursday off so I may recover before I have to work the next weekend. The week after my hours have been cut drastically to only 3 days so it won't or shouldn't be nearly as quiet hereabouts.
Speaking of gardening that is where I am heading. Madam and I are dog sitting for Minimonk and we have Megan so I will have company in the garden today.

Monday, May 02, 2011

Mixed Emotions

Waking up to the news that Bin Laden has been killed leaves me with mixed emotions. On the one hand I guess it ends one long trial and will provide some closure to people. On the other I can't help but feel that killing him will just provide the terrorists with a martyr and rallying symbol. I suppose we'll just have to see how it all plays out. I am sure, however, that well hear from the Retardlican fringe that this is just another lie from the Kenyan Muslim who is turning America into a Socialist country and/or if he is really dead then why didn't we bring the body back to put on display.

Anyhow, I have a day off and the weather is good so I intend to spend it in the garden. Maybe I can get the rest of the planting done and my water line to the garden repaired. I was saddened to discover a young king snake entrapped and dead in the netting I covered the okra with when I toured the garden last night after work. Either choked or died from too much heat. I'll have to give it a proper burial this morning first thing if an owl or some other predator left it for me to dispose of. King snakes a good to have around as they keep less desirable snakes like copperheads, moccasins and rattlers away. Maybe its momma is still around.

Good breakfast (eggs scrambled this time Steve) so I am fueled and ready to go.

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Happy Beltane

Happy May Day and for all you Pagans Happy Beltane! Going to be a nice day here in Atlanta for doing what you should do on a nice spring day especially one with so many traditions. Unfortunately, I have to work and that is where I am headed. Enjoy!