Thursday, September 17, 2009


She's Joan Armatrading and she is timeless.

"Love and Affection" went gold in 1976. Thirty-three years later, it still sends chills down my spine.

Here's her more current "In These Times":

For her 58th birthday last year, Joan ran the New York Marathon. I bow to the superior woman!

She's touring again in 2010 if you find yourself in the U.K. in March-April-May.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

We're Number 37!

Paul Hipp is hereby officially invited to be my first dinner guest when our new home is complete! The Fleur-de-Lis will be flying that day as I just found out a flag pole is included in the new home.

Yup, #37 in health care, but #1 in war, tanks, bombs, planes of death. Bizarro World, USA.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Welcome Back, Hubble!

Hubble is back, thus saving me from thinking about anything political!

This is the Butterfly Nebula. I see Dave Bowman from Arthur C. Clarke's (and Stanley Kubrick's) 2001: A Space Odyssey! Do you see him? It's like the "star child" is looking at himself in a hubble mirror! officially ...

"The Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3), a new camera aboard the Hubble Space Telescope, snapped this image of the planetary nebula, catalogued as NGC 6302, but more popularly called the Butterfly Nebula. NGC 6302 lies within the Milky Way, roughly 3,800 light-years away in the constellation Scorpius. The glowing gas is the star’s outer layers, expelled over about 2,200 years. The “butterfly” stretches for more than 2 light-years, which is about half the distance from the Sun to the nearest star, Alpha Centauri."

... hmmm, not a word about Dave Bowman, The Monolith or the Hal-9000 (who "always enjoyed working with people" even though he occasionally cut off their life support systems or set them adrift in space, thus earning the nickname "Death Panel Hal") ... what, are there no science-fiction fans at NASA?

{check out this NASA link for some phenomenal Hubble images} ...

... meanwhile, if you want to know what I've been up to, see post below ...

Egregious mail coupon brings DK back to the blog!

I certainly didn't plan it this way, but it's been over 6-weeks since I last blogged. I've missed you all terribly! Many thanks to those who checked up on me and kept me in the blog loop.

It's been a busy time for me, filled with new home construction and trying to stay one step ahead of our builder's schedule. You'd be surprised how quickly a new home can be built in a bad economy. At this point, we are still enjoying walking THROUGH the walls for a few more days before the insulation is installed.

Many times during the past 6-weeks, I've wanted to blog about this or that, but most anything I've wanted to say has already been expressed (much better than I could have) by others. Blue Dogs (bah, a pox on their Houses) ... Health Scare (the townhall people shouting the loudest are the ones who have lost so many brain cells, they will soon be in desperate need of the very health care they so vigorously sought to defeat) ... Health Insurance (35% of my premiums going to line insurance CEO's pockets vs a Public Option that would provide affordable coverage for all seems like a no-brainer to me) ... We the People (an overly dramatic group who did not allow their hungry children to eat their normal socialized school lunch today if their country's President would be speaking at the same time) ... Glenn Beck and other brain-dead fox sociopaths who ooze from every public TV in my state (and who are beloved by birthers, deathers, teabaggers, and racist idiots everywhere) ... yup, certainly no lack of blog material for sure.

So if I didn't blog about any of that, what drove me here tonight?

It was this coupon in our mailbox today (click for full effect):

It came in an envelope full of coupons for various local businesses put out by the mass-mail advertiser, Valpak. Usually filled with $10 discounts from a tire store, or free dessert from a restaurant, or 20% off deals from some furniture store, these mass-mail coupons are used by local businesses trying to bump up their sales.

In the current bad economy, many of these stores are really hurting. As sales drop, they have had to lay off employees and trim costs wherever possible, including employee health care and pension benefits for those they are still able to employ. Sadly, many businesses have simply failed and are now history, leaving their former employees free to attend Town Hall Meetings.

To give customers who are increasingly reluctant to purchase non-necessities an incentive, you can understand the idea of offering a little bonus for patronizing one store over their competitor. Usually these bonuses are tied into whatever the store is selling. Free dessert from a restaurant is a logical tie-in.

But what hare-brained idiot at "Auto Trim Design", a place that apparently caters to those who wish to protect their car's front end with a "clear bra", thought that offering a "Free 9mm Hand Gun with every Clear Bra Purchase" was a good idea?

How desperate does a business have to be to give out guns to those who purchase car bras? I mean, I've heard of "targeting" customers, but this is ridiculous, not to mention dangerous! (that is a link to a good read about where all this gun infatuation leads) ...

As far as I know, those car bras are mostly used by people who can't stand the thought of insects dying and leaving bug guts on their precious multi-coated sports cars. Maybe with a "Free Gun", car owners can just shoot the little winged bastards in midair, thereby negating the need for car bras altogether!

Clearly, "Auto Trim Design" did not think through this promotion very carefully since it may just "trigger" the death of their business!