12/21/09

Wow! What a Day! Part II

Hey Ya'll.

The final drill went suprisingly better than I had expected. It was a live person drill over the phone to fix an issue. I don't get to pick who was on the other side but nonetheless the call was successful. After the call I was asked what the name of my mock client was. Then the instructor's eyes got big and he asked me if I figured out who I was talking to. Truth was I didn't even think about it. After I thought about it for a few seconds I was able to put the face to the voice. Then my eyes got big.

....It was none other than the Site Director. My boss's, boss's boss. The highest ranking guy in my site... city... state. *A great guy I must add. How many top dogs do you all know that will stop what they are doing and help a trainee?*

All I can say is that I was glad I didn't know that before the call came in. My nerves were already pegged out. Besides, I passed with the Big Boss getting a first person view at my performance. That can't be all that bad.

Today we went live in a limited respect. We still have 1 week of training then four of us move on to an advanced training for another two weeks. In my limited live interactions I connected on 5 of 5 issues with only one mistep that was not a critical issue but still I wish I didn't miss that one. Overall I think I did quite well but to be honest I think I got 5 easy soft issues. I shuddered at what some of my co-workers received for first live interactions. Tomorrow is another day. There will be more than 5 interactions for sure. I hope I have as much faith in my skills tomorrow as I did today.

All in all. I love my new job. It is a 180 degree dynamic change from my previous abortion of an employer. Shoot. I couldn't get positive attention from a manager there let alone a Director. Life is good just as long as I don't watch the news.

12/20/09

Two Definitions

There is a lot of discussion lately, with regards to this government entrapment of the people health care bill being justified by Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution, which authorizes Congress to "provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States".

However, I believe this is a shortsighted argument - based on two definitions.

The first definition comes from Merriam-Webster's dictionary on the word "amend":

1 : to put right; especially : to make emendations in (as a text)
2 a : to change or modify for the better : improve (amend a situation) b : to alter especially in phraseology; especially : to alter formally by modification, deletion, or addition (amend a constitution)

Specifically, I'm referring to definition 2b: to alter formally by modification, deletion or addition (amend a constitution). By adding an amendment to a document, the preceding terms listed are altered and new terms may be added. In the case of the United States Constitution, amendments are added to further restrict the powers of government (exceptions: 16th Amendment, authorizing Congress to collect taxes; 18th Amendment, restricting the rights of the people, which was repealed by the 21st amendment).

As a direct example of how amendments change the terms of those that precede them, all we need to do is look at Article 1, Section 8, Clause 1 (authorizes Congress to collect taxes) and the 24th Amendment (abolishing the poll tax). The federal government was granted a right and the United States Constitution, which inherently distrusts government, was amended to restrict this granted power.

This brings me to the second definition arguing against government-controlled health care - the 10th Amendment:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.


Now, Congress is authorized to provide for the "general Welfare". This is plainly written in Article I, Section 8, Enumerated Powers and not open for dispute. The United States Constitution, as we know, does not trust the federal government and the 10th Amendment, which I believe the Founders intentionally placed at the end of the Bill of Rights, explicitly states if the United States government is not explicitly granted a power by the Constitution, it is reserved to the States or the people.

For those who hold the 1st Amendment and 2nd Amendment sacred (as we all should), I implore you to look at the other 24 amendments in this boon of Liberty. The 10th Amendment was not placed last in the Bill of Rights because it was the least important. It is there because, as is fitting for any amendment to a contract, it is the most important in limiting what the government may do to the people.

12/14/09

Wow! What a day!

I once ate at a great Chinese Restaurant in Dillon Colorado where I learned a valuable lesson. I had ordered a dish that was advertized as spicy about a week earlier and had returned with about a dozen friends and ordered that same dish. This time I asked the waitress if I could get it "A little spicy, because the last time it wasn't that spicy." MISTAKE! The dish that came out of the kitchen could be used in the NASA space program to launch shuttles into space. My face had the tint of Carrot Top's hair. I ate every morsel even though the poor waitress had to upgrade me from a glass of water to a pitcher.

I tell that story to tell you this one. Some lessons learned have more than one application.

Recently I found myself in a Job Transplant situation not unlike our friend Hap but without the relocation and Praise God, in a much shorter timeline. *Hap. Much love and respect for surviving that and making the relo decision. It was a hard choice, and probably harder than anyone will ever know.*

I currently find myself in a class of intelligent people who even with multiple holidays, and inclement weather closing us down for a day, somehow find ourselves ahead of the learning schedule. The speed at which we have learned the information I attribute to the skills of our instructors. Those instructors recently asked for feedback. Someone *not naming names ME* suggested a variety of real-life scenarios instead of the typical ideal lesson-reinforcement scenario. Just so we do not get caught blindsided when we see one. For some reason the Chinese Restaurant lesson did not seem to be applicable in this instance. BOY WAS I WRONG.
About 3 PM today my brain came to a screeching halt. I had a total cranial meltdown. The scenario we encountered was not just one realistic situation but five all wrapped up into one with a twist. I could not believe how many mistakes I made. I still don't know how this one got ironed out in real life. *Yeah someone actually went there.*

Everyone needed help. It was ugly.

No more pride. No more asking for the advanced stuff.

That was real smooth of me and tomorrow is the first, and biggest, of the make-it-or-break-it drills. Where did my confidence go? Oh yeah it is sitting in the back seat with my pride. I think I will do okay but one thing is for certain: I have tons of respect for my peers who have gone before me.

11/20/09

Honorary Belting

This article was passed to me by Harvey of Bad Example. President Obama, during his recent visit to South Korea - as part of his apparent world tour (take that global warming believers!) - was awarded an honorary black belt in Tae Kwon Do. Since I'm a black belt in TKD, it's well within my authority to comment on this "achievement".

First, I assume he's 1st degree. Being a second degree, I outrank him.

Second, I'm not offended at the award even though it wasn't earned. It's an honorary belt, just like an honorary doctorate from a university. In fact, this is an apt reference since one may actually get a degree in TKD in some South Korean universities.

Many of the comments on the article are just waaaaay too sensitive on the subject of an honorary award. No, it's not like the Nobel Peace prize. While both are political awards in my mind, the Peace prize denotes some form of accomplishment while the black belt, in reality, is just a piece of cloth around one's waist - the perceived value is put there by the observer.

Also, and let's be honest, there are black belts available for the asking out there. If you want to look at any martial arts website out there, you can order the belt & an official-looking certificate and *BOOM*, you're a black belt. It's a symbol, not a determination of actual competence in an art.

Now, it would be inappropriate for the president to claim status as a black belt since it was given & not earned AND the fact everyone will know it's honorary from the start of class. Accomplishment allows for character building, not the other way around.

Here's what a black belt means in my opinion. Yes, I wrote an essay for my 1st degree (AND got my cool tagline from Harvey as a result!).

11/13/09

Dr. Seuss Redux

For the older kids out there...











New Job

3 weeks in.

3 days of training in the first week. None since

No supervisor. (Not as sweet as you might think)

No organization in the organization.

Suggestion: Get a clue, dummies.

11/11/09

Happy Veterans' Day

Thank you to all those who have served & all those who are serving this great nation of ours. The freedoms you all protect are the greatest gift anyone can provide to another.

11/3/09

Gun Wrongs

Because there's an obvious opposite to Gun Rights...

video

10/29/09

Wow. The School's WebSite actually says that?!?

I was looking at a friend of mine's high school website. He went to an inner city school that he likes to say was more like a prison than an actual school. His wife emphatically agrees. When she saw where he went to school and grew up she was surprised. He eventually moved away from that environment and now states that the worst school in our area is better than the school for the gifted where he grew up. I thought he was feeding me his usual line of 'hee-yuck hee-yuck' humor but then I went out to his school's web site which he admitted he was surprised it even existed. It is a pretty basic website obviously done in-house by the students, but to our surprise one of the links is pretty telling of what they deal with in that school system.

Under the heading: "Odds and Ends / Found on the Wall..." it states:

Found on the Wall...

Found on the wall in the literacy center at South Division High School in Milwaukee

If ever there was an argument for why throwing more money at our public schools is not the best way to get higher achievement, this is it.

The problem facing our schools today is not lack of funds; it is lack of talent. We have under qualified people filling many of the key positions at our inner city schools. Some half-wit administrator felt that allocating funds to develop a “literacy” center in place of assigning those funds to attract a teacher with the talents and skills needed to improve the skills of the students.

Maybe there was a need for a literacy center. I wouldn’t be critical of an administrator developing such a program if it proved to be useful. It is going to be an incredibly hard sell to merit a literacy center staffed by people who can’t even write a simple sentence. But I am critical. I am critical that a person could be hired to work in a literacy center who struggles with basic syntax.

“Discovery the doors to books open.” This seems like it could almost make sense. "Books open the doors to discovery" is a great message to send. I can’t even imagine the hell a dyslexic individual trying to get help in this “literacy” center must be going through.

I have an idea. Let’s not hire incompetent people to teach. What happens when incompetent people teach? They teach incompetently. Therefore, no education takes place and we have just hired a $30,000/year baby-sitter with benefits.

Here is the link if you don't believe me:
http://www.1dynamicplace.com/SDHS/index.html?lang=en-us&target=d136.html


All I could say was.... "Wow" and it made it past all the censors. Way to go sneaky Web admins. Just goes to show you that the school administrators don't know how to use a computer and check on this kind of stuff. But what do I know I am just a dumb country bumpkin.

Sounds to me like Acorn was alive and well in the Inner City Public School System. If this is not an advertizement for Home Schooling than I don't know what is.

10/12/09

More Equestrian Math

In this equation (wow, that really works for this!), we have the following:



1 - Hap (the fateful protagonist of our story) - 180lbs

2 - Packer (the very cool, calm & collected Paint) - 1200lbs

3 - Random Horse #14 (big, stupid doo-doo head) - 1000lbs



So, here's the situation: Hap & Packer leave Barn at approximately 2pm, moving at a fast walk (6 mph, or so). After the first turn, they encounter Random Horse #14, who decides his curiosity, and possibly non-gelding equipment, is suitable for a challenge to the Hap/Packer team.



If Packer decides that RH14 is, in fact, deserving of being put in his place, how long can Hap hang on for the wild ride?



Bonus question: When do Hap's lungs give out from the screaming?

10/10/09

Stop Playing Football

President Obama, S-T-O-P using our military as a political football for your special-interest buddies!

First, you were indecisive about taking out the Somali pirates who held an American ship & her crew hostage. Next, you had to be shamed into meeting with Gen. McChrystal - probably a major inconvenience between pitching Chicago for the 2016 Olympics & your talk show tour - for a whole 1/2 hour.

Now, you've decided to openly allow gays in the military - a move that, based on your few previous actions, suggests you intend to further suppress morale among our brave men & women in uniform by using them as the impetus for your next special-interest "touchdown".

Before we get any farther...do I have an objection to any person, regardless of sexual orientation, serving his or her country? No. People have done so, honorably, and without some self-aggrandizing need to trumpet their preference in human genitalia. My objection is making sexual orientation the issue. Openly allowing homosexuals in the military - particularly on the heels of the POTUS showing ZERO leadership in responding to his commanding General - will tell the good people currently serving that they're part of some beltway experiment in political correctness.

Damned if that's what we relegate them to!

So, Mr. President, you score points with your hard-left constituents, most of whom probably loathe the military more than Rosie O'Donnell hates spinach. Of course, the goal is not to prevent, "cutting from the military's ranks people with needed skills for fighting". That's a total political answer that disguises chagrin as consideration. The idea seems to be unsettling the military to the point of discouraging recruitment.

In a word: Shameful.

10/9/09

Deep Thoughts: Nobel Prize title for winners.

For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.

***************************

I got to thinking today, when I person gets knighted they attain a certain status. They can be called "Sir Knight". When someone reaches the heights of their education in their line of study they get to be called "Doctor". When a martial artist kicks enough butt in Badaahhhhh... *uhem* Bad Arse style (keeping it clean for Mrs. Who ;) ) they get to be called Master.

I think now that Barak Hussein Obama has earned the title of Nobel Peace Prize Winner he should be able to use the title "Leader Extraordinaire."

Yeah I think it should do.

Barak
Hussein
Obama
Leader
Extraordinaire

Anyone else got a fitting title for this new prize winner?

Hmmmmmmm.

ASPCA Animal Lover Prize

Fresh on the heels of President Barack Hussein Obama (mmm, mmmm, mmmmmm!) winning the Nobel Peace Prize & shocking the world by doing so with under two week's experience AND without any significant accomplishments to further peace in the world, comes another timely choice for an award:

The APSCA World Animal Lover Prize has been awarded to Michael Vick, of the Philadelphia Eagles for his notable accomplishments in expressing his regret for operating Bad Newz Kennels - a now-infamous dogfighting ring.

"Sure, he abused, mistreated and ultimately maimed poor animals", stated the ASPCA spokesperson, "but you have to look at his words since then, which decidedly paints him in the light of a person who regrets what he did because it cost him millions...uh, can we edit that last sentence out?"

Vick, who recently was allowed back into the NFL after being released from prison, obviously was deserving of the prize because, as the ASPCA spokesperson puts it, "While he hasn't actually shown real remorse for his actions, Mr. Vick was overheard saying, 'I'll bet you I never try that sh*t again!' to a fellow Eagles player. This indicates his intention to love animals and thus earned him our coveted award this year".

Other winners of the ASPCA Animal Lover Prize include Britney Spears and rapper DMX.

10/7/09

Hap vs. 5,000 Volts

In a word: OUCH!

This incident involved wet ground, an electrified fence & a 1200lb Paint Quarterhorse.

In other words: 1200lb horse + 175lb Hap x 5000 Volts = ?

Juggle that equation in your head for awhile & let me know what you think...

Congress Shall Make No Law...

But that apparently doesn't apply to the courts. Who can decide what's best for us by judicial fiat.

The main argument against a cross memorializing the sacrifice of WW I veterans is that it "excludes" other veterans from being honored.

Excuse me f***tards but just because a memorial is in honor of a particular group doesn't mean it's specifically intended to give a different group the proverbial finger. Yes, I'll grant that the park agency should have allowed a Buddhist symbol to be placed on the land. However, tearing down the cross doesn't put a Buddhist symbol up there.

I'd be inclined to believe this was a pro 1st Amendment argument if it was constructive (i.e. - let's allow ALL religious symbols to be placed) in nature. Of course, the ACLU, in it's infinite Christian-bashing "wisdom", cannot abide a cross on federal land & supported a former National Park Service employee who quite possibly had honorable intentions for bringing forth the lawsuit.

10/6/09

THE Christmas Gift of the Year

Folks, have you ever wondered what it would be like to experience, firsthand, the generosity of "The One"?



Do you find yourself in contempt of the American economy, way of life & capitalism, in general?



Admit it, you've secretly hoped for a game you could play that allows you to do both of these wonderful things at once.





Introducing: Obamopoly!!!



The object of the game is to destroy American capitalism by having the government take over EVERYTHING!



Tokens include a bus, a teleprompter, a sprig of arugula (have you seen the cost of that lately?) & a waffle iron.



So, do you wanna play? NO??? Well, too bad, everyone's playing and, quite frankly, in this game, nobody wins...


10/5/09

Killing Kittens Since 1992...


10/2/09

Barack "Chamberlain" Obama

That's the name he's getting from now on.


Of course, there needs to be justification for attaching such a moniker to anyone. Now, where could I find some sort of proof of concept?


Oh! That's right: he gave up our missile shield in Europe for nothing, sold out our allies (Poland & the Czech Republic) & all to make nicey-nice with Russia - a power who only benefits from a weak United States.


Now, maybe I'm reaching here. After all, it's not like PM Neville Chamberlain sold out an ally (Austria) by volunteering a peace offering (the Sudetenland) in the interest of making nicey-nice to a belligerent power (Nazi Germany) who only benefited from a weak Britain.


"Appeasement" is a stinky cologne, Mr. President...

9/30/09

Double Trouble

Comedienne Whoopi Goldberg - who long ago forgot how to deliver teh funny - joined with over 100 Hollywood actors whackos in diminishing Roman Polanski's rape of a 13-year old girl in the 1970s. The wingnut declared, in typical leftist confusion, that Polanski didn't commit "rape-rape" - apparently, he "only" committed rape.

Wow, with that obvious post on the moral high ground as proof that rape isn't as bad as "rape-rape", I wonder what ways the left would defend the abominations of their other cohorts:

* Bill Clinton didn't have "sex-sex" with Monica Lewinsky.
* Jimmy Carter's presidency wasn't "lame-lame".
* Kanye West wasn't "rude-rude" when he took Taylor Swift's mic.
* Jenny Slate didn't say "f*ck-f*ck".
* The U.N. isn't "against-against" Israel's survival.
* The G20 protesters weren't "violent-violent" (um, that was the TEA party guys!)
* Charles Manson isn't "crazy-crazy".
* The public option isn't "bad-bad".

Any other ideas? Leave 'em in the comments...

9/29/09

Prius verses the competition

Cruising through in internet researching car info I ran across this little gem that I have modified to fit my deep dispise for dePrius.


Question: Head to head versus the competition how does the Prius (formerly known as the leCar) stack up?


Answer: (look closely.)



9/28/09

Deep Thoughts: Cash For Clunkers Positive Angle.

For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.

***************************

I have decided to try to take a more positive look on the current hole we are in. So here we go:

The POSITIVE results in the Cash For Clunkers program:


It has taken thousands of Obama bumper stickers off the road...



How did I do?

hmmmmmm.....

9/23/09

Oh, They Can't?

Who says women can't drive?



That was a retired teacher, grandma who just ran a 9.74 1/4 mile in her GTO!!!

It Does Exist!

Waaay back, I doubted the very existence of Whataburger. My friends told me it didn't exist, people mocked me for believing in Whataburger. My life was filled with doubt, fear & worry that, in fact, there WAS no Whataburger!


I just didn't know how I could go on in a world where Whataburger wasn't real...


Then, like Sarah Palin setting liberals straight on big government, Mrs. Who stepped in & renewed my hope for a real Whataburger! I was overjoyed with a bolstered sense of hope & possibility in the world that, one day, I too might enjoy the delicious wonder that is the Whataburger!


Well, that day finally arrived! I have eaten the Whataburger & it was freakin' delicious! Thanks, Mrs. Who, for not letting me give up hope. :-)


Here's my proof Whataburger exists:




And here's my proof it is good:

Awww...

This is just the sweetest little thing I have ever seen!

As a matter of fact, this Italian Teddy Bear is possibly cuter & cuddlier than I am!

Um, possibly NSFW if you have folks with tender ears...

9/21/09

Taking A Gamble

The trip to OK was a good one. We stayed in Springfield at Miss Hammy's brother's house & ate at Lambert's (the home of the Throwed Roll) - that place is just plain incredible! If you ever get the chance to eat there (there's also one in Foley,AL), I highly recommend it. You'll wait at least an hour to get in & the experience is actually worth every minute.


Cowboy didn't work out as well as we had hoped. The folks who own him definitely know how to care for horses & all of them seemed happy with the digs. Cowboy himself was decent-looking, to be sure, but his hooves were under-slung a bit & he was very stiff on the front end (to the point of circling his legs outward just a bit). He's a very friendly, yet VERY serious, yearling. While that's a spectacular quality for a show horse, I'm not looking to show all that often & his "all work" demeanor doesn't suit my attitude. I want to work a horse & also let him have some fun.


That leads us to "Gambler" - who, ironically doesn't seem like much of a gamble. We checked him out on Sunday before we headed home & this little weanling is not only sweet & playful, he's also blessed with good conformation, sturdy legs & his sire displayed similar qualities to Miss Hammy's Paint. We researched a bit more & it turns out Gambler is related to Miss Hammy's Paint (Her Paint's grand-sire is Gambler's great-grand-sire)! This may account for the similar attitudes - or not...who knows at this point.


The folks at this small farm care for their horses very well & openly answered all questions without hesitation or a "sales pitch" attitude. They let us take some video of him & a few pics. We have one concern that Miss Hammy noticed & will address that. If it's a minor issue, we'll get him vetted & consider going ahead with the purchase.


Here's a pic of the little guy...

9/17/09

Horse's Butt Award

Our great, all-knowing, merciful leader - "messiah" president barack obama has given away our European-based missile defense system...for absolutely nothing.


He claimed that his new strategy will provide "stronger, smarter & swifter" defenses against countries like Iran. Sure thing, buddy. Does your new strategy involve harsh words & spit balls? Oh, wait, you said on the news that it would be a "mobile" system. Does that mean we & our European allies you sold up the river all run for cover in bomb shelters?


So, instead of defending the USA & our allies, we're going to stick with the concept that MAD (mutually-assured destruction) is the best plan. Nevermind that we can reduce the nuclear threat of an increasingly recalcitrant Russia with this shield. No, the so-called "second coming" decided to honor the 70th anniversary of the Soviet invasion of Europe by giving up the best option for the West's strategic defense.


Congratulations, Mr. president, you are the recipient of the first Crunch Time Horse's Butt "Award"! Wear it with typical liberal pride...


9/15/09

Pretty Cool

Miss Hammy & I are looking at a horse. Now, before any of you read into that, we're looking at a horse for me to buy. Things are going well with us but this is from a trainer/student perspective, not a couple vantage.


I'm looking at a really cute little fella named "Cowboy" (barn name, not full one). He's a yearling Paint who is halter broke & supposed to have a great personality (we'll see about that). While there's certainly no commitment to make a purchase at this time, we are heading down to OK for a visit so we can see him & hopefully have Miss Hammy work him a little on a longe line.


Now, I'm still jobless but have the $$$ to purchase him ($2500) & stable him for a year or so. I'd darn sure better have a job by that time! We're hoping to talk the sellers down to $2000 or less since he hasn't sold for awhile & he probably won't sell over the winter months.


I wouldn't claim to be ready to own a horse. However, in the event I do make this purchase, Miss Hammy is willing to work him for 30 days, turn him out after that (until he's 4) & then give him 60 days to ensure he's saddle broke & trained in basic dressage (1st level, tops), jumping (to 3ft or so) & some western pleasure/trail. He'll end up with a hybrid discipline set, which works since Quarters aren't particularly suited to dressage (though they have the brains to learn it) & I've seen more than a few who love to jump.


Her Paint, "Packer" - who, for you Green Bay fans, was foaled on the same day the Packers won their last Super Bowl in 1998 - L-O-V-E-S to jump! He's actually helped other horses clear the hurdle (pardon the pun) & learn to jump over 3ft where they'd normally stop faster than Rosie O'Donnell passing an all-you-can-eat Ho-Ho buffet.


Anyway, Miss Hammy believes that riding lessons also mean the rider MUST prep & tack the horse as well. She has me brush him down, give fly spray, pick the hooves, add polo wraps & put on the bridle. We alternate on using a saddle. Riding bareback provides me natural stability & I don't have any stirrups with which to "cheat". After that, yes, I'm expected to muck the stall - which is actually good because it's perfect "me time". The good thing about this is I'm picking up habits that won't allow for cutting corners. If I'm going to own a horse down the road, I have to understand what is needed to care for him/her at all steps (tip: feed bags are HEAVY...but not as heavy as a hoof on your foot).


Well, I'll keep y'all updated on how Cowboy does! He's a real handsome fella...

9/11/09

Deep thoughts: Poles or Polls

For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.

***************************

Facebook AKA Stalkerland has way too much time on it's collective hands. They throw out all kinds of stuff. I ran across this in my perusings which I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw it......

The results for "The "Re-elect Obama" Poll"


Will you vote for Obama in 2012
yes - (24.3%)
no - (70.9%)
undecided - (4.7%)


Jimmy Carter even did better than that!!!
How did THAT happen if Facebook is dominated by the younger generation College / Highschool age peeps.....

nObama's Propaganda Czar must not doing their job.



Wait...... that's MSNBC. Nevermind. That explains a lot.

9/10/09

One Year

Hard to believe it's been a year since the seizure. Not that I haven't had a few ups & downs, just like all of y'all have, but I'm generally in good health; pretty happy; and am fortunate that the only reminder of that incident is this well-hidden scar on the top of my noggin. (A special thanks to Mrs. Who, whose thoughtful gift kept it that way, even right after the surgery!)

Since the C-shaped scar is in fact there & I have a needlessly disturbing sense of humor, I figure having a little fun with my situation is in good order. You see, baldness runs in my family. It seemed to skip me, as I have a gloriously full head of hair, but how would I explain this scar if that well-coiffed "do" wasn't perched up there?

Explanations for Hap's C-shaped Scar
-- Horrible incident involving an impromptu nap in a pumpkin patch.
-- "Darn right I'm a hardcore Carolina fan!"
-- "Dad thought reminding me of my GPA in high school would help for college."
-- Something involving the rescue of a busload of nuns/orphans.
-- #6 of 12 extreme protesters who declare "OBAMACARE SUX".
-- "I took folks literally when they said I should have my head examined."
-- "When someone says, 'I double-dog dare you', there's no WAY I'm backing down!"
-- "DNC tried to remove my brain & all they got was this lousy tumor."

9/9/09

No "Option"

The "Public Option" of Obamacare is dead. Apparently, the Senate finance chairman (Max Baucus - D, Montana) says it just can't pass...sort of like a congressman after a 24-hour cheese binge.

With this in mind, I figure it's only appropriate to eulogize this abomination of a health care "plan" in the most inappropriate of ways:

Top Ten Most Likely Headlines for the Public Option's Demise
10. "Public Option no match for Public Opinion."
9. "Former-president Clinton Dismayed at Failure of Pubic Option...Claims Issue Is Misunderstood."
8. "Obamessiah Fails To Heal The Masses."
7. "Dems Left With Foot-In-Mouth Disease."
6. "President Obama Quoted As Saying: 'Uh, um, you see, uh, uh'."
5. "NYT Uncovers More Pictures From Abu-Graib."
4. "VP Biden Unavailable For Comment."
3. "Obamacare Dies of Talking Pneumonia"
2. "Public Option Still More Popular Than Congress, Poll Shows."

And the #1 headline for the failure of the public option is...

1. "Town Hall = Down Fall!!!"

9/1/09

A Tale Of Two Presidents

I wonder who the Marines liked better: Dubya or Barry?

Here's the results...

8/24/09

Deep Thoughts: nObama Care and Plastic Surgery


For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.


***************************

What is going to happen to Plastic Surgery if nObama gets a hold of it.













Or WORSE YET!!!!!!













Eiew......








8/22/09

Deep Thoughts - Typos

For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.

***************************

It occurs to me that the letters T and G are very close to each other on a keyboard.

This recently became all too apparent to me and consequently I will never be ending an email with the phrase "Regards" again.

hmmmmmmmmmmmm.

8/21/09

Deep Thoughts: Is that wrong?

For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.
***************************

An internet friend of mine sent me this joke......and it got me thinking.

**** Joke****
Barack Obama got out of the shower and was drying off when he looked in the mirror and noticed he was white from the neck up to the top of his head.

In sheer panic and fearing he was turning white he called his doctor and told him of his problem.

The doctor advised him to come to his office immediately. After an examination, the doctor mixed a concoction of brown liquid, gave it to Barack, and told him to drink it all.

Barack drank the concoction and replied, 'That tasted like bullcrap!'

The doctor replied, 'It was, you were a quart low.'
***********end of joke***********

So is that really racist being that nObama is half caucasian? I'm not sure wether to half laugh or half rebuke my internet friend. Then I had to think again .... Does it count that the friend is a African American? Or would it count that he was a Conservative African American.

Being PC is so freaking impossible.

Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

8/20/09

Cash For Codgers

JUST IN.....

Democrats, realizing the success of the President's "Cash For Clunkers" rebate program, have revamped a major portion of their National Health Care Plan.

President Obama, Speaker Pelosi, and Sen. Reed are expected to make this major announcement at a joint news conference later this week. I have obtained an advanced copy of the proposal which is named.....

"CASH FOR CODGERS".......

and it works like this..... Couples wishing to access health care funds in order to pay for the delivery of a child will be required to turn in one old person. The amount the government grants them will be fixed according to a sliding scale. Older and more prescription dependent codgers
will garner the highest amounts.

Special "Bonuses"......will be paid for those submitting codgers in targeted groups, such as smokers, alcohol drinkers, persons 10 pounds over their government prescribed weight, and
ANY member of the Republican Party.

Smaller bonuses......will be given for codgers who consume beef, soda, fried foods, potato chips, lattes, whole milk, ice cream or other dairy products, bacon, or Girl Scout Cookies.

All codgers will be rendered totally useless via toxic injection. This will insure that they are not secretly resold or their body parts harvested to keep other codgers in repair.

Remember....... You heard it here first.....

8/7/09

Sleepytime Fun

Old Fart Football!!! **this was sent to me by Mrs. Engrish. ....don't get any ideas Mrs. Engrish or it's to the couch.**

An old married couple no sooner hit the pillows when the old man passes gas and says, 'Seven Points.'

His wife rolls over and says, 'What in the world was that?'

The old man replied, 'It's fart football.'

A few minutes later his wife lets one go and says 'Touchdown, tie score.'

After about five minutes the old man lets another one go and says, Aha. I'm ahead 14 to 7.'

Not to be outdone the wife rips out another one and says, 'Touchdown, tie score.'

Five seconds go by and she lets out a little squeaker and says 'Field goal, I lead 17 to 14.'

Now the pressure is on the old man. He refuses to get beaten by a woman, so he strains real hard. Since defeat is totally unacceptable,he gives it everything he's got, and accidentally poops in the bed.

The wife says, 'What the heck was that?'

The old man says, 'Half time, switch sides."

Simple Science at Work

New Element Discovered (From an internet friend)

Scientists have discovered the heaviest element yet known to science. The new element, Governmentium (Gv), has one neutron, 25 Czar neutrons, 88 deputy neutrons, and 198 assistant deputy neutrons, giving it an atomic mass of 312.

These 312 particles are held together by forces called morons, which are surrounded by vast quantities of lepton-like particles called peons. Since Governmentium has no electrons, it is inert; however, it can be detected, because it impedes every reaction with which it comes into contact. A tiny amount of Governmentium can cause a reaction that would normally take less than a second, to take from 4 days to 4 years to complete.

Governmentium has a normal half-life of 2- 4 years. It does not decay, but instead undergoes a reorganization in which a portion of the assistant neutrons and deputy neutrons exchange places.

In fact, Governmentium's mass will actually increase over time, since each reorganization will cause more morons to become neutrons, forming isodopes.
This characteristic of moron promotion leads some scientists to believe that Governmentium is formed whenever morons reach a critical concentration. This hypothetical quantity is referred to as critical morass.

When catalyzed with money, Governmentium becomes Administratium, an element that radiates just as much energy as Governmentium since it has half as many peons but twice as many morons.

8/5/09

Deep Thoughts: Teamwork

For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.

***************************

Is it really called "Bipartisan if it is just a massive orgy of Democrat Liberals and Communists?


Hmmmmmmm.........

8/2/09

Moral Question

I was at the barn, with Miss Hammy, a few days ago & one of the cats had caught a small (chickadee, I think) bird. The feline was in the "playing" stage of the kill & hadn't yet caused any lasting damage.

When the kitty set the bird down in preparation for the festivities, I stepped in, shooed the cat away & picked up the bird (with a glove - wild birds can have parasites). We brought her over to a tree a ways off & she hopped up to a branch & flew away.

The question: Do you save the bird or let nature take its course?

7/28/09

Obamacare

TOP TEN INDICATORS THAT YOUR EMPLOYER HAS CHANGED TO OBAMACARE:

(10) Your annual breast exam is done at Hooters.

(9) Directions to your doctor's office include "Take a left when you enter
the trailer park."

(8) The tongue depressors taste faintly of Fudgesicles.

(7) The only proctologist in the plan is "Gus" from Roto-rooter.

(6) The only item listed under Preventative Care Coverage is “an apple a
day."

(5) Your primary care physician is wearing the pants you gave to Goodwill
last month.

(4) "The patient is responsible for 200% of out-of-network charges," is not
a typographical error.

(3) The only expense covered 100% is "embalming”.

(2) Your Prozac comes in different colors with little M's on them.

AND THE NUMBER ONE SIGN YOU'VE JOINED OBAMA’S HEALTH CARE PLAN:

(1) You ask for Viagra, and they give you a Popsicle stick and duct tape.

7/27/09

Deep Thoughts: Criminal Minds

For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.

***************************

If you have sex with a prostitute against her will, is it considered rape or shoplifting?

and.......

How important does a person have to be before they are considered assassinated instead of just murdered?

hmmmmmm

7/14/09

Geography Lesson

GEOGRAPHY OF A WOMAN
Between 18 and 22, a woman is like Africa. Half discovered,
half wild, fertile and naturally beautiful!

Between 23 and 30, a woman is like Europe. Well developed and
open to trade, especially for someone of real value.

Between 31 and 35, a woman is like Spain, very hot, relaxed and
convinced of her own beauty.

Between 36 and 40, a woman is like Greece, gently aging but
still a warm and desirable place to visit.

Between 41 and 50, a woman is like Great Britain, with a
glorious and all conquering past.

Between 51 and 60, a woman is like Israel, has been through
war, doesn't make the same mistakes twice, takes care of business.

Between 61 and 70, a woman is like Canada, self-preserving, but
open to meeting new people.

After 70, she becomes Tibet. Wildly beautiful, with a
mysterious past and the wisdom of the ages... An adventurous spirit
and a thirst for spiritual knowledge....


THE GEOGRAPHY OF A MAN
Between 1 and 80, a man is like Iran: ruled by nuts.

7/13/09

Deep Thoughts - Luxury Cars

For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.

**********************************

Luxury cars are soon to be a thing of the past if the current regime has it's way.

They have always been beyond my means but I took out a luxury car last week, just to drive that sucker.

The salesman sat in the back seat describing the car and options. The seats were of particular interest. He explained the seats directed warm air to your butt during the winter and directed cool air to your butt in the summer heat.

I couldn't resist: I stated the car must be a Republican car.


He asked; "Why do you say it is a Republican car?"

I explained if it were a democratic car the seats would blow smoke up your ass year 'round.

7/10/09

Deep thoughts - The Uh Oh.

For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.

***************************

We know that if you put lipstick on a pig it is still a pig. BUT......

If you put lipstick on a horse will Barak still kiss her goodnight? (maybe after he buys her a $6000 feedbag?)

7/8/09

In The Saddle

I've taken up a new hobby!

As you may have guessed from the title, it involves our equine friends. Miss Hammy owns two horses & knows how to ride English (English & Western being the two major disciplines). I think she knows Western but claims people who ride Western "don't know how to ride".

She started me off, bareback, on her quarter horse & we kept it at a walk. The next time out, I rode her Thoroughbred & we walked around the farm area (a mile, or so).

Last night, we worked our way up to trot - which reminds me: her boys are trained to respond to both physical AND verbal stimulus in English: If you say "trot", that's what you get, so be prepared. They were both patient horses & treated me pretty well. I still have to get used to showing a 1200lb animal that I'm in charge & my behind is a little sore, but I think a few weeks & I'll be up to a canter.

Right now, the trot is still jostling me a bit - I have to learn to relax - but I am getting better with my form & turning my head/shoulders with the horse.

It's fun stuff & maybe there will be pictures in the future!

7/1/09

Hap's Cross-Country Adventure

I departed last Tuesday (along with Miss Hammy, as the girlfriend will be called on this blog) for the People's Republic of California. She had an appointment out there last Friday & asked me to tag along. We drove...


***Queue "Holiday Road" from National Lampoon's Family Vacation***


After an interesting adventure (read: massive, catastrophic delay) just 30 miles before Las Vegas, we made it to California on Wednesday night.


I'll go over the details at a later date but now for the highlight of the little trip:


The Ronald Wilson Reagan Presidential Library!
(Apologies to Pam...I'm not a photographer on any level)




It really was an amazing place to visit. Because of an earlier delay, we didn't arrive until 3pm & the museum closes at 5pm but still, it was enough time to take in a well-designed library that pays tribute to the accomplishments of a great man.


Miss Hammy particularly loved this statue (by Veryl Goodnight) of stallions trampling over the ruins of the Berlin Wall. OK, mostly because she loves horses but there was a lot of excitement on her face on seeing it.



OK, I had to capture this pretty image!



The car governor Reagan traveled in while campaigning for president...OK, I'll forgive the fact it's a Ford.



The first image one sees walking into the museum.


OK, I've got at least 100 pictures to show & I'll throw a few posts up covering the whole experience. There is one picture to end this post that made the entire trip worth the time:


This is Ronald Reagan's burial site. I've read & been told that people can feel a tangible sense of evil in places where inhuman atrocities have taken place. Well, upon entering this small memorial, the feeling of calming peace wrapped itself around me. It was a beacon of good. All else that can be said is that the man's dedication to all that was best in America left a lasting impression at his place of rest on this earth.

Deep Thoughts: Waterboarding

For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.

***************************

I think I would rather undergo waterboarding than have nObama, Pelosi, Biden, & Reid.
Yeah I would certianly enjoy waterboarding more than suffer through the Qlueless Quad.

6/26/09

Where in the world is HAP?!?

I am not sure anyone noticed or not but Mr. Hap has been ...missing for a while.

As a joke a while back I sent him a Russian Mail Order Bride catalog.... no I didn't..... and neither did he.
He wanted me to tell you that he DID NOT GO TO ARGENTINA!!!

Last week Hap told me (paraphrased) that he may be going to just about the coolest place he's ever wanted to visit! He said it would be very likely that he will be there by the end of the week. He did not want to ruin the surprise for us all but we'll definitely agree this is one "must see" place in a lifetime.

So he is visiting someplace that most of our readers all want to visit at least once in their lifetimes. I will let your minds wander and please GUESS AWAY. (I got it in three guess ...four if you count one of my associates guessing another location incorrectly as well.)

Rest assured Hap will be back and with some stories and Pics of his gallivanting.

I can't wait! This is gonna be good!

Deep Thoughts: Green Electric Cars

For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.

***************************

Dumb question.

Did anyone stop to think of where we are going to dispose of all the batteries from these Electric Cars? Last I checked they were an environmental hazzard. Some one correct me if I am wrong. The gas powered vehicles are recycleable to the relatively small battery. These Hybrid cars rely more on their batteries than the gas cars. One would expect that in this Green World; batteries would be in higher demand and replaced more often requireing NON-ENVIONMENTAL FRIENDY waste.

Also Carbon Dioxide was something that was reversable. I don't know of anything that reverses Battery Acid into something useable.

I don't know.... the whole thing seems stupid to me. Weaker less effecient cars that do more harm than good replacing better but albeit stinkier cars.

Maria Belen Chapur

I have to wonder about the quality of Eye Care in Argentina and in South Carolina.


Gov. Sanford heads South of the Border in more ways than one and we get rumors of this mystery woman.


Rest assured as I have used my vast investigative resources and intelligence contacts we have hunted down this mystery woman know only as Maria Belen Chapur. But the quote from the media states: "A witness who works near her home described her to Buenos Aires Continental Radio as a beautiful brunette with big eyes who plays tennis on a nearby lawn and runs every morning in her neighborhood."


Like FoxNews States.


We'll Report You Decide.


Deep Thoughts: The King is Dead & Other Random Thoughts

For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.

***************************

The King is Dead. And sympathies to his family and family friends who were real friends not the moochers.

Okay I got that outta the way.
Random thoughts.....
Too much Jesus Juice? The Batteries ran out? Macaulay Culkin wouldn't take a collect call from him?

What ever the cause maybe the Environmentalists can rest easy. We can recycle 90% of him.

Something that is kind of puzzling .... With soooo many wax museums around the country with Jacko as featured display, why couldn't they find the spare parts? Were they already outdated models and incompatible with the Michael Jackson 9.5?
"We can rebuild him. We have the technology." and millions of spare parts.

It's sad really. Now Lady Gaga has to find another potential boyfriend. (That lady reminds me of a guy in drag. eiew.)

I see a conspiracy brewing too.... Heath Ledger played The Joker in one of the best roles of a bad guy yet. Truly one of my favorites. He dies last year. This year the guy who emulated The Joker in real life dies........ I am really concerned.... How is Jack Nicholson doing????

6/11/09

Horse Sense

SEGUIN, TEXAS...

A man is sitting in a bar far from home when Barack Obama comes on TV. The man looks at the TV and says, "Obama is a horse's ass." Out of nowhere, a local jumps up and punches him in the face, knocking the first guy off his bar stool, then stomps out.

He gets up, rubbing his cheek and orders another beer. Shortly after, Michelle Obama appears on the TV. He looks at the TV and says, "She is a horse's ass too!"

Out of nowhere, another local punches him on the other side of the face, knocking him off his bar stool again.

He gets back up and looks at the bartender, "I take it this is Obama country?"

"Nope." replies the bartender. "Horse country."

6/10/09

Dumb Liberal Humor

A man was sent to Hell for his sins. As he was being taken to the place of eternal torment, he saw a democrat making passionate love to a beautiful woman.
"What a ripoff," the man muttered. "I have to roast for all eternity and that democrat gets to spend it with a beautiful woman."
Jabbing the man with his pitchfork, the escorting demon snarled, "Who are you to question that woman's punnishment?"

****
A woman and her little girl were visiting the grave of the little girl's grandmother. On the way back to through the cemetary back to the car, the little girl asked, "Mommy, do they ever bury two people in the same grave?"
"Of course not, dear," replied the mother. "Why would you think that?"
"The tombstone back there said "Here lies a democrat and an honest man."

****
You are trapped in a room with a tiger, a rattlesnake, and a democrat. You have a gun with two bullets. What do you do?

Shoot the democrat. Twice.

****
Hear about the terrorist that hijacked a 747 full of democrats?

He threatened to release one every hour if his demands wern't met.


:)

5/30/09

Nothing To Prove

OK, I know that some high school kids have precious little to do this time of year. School is getting out, they're hanging out with friends & their little hormone-driven frames just need to prove something. For that last part, I now have some advice:

Think about the person you choose to make your point.

My date & I were walking to grab a sandwich at the local Hardee's last night & just having a nice conversation when we saw six kids - two guys, four girls - hanging out at the corner by the restaurant. Now, that's not a completely unusual sight but something seemed a bit off about one of them. He started walking our way & intentionally kept to the middle of the side walk - guaranteeing I'd either have to move out of the way or butt shoulders with him.

Not being a simple thug, I chose the former. This little punk had one thing - starting a confrontation - and darned if I was going to give it to him. As we walked past, I gave his buddy a bit of a look to let him know these two people weren't an easy target & he definitely kept his distance. Obviously, doofus #1 didn't see that glare & turned around to come right up behind us. He was certainly trying to impress his friends & meant to "look big" at our expense.

We walked off without incident.

However, I'd like to say that this 16 or 17 year-old really did get lucky. Had he started something when I was alone, there's really not much of a problem: I'd get out of there as soon as I could - since there would be little sympathy for an adult with two black belts fighting off a common thug/kid. Being with a lady, the situation changes dramatically. Had he attacked, I'm now defending someone else. Nothing would have mattered other than getting her out of there safe & I would have ruined this dumbass to do it.

For you simple hooligans out there who think playing around like this is fun, just consider with whom you're messing. They may have skills in fighting/self-defense & not be so willing to avoid confrontation. Not to toot my own horn (I hope what I know never has to come out) but had this moron started something last night, I'd probably be asking someone to bail me out instead of typing this blog post.

5/29/09

Deep Thoughts: The nObama Official Number

For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.

***************************

The President nObama has earned himself the first official Number of a President. A Symbol of his presidency.

#34

I think it is fitting. From now on we can refer to the President nObama as Number Thrity-Four.

Hap do you think that they will get it? Hint: Clinton would have to be #81.

Bad Break

Literally.

We had 3 people testing in HKD this week: One for red belt, one for green belt & one for yellow belt. The good news is all of them passed.

The bad news is that one of them (testing for red belt) suffered a broken radial bone in his right arm that could not be set at a local doctor's office & had to wait until the next morning. He's a tough kid of 17 years & there's no doubt he'll be fine. This guy can hang with me in most situations & he's giving up at least 50lbs...so yeah, he can hold his own.

We have a final drill in every test that we call the "Circle of Death". This is very much a tongue-in-cheek thing & consists of the four most senior belts standing at the corners of the mats & attacking the defender in succession. There's no break in between attackers & the adrenaline gets pumping. Unfortunately, this is where the break happened.

Now, I've talked to the guy ("green") who did the breaking & let him know he didn't do anything wrong: HKD is a rough & tumble art (I've got a chipped tooth to prove it) that brings about injuries. There was no malicious intent & he simply went faster than expected when taking "red" down. "Green" does great at this art & needs to know that these things will rattle someone...to which I shared with him my story of being rattled once.

I was also an orange belt, over 5 years ago, and we were working on throws. The particular technique is called the "One-Step Throw" & can really send the attacker flying for distance. Now, when we do this sort of throw with someone of a low rank (below brown belt), it's customary to let them know what we're planning to do. It helps avoid accidents (in theory).

So, a young lady who was also an orange belt (all of 15, I think) was the "attacker" & I let her know we were going to do the one-step throw. Upon her acknowledging this, I repeated the name of the technique, did a couple of set-ups & then did a "ki-hap" to let her know I was ready to go. She did the same & I performed a breakaway from her grab, stepped deep & turned around to step for the throw.

She whipped forward & didn't tuck her head down for the rolling fall that was supposed to happen. Literally, time seemed to hold its breath as she bounced once on the mats (thankfully very cushioned) & lay there for a second - it seemed like much longer - crumpled in a heap.

My first thought was, "Oh my God! I just killed this poor girl because I did something wrong!". My instructor (who is still my instructor), came up to me after seeing what happened & noticed how upset I was. He simply & calmly asked if I told her what technique was going to happen. When I replied that, yes, she did know & we had done a couple set-ups, he replied plainly that she failed to roll properly & it wasn't my fault in any way.

The most important part, however, is that she was perfectly fine. Stunned a bit, but no worse for wear & completely understanding that she didn't roll properly. To be honest, I was just happy she was OK.

So, as I was telling "green", I know what it's like to be rattled to the core & feel like you've done a horrible thing. While knowing you didn't mean any harm may not help, we all assume the same risk coming into that class. "Red" knew that as well as anyone & there's no doubt in my mind he'll be just fine. "Green" is a spectacular student & I know he'll bounce back from this.

5/25/09

Martial Law

Patti of Good Googledy Moogledies commented on a recent post where she asked:
"Have any advice that might help a mom who'd like to let her boy explore what [martial art] he is interested in, but in an environment that is productive to the boy - not just the instructor's bottom line?"

Choosing a martial arts school can seem complicated: Tuition costs, uniforms, extra equipment, etc. are only a few of the thoughts that will run through your head when trying to choose a school. Honestly, though, the above concerns aren't the most important. Ultimately, the concern is finding a martial art & school you enjoy.

With that in mind, here are Hap's recommendations for finding a martial arts school:
1) Style: What does the school teach? This is what the student will study & it needs to match what you want out of a martial art. Do you want self-defense? Jeet Kun Do or Hap Ki Do are great...Tae Kwon Do or Karate aren't for you in this case. I'll offer more suggestions at the end of the post.

2) Location/Facility: Try to find a close school with clean, organized facilities. Traveling for an hour, unless the student is exceptionally dedicated to the art, is not practical. Facilities should be appropriate for the art (i.e. - clean, spacious mats for Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu or high ceilings with clean, smooth floors for Tae Kwon Do). Fancy equipment is often expensive & schools generally are in this for profit. That means the students are paying for what you see. That's not necessarily a bad thing...just keep it in mind.

3) Contracts: This also includes tuition costs. There is ZERO need to sign a contract, in my opinion. The school should either bill by the lesson or by the month. Just because "you get what you pay for" is a popular adage doesn't mean it's entirely true. A good school won't break the bank. In fact, I'd be suspect of any school that charges over $80/month (major cities may cost more). My instructor charges far less, though teaching is not how he earns his living.

Any school worth your time will let a prospective student try out a lesson or two for free AND will answer all questions honestly.

4) Equipment: Can you purchase your own or must you buy from the school? The latter often means marked-up prices. Depending on the art, there may be a lot of equipment to purchase & purchasing from a distributor such as Century can often be less expensive than buying from the school. A school can determine the dress code of students & the students should be allowed to obtain that equipment by the most cost-effective means.

With those basics out of the way, here are some questions I'd ask based on experience:
(If you don't get a straight answer on any of the below, just leave the school)
1) How many years have you practiced AND taught in [martial art]?

2) What is the core philosophy of the school (sparring, self-defense, discipline, competition, etc.)?

3) How much is tuition? Are testing fees included in this price? If not, what are the testing fees for each level & for what (exactly) does the testing fee pay (boards, new belt, certificate, instructor time)? I'm personally against the instructor charging a large test fee for his/her "time". That should be part of the tuition, not test. The testing is the student's time!

4) Are there any age restrictions for rank? Unfortunately, some schools will promote based only on time-in-rank & not consider age. Remember that rank is a combination of skill, effort, time and maturity. The belt is basically a measuring stick for progress. By itself, the belt keeps your pants up - it does not determine actual ability or dedication to the art.

There are plenty of other questions that may be asked. If anyone comes up with any, I am always available to answer them. Please feel free to e-mail me (e-mail link is at the top of the site) if something is on your mind.

Now, for a quick summary of martial arts. These are arts to which I have been exposed but do not necessarily have a rank:
1) Hapkido (2nd Degree): My first martial art & the other love in my life (besides God, Country & Family). Hapkido focuses largely on joint locks, balance disruption & minor striking elements. The main focus is to prevent/deter an attack & strongly discourage the attacker from pursuing another assault. It is a difficult art to learn but exceptionally difficult to counter in its primary application: Self-Defense.

2) Taekwondo (2nd Degree): A striking art that utilizes snapping kicks (70%) & hand strikes (30%). It is an art in the sense of patterns (kata, poomse) to learn & an entire philosophy permeating every aspect of the discipline. This is a very popular art across America for families & children as one major focus for schools is to instill discipline in students. There are also more "acrobatic" kicks & techniques that make for good demonstration, competition & sparring.

3) Arnis (Level 2 of 10): An overly-simplified summary of this art is "stick fighting". More accurately, it is close-quarters self-defense with a combative edge to the art. The stick & knife techniques supplement Hapkido's joint locks with practical weaponry. Still, the art easily stands on its own in terms of self-defense & adaptability.

4) Jeet Kun Do (No Rank): The art founded by the late Bruce Lee, JKD is simplicity in self-defense. It borrows elements from various Chinese styles & offers discipline along with self-confidence. If there were a place to start in martial arts, this would probably be the best. A student can get in shape while learning valuable skills.

5) Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (No Rank): A grappling art, the traditional form founded by the Gracies is renowned for revolutionizing Mixed Martial Arts & gave us organizations such as the UFC. BJJ deals largely with ground fighting applications & utilizes chokes, holds & joint manipulation to submit or render an opponent unconscious. There are "street" applications of this art that focus on self-defense but I am wary of any art that takes an attack to the ground. The focus of self-defense is to get out of the situation, not prolong it on the floor (That is just my opinion).

5/24/09

"Taken" Review

***Minimal Spoilers - Ending NOT Revealed***

Summary: Don't mess around with daddy's little girl!!!

This was honestly an excellent movie from start to finish. Liam Neeson (a spectacular actor)plays a former government agent whose teenage daughter is abducted by a kidnapping ring in Paris, France. What results is the most one-sided kicking of criminal @$$ that I have ever been proud to see.

Neeson's character is resourceful & he stops at no moral end to gain information towards locating his missing progeny. In this way, the movie is exceptionally believable: no matter how brutal the actions of the protagonist, you always know his behavior brings him productively closer to finding his baby girl. He's a father protecting his child & Heaven have mercy on anyone in his way...

From a martial arts perspective, the film is a complete thrill. There's ZERO over-the-top flippy kicks & stunts. My best guess is he employs Krav Maga (or Commando Krav Maga) in most of his "dealings" with the animals in the kidnapping ring. It's an exceptional style that suits the subject material perfectly & the brutality of the techniques is a mirror into the soul of a fearsome, angered father. At no point can you doubt how the movie will end.

If you want to see a great movie, don't even glance elsewhere. Taken will hold you from start to finish & the conflict resolution, much like the father's morals, is absolute.

Memorial Day

As we enjoy a long weekend with our families & friends, please, let us all remember there are many men & women who have served this great nation who can only look down from Heaven & hope for one more moment, one more day or even one more word to the ones for whom they sacrificed everything. Keep in mind that we have to live for them - appreciate their courage & commitment to a grateful nation - and be thankful every day we bask in the glowing freedom each service member has provided.

Freedom is not free. The price paid, so terrible to those who have lost soldiers; Marines; airmen or sailors, guarantees we can wake up every day in a land that is free & strong in the face of adversity. Every morning all of us can look at our beautiful Flag & know that that day we awoke as a free people.

Honor these brave men & women for their memories truly deserve the very best we Americans have to offer.

5/22/09

The Highest Order

A compliment of, that is.

At our most recent test in TKD, we had a pretty lousy showing. I couldn't believe how poorly many of them did - it's like most of the students just didn't want to try. Even the most recent student of the month did terrible. Frustrating, just frustrating.

Fortunately, the adults who tested did a decent job. One student in particular did a spectacular job even though he's a white belt. Now, he's also an advanced student in Arnis & can really handle himself, so it's not like we're talking about a completely new-to-martial-arts student here.

In any event, I was the one judging him & even his terminology was excellent. He was straight-forward in his answers & demonstrated complete knowledge of the material. Afterwards, he came up to me & mentioned that he started TKD to work with his young daughter & decided to stick with it because he was impressed with how precise & strong my kicks & strikes are.

This, coming from a man who could whip me in a no-holds-barred fight in about 30 seconds! It's a great compliment & one that will only encourage me to work harder so the example set is the best possible.

5/20/09

Deep Thoughts - CAFE Standards

For those days when there is nothing better to do than to ponder through musings of a twisted mind.

***************************

Can we impose CAFE standards on Congress?

$$ per mile of performance?

The fines we would get back from Congress would pay for nObama's StimU-Less Bill.

5/19/09

WARNING!!!!!

WARNING WARNING WARNING WARNING

If you get an e-mail titled
"nude photos of Sarah Palin,"
DON'T OPEN IT!
...It could contain a virus.

If you get an e-mail titled
"nude photos of Nancy Pelosi,"
DON'T OPEN IT!
It could contain nude photos of Nancy Pelosi!

5/17/09

Lesson Of The Day

An old prospector shuffled into town leading an old tired mule. The old man headed straight for the only saloon in town to clear his parched throat.

He walked up to the saloon and tied his old mule to the hitch rail. As he stood there brushing some of the dust from his face and clothes, a young gunslinger stepped out of the saloon with a gun in one hand and a bottle of whiskey in the other.

The young gunslinger looked at the old man and laughed, saying, 'Hey old man, have you ever danced?'

The old man looked up at the gunslinger and said, 'No, I never did dance and just never wanted to.'

A crowd had gathered quickly and the gun slinger grinned and said, 'Well, you old fool, you're gonna dance now' and started shooting at the old man's feet. The old prospector in order to not get a toe blown off or his boots perforated was soon hopping around like a flea on a hot skillet and everybody was laughing fit to be tied.

When the last bullet had been fired the young gunslinger, still laughing, holstered his gun and turned around to go back into the saloon. The old man turned to his pack mule, pulled out a double barreled shotgun, and cocked both hammers back. The loud, audible, double clicks carried clearly through the desert air. The crowd stopped laughing immediately.

The young gunslinger heard the sounds, too, and he turned around very slowly. The quiet was almost deafening. The crowd watched as the young gunman stared at the old timer and the large gaping holes of those twin barrels. He found it hard to swallow. The barrels of the shotgun never wavered in the old man's hands.

The old man said, 'Son, did you ever kiss a mule's ass?' The boy bully swallowed hard and said, 'No. But I've always wanted to.'

There are two lessons for us all here:
1. Don't waste ammunition.

2. Don't mess with old people.

5/16/09

Meme for Me? Me!

Harvey of Bad Example tagged me on a recent (under 1 year old) meme and, being the obliging blog-groupie that I am, here's the skinny:

Rules:
1) Post the rules on your blog.
2) Tell 5 random things about yourself.
3) Tag 3 people at the end of your post.
4) Pass on the tag.

5 Random Facts
1) Every time I talk with my parents, I can feel some sense of their disappointment & wish I had made more of my life.

2) The scar on my head (from the surgery) reminds me both of how strong & how fragile we all are.

3) "A Bit of Fry & Laurie" is one of my favorite shows.

4) I've wanted to move to South Carolina for over a year. Now that it's close to that time, I'm scared to death of what my life will be like.

5) I will worry constantly about my screw-ups in some odd hope that worrying will fix the problem when there's nothing I can actively do.


Now the taggees:
1) Mrs. Who of House of Zathras
2) Pam of pamibe
3) Patti of Good Googledy Moogledies

Sorry, Guys

Well, I have to give myself credit: at least I made it 1 week into dating again without screwing up.

Of course, I had to be typical over-thinking me after that time & sentence myself to probably at least another 2 1/2 years without a social life.

Some advice: when you know in your heart of hearts that you are meant to be alone for the entirety of your life, don't drag someone in hoping for a miracle - just accept it & lower the risk of one more person getting hurt.

She's a nice lady & I wish her the best - she deserves an actual man.

***Update***
OK, you can upgrade me from "dumbass" to "dork". As usual, I was worried about more than the actual problem.

Turns out, she was concerned that I was trying to push her out of my life (which would be phenomenally fast for me - considering this pretty girl has hardly been given the time to be in my life). We talked a bit yesterday & kind of resolved the concern - which is good being that I really do like this lady. Maybe we both freaked out a little because hitting things off so well is odd for me & the same for her.

Mrs. Who: Sorry about the "actual man" comment. Reading that, for a friend who treats me with the respect you do, must have been a slap in the face. Can I blame it on the former hole in my head just this once? PLEEEEEAAAAAASSSSSSE???

5/12/09

One should becareful about blindly passing legislation.

This was emailed to me and I find it fascinating. ...Probably not nice to put right after the Happy Mother's Day Blog... but..

(Note to self: CALL MOM! You dummy you forgot.)



I digress.... Where was I ... Oh yes. This IS fascinating.

Be sure to read the final paragraph; your understanding of it will depend on the earlier part of the content.



The US standard railroad gauge (distance between the rails) is 4 feet, 8.5 inches. That's an exceedingly odd number.

Why was that gauge used? Because that's the way they built them in England, and English expatriates built the US railroads.

Why did the English build them like that? Because the first rail lines were built by the same people who built the pre-railroad tramways, and that's the gauge they used.

Why did 'they' use that gauge then? Because the people who built the tramways used the same jigs and tools that they used for building wagons, which used that wheel spacing.

Why did the wagons have that particular odd wheel spacing? Well, if they tried to use any other spacing, the wagon wheels would break on some of the old, long distance roads in England , because that's the spacing of the wheel ruts.

So who built those old rutted roads? Imperial Romebuilt the first long distance roads in Europe (and England ) for their legions. The roads have been used ever since.

And the ruts in the roads? Roman war chariots formed the initial ruts, which everyone else had to match for fear of destroying their wagon wheels.
Since the chariots were made for Imperial Rome , they were all alike in the matter of wheel spacing. Therefore the United States standard railroad gauge of 4 feet, 8.5 inches is derived from the original specifications for an Imperial Roman war chariot.. Bureaucracies live forever.

So the next time you are handed a specification/procedure/process and wonder 'What horse's ass came up with it?', you may be exactly right.
Imperial Roman army chariots were made just wide enough to accommodate the rear ends of two war horses. (Two horse's asses.)

Now, the twist to the story:

When you see a Space Shuttle sitting on its launch pad, there are two big booster rockets attached to the sides of the main fuel tank. These are solid rocket boosters, or SRB's. The SRB's are made by Thiokol at their factory in Utah. The engineers who designed the SRB's would have preferred to make them a bit fatter, but the SRB's had to be shipped by train from the factory to the launch site. The railroad line from the factory happens to run through a tunnel in the mountains, and the SRB's had to fit through that tunnel. The tunnel is slightly wider than the railroad track, and the railroad track, as you now know, is about as wide as two horses' behinds.

So, a major Space Shuttle design feature of what is arguably the world's most advanced transportation system was determined over two thousand years ago by the width of a horse's ass. And you thought being a horse's ass wasn't important? Ancient horse's asses controlled almost everything.

5/10/09

Happy Mothers' Day!

To all you mothers out there who make this a better, brighter & funnier place in which to live, thank you & have a great day - you've earned it!

All of you have a thankless job whether you stay at home or split work at home with a career. As a former kid I can tell you from experience that the little devils we are sometimes will drive you crazy but we sons & daughters love our Mothers.

Have a beautiful & blessed Mothers' Day!

As my gift to you, tell your families to make sure the house is clean, Mom gets to do what she wants (or doesn't want) to do & everyone tell her how much she makes your world a better place...or Hap will give them a free "lesson". :-)

5/9/09

Relativity

"Relativity: Put your hand on a hot stove & a second can feel like an hour. Put your hands on a hot woman & an hour can feel like a second" - LL Cool J, Deep Blue Sea

Well, Hap finally made a change - he went out on a date for the first time in 2 1/2 years. Honestly, the young lady I was so fortunate to attend for the evening began the pursuit, so I can hardly say it was my idea.

Imagine, if you will, the perfect evening: dinner in a quiet, calm, softly-lit Italian restaurant; gradually moving over to the lounge area with its cozy couches, light oldies playing in the background; relaxed & talking the entire night away until the place closes at 2am. You know, just getting to know someone & doing so in complete comfort.

It sounds like something from a great romantic comedy - too good to be true. But this "perfect" evening actually happened last night.

Now, I don't know if she reads my blog but even if I KNEW she didn't, Hap makes every effort to be a gentleman, so there will be no confirmation or denial about romance save my saying that I'm attracted to AND respect this woman, so a perfect first date is the perfect introduction, not a scene from a trashy romance novel.

The problems I find now are these:
1) I was laid off from my job. Yes, I have money but still feel embarrassed to tell this lady that I'm unemployed. There's no good reason, I just feel awkward.

2) I want to move to South Carolina, planned to do so & planned to tell her up-front but now, selfishly, I'm thinking there's no harm in staying longer to get to know her & wonder if that means my integrity is lacking for changing my mind. (For the record, she knows I want to live in SC).

Beyond any issues my mind can dream up, this woman is a smart, passionate (driven to succeed, fellas), former Marine with red hair, blue eyes & a smile that could melt a glacier. I even was comfortable enough to let her feel the scar on my head & explain the surgery. To say this impressive gal has qualities I appreciate is to say Elvis dressed a just little flashy in the 70s...

Why, oh why, did someone come along right when all the biggest changes started happening in my life? I have to wonder if it's a blessing or another case where I have horrible timing & it'll all go "bye bye" in a snap? Obviously, I'm praying for the blessing but don't know if I've done anything so well to deserve that.

5/6/09

Defining




5/1/09

The Coffee Cup Conspiracy

As promised the little known "Great Coffee Cup Conspiracy."








Not too long ago a think tank made up of coffee experts mainly consumers with not much else to think about but more than Liberals and Progressives ususally do in a lifetime, were sitting and enjoying their daily cup of joe when one of the cups was turned horizontal unintentionally thus spilling the contents upon themself. It was this instant when the deep realization of the gravity of the Great Coffee Cup Conspiracy.

The Spiller, we'll call him Bill, not because it rhymes with spill, but because Bill is his real name. Anyway Bill, slightly agitated that he not only lost his morning beverage and would have to go back to get another because who would want to live through a morning with out that addiction fix.? He left mumbling at how much the cup of coffee was actually costing him when he included his wardrobe costs. I think it was all of $30. When he arrived at the coffee pot he discovered that someone had taken the last of the pot and did not make any more. Is there anything more infuriating? So he proceeded to brew another pot. I and the others joined him in the break room because I was out already and Chris's coffee was cold. I mentioned to Bill that this was a huge waste of money. We all agreed and we came up with the following points for the Great Coffee Conspiracy.
  1. The beverage of and by itself is hugely addictive. You just cannot go by too long without a fix. It has to be more addictive than non-conventional narcotics.
  2. It is brewed too hot to drink so one has to wait before taking the first sips. This adds to the enticement and makes it that much more irresistable.
  3. If spilled .... it stains like none other. We are thinking that the textile manufacturers and clothing manufacturers had something to do with the incompatibility with these two addictions. The need for coffee and the need for clothes. We accepted that the second addiction was not exactly an addiction but more of a social decency. Especially in some cases.
  4. Look at the cup. The very design of the cup lends it self to more consumption of an already irresistable addiction. It is bigger on top and open. Heat rises and the cooling surface of the cup creates a temperature reduction cycle that the very design of the cup accelerates. What happens when the coffee gets cold? As Chris did: he dumped it out and got another cup.
  5. The design of the cup is also top heavy, and as Bill experienced, has a very major tendency to turn 90 degrees. No one ever saw a coffee cup right itself. No no that would be counter productive to the selling of more coffee (and clothes).
  6. If coffee is left for too long (which seems like not very long) on a warmer then it burns and it needs to be thrown out and another pot created.
  7. Drinking coffee has become a traditional begining and ending to the day. It is the first bevarage of the morning to wake up and is offered by eating establishments (they are a big part of the conspiracy) for an "after dinner drink."
  8. It is rather inexpensive and readilly available. Often free. Hmmm $1.25 for a Pepsi or a Free coffee? Well twist my conservative arm.

Coffee is one of those things that is pushed on us as a society and we get hooked and are now dependant to the mercy of the growers of the bean. What would happen if Columbia decided to quit exporting thier brown gold? This country and I imagine several others would revolt! We would invade Columbia like they were the fourth axel of evil. Can you imagine if Coffee were taxed like cigarettes? nObama would have a surplus budget. (Sorry. I just couldn't do a whole blog without at least two shots at him.)

Those were all the angles I could think of on short notice I think I missed a couple. Feel free to ponder the Great Coffee Conspiracy and enlighten us with your angles on this menace to mankind. In the mean time I got to refill my cup. It's kind of dry.

See you in the break room.

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