Friday, January 20, 2017

Daddy's Home!

Thank God!

On a clear day in Des Moines I was seated on an airplane in a small seat, but lo and behold, the seat next to me was empty!

And would remain empty!!

I opened the book I was reading, stretched my legs out into the area below the seat next to me, put on my headphones and was greeted with Sway off Exile on Main Street by the Stones.

Six short hours and I would be home.

And then...and then...and then...

We weren't taking off.

The flight attendant grabbed the mic.

"Somehow we have a dent on the plane! We don;t know how that happened, but what needs to happen now is that maintenance has to come by and check it out and then we have some paperwork with the FAA to do. We're hoping it only takes 15 minutes or so."

Twenty minutes later he grabbed the mic again.

He was apologizing over and over.

"We need another 15-20 minutes. We're sorry for the inconvenience."

Sorry?

I checked my paperwork.

I was going to miss my connecting flight.

The flight attendant stopped by to personally apologize.

I never looked up at him.

He's sorry????

But a funny thing happened on the way to absolute depression.

I got off the plane in whatever the hell city I was in and rushed through the airport just as woman at the desk was telling me that Group 3 could board the plane to Buffalo!

"I've never been so happy to be in Buffalo," I told Sam.

But you know who was happier?

Yeah, Melky and the Pair.

My doggies were going wild!

I unpacked and threw the suitcase far away from me...

...then got into my own bed.

Buffalo!

I'm home!!




Thursday, January 19, 2017

Travels With Kathy

With apologies to Steinbeck...

...who did "Travels with Charley."

Which was about moving around with his dog.

We started the trip by my asking her which nickname she'd like for our travels. She went with Kathy Khaos, with a K.

So, off we went.

We rented a car that had a backup screen. Kathy liked that as I drove.

"Slow down!"

"That guy is merging!"

"Oh-oh-oh!!"

I finally let her drive just so the person in the passenger seat would sit quietly.

She was backing out of a parking spot.

We heard a sound.

"What's that?" She asked.

I was pointing at the screen.

"Oh, I forgot about that! Why is there a pole there?"

"It's the pole's fault," I said.

The frustration of traveling with someone else is that "he who travels fastest, travels alone", but we were on a semi-vacation. I'd try and relax.

"Can we be ready by 1:00?" I'd ask...

...at least 4 hours early.

"I'm ready!" She'd announce, excitedly, at 1:15. "That's good, right?"

"Yeah," I answered. "I've only wanted to gnaw my arm off for 15 minutes."

Yet, it's me as well.

"We aren't trying to ruin your life by living ours in a somewhat slower fashion," she explained. "We actually don't give ANY thought to what might be irritating you at any given moment."

I laughed.

That's probably true.

We sat down at a diner for breakfast.

"Let me guess," I said. "Eggs, scrambled dry. Bacon, crisp. Rye toast."

She then knew my exact order.

It's been a long while.

"Are you going to miss me?" I asked as our plane landed in Buffalo and we realized that we'd be apart for long stretches the next day.

"Not at all," she said. "I've had enough."

Which is good too.

"You're free to go back to your insane world of deadlines set in your own head, and I can relax a little."

"Ahh," I said. "Well, I'll miss you!"

"Get away from me," she said, with a laugh.

Twenty-some years.

Traveling together through all kinds of crap.

We usually get there together...

...give or take 15 minutes.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

What the Hell Time Is It?

Okay, I've been in Arizona, Nevada, Missouri, Illinois, North Carolina, Kansas, New York and Iowa.

In 8 days!!

The problem being I was in the Western Time Zone for 2 days, Central for 2, Mountain? for 2.5 and Eastern  for 1.5.

I've been eating whenever. Catching naps like a 90-year-old man and trying to figure out what the hell time it is at home.

Television shows?

Forget it!

Part of the problem is that sometimes my phone switches the time to reflect where I am. I sort of expected that...

...but I got burned by ESPN app deciding that I was also in the zone I was in.

I turned on the Atlanta-Seattle game two hours before it started.

Different beds, different pillows...

...damn I screwed up!

I make my own schedule!!!

I just never actually considered all the damn time changes!

The other night...not sure which state...I went to sleep at my normal time...I thought.

I woke at my normal time.

Got up and moved around a little and said:

"Damn! I'm tired!"

Then I did the math and figured out that I went to bed at the time it was where I was and woke up when I figured it was 6:30 in Blasdell.

We often talk about sports teams going from East to West.

They always get their asses kicked.

Now I know why.

I spent a couple days in Vegas...

...sleepwalking!

Ah well...long stretch at home coming up.

I'll be in bed.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Retirement Home?

We missed the turn to our hotel and did a little spin around the block in Scottsdale.

The houses were tiny...and looked worn.

"That's all we need," I said pointing to one that is smaller than our garage.

Kathy knew exactly what I was talking about.

January 14 and we were both in shorts and a tee-shirt.

Getting out of Dodge when the snow is flying is a real goal in the coming years.

"I don't want to be 70 years old, flopping around in my driveway because I slipped on the ice with my bad hips, legs, back...whatever!"

"That one is cute," Kathy pointed to an even smaller place.

"We'll be forced to live in close quarters," I warned.

"Yeah. Maybe something a little bigger."

We were both afraid to look around at any prices for housing in such an area.

I'm sure it isn't cheap.

We even mentioned our retirement plans to some of the people that we met around here.

"Ahh, the old, retired people who jam up our roads and stores."

Like it or not...

...we're getting there!

Better to be old and annoying in a warm place, I'm thinking.

"I'm in," Kathy said.

Time to check the prices.

It'll be here before we know it.


Monday, January 16, 2017

MLK Day

John Lewis, who marched, and was beaten in a fight for civil rights...

...a lifetime ago...

...was in the news over the weekend because he was in a Twitter fight with the incoming president who stated that Lewis is "all talk, no action."

It sounds like a miscalculation to many of us who are not truly emotionally challenged.

The fight for rights...basic, human rights...was real.

It's still real!

Lewis was arrested 45 times and stood shoulder-to-shoulder battling with those who did not want him to eat in white-only restaurants, or drink at a water fountain that might be contaminated if a black man put his lips on it.

"Do nothing."

Lewis has also served in our government for years...continuing the fight.

MLK Day seems even more important this year.

The civil unrest is a tangible thing.

There are some who believe that "Making America Great Again," is all about stripping people back in their place.

Like gays, or blacks, or Mexicans, or refugees.

No one ever admits to being a racist...

...but racism is alive and well.

MLK Day is a day when we certainly think about some of the men, like John Lewis, who stood up and shook his fist at injustice.

We need some of the same type of people to stand up now.

Because no one wins...

...when we start picking and choosing who has the right...

...to be human.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

My Boys

We don't leave home very often.

I have to travel a bit for work, but usually it's just a couple of nights and back home. Kathy is never gone for too long.

So, on a "vacation" where I mixed in a little work, we are away from the boys for 5 straight days.

"I miss them," Kathy said.

Of course!

We face-timed Sam for a couple of minutes, but he wasn't much interested. Yet, there are texts going around.

Jake texted me about a couple of NBA guys. We went back and forth about life. Sam is the guy who is keeping the house under control...and taking care of the dogs.

Then this:

"We had pizza and the box isn't in the fridge."

A pizza box in the refrigerator is a big no-no when I'm home.

"It is in the fridge," Kathy said. "They confessed."

So far we know that their big rebellion is keeping the box in the refrigerator where energy is wasted to get the box cold is happening!!

If that's all that happens...I'm good!

I'm sure that Quinn is also spending time on my couch.

I can picture it:

Video games on the big television.

Basketball game after basketball game being watched one after another.

Pizza, chicken fries...

A lot of laughing.

We have good boys.

Of course we miss them, but it's good for alll of us.

And I know Sam pretty well...

...he'll make sure that the pizza is on a plate before I walk back through the door.

Poor kid.

He feels guilty about it already!

Saturday, January 14, 2017

The B Street Band

So, Trumplethinskin is actually going to have music at his little hate bash next week.

Except it's a tribute band.

New Jersey's own B-Street Band. They play Springsteen music as a tribute to the Boss.

The fact that they are playing for The Inaguration is pretty galling to Springsteen fans and most certainly makes Bruce's blood boil. After all, the music has been about everything but the isolation and bitterness that may just be around the corner.

I've followed Springsteen since I was 11 years old.

I have always understood the message.

It's exactly 180 degrees different than the message that President Golden Shower is suggesting.

So the lead singer of the tribute band has been getting his ass handed to him.

But here's the rub.

The B-Street Band also played for Obama twice.

They aren't rich people.

They had signed a contract back in 2013.

Long before the Russian spy ran for the highest office.

They understand that Bruce is most likely not enamored that his music will be front and center on that crazy day.

Ah well.

At least no one will be watching.