Thursday, July 31, 2014
Not Jumping For Joy
10:47 am edt
I had a chance to go sky diving
once, but talked my way out of it. I had no desire to spend several hours getting trained before jumping from an airplane.
The line for the parachute would be pulled as we exited the plane's door.
I can't imagine the feeling of falling through the air. It's not something I would want
to experience. It's not as safe as it's made out to be.
The other day, two jumpers in a tandem faced a catastrophe when their chute malfunctioned
75 feet from the ground. The first-time jumper was killed and the instructor critically injured. The victim was jumping on
the day before his birthday.
jumps with a qualified instructor seem like a safe thing to do, but a sudden wind gust resulted in a tragedy in
Wednesday, July 30, 2014
A Game of 21
7:39 pm edt
It doesn't surprise me that
a recent Gallup poll showed that 75% of American adults don't want to lower the legal drinking age to 18.
I see their point. Kids drink irresponsibly. They do
stupid things and embarrass their parents when they get caught. Hopefully, nobody gets hurt in the process.
The legal drinking age has always been an issue.
In my case, it was 21 until I turned 19 and the age was lowered to 18, one month later.
I agree with lowering the age because kids can get
married at 18 and serve in the military.
The point can be debated forever. Some kids grow up to be irresponsible adults.
Tuesday, July 29, 2014
Trash That Idea
2:51 pm edt
A local city official made
a proposal that didn't make any sense concerning the negotiations on a new contract for trash removal. All of the bids came
in higher than the previous one.
is a proposal to limit the amount of trash per household. They want everyone to have a 64 gallon barrel that can be wheeled
to the curb by residents and easily picked up by the truck and workers.
Limiting the amount of trash eventually leads to illegal dumping on the side of the
road. They also didn't take into account the issue of elderly residents trying to move a 64 gallon barrel.
This is just another bad idea that should go down
in flames. It was stupid from the start.
Monday, July 28, 2014
The Sudden Storm
2:38 pm edt
Weather can change real fast
as we saw today with the sudden tornado in Revere, Mass. It was only about 35 miles from where I live. There was a warning
about 30 minutes before it happened.
far, it looks like it was mostly property loss, with no injuries or fatalities. The damage was very striking to homes,
cars and trees.
went to bed last night and got up this morning never expecting this to happen. It seems to be the luck of the draw when it
comes to natural disasters.
You just hope it never happens.
Sunday, July 27, 2014
The Shark Bites With His Teeth
2:00 pm edt
Sharks seem to be more prevalent
along Cape Cod beaches the last few summers. They draw tons of tourists who spend money.
Everyone seems to have a romanticized view of them. People swim too close. It's all a big
joke until someone gets attacked. Let's see what happens after that.
tourists continue to buy shark t-shirts and related items. All is good for now.
Saturday, July 26, 2014
5:14 pm edt
Farm stands seem to be very
popular these days. They offer a great alternative for buying fresh produce at the grocery market. We
have a few locally.
always count on them to be more expensive and not having certain things. Appearance is another story. I wouldn't buy some
of that stuff in my local market.
got some nice things the other day, but they cost too much.
Friday, July 25, 2014
Covered In Ivy
1:57 pm edt
Some stories in the news get
more hype than they deserve. Someone thought it would be a good idea to use goats to address the issue of invasive plants
in a small park in Boston.
got a lot of coverage in the media because it looked cute with goats eating poison ivy and other plants. It will take four
weeks for them to clear the area.
the roots are pulled up, the plants will be back next year. The goats are no better than humans using weed whackers.
The only difference is that they don't mind the poison ivy.
Goats have also been used to clear vegetation along utility rights-of-way. Anyone who is
serious about clearing weeds knows that they need to be pulled up.
Thursday, July 24, 2014
Some Not Open To It
11:36 am edt
I really like the open-road
toll concept. Traffic moves so much faster. The Tobin Bridge going into Boston just removed their toll booths. Drivers either
have a transponder or they get a bill for $3.
Unfortunately, there will always be an outstanding amount of tolls that never get collected. Massachusetts
already has $5.52 million owed by out of state drivers. They have a reciprocity agreement with New Hampshire to block
driver license renewals for scofflaws, but what about other states?
The transponder system works great, but you will never get everybody to use one. They
can track where you are for that moment and that is too much for some people.
Wednesday, July 23, 2014
1:03 pm edt
I think post 9/11 security
is often a charade. Budget cuts have caused important parts of our infrastructure to be left unguarded. Anything could happen.
We saw that the other day with the Brooklyn Bridge
in New york City. Someone climbed the "secured" towers of the bridge and replaced the American flags with white
It didn't cause
any harm or injury, but how did it happen? The bridge is suppose to be secure and guarded, but obviously wasn't this time.
There was the normal finger-pointing and outrage,
but this will blow over and be forgotten. As a nation, were are letting our guard down because we have become too complacent.
Tuesday, July 22, 2014
4:42 pm edt
predict how the Market Basket family feud will work out. They have a monopoly where I live with three stores in town. There
is no competition for them.
stores are running low on almost everything. Yesterday, they had no fresh fish or chicken and were out of most produce. The
customers are being punished over something the have no control of.
There is no easy solution. It's a business thing.
Monday, July 21, 2014
The Car Knows
11:12 pm edt
I could never work on the
cars of today like I did in the 70's and 80's. They are so complex with their computer systems.
Toyota has a live time record of my car. When
I accessed it, my current odometer mileage
how they can have that data.
Sunday, July 20, 2014
Respect The Place
8:01 pm edt
A friend of mine on Facebook
was so looking forward to a family trip to Disney World that he posted his top 10 favorites over the same period of days.
I was there once back
in 1982. Epcot had just opened. I never made it back there and have no intention of ever doing so. There were many
places built after that.
guy was so enthusiastic about it. He really knew his favorites. I enjoyed reading his posts. People that go there
on a repetitive place have such a passion for it. I really respect that.
Saturday, July 19, 2014
3:11 pm edt
I donate some money to charities.
As a result, I get inundated with solicitations from all sorts of non-profits. My name gets sold or given to other groups.
They are relentless in pursuit of money.
recently received one from the American Legion, thanking me for my military service and inviting me to join their group.
The only problem is that I never served in the military. I don't know how they got that mixed up. I've donated to some
veterans groups in the past.
are right when they say no good deed goes unpunished.
Friday, July 18, 2014
Stating The Facts
4:50 pm edt
It never surprises me what
people don't know, but sometimes there are things that are pretty basic to all of us.
That wasn't true for a TSA agent at a screening area at the Orlando International Airport. A
passenger showed a District of Columbia driver's license which the employee did not recognize as being part of the USA. He
asked for a passport.
realize that they don't teach a lot of facts in school, but American citizens should know some basic things. The employee looks
like a fool.
Thursday, July 17, 2014
Just Another Freak Show
3:15 pm edt
New York City has its share
of characters and strange people. Times Square has been inundated with people who dress up as cartoon characters or some other
tourists for money before allowing them to take pictures. There are too many of them. The city does nothing to licence
them or impose some type of regulations.
has always been a freak show. Crime might be down and many of the porn shops are gone, but it still attracts characters who
prey on tourists.
think the city should require them to have some type of permit in order to perform there.
Wednesday, July 16, 2014
Guest In The House
12:26 pm edt
successfully launched itself in 34,000 cities across 190 countries. It allows people to rent out rooms or couches in their
residences to tourists who are looking for a cheap place to stay. There are a few horror stories of bad guests and crazy happenings.
I can't imagine being involved in this. I would
never open my doors to strangers or stay in their home. I can't imagine falling asleep, wondering what might happen next.
Everything seems to be going nice for this company,
but eventually, there will be a tragedy.
Tuesday, July 15, 2014
8:28 pm edt
I drove by a local community
garden when I recycled my newspapers today. After a few weeks of growth, the gardens look very different from one another.
The corn is doing real bad. Everyone seems to grow tomatoes.
One of the bigger gardens had some very large tomato plants. They looked out of place in
comparison to the other plots. They must have been pretty big when they got planted.
The real harvest will come during a six week window in early August and September.
The corn won't make it to the table.
Sunday, July 13, 2014
10:53 pm edt
always a challenge to eat properly. I never eat during my comedy shows, but tonight someone brought out appetizers of
nachos and cheese.
never buy this type of stuff because I end up eating too much of it. Tonight was no exception. I was getting hungry during
the show and it certainly quenched my appetite.
This snack gets a low grade for healthy eating.
Saturday, July 12, 2014
No Time For Selfie
1:52 pm edt
People are obsessed with taking
selfies these days. They snap them at the strangest times. It doesn't matter the situation or where they are.
The other day, someone posted one of themselves
on a plane with the oxygen masks being deployed because of a sudden drop in cabin pressure. All was well in the end, but I
thought it was a weird time to do this.
plane's situation could have been catastrophic. I guess the guy wanted to leave a record behind in case his phone was
destroyed upon impact.
was focused on social media to the very end.
Friday, July 11, 2014
4:59 pm edt
You see a lot of strange comments
on Facebook. Today, I saw a request from a person looking for a large fish tank for their two pet rats. I have no doubt
that one will show up.
do people keep rats as pets? I heard they make nice ones, but they are so disgusting. Nobody ever says we need more rats.
I can't imagine letting one loose in your house
just for kicks.
Thursday, July 10, 2014
They Can't Be Wrong
10:09 pm edt
It's hard to predict which
day will have the best weather for the beach. I don't believe in long term forecasts. Five days is too far away.
It seems that most coastal areas have "partly
sunny conditions with a 10-30% chance of rain".
The weather "experts" always cover themselves with the "pop-up thunderstorm".
They can never be wrong.
seems to effect the cloud cover.
Wednesday, July 9, 2014
3:48 pm edt
There was a great article in the
Boston Globe about "helicopter" parents and how they handle their kids transition to college. Some of the parents
are so over the top in living their lives through their children. I never had kids so I guess I don't understand it.
We are raising a generation of kids who live at
home too long and are unable to make adult decisions on their own. The federal government is guilty of the enabling
process by allowing kids to stay on their parents health insurance until they are 26.
Kids can't do anything on their own without parental
supervision. There is no such thing as going to a playground to play a game of baseball.
These days, every kid has to be under the close
watch of an adult. Soccer
parents would never think of dropping their kid off at practice and picking them up later.
The next generation of parents will continue this.
Tuesday, July 8, 2014
The Geese Are Here
6:26 pm edt
Some people think Canadian
Geese are cute, but they make a mess wherever they hang out. I saw a huge flock of them today at a park where I run.
There is a play area for kids. One of the parents thought
it would be a good idea to feed them. There must have been 30 birds. I'm sure the kids think they are nice, but this will
get out of hand real fast.
they start messing in the play area, there will be a public outrage. Until then, they are free to do their own thing.
Monday, July 7, 2014
Not Wild About It
9:15 pm edt
I made the mistake of buying
a two liter bottle of Wild Cherry Pepsi. It was included with several other regular Pepsi bottles on sale.
I didn't even realize I bought it until I opened
it up. Something was wrong with the taste. Then, I looked at the bottle.
I don't like the taste of it. In the end, I'll probably pour it down the drain.
on sale for 99 cents.
Sunday, July 6, 2014
Finally For Sale
8:57 pm edt
Since the middle of March,
I've watched a new duplex rise on a vacant lot and finally have a "For Sale" sign by their door.
It took about 10 weeks from the time they dug
the foundation and poured the concrete. The units look nice from the outside and are certainly a big improvement over the boarded-up
house that sat there for so many years.
things had to get coordinated in order for this to happen. Labor costs and building materials are expensive. The units need
to be priced so that the developer makes his profit. There is not much room.
I'm sure they will get sold. The new owners can decide what to do with the small open patch
of dirt between their driveways.
Saturday, July 5, 2014
All Gardens Are Not Eequal
8:52 pm edt
There is a community garden
at a local church. They have quite a bit of land so they rented out space to individuals and groups. I've seen people
working their piece of land when I recycle my newspapers. The results are quite remarkable.
Some of the plots are doing very well. Others look
like they need a lot of attention. Everyone seems to want tomatoes. One garden had a very interesting set of poles for beans.
Over the next month, the gardens will tell their
story for the rest of the summer. Some will yield produce until the final frost while others struggle to produce anything.
Friday, July 4, 2014
No Big Bang
1:29 pm edt
The weather has certainly
effected a lot of 4th of July plans. Hampton Beach wasn't crowded yesterday with the overcast skies and predicted rain. Many
towns and cities had to cancel or reschedule their fireworks.
I have never been a fan of pyrotechnics. I never saw fireworks much when I was a kid.
I had many chances over the years to watch them, but found always something better to do.
Wednesday, July 2, 2014
Odds Against The House
4:37 pm edt
As November approaches, Massachusetts
voters will be inundated with ads from both sides of the casino law. It will be the only chance to repeal the current law.
I don't care either way about casinos. Building
three of them and one slots parlor is a recipe for economic disaster. Elected officials only see the promise of revenue from
Voters just need
to look at Atlantic City to see a disaster in the making. The city currently has twelve casinos, but three are expected
to close by the end of the summer. Revenue has dropped from a high of $5.2 billion in 2006 to just $2.86 billion last year.
What was the cause for the decrease? Are people
gambling less? There are only so many gambling dollars out there. People have options and don't need to travel far. Massachusetts
casinos will impact Connecticut. I don't see how they can all survive.
Tuesday, July 1, 2014
1:14 pm edt
Radio Shack tries to stay
relevant as a retailer. I often wonder how they do it with all of the competition.
They are having a big sale this week. Most stores will say they are having a 4th of July
sale, but not Radio Shack. They are using the term "Freedom Day Sale". Why are they doing this? Is the 4th of July
always hijack the holidays and have their sales around them. They are not afraid to use the proper names except
for Christmas. Will the 4th of July be joining the list?