Thursday, November 10, 2016

Stay vigilant

This election season is finally over.  We still have to bear with the vitriol, wailing and nashing of teeth of those supporting Queen Hildabeast for a few more weeks, I suppose.  Then it will be business as usual for the media to trash, misrepresent and triple-guess every word and action that P.E. Trump says and does.

But for now, a small respite in the hopes that the Supreme Court will not yet fall to those who despise the principles of freedom that this country was founded upon.  

Nonetheless, stay vigilant.  Because the Sorosians and socialist that hate our freedoms always seem to come back...  When and where you least expect them...

Thursday, October 27, 2016

All Hail to the Queen!

My wife and I were in Lancaster, PA on Monday.  I saw this campaign headquarters with the previous business name only partially painted over.  It was just too appropriate of their mindset to pass up taking a picture.  Ironically, it's on King St. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Technical difficulties

My apologies for not having posted (yet, or in a timely fashion) an A.A.R. on the conference and training I attended in South Bend the week of Sept 26.
Short answer;  It was awesome and I look forward to going back next year.

Learning curves, technology, non-compatible operating systems and trying to get large data files of pictures and video to a shareable platform.  Icloud doesn't play well with others...  Sigh...

I don't even know where to begin describing my frustrations.  One day I'll get this sorted.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Day one water rescue conference

Today was the first of a three day class I'm taking at the conference.  It is being given by a training company from CA called Aqua 7.  In this class we are learning about using PWC's (jet ski's) as a rescue water craft (RWC) in a river environment.
While not the perfect do-all water craft, it is a very valuable tool.
After a half day of lecture, we got out on the water to run through a few skills, namely a slalom course around a series of bouys.
We started out running the course individually, then with a partner who was seated backwards and not holding on with their hands.
From there we moved on to running the course standing on one side, then ran the course again standing on the opposite side.
That followed with two on each side of the seat.
All of these runs were done for time.  The goal was to build balance and a comfort level for operating.
Unfortunatley the video of the day didn't turn out very well.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Water school

Well, sort of.  It is a swift water rescue conference, with a three day pre-conference class in a couple of different topics.
I'm talking about the IAWRP water rescue conference in South Bend IN.  This is my first time here and it should be a very interesting week.  I'll actually have something of interest to blog about for once.  If I have the time to do so.  Hopefully I'll even have some pictures and or video to share.

Here are some highlights from last year;

This is a very hands-on conference.  There is one day of lectures, then the rest is out on the river.  Most of the training is done in whats called the East Race of the St James river.  There are gates that can be used to control the water flow.  The conference ends on Saturday afternoon with what they call the rescue rodeo.  A friendly team competition of applying the skills that have been reviewed and learned during the week.
If there are any readers out there in bloogerland that are in the area, come on out and watch us have fun  train.  I'll be the guy in the drysuit and PFD.  :)

Monday, September 19, 2016

An interesting but unimportant discovery

I have an eclectic taste in music.  I like a little bit of most genre's with the exception of rap.  Unfortunately my musical ability is pretty much non-existent.  Keeping a tempo for me rivals that of Steve Martin in "The Jerk" and about the only way I can carry a tune is if it's coming out of a radio on my shoulder.
While visiting with some friends over the weekend, they shared a music video they randomly  came across on the tube of you.  It is a band called "Steam Powered Giraffe".
According to the wikipedia page, they were formed in 2008 and is popular in the steampunk subculture.  They are also trained as mimes, which is evident in their antics as steam powered robots.  They have also created a backstory for the band, which I also find interesting.
Their harmonizing is quite amazing as well as the voice range of the guitar player.
I can't say that I would want to listen to them all the time, but they are a nice change of pace.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

They didn't listen to Colonel Cooper

But of course, that would imply they even knew who Colonel Cooper was...
With the latest craze of gaming distracting this country's younger generation(s) from matters of pertinence, Pokemon Go is making the complete lack of situational awareness very evident.  There are numerous reported robberies and muggings across the landscape of seekers of the Pokemon.

I first head of this new game a couple of weeks ago when we stayed with one of my nieces and her husband, both in their mid-20's.  He was excited about the game and had just downloaded it to his phone.  As he was explaining how it worked by using your camera, I immediately cringed at the thought of the potential and probability of the security breach.  It's also now becoming more widely reported that this game gives the Google-ites pretty much complete access to everything on your phone.  Talk about a data-rich harvest!

Each to their own, I guess.

Thursday, May 26, 2016


Crickets chirping.  That's about all that's going on here.
The minutia of life as it fleetingly passes by.  The wonderment of our daily activities that we get accustomed to and not find noteworthy, forgetting that every day is a gift.

I wasn't able to go to the NRA convention this year.  Perhaps one of these years...  Meanwhile, I'll have to appreciate it vicariously through my blog followings.  Although the numerous comments about the traffic snarls kind of makes me glad I didn't go.  I hate being stuck in crowds.

The other day while I was at my firehouse, the Chief stopped in with the toddler  whom he and his wife recently took guardianship.  Cute little guy.  Probably around 2 y/o, give or take.  He came right up to me, even though he doesn't know me.  After playing with him a little, I walked him behind the Chief, who was wearing basketball shorts and proceeded to go thru the motions with the little guy on the art/ act of de-pantsing.  Everyone got a yuk-yuk out of it.  About a half hour after the Chief went home, I got a text from him.  He was at the sink when the little guy came up behind him and attempted to de-pants him.  He was cussing me.  Awesome.   Murphy, you would be proud.

Friday, April 29, 2016

It all appears at some point

The (usually) good thing about Al Gore's invention of the interwebz is that information you are looking for has a way of eventually ending up on a website.
Case in point; several years ago, I was curious about information regarding a record set of 78's that my parents had when I was a wee-lad.  For those of you under 25 years old, a record is like a big black CD with grooves in it.
It was the story of Willie the whale, the whale who wanted to sing at the Met.  Using different search engines and search terms yielded no results.  That was then.
This morning, for some unknown reason I tried again.  Voila!  Found it.  Some one put the recording on the tube of you and another website has the 14 minute movie Walt Disney made in 1946.
I share my discoverys below:

The animated movie .  I'm not tech savvy enough to get a non-youtube video embedded.


Saturday, April 23, 2016

Scam thievery!

Just checked my email and glad I did. 
There was a notice that a purchase was made that exceeded my (low) dollar amount threshold.
Problem is, I didn't make it.  It was an online purchase.
I called the credit card company and spoke with their fraud dept.  Now they are sending me a new card.
The disturbing part of this;  This is the second card (different account) to which this has happened in about a month and a half.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

That was an interesting evening

I took the pup for a much needed hike/ walk along a trail on the bank of the Shenandoah yesterday afternoon.

 It was a beautiful day for it.  Mild temps, plenty of blue sky and awesome scenery.
As we were walking back to the parking area, some one from my fire station called me and asked if I was around and available.  Our swift water team had been requested to assist PD and a towing company to retrieve a vehicle in about 5' of water.
The info that was relayed to me was that this was a non-emergency response, that the driver hadn't set the parking brake and the car rolled down a driveway into a body of water.
Well, that was somewhat accurate.

As it turned out, that body of water was the Shenandoah River.  It wasn't a driveway.  The closest house was about 1/4 mile away. 
The car's owner, supposedly had gone to this quasi-boat ramp (meaning a dirt/ mud cleared slope into the water.) to check out the fishing.  He told the police that as he was standing there, his car went past him and into the river.

When we got there, this is what we found.  The car, a Dodge Magnum wagon, had floated downstream about 200 feet before settling where it did.
With the tow company's truck winch line and an assortment of additional chain and straps, we still came up short about 10' of being able to attach to the car.
So we took all the misc. stuff out and got our utility rope.  It is 1/2" Kernamantle rope, rated for a tensile strength of 12,000 pounds, but we typically don't load it to that, figuring in a safety factor of 15.  We weren't sure it would hold, but what the hey.
Started out with one of the tow truck driver's recommendation of placing their "J" hook on the "A" pillar.  As soon as they started winching, the car came up on it's side, ready to roll over.
We re-rigged with a strap through the car around both "A" posts and attached in front.  We were a little surprised that it still rolled over.  The tow operators drug it out on it's roof and righted it on the river bank.
Once the car was out of the water, one of the tow operators looked in the car.  He said it was still in drive.
I heard it said that when the owner called his insurance company and told them what happened, they hung up on him.  I think I would be finding another insurance agent, but I suspect that decision is already made for him.
I'd be curious to know what the total bill of this adventure is going to be, between the tow bill, our bill and the fines he's likely to incur.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Pastoral conversation

This is a conversation I had with our pastor yesterday.  I'm posting this since Murph's leg is feeling better, he needs to have something that pains him.
I happened to be in the one kid's area where my lovely bride teaches Sunday school when the pastor came to get his kids.  She proceeded to tell him the question she posed to the kids for the morning's lesson.  "Why is important that Jesus rose from the grave?"
As a quick and brief discussion ensued, I added the comment that not only is Christ the Bread of Life, but also the yeast, as He is risen.
The pastor responded with "This I say to the yeast of these"
I responded, "Well, today is Yeaster!"

I hope you all had a glorious day of remembrance.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

End of an era

And the beginning of a new.
The Lair is being relocated.
Had the opportunity and pleasure to get together one more time for the immediate foreseeable future last night with a few folks for a send off get-together with Murphy's Law.  Bbq and good beer were enjoyed as the typical war stories were embellished told.
I'm going to miss the regular interactions and torturing with my bad humor.  It won't be the same through email, phone calls and blogging.  At least I can take solace in knowing that with Aaron making the trip with him, there will be plenty of pun-ishment doled out.  That is, if the dogs don't end up sitting up front and Aaron is in the back behind the fence.

Safe travels, my friends.  Best wishes on the new endeavors.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Friday funny

A wife, being the romantic sort, sent her husband a text:
                                         If you are sleeping, send me your dreams.
                                         If you are laughing, send me your smile.
                                         If you are eating, send me a bite.
                                         If you are drinking, send me a sip.
                                         If you are crying, send me your tears.
                                                         I love you!"
                                         The husband, replied,
                                         Am on toilet.. Please advise

Dr. Drobkin was a world-famous cardiologist who earned his undergraduate, graduate, and medical degrees in his hometown and then left for Manhattan where he quickly rose to the top of his field.
Soon he was invited to deliver a significant paper, at a conference held in his hometown. He walked on stage, placed his papers on the lectern, but they slid off onto the floor.
As he bent over to retrieve them, at precisely the wrong instant, he inadvertently farted. The microphone amplified his mistake resoundingly through the lecture room and reverberated it down the hall! He was quite embarrassed but somehow regained his composure just enough to deliver his paper. He ignored the resounding applause and raced out the stage door, never to be seen in his hometown again.
Decades later, when his elderly mother was ill, he returned to visit her. He reserved a hotel room under the name of Cohen and arrived under cover of darkness.
The desk clerk asked him, "Is this your first visit to our city, Mr. Cohen?"
Dr. Drobkin replied, "Well, young man, no, it isn't. I grew up here, received my education here, but then moved away."
"Why haven't you visited?" asked the desk clerk.
"Actually, I did visit once, many years ago, but an embarrassing thing happened and since then I've been too ashamed to return."
The clerk consoled him, "Sir, while I don't have your life experience, one thing I have learned is that often what seems embarrassing to me isn't even remembered by others. I bet that's true of your incident too."
Dr. Drobkin replied, "Son, I doubt that's the case with my embarrassment."
"Was it a long time ago?"
"Yes, many years."
The clerk asked, "Was it before or after the Drobkin Fart?"